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  • Jay Walden

Mid December

The smallest feature that a human finger can distinguish by static touch is about .2 mm, about twice the diameter of a human eyelash—pretty amazing. I have a Scottish heritage, so I rebuild a lot of my leaders rather than buying a new one each time I go out, and sometimes I've got a lot of blood-knotted sections in there and it's hard to remember from one fishing session to the next if I ended up with a piece of 6x or 7x tippet, or if it was dark when I broke off and just said, "screw it." Most of the time I tell myself that I can actually see or feel the difference, but science doesn't back me up on that. Truth be known, I'm actually not always that sure, and it really depends on how lazy I am and whether I want to clip off the old piece and start over again or just get on with the fishing part and change it if I start getting refusals. The difference in the diameter between the two is about .025 mm, (6x is around .127 and 7x, .102)— out of my realm, where static touch is concerned. I can't even feel it, why should I think that a trout could even see that from underneath the water, especially when it's moving? Yet they can, and do. I know that, because I've observed it, time and again. These are some amazing creatures. If you thought that the sensitivity of human touch was something, consider the eyesight of a trout that can distinguish a size 26 from a size 24 fly that is rushing by at mach 2, under 8 feet of water where the light is not so good, or detect the difference of .025 mm in the diameter of the tippet attached to your dry fly. No wonder they drive me completely nuts, sometimes. For all you doubters of the 7x for your tiny dries on the San Juan, I write this for you. Anyway, I guess you're wondering about how the fishing has been, so I better get on with that. First of all, the flow is around 320 cfs and the water is still clear. There are good midge hatches throughout the larger part of the day, with a smattering of BWOs in the afternoon, but I've had better results just sticking to midge patterns for the drys. The nymphing is good with small midge patterns and a mix of baetis if you're fishing from Texas Hole and below. Once the water warms a bit and the fish become more active on emergers and adults, you should switch over to dries or short- rig up some emerger patterns to get yourself down into just that top layer of water. The big news for this week will be the weather—it's not likely to break the freezing mark for a high, until Saturday, so if you plan on fishing the earlier part of the week, you better show up here with your big-boy pants on. I also saw some single digit lows, like 1 degree on Wednesday night, so there you go. I think I'll stay in and see what Amazon's got going on, I still have a few Christmas gifts to buy. If you can hack the cold, your fishing will most likely be good and ,for sure, you're not going to have to worry about crowds—we've still got clear water and the window is, no doubt narrowing on that, especially with this cold snap. If you would like to book a guided trip or need more info, give us a call at 505-632-2194.

Jay's Fishing Reports

Books by
Jay Walden
Can be purchased on Amazon or in our fly shop.

Jay's Fishing Report  

To our faithful fishing report readers, 

Here's a way to get your rainbow trout fix 'til you are able to hit the San Juan again-- available online only

Check each style out--there are a variety of colors, fabrics & sizes to enjoy.

Special thanks to designer & artist, Matt Zudweg 

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As a small aside and attempt at shameless self-promotion, there was an article featured  on Flyfisherman Magazine's website written by yours truly about the 60th anniversary of Abe's Fly Shop that can be accessed through the following link: Abe's Anniversary. Hope you can make it out this week. If you would like more information or would like to book a guided trip, give us a call at 505-632-2194. 

Abe's Fly Shop Turns 60 -

Watercolor by Tim Oliver                                          Photos Courtesy of Abe Chavez


Jay's Past Reports:  

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