Brood II

by Mark July 27, 2013 0 Comments


When I arrived stream side for my first time fishing magicicadas, I could hear them in the trees. The noise was unmistakable and resonated from a hill covered in pines. The sci-fi sound came and went hourly throughout the day. Interestingly enough, the hill was the only section in the area where the sound was coming from. It was also where cicadas could be found in bushes, leaves, and littering the ground. Occasionally, you could even find a live cicada struggling as it floated downstream. Elsewhere,  you wouldn’t even know that there were cicadas in the area. A half-mile downstream, I found another grouping of cicadas at the base of the mountain. In between those two areas is where I decided to concentrate my fishing efforts.

After my first cast into the stream, I knew I was in for a good day of fly fishing. A 17 inch wild brown gently sipped my size 6 cicada and the battle was on. As the day progressed, I had vicious attacks on my dry fly in every single good looking lie. On several occasions, fish would miss on their 1st, 2nd, and sometimes 3rd attempts before wising up to the folly at the end of my line. It was phenomenal fishing, and I was clearly the first person to toss a cicada on the stream. My brother finally got his act together and met me on the stream to catch a few beautiful browns of his own. Thunderstorms finally drove us off the water, but not before we were both satisfied with the action. We found out later that we weren’t alone. Other anglers had keyed in on the insects as well and found success upstream of us.


When I fished the cicadas for the first time, I couldn’t help but think about western hopper fishing. In Pennsylvania, terrestrial fishing can be good, but it never approaches the level of intensity of a western stream where trout hammer large hoppers along grassy banks every summer. It was nice to be able to experience something similar on my home waters and have some good sized wild browns willing to play in the middle of the day. Normally, summer days on streams like this are mostly hatch-less and the big trout don’t show themselves too often. It was great to be able to experience it first hand.


Subsequent outings proved to be much less successful. Although eager to devour our large dry flies one day, future trips produced slow outings with the occasional nice fish. Waters nearby provided some action but everything failed to live up to that one afternoon. Myself and a few other anglers just timed it right and reaped the rewards. As the days went by, I began looking for other waters that held cicadas so I could replicate that experience of being the first to cast a cicada dry fly into a body of water.










Targeting areas of shade and structure proved to be highly effective…















Good male brown…




Fish also struck at the end of the drift as the cicada swung in the current…

Popping was effective too…









Related Categories: Cicadas Fly Fishing Magicicadas

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