The (Big Timber) Boulder River is wide awake, and not just down low. I decided to head over there after seeing that temperatures had reached about 54 degrees at Big Timber already - it was my best shot at some blue-winged olives. But instead of staying low and maybe catching some mayflies and run-up rainbows, I decided to fish new water at the Boulder Forks FAS, which was good because I was able to fish the West Boulder for the first time.
Both rivers are absolutely stunning, with gin-clear water in beautiful settings. A fresh coat of powder made the scene all the more gorgeous. It was the warmest 32 degress I've felt in a long time, and the wind was minimal. Peace and trout.
Both the mainstem and the West Boulder were fishing - small fish in small pockets on the West, bigger fish in nicer runs on the main (appar- ently, the West de-iced only a couple weeks ago). I managed to bring a 19-inch rainbow to hand - a nice stepping stone on my way to filling Brady's shoes on Fridays.
Hopefully I'll have a chance to get better at holding fish for grip-n-grins (and more creative in shooting them). It doesn't make it any easier when you have to set the timer, balance the camera on a rock and hope it's in focus. At least it validates my claim.
For the third week in a row there were good numbers of winter stoneflies - I've seen more in the past three weeks than I thought existed in the world.
I wouldn't mind getting back over there before long - but we have other fish to fry (so to speak). Stillwater River, anyone?