Greetings Compleat Anglers! Here is your fishing report for June 28th.
Fishing is great all over! The Catskill rivers are in their prime - running at perfect flows for both wading and floating, with strong summer hatches coming on, and all the rivers have great clarity. Both the Cannonsville and Pepacton Reservoires are at 99% capacity - great for this time of year!
I fished the Delaware system for three days last week - a day each on the West Branch, East Branch and Main Stem. On the West Branch there were good hatches of Light Cahills (#14), Tan and Green Caddis (#16-#18), scattered Isos (#12-#14), BWO's (#14-#22) and Sulphurs (#16-#20). There were also Cahill spinners and Rusty spinners as well. West Branch insect activity was slow throughout the day, but came on strong as evening fell - with heavy hatches of Cahills, Sulphurs, Olives and spinners, and the fish were on them! I took a lovely, big Brown as darkness settled in. Those anglers working nymphs in the riffs did very well - during the day they had steady activity. Most fished a two or three nymph rig, and key flies were Pheasant Tails (#14-#20), Copper Johns (#18-#20), Caddis Pupa & Larva (#14-#16), and Stoneflies (#12-#6). Also terrestrials (ants and beetles in the colors of black, cinnamon, gray and green) take many picky fish that may be keyed in on a specific mayfly pattern but will usually take a shot at a juicy ant or beetle.
The next day, the real activity on the East Branch began around 4:00PM. Light Cahills, Sulphurs, Olives, and scattered Isos began to emerge in the riffs and flats. There were sporadic bank-sippers (subtle, spinner-like rises an inch or two off the bank.) These usually hide big, powerful fish, and that proved to be the case on Wednesday as the picture of the lovely Brown below illustrates. As twilight came on, there were huge spinner falls of Cahills and Olives. Trout were rising everywhere, and I took several nice fish on a Rusty Spinner. It was a lovely day on the water.
On Thursday I made the trek to Lordville (on the Delaware Main Stem), one of my favorite riffs. I fished the long, sloping riff from top to bottom, which took about five hours. While there were only sporadic insects hatching, I took a half-dozen good Rainbows and Browns on a #18 Copper John nymph, swung in the moving waters. My last fish on the nymph was a heavy shad, only a couple of days from the ocean! Shad occasionally will crush a nymph, wet or even a dry, and their heavy runs and power are the match for any 5WT! This one took me into my backing and for the first few minutes I thought I had a huge Rainbow! What a great way to finish off a wonderful three days on this iconic river!
In Connecticut, the Farmington River is also in perfect summer shape. There are good hatches of Sulphurs (#16-#18), Cahills (#14), Vitreus (#14-#16), BWO (#18-#22), scattered Isos (#10-#12), and rusty spinners (#16-#20). Toward evening, an occasional big, juicy Potomanthis (#10) makes an appearance. And don't forget ants, beetles, as well as tan and green Caddis (#14-#22). Some big Browns have recently been taken on nymphs as well. Key patterns are Pheasant Tails (#14-#18), Copper Johns (#16-#20), Stoneflies (#12-#6), Caddis Larva & Pupa (#14-#18), Prince (#14-#18) and Hare's Ear (#14-#16). Remember that the flows closest to Riverton are the coldest, which make the insect hatching cycles somewhat slower and behind that of the insects downriver. The water temperature is a cool 57 degrees through the TMA.
The Housatonic River has also benefitted from recent rains which has been keeping the flows healthy and an acceptable 63 degrees. The Housatonic is perfect for both wading and floating. Remember: Thermal Refuges for the Housatonic tributaries are in effect from June 15th through September 15th. Fishing is prohibited within 100 feet of the CT DEEP black and white posted signs near the tributary mouths. Key flies on the Housatonic: For dries, Caddis (tan and green), Light Cahills, and Isos are best bets. Wets and nymphs such as Golden Stones (#8-#10), Hare's Ear (#12-#16), BH Prince (#10-#16), BH Pheasant Tail (#12-#18), and terrestrials such as ants and beetles will all catch fish consistantly. And don't forget streamers (best in the morning) such as Zonkers, Woolly Buggers, Conehead Muddlers, as well as Mop Flies, San Juan Worms and egg imitations!
Here's your weekly river flow chart:
Delaware West Branch at Hale Eddy: 494cfs at 48 degrees;
Delaware East Branch at Fishes Eddy: 723cfs at 60 degrees;
Delaware Main Stem at Lordville: 1260cfs at 62 degrees;
Beaverkill at Cooks Falls: 295cfs at 59 degrees;
WB Farmington at Riverton: 272cfs
Still River at Robertsville: 35cfs;
WB Farmington through the TMA: 307cfs at 57 degrees;
Housatonic River at Falls Village: 515cfs at 63 degrees;
In Long Island Sound, fishing has been pretty hot. Both the boaters and the beach fishermen are reporting great schools of schoolie bass and blues - good numbers of fish with an occasional keeper-size mixed in. There have been Sand Eels from before dawn into the first hour or two of daylight along the beaches from Greenwich to Fairfield. Boaters venturing out into mid-sound deeper waters have been crushing some huge bass in the 30-40 pound class! Best flies are Sand Eel imitations, Deceiver patterns, Clausers, silversides imitations, and small bunker patterns as well. And when the fish are on top (which they have frequently been lately, Crease Flies and Popper patterns have been doing the trick nicely.
If you're looking for some direction as far as finding more fish, casting instruction, or getting out in a boat or wading, check out our new Recommended Guide section on our website. These are all thorough professionals who know the waters well, know the fish and where to find them, and know what they're feeding on. Be it salt water of fresh water, we have the guide for you! Fishing with a guide can up your game, teach you new techniques and increase your enjoyment and catch-rate substantially!
And as always, stop by the shop and check out all the latest toys (rods, reels, waders, boots, clothing, flies, and accessories) from our major suppliers such as Sage, Simms, Hardy, Nautilus, Ross, Scott, Winston, Loomis, Lamson, Patagonia, Hodgeman, Columbia and many more! Hope to see you soon, and Tight Lines!