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Midge Magic

I have fly fished now for over 55 years. I have experienced and forgotten many special times on the water. But this fall I had one I'll share with you. It was mid-September, the time when the brookies begin to congregate at the inlets of the rivers waiting for the right conditions to return to their spawning grounds. It was first light with fog hanging over the water. I was alone in a place which in the coming days would attract a crowd. I came with one rod rigged with a sinking line and another with a floating line just in case there might be some rising fish. I started casting the sinking line, letting it sink deep before retrieving. It wasn’t long before I noticed a fish rise and take a midge off the surface, then another, and another. I put down my sinking rig and strung up my dry fly rod. I checked the leader, added some light tippet, and tied on my favorite midge emerger fly. On the first cast I caught a small brookie as larger heads started to break the surface of the water and gently feed on midges. For the next hour I caught and released many colorful brookies up to 17”. As the sun burned off the thin layer of fog, the feeding frenzy stopped as quickly as it had begun.
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