Summer Steelhead are showing up a bit late this year due to lower Big Lake temps for this time of year. Things are in full swing at IN’s most famous Skamania Creek as I post. Skams started to move into the Joe in late July and I made a trip 2 weeks ago with Jim and we saw plenty of fish moving upstream, but they showed very little interest in biting due to low water and increasing temps. This has been a very mild Summer and the Skam fishing should be great if the trend continues, only we need some rain. I’m determined to see how the tributary fishing is this weekend for Skams if the weather cooperates but it looks sketchy at the moment.
After being defeated by the Skams last week I decided to head to the bushy Summer Driftless to see how the hopper fishing was. Nothing boosts your confidence like taking fish on large top water patterns. Turns out the hopper fishing is behind too due to cooler weather. They were around but not ubiquitous and jumping all over in plague like quantities. I probably fished a few different hopper patterns for 2 hours and had 3 misses. Luckily, the Driftless is very forgiving and I had no problem picking up fish casting size 16’s to the heads of pools. The first brown I landed was quite the specimen. I will definitely come back in a few weeks with a hopper/dropper setup and it should be great fun.