Throughout the western U.S. rivers will be experiencing some of the best caddis fishing in the next few weeks due to the appropriately named mother’s day caddis hatch. Growing up on the Yakima River I have witnessed the caddis extravaganza first hand. I am talking about caddis so thick that if you are a mouth breather you probably don’t need to pack a lunch. So thick it looks like the river has dandruff.
It’s a fly fisherman’s dream: millions of bugs on the water and large trout rolling on the surface like hungry piranhas. In theory, it should be easy to catch one of these gluttonous fish, but it proves to be quite a challenge, a real numbers game. The odds of getting your caddis dry fly noticed by a large trout can seem like winning the lottery; however with some slight fly differentiation and some excellent fly placement it can be done.
The only other option is to go sub-surface; I am talking about nymphing or using a soft hackle fly. I know it seems counterintuitive to go deep when there are so many fish rising and bugs on the water but sometimes this is the best way to get your fly noticed. Good luck and don’t forget to tell your mother that you love her!
Life cycle of the caddisfly
The ultimate reference book: Caddisflies by Gary LaFontaine