I’m on a major road trip driving to New York and back, and will be fishing with my buddies in the Catskills for a week. After driving the Interstate construction madness for three days, I arrived in Hancock, NY, home of my favorite tailwater – the West Branch of the Delaware River. I fished yesterday and today, and it’s been really tough. The water is very low and the bugs just haven’t popped on the West Branch yet. Hopefully next week will be better when my buddies get here. I’ve been fishing nymph rigs and dry-dropper rigs and getting some fish. But it’s been a lot of work for a few fish. The good news is I have landed some nice browns in the 17 to 18 inch range, which I am very happy about. My best fish have all been on nymphs so far, including this nice brown below from this morning. Really hoping for that epic dry fly fishing soon though!
We finally got the spring storm we have all been waiting for. Looks like about 8 inches of fresh snow out back here at my house this morning. Hopefully the mountains got a couple of feet or more. This should help the snowpack and water content up high, and it will be good for the rivers. This cold snap will also delay run-off. Maybe we’ll see a more “normal” time frame for snow-melt and run-off now, which will set us up for good flows this summer.
I fished up below Taylor Dam (C&R stretch) yesterday afternoon for the first time this year. It was nice to see fish rising. I fished a 7′ 6″ 4-wt. bamboo rod and a single size 20 dry fly the entire time. The fish were pretty active and I was able to land some nice fish. It was a welcome change from slinging heavy nymph rigs with a 9′ 6-wt. graphite rod.
I had an excellent three days with Chris on the Taylor River. He landed a lot of nice chunky rainbows, and he also caught cutbows, browns, cutthroat, and brook trout! It was too much fun!
I got out with my “Riffle and Rise” bamboo rod for the first time this year. It’s been warming up and fishing has been good, so I figured it was time. Had a fun afternoon on the upper Gunnison River, catching some very nice trout, including this fat 22-inch rainbow here.
I only fished for a couple of hours this afternoon and didn’t catch a ton of fish, but I caught every trout on a size 6 stonefly nymph. They were all looking for a big meal.
Had a fun afternoon on the Taylor River yesterday. It warmed up nicely and the fish were hungry.
I fished the Gunnison River this afternoon, and though it was cold and windy (and still very much winter), the fishing was pretty good. The rainbows were all nice and chunky, and they really fought hard. I fished an egg pattern and the Pickle (stonefly nymph) the entire time. The Pickle worked very well on the rainbows.
There is quite a bit of open water on the Gunnison River now. Ice-off came early due to the well above average temperatures we have seen since early January or so. Fished the lower river with Dave today and caught some decent fish. It was a beautiful day and nice to get out with the fly rod.
The warm weather has continued into February now, and we’re starting to worry a little about the snowpack. There is still plenty of winter left and hopefully we’ll get some good snow between now and April. In the meantime, the fishing has been good and it’s nice to get out there on the rivers for some early season fishing. This was a very pretty wild trout from the East River today.