Time for Tricos
There are many small streams in Central New York, like the Oriskany Creek (see left), that produce excellent hatches of the Tricorythodes or tiny white and black mayfly. The Tricos start to emerge sometime in July. Look for them as a swarm-cloud over the stream, which indicates a strong population. One of the most beautiful sites of the year is looking up into the morning sun and seeing the first cloud of Tricos. Though they are incredibly small, ranging from size 20 to 26, these tiny mayflies can provide some of the most exciting action of the year. The hatch is usually very reliable. Once the first hatch starts sometime in July, expect to see a hatch every morning until the first really hard frost.
Male Tricos, which have an entirely black/dark brown body, emerge overnight and take refuge until the emergence of the female duns. Females have a white abdomen and a black thorax. Emergence of the female duns will occur in the morning from sunrise to 9am depending on the weather. A really hot morning will cause an earlier emergence and colder weather will push it back. From sunrise to emergence nymphing is possible, and during the emergence you may elicit some strikes with a dry fly/surface presentation, but the best action comes when the Tricos molt and mate, which they do entirely in the air unlike other mayflies, and spinners fall to the water. This will happen in a relatively short period of time, sometime from 10am-12pm. Then comes the fun!!! There will be countless dead and dying Tricos drifting on the surface , in the film or just below the surface. It looks like the fish are taking nothing! They will feed on the dead spinners for hours.
A stealth approach is critical to success. The water will most likely be very low and clear. Casting accuracy is also important. Fish spook very easily in the low clear water of summer. The best tackle to use for these small central New York streams is a 3wt 7 to 71/2 foot rod. Cast well above rising fish 10-15 feet if possible. Use 7X or 8X tippet, and a leader of at least 10-foot.
Don't let the hot summer days put an end to your trout fishing. Get out in the morning and challenge the trout with a Tricos fly. Both the Oriskany Creek and Sauquoit Creek in central New York produce good hatches of Tricos.