Monday, August 9, 2010

A trip to the Great Northwoods

I had the chance to spend a few days last week fishing the upper reaches of the Connecticut River in the Great Northwoods of NH.  As we drove up I was very disappointed to see the lower sections of the river swollen and muddy, this was supposed to be the year that I was going to be able to fish the Connecticut under normal flows.  I was hoping to fish both the Connecticut River and some smaller streams for brook trout, but heavy thundershower activity had removed that possibility.  Fortunately, the dam at 1st lake was holding a lot of water back and kept the river clear and fishable down to the first tributary.

When we arrived we chose to fish some pocket water with a rusty brown stimulator with a red copper john as a dropper.  I quickly caught a couple of pretty rainbows.  There were a lot of fish following the stimulator but eventually turned away.  We move downstream to a popular stretch and I hooked and lost the best fish of the trip.  The fish turned on the stimulator and took it deep to the bottom of a water fall.  When I applied pressure the tippet knot gave way and off he went.

The next morning, we fished another stretch downstream and I headed upstream for some new water.  I hooked a good number of smaller landlocked salmon, including one that cleared the water after the stimulator and then proceeded to break off the tippet.  As I moved up further I found a nice deep run that yielded another rainbow on the stimulator.  We finished the day fishing an elk hair caddis near dark with a final rainbow.

The final day started off cool and overcast and I had a good feeling about things.  The morning was quite with only a small salmon for my efforts.  After a short break, I headed back to the section I had fished the day before.  The stimulator/copper john combination again proved deadly as I took the first rainbow on the dropper and a second one a few feet upstream on the stimulator.  The deep run I had fished the day before yielded another rainbow on the dropper and the water was looking good for continuing upstream.  A heavy shower forced us back to the car and an early lunch.  After lunch we headed back upstream to fish a section that had yielded fish on previous days.  Now the overcast conditions were breaking to crisp clear weather that seemed to turn the fish on.  For the next two hours I was catching fish in pocket after pocket on the stimulator with a total of 8 rainbows and numerous salmon for the day.

The only downside was not getting fish some of the smaller stream that we had wanted to visit.  In addition to fishing we were able to view some of the other wildlife in the area.

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