Located in the Berkshires of Massachusetts there is a lovely field of Golden Rod. It is quite large and with the suns light upon it is breathtaking. Don't know how true this is but I've been told that golden rod is edible and nutritious. Just beyond this field is a stream, a stream I have known since the 70's. A stream that flows of the top of one of the mountains and flows into a lake. The stream has good flows and I have never seen it dry up. It is well shaded by some very impressive hardwoods, and there are no homes or farms nearby.
A beautiful stream indeed, one that holds some wild brook trout, trout that probably see very few anglers, almost to a point where I would say no anglers. So I guess you are saying why then have I never fished the little stream. I'll tell you.
There is this one obstacle. Climbing this rock wall. I know you might say find another way to get around it...well there's no way. I would have to enter the woods from quite a distance and walk to the stream, an easy walk it's not.
I will make an attempt to fish this stream soon. Maybe tomorrow. For this stream I have tied up a few of these flies.
"Hornberg" Dry Fly
Hook, Mustad dry fly size14...Body, flat silver tinsel...Underwing, yellow hackle fibers...Overwing, Mallard fibers slightly longer than the underwing...Hackle, brown and grizzly.
The calendar said August 15th but the weather said late September. Friday when I woke up Parker was already pacing near the door. I grabbed his leash and opened the door wow what a cool blast. I had planned on fishing this day so one cup of coffee and some oatmeal and I was on my way. I got to the stream at 6 and was in the water soon after. The heavy rains we had mid week had the stream runny fast and it was cold. With conditions as these I knew the fishing would be great.
The air temps in this streams little valley were in the high forties, and I was glad I had the light wool shirt to aid in warding off the chill. It did not take long for the trout to respond and they were very willing to play.
The beauty of this pool, at the head it is very noisy as it crashes over the rocks. The large boulder causes the water to form a deep pool. Then the water moves to the end of the pool where it becomes a tranquil slide.
A wild brook trout who was taken from the pool above. Is colors stating a change, and the season to come.
Each and every pool produced brook trout. The high waters moved many and gave them the nerve to strike my offerings.
I am very fortunate to have access to such wild creatures. Can there be anything more beautiful in this natural world?
In answer to the question above, I'm sure there is for this is a big world. But in my tiny section I don't think there is.
Wet flies have been part of fly fishing since the beginning, when that was I don't know but it's been a long time. The English found these flies to be effective, and from England they found there way here. Many of the English patterns were tied to represent different stages of insects and they accomplished that very well. Across the pond it was somewhat different. Many of our early wet flies were tied to fool brook trout and they took on a colorful transformation.
When I think of wet flies I think of Ray Bergman. The man was incredible both as a fly tyer and angler. So many patterns of his are still in use, and many more are tied just for their beauty alone.
How wet flies are fished is a topic that is best told by those that do it best. Some anglers can actually fish 3 of these flies at once. I have enough to do with one fly. But even by itself the wet fly can catch fish.
These are a few of my wet flies. They are very simple both in construction and materials used. Some waterfowl feathers in various colors and some basic dubbing and you can tie a lot of effective flies. I fish small streams and at times the water is low as is the case in the top photo. A dry fly fished here may bring a strike, but if you don't hook that trout he'll won't come up for it again. The sun and the low water will keep fish in a very cautious state. But if the fly you offer is below the surface the trout feel a bit more secure and will hit it.
So on your next visit to a small stream tie on a size 14 Dark Cahill wet and give it a workout. Wet flies are timeless. "Simple Wet Flies" are effective.
I start with this wonderful bright yellow flower, for it shows just how nice it felt to fish a stream again. I said to myself the hand feels good enough, so give it a shot. Six a.m. found me along the the road that leads to the water. The mountains on both sides were just starting to filter in the days first rays of sun, and there was a low bank of mist where the stream rushes through the boulders. There was a slight chill in the air that made me reach for the long sleeve outdoor shirt.
As I strung up the fly rod of choice today I had hopes of a day to just take in what ever the woods and waters would offer, and not be to worried about what fly or how I was to fare with the residents of the stream. I was happy to see the stream was in great condition. Its waters flowing very nicely and water temps at 62.
The stream offered both quiet sections and rough water.
In water as such is where I encountered my first hookup. The brookie struck a bomber and figured where to go to deposit it in an underwater snag. Several more attempts, along with a change in the type of fly brought a to hand.
Pretty little guy. There were to be many more like him this day.
This stream is not easily fished, some of those boulders required agility to climb over. The steep banks were also a problem at times. The forest was mostly hemlock with a few oaks. I also made note of two feeder brooks that were still pumping water. I will explore these at another time.
In the pool right at the tail as the wet fly moved to the surface I noticed a good size swirl just behind the fly. On a repeated cast the fish struck and the battle was on.
Moments later I reached in and lifted this strong lady. Her fins were large and her tail wide and very powerful. She knew this streams currents and how to use them to her advantage. I placed her in the water and she was gone in a heartbeat.
An old friend joined me on this great day. Thanks.