Greetings Compleat Anglers! Here is your fishing report for April 17th!
Water, water and more water! The rains yesterday pretty much blew everything out (except for some some off-the-charts bass fishing in the suds off New Jersey!) So I thought I'd begin with the flow charts so everyone can see how their favorite river is flowing and what the timeframe might be before they're back down to fishable levels:
WB Farmington at Riverton: 535cfs in the low 40s;
Still River at Robertsville: 1390cfs in the low 40s;
WB Farmington through the TMA: 1925cfs in the low 40s;
Housatonic at Falls Village: 3530cfs in the low 40s;
Saugatuck at Ford Road (TMA): 679cfs;
Norwalk River in Wilton: 584cfs;
New York Rivers:
EB Delaware at Harvard: 1990cfs at 39 degrees;
EB Delaware at Fishs Eddy: 6170cfs at 41degrees;
WB Delaware at Stilesville: 1550cfs at 38 degrees;
WB Delaware at Hale Eddy: 2520cfs at 39 degrees;
Delaware Main Stem at Lordville: 9290cfs at 41 degrees;
Salmon River in Pineville: 2050cfs;
Cattaragus River in Gowanda: 3960cfs;
Connetquot in Central Islip: 35.1cfs
Nissequogue in Smithtown: 73.2cfs
In Connecticut, there have been some big wild and holdover fish taken in the Farmington during the previous week. Most of these have come on nymphs. Best nymph bets are Olive mayfly nymphs (#16-#18,) Mops (#14-#18), Pheasant Tails, Caddis Larva, Egg Patterns, Stoneflies (#8-#10), Zebra Nymphs (#18-#20), and Frenchies (#16-#22). There have been good numbers of BWO's (#18-#22) with occasional fish on them, though not always. Other dries to consider are Winter Caddis, Early Black Stoneflies and midges (in mostly gray and black). Right now the TMA (and most of the river) is unwadeable below where the Still River comes in. So if you're determined to fish, aim high up in the Riverton section and fish nymphs and streamers in the slower, deeper runs and glides. Below is a nice Farmington Brown I took on a Caddis Larva:
The Housatonic is ripping as well but should come down reasonably fast. As it does, streamers and nymphs will be the first line of offense. Wooly Buggers, Zonkers, Muddlers and lots of other streamer patterns will be very effective. For nymphs, while the river is still high, large Stonefly patterns (golden, brown and black) will be effective in sizes #6-#12. Also, Pheasant Tails, smaller Stoneflies, BH Prince, BH Hare's Ear, San Juan Worms, Egg Patterns, Scuds and big Mops should work as well. For dries, there are still some early black stoneflies along the banks and the Hendrickson nymphs have been active so perhaps in a week or two we'll begin to see Hendricksons. But for now, use extreme caution if you're considering wading options.
Smaller Connecticut rivers have received a rainy deluge as well - the Norwalk, Saugatuck, Mill and Mianus are ripping, but also should come down pretty quickly. They have all been nicely stocked and hold lots of fish. Once water levels have settled down, nymphs and streamers should give you lots of action. While the water is high (but fishable) use egg patterns, San Juan Worms, Mops, Wooly Buggers and other small streamer patterns - you should see lots of action.
In the Catskills, the Delaware system is currently blown out. But before I cover the Catskills, keep in mind that there are huge opportunities finning deep in some of our local reservoirs in New York and Connecticut. It takes some patience and effort in scoping out where these opportunities lie but putting in the time and effort to search out places and methods can result in some spectacular results. Check out this hog fatty that our good friend (and marvelous fly-tier) David Nelson stalked from one of the local reservoirs he has been haunting of late. It may take time and patience but how amazingly satisfying must this have been?
Back in our Catskill rivers, even before the rains, fishing has still been on the slow side, with a few nice fish coming to streamers, but not much in the way of dry fly activity. The water temperatures for all three Delaware branches have hovered in the high 30s/low40s so the fish are just not really active yet. We've had one or two reports of rising activity on the "D" system, but it is clearly still early days. As the Beaverkill comes down, so will the Delaware East Branch and it will lose its color over the next few days. As the high water comes down to fishable levels, streamer fishing along the banks should get hot - especially if the reservoirs are still spilling (currently both Cannonsville and Pepacton are spilling). Use any streamer pattern that looks like an alwife - if you're in a boat, drift the shoreline and bang the streamers along the bank - four or five strips and re-cast. Cover as much water as possible. Also, look for BWOs along with Caddis and also possibly the first Blue Quills. Remember, the magic number for water temperature is 50 degrees!
Our own Pat Fowler and a friend fished the upper Beaverkill over the weekend before the deluge. They had a great trip taking several gorgeous trout. Check out the pics below of a couple of lovely browns that came to net.
While the Striped Bass fishing in LI Sound has been spotty at best, the fish are in heavy along the New Jersey shorline. Our good friend, Jack Denny and a few of his crazy cronies braved the deluge and wind yesterday and the result was impressive. In that wind and rain they took fish to 20 pounds - almost all on deceiver patterns. Check out this beauty that Jack nailed:
"Fish Doctor" Scott Loecher reports that he spent a couple of hours at Short Beach at the mouth of the Housatonic last week. He saw a couple of decent fish landed but overall fishing was still very slow. While the resident fish are still around, the migration from the south has not reached us yet. Check out the map below ( borrowed from"On The Water") that shows the progress of the bass migration:
As you can see by this week's featured image, we've got a huge stock of every type of fly imaginable - salt water, freshwater - you name it! Ten's of thousands of flies - many tied by custom pros right here in the USA! We supply trout flies for every major hatch in the Northeast, as well as a great stock of hand-tied Atlantic Salmon flies. We offer saltwater flies for Stripers, Blues, Albies, Bonefish, Permit, Tarpon, GT, and all other saltwater species. Need info about Atlantic Salmon fishing in New Brunswick, the Gaspe or Nova Scotia? Come in and talk with Bob Reichart - he'll hook you up with a river, lodge, guide and set you up with some great fly patterns as well! Come in and talk to me (Len) about the Catskill rivers - for great intel on where to fish, daily river conditions, guides, equipment, hatches and even where to park! Scott Bennet and Scott Loecher can provide great intel on what's going on in LI Sound, and talk to Scott Bennett about where the hot Bonefish and Permit spots are. Or speak with Bob or Pat about the what's and where's of our local Connecticut waters. We ARE your full-service source for all things fishing!
And while you're here, check out our newest arrivals of Simms and Korkers boots and Simms waders, or throw one of the new Scott "G" series rods, Sage "X" rods, or Loomis Asquiths. We have every major (and minor) brand of flyrods, reels, and lines including Sage, Scott, Loomis, Winston, Reddington, TPO, Echo, Hardy, Nautilus, Hatch, Abel, Ross, Lamson and so many more. We have a huge inventory of fly-tying equipment and accessories - everything you'll need to get ready for that trip of your dreams!
So until next time, stay safe and tight lines!