On Monday the water level was perfect. The temperature was right. And the flow looked good. From the bank one or two fish could be seen in the flats above the riffle. A single angler fished the far side of the run. I waded out wondering whether these two fish represented the end of the spring run on the Rocky River.
The calendar said the run should be over, but our long, cold spring had me hoping for an extended season. With a week of sun and 70s ahead, my guess was this was the end; at least on the Rocky. Undoubtedly fish would still be found, particularly on the Grand. The behavior of the two fish told me the end was here. They didn't move for the swung fly. Instead they dropped back, heading for the lake...the reverse commute was on.
Truth be told, I am ready for the season to be over. Sure, I could be talked into a trip to the Grand if the reports are promising. But I've had a good season. I wish the conditions would have been better to introduce a few more newbies to this amazing fishery. But the last few springs have not featured the thick runs of years past. (Yes, it's never as good as it used to be.) But I helped one friend land his first steelhead. And that will have to be good enough.
Now it's time to organize the gear, throw out some stuff and start tying up flies for the fall. Steelhead season is only four months away.