Monday, January 15, 2018

Fish the bridge!

Alan, Kirk, and I met up for some small stream fishing today.  At mid morning the temperature was in the low teens and I don't think it got much warmer.  We did ok with ice on the line and in the guides early but when we headed up a small tributary the ice became almost unmanageable.  We were a bit surprised to see how much water the brook was holding from the heavy rains late last week and the large number of ice dams all along the brook.  Eventually we got frustrated with the iced up gear and called it a day.  Kirk had managed a small brown and a brookie and Alan had a couple bumps but I blanked.

Not wanting to get shut out for the second straight outing of 2018, I decided to try one last spot.  When it's the bottom of the ninth, with no runs and no hits, it's time to fish "the bridge".  In winter when the flows are higher and cold, bridges often provide some deep holes with softer water were fish can take refuge.  I've played this hand before on slow winter days.  After a quick thaw of the gear in the heated truck, some hot coffee, and renewed optimism, I went looking for bridge! Desperate times call for desperate measures and I am not above fishing junk flies.  It wasn't long before the squirmy connected with the first fish of 2018, a hefty rainbow especially for a small stream!


Thursday, January 4, 2018

Winter storm tying

We are in the middle of a strong nor'easter that is blanketing the east coast with snow, cold, and high winds.  There won't be any fishing for a little for sure.  I saw a picture yesterday of Church Pool on the Farmington River frozen solid!  Typically this tail water remains open and Church pool is well known for it's winter caddis hatches and rising trout all winter long.  Needless to say this winter has been a record cold one.  With all this cold weather, I figured it was time to change the blog background to a winter scene!

I've been tying some small nymphs lately.  This morning I was working on some small olives.   Stay warm everyone!


Olive nymph
Hends 354 #18 nymph hook
UTC 70 DN thread
Coq de leon tail fibers
XS gold ultrawire rib
2mm gold tungsten bead
olive squirrel dubbing and UV brown ice dubbing blend


Small Pheasant Tail
Hends 354 #18 nymph hook
UTC 70 DN olive thread
Coq de leon tail fibers
2 pheasant tail fibers
XS copper ultrawire rib
2mm copper tungsten bead
olive squirrel dubbing and UV brown ice dub blend


Olive quill nymph
Hends 354 #18 nymph hook
UTC 70 DN olive thread
Coq de leon tail fibers
Olive polish quill body
Loon UV fly finish over the quill body
2mm copper tungsten bead
olive squirrel dubbing and UV brown ice dub blend

Monday, January 1, 2018

First outing of 2018

Well it's New Year's Day 2018 and Alan, Kirk, and I didn't want to let our traditional New Year's Day outing go unobserved this year.  No one had any illusions of catching fish on a day when the temperature barely reached 5 degrees and finding an open patch of water to drift a fly was challenge.

Alan, Kirk and myself on a very cold Jan 1, 2018

However, fly fisherman are to varying degrees irrational optimists and we each found ourselves at some point with our feet in frigid water thinking this little opening just might produce a fish.

Kirk working a patch of opening water
Pete's pool, did anyone remember the auger?
We headed back to the vehicles around 12:30 and with some coaxing managed to fire up the stoves to heat up some homemade soup.  While this year's outing was brief and devoid of any piscatorial entanglements, the fellowship of small stream anglers willing to brave the most insane conditions for a hot bowl of soup and a walk in the woods is all that is necessary to enjoy the first day of the new year.  Happy New Year everyone!