7/28/14 - LET IT RAIN!!! After weeks of sparse showers and long dry days we are looking at our first decent rain storm in some time. Though the rain should stop within the next few hours, we have finally received a good shot of water between yesterday and this morning. Combine that with our unseasonably cool weather we are setting up very nicely for an unfamiliar great week of trout fishing in late July early August. We can only hope that this weather pattern continues. During yesterday's water level increase our guides found that the bigger fish had finally moved from their late summer hiding spots and came out into the "A" sections for buffet meal. We can probably expect fishing to be like that through today and maybe into Tuesday before the water drops completely and clears.
The Golden Stonefly has been a top choice for the fish in the water type areas that they call home. As many know, the stonefly prefers rocky and highly oxygenated areas. Which is perfect because those are the areas that have fished best as of late. For the last two and a half weeks we have seen a massive increase of golden stone nymph shucks appearing on the streamside rocks just after the water has started to recede from a higher volume. That will certainly be the case in the coming 24-48 hours. Some of these shucks will measure close to 2". Thats a big bug. Working large stonefly nymphs in the higher water for the coming days will allow you to offer a big meal to hopefully the larger fish. When the water is up and potentially off color you will obviously be working a subsurface patterns, but another advantage of the big golden stone nymph is that the extra weight you get from the fly will help penetrate the water column faster and get you down to where you need to be. As the water clears it will be time to start throwing those big dries. Foam, natural, whatever your preference, but send them out big. The funny thing about the stoneflies, for every 250 shucks you see on the rocks you may see 1 adult struggling to fly around. They hatch at night and are rarely seen during the day. They will spend their time hiding under stream side leaves, courting, and biding their time until its time to lay eggs. But make no mistake that the trout are well aware of their activity. They struggle to fly, hatch and basically do any kind of movement because of their size. They are easy and very large targets and the trout know them well. Working the larger dries certainly can make for some of the more exciting fishing of the year. Combined with the ever increasing amount of terrestrials the trout are looking up for larger meals. But this is better targeted when the water is a bit clearer then it will be for the coming day or so.
Otherwise ther have still be some other bugs buzzing around and up until the rain, the fish seemed willing to taste all of them. We are still seeing at least 3 different types of Caddis. The little Green Stones are still buzzing around sparsely mixed with a very small brown stonefly around a #18-20. A few Tricos have been seen, and the ever present Blue Quill, Baetis and Midge. We can anticipate seeing White Caddis, the Euphoron and one of local favorites the Isonychia soon.
A few thoughts on the Iso... We can only pray and "raindance" and do our good luck superstitions for the water temp on the Otter to drop below 70. The Iso flourishes on the Otter, but it is beyond rare at this point to actually be able to fish the heaviest hatches mid-August on the Creek. But don't stop whatever you're doing to help make that happen. Lucky for us the impression of the Isonychia last long after the largest hatches have passed and they sputter hatch from the water well into September and at that point pair very nicely with our largest sized caddis hatch the Northern Casemaker and the small but prolific autumn Baetis hatch. The Iso nymph will be something you will want to be able to imitate regularily in a few weeks. These guys are serious swimmers. They tear around the river with an amazing speed and motion. Did I mention that the trout love them? There are many great imitations of the Iso nymph, the Princes, Zug Bugs, large Soft Hackles, smaller Stonefly Nymphs. We sell one such imitation here at the shop that is awesome. Its an articulated nymph that really flutters when it swims. There is allot of forgiveness when fishing the Iso, as they are such swimmers that even a sloppy drift will gain some interest. SWING EVERY DRIFT. As the water starts too cool moving into September the trout become acutely aware that the winter is coming and it becomes time to put on weight. The Isonychia does not emerge though the water column, rather climb out onto streamside debris, just like our good friend the golden stonefly. Focusing drifts near mid stream rocks and logs can be a nice way to entice out an Iso eating trout. But I digress, as we aren't quite there. But knowing that rocks flipped at Dog Team during this cold front revealed several Iso nymphs, so they are on the way, and are certainly a viable pattern to consider imitating.
For those who have been enjoying the bounty of warmer water species of fish here in Vermont, you have not been disappointed. From the local Largemouth Bass ponds, to river Smallies, to Pike, Gar and Carp. This is just about as fun as it gets. The rain will add lots of water to the Otter and we will surely have a day or two of dirty water. Luckily as we enter the back half of the summer, the water levels and clarity will clear faster than in the Spring. For the years I have been guiding Pike on the Otter, it seems to me that more water in the Otter this time of the year is a good thing. It seems to rejuvenate the pike quite a bit. More hard takes and less follows, just like the early summer. It also helps negate the daily water level changes that become present via the Rutland area dams making power. That daily fluctuation always seem to make the fishing way more challenging. That shouldn't be an issue for the coming days after the Creek clears a bit.
Well we are sitting just a few days from August and things are looking great for the coming days. Cold weather hitting today and a set of cold nights ahead. I would strongly suggest that you make sometime to get out and fish this rare late summer cool down, as we don't know how long it will last. Our shop is again reload with flies for everything from now until the ice comes. We have only a few guiding days open this week, but if you want to see what can really happen during this cool down and water increase this week let our guides show you. Thank you so much for great summer so far and we hope to see you soon. Good Luck and Have Fun!
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|River||Water Temp||Water Clarity||Last Update||Hatches|
|Otter Creek||70-74||OFF||Jul 28 2014 - 12:18pm||N/A|
|New Haven River||64-70||OFF- will clear quickly after rain||Jul 28 2014 - 12:17pm||Golden Stonefly, Caddis, Little Green Stones, Little Brown Stones, Tricos, Baetis, Blue Quills, Midge|
|Middlebury River||64-68||OFF- will clear quickly after rain||Jul 28 2014 - 12:13pm||Golden Stonefly, Caddis, Little Green Stones, Little Brown Stones, Tricos, Baetis, Blue Quills, Midge|
|Otter Creek||73-77||Just Off, Typical Otter||Jul 21 2014 - 1:14pm||N/A|
|New Haven River||64-71||Clear||Jul 21 2014 - 1:12pm||Small Green Stones, Yellow Sallies, Caddis, Blue Quills, Golden Stones, Midge|
Detailed Fishing Reports
(PHOTO: Have you seen me? I'll be coming to a town near you soon)
(PHOTO: GMA Guide Dave Konopke taking advantage of the higher water)
The New Haven is on the rise again, but will be running cooler for the next few days. You may even be able to get some fishing ion at Dog Team in the morning after the water clears a bit. Fishing has been very good in the pocket water for wild rainbows in the middle section of the river.
The Midd is on the rise with the rain. It will clear quickly after the rain stops, and should be clear within 24 hours on the upper stretches. Golden Stoneflies in all stages of life cycle should be a top choice. When the water clears look to some small patterns. Midge Larva have worked well for our guides.
Pike and Bass fishing on the Otter has been very solid. Paul Warner is holding his personal best Pike above. He measured it at 45". Pike guiding has been good as of late. Let us take you out for a float on our comfortable raft.
The New Haven fished well all last week. The cool nights gave us shots at the lower river for the first time in a week or so. That will change again with the next 3 days of warm weather. The water levels are low, so be stealthy as you move around. We have had luck with the smaller wild rainbows near Bristol.