I mostly fish in the morning, but (apparently) once every full moon I get a chance to fish my favorite waters in the evening. Nothing against late afternoon fishing, in fact I really enjoy it, but it works better for my schedule to get out in the AM. But this Friday the 13th was an exception and perhaps an early father’s day gift. I’m also afforded the opportunity to fish Friday afternoons due to company summer hours which ends the day at 2:00PM (sometimes a little sooner). So during the day I started putting my gear together and uncharacteristically strung my rod and tied on my flies with conditions sight unseen. From the USGS site I knew the water was dropping and flows were lower, but potentially still off color. I had an itch to fish a hopper dropper set up, so come hell or in this case high water I was going to at least start with it. My rig included a Chernobyl Ant with a size 16 Copper John trailing behind it. I’d like to tell you I selected it because it’s one of my favorite runoff patterns, the copper flash catches the fishes eye or because of its weight it gets down quick in fast water (all of which are true, of course), but I picked it almost entirely based on the fact that I hadn’t fished a Copper John much this season and wanted to get it wet. I had a couple stops to make along the way and arrived to a semi-vacant stream at about 2:30ish. My prior preparation made it easy to get on water shortly after. I ran into one angler on my way to the first hole who was rocking a sweet MN Rep your Water hat (need to get me one of those). The report was grim; he fished a couple hours, threw everything at them and only caught a fish or two. After the quick debriefing I started to curb my expectations for the day. As expected the water wasn’t high, but was off color. Shortly after we parted I made my first cast into a hole the angler had passed over. Instantly I hooked up with a nice brown. Not long after that I landed another, both of which were above average size for the stream and with plenty of fight in them. Just lucky I thought considering I hadn’t really detected the take either time. The first was at the end of the drift when I picked up to cast again and the last after a little mend. My strike confidence grew on the third fish whose stature made for a subtle twitch of the Chernobyl. Throughout the rest of the day they wouldn’t leave the Copper John alone hitting it as soon as it landed on the water. I desperately wanted a pig to rise to the dry, but it was not meant to be. The day brought a dozen or so fish to hand and all but a couple oversized. After the first handful of fish I started to really appreciate the look of the evening stream. Sure it’s the same water but something about it felt different. I started to wrap up the day at about 5:00 so I didn’t get into the magical evening hatch, but it was still a great couple hours. As I worked my way out I noticed an inch worm hang by its silk dangling in the water. The current pulled it back and it looked as though it was jumping upstream. I watched it more than my indicator until I felt a tug on my line ultimately resulting in the best fish of the day. Just one of those days when I was more lucky than good.