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River Report - June 21, 2018

The Old Au Sable Fly Shop Fishing Report
It is the stuff of legend and lore.  Anglers from all over the world descend on our little corner of trout greatness to take part in a trout fishing event unrivaled in the rivers of North America.  An insect hatch so enormous that it shows up on satellite radar—it can literally be seen from space.  The Hex hatch is well underway on the Au Sable River here in Northern Michigan.

It’s a time of fortune and folly.  Many anglers will bring to hand huge trout that make an angler’s career.  Other will have fabulous stories of explosive takes and screaming runs and, ultimately, of the one that got away.  Oftentimes, those stories last even longer than the faded Polaroids of fat-bellied browns and grinning anglers.

Hex time gathers fishing buddies and families in fishing camps along the river.  Some folks only make it to Crawford County just this one time of the year to partake in the big fly fever and reunite.  Nothing quite like sharing a log with a friend as evening falls and hopes of trout rise.  You’ll hear lots of laughing in the dark on the Au Sable.  The fraternity of fishermen here is a fine group of humans.

There will be lots of late nights and lots of bleary-eyed fly fishermen haunting the shops in the mornings and the darkest corners of the rivers at midnight.  Stories will be long and detailed and the pace will be frenzied.  This is the week.  The bins will get picked clean of over-sized mayflies soon and all of the hoopla will slide away into family vacations days at the lake.  Fishermen will start to thin out; leaving the river a lonelier place at a milder pace.

We’re all excited for the next ten days of chasing hex and trophy trout, but I think we’re all eyeballing the next season on the Au Sable too.  July is grasshoppers and Royal Coachmans and whatever time of day suits your nap schedule.  Huge trout, heart stopping strikes, and finger burning reel runs are certainly a great part of this sport, but there’s plenty more to it as well and sometimes a quiet, misty morning and a sparse rise is just about as good as the world gets.

Have fun out there,