The Dog Days

August is always an interesting month in Wisconsin.  The days can be warm but the evenings can often have you looking for long sleeve shirts or a pair of pants.  In short it is my favorite time of year.  The fishing can be a little tougher this time of year because the water can get quite low and very clear causing the weed growth to cover many of the shallow flats along the river.  This may cause havoc with your fly on occasions but it also sets up an interesting little ecosystem where bugs and fish meet.  Due to the substantial weed growth in the river the Menominee has a tremendous dragonfly and damselfly population.  As you are anchored up or even while floating down the river you can see the adult stage of these insects flying and landing everywhere.  This means that on these flats and in the pools below riffles these bugs are on the fish’s radar.  It is fun to switch over to these small flies and watch big bass take them in like a brown trout on a spring creek.  Casting damselfly fly patterns and small poppers on the edge and in the pockets of the weed beds can bring up normally weary fish on bright sunny days.  Faster cooler water in and below rapids can also be great spots during the dog days of August to find some nicer fish.  I really enjoy hopping out of the boat in the now shallow water and wading around in search of ambushing smallmouth in the pocket water of rapids.  The fish that reside in this water know how to use the current to their advantage so if they grab your fly prepare for an intense fight.rivers end hyde drift boat on the menominee river in wisconsindamselfly by smallmouth river in northern wisconsinlate summer low water on the menominee river fly fishing smallmouth basssmallmouth being released after being caugh fly fishing on the menominee river in wisconsin

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