Planning a trip to the Au Sable river in Grayling Michigan takes some time, in my case the journey started in February when I called Josh to see if Chef Matt Haley might have time to fish with me, we picked a date when the Hendricksons were said to be hatching and proceeded to the next task of booking a room, a guide and setting up a morning float with Matt.
The Au Sable River is famous for many things, in the eyes of fly casters like me. It’s prolific hatches (hatch refers the the type of bug emerging from lara on the river’s surface, generally a key to fly choice success) like the hendrickson, blue winged olive, sulphurs and the world famous hex, a large mayfly that breeds after dark and falls to the surface dead afterwards. It’s the legendary Au Sable hex hatch that makes even the largest trout crazy enough to fall prey to hand tied replicas of the hex that brings leagues of fisherman to this river every year. I picked the hendrickson hatch knowing that as a first timer the hex hatch would require a working knowledge of the area (mainly because one fishes the hex in the darkness of night), and the holy waters surrounding the Gates lodge would be best for us this year in mid May.