Thursday, July 2, 2015

Do Brown Trout Like The Crowningshield?

I started out this morning with the intention of fishing a section of stream that I have not fished since early October. The winter has been very hard and I did not know what to expect. The stream has wild populations of both brook and brown trout, but this section primarily holds browns. The fly I selected to start with was the Crowningshield dry, as it turned out it was the only fly used today.

Like always I check the water temp, which was a cool 60. The brook was covered with shade with some sun poking through.I'm not fooling when I say they hammered that Crowningshield fly. On the first cast the fly did not even move when a brown rose and was hooked.

I'm going to let the photos tell most of the story.

These browns were strong.

As the fly drifted near the bank...oh man.

There was a rise at the middle of this pool. The fly drifted and wham.

This is what took the fly. My best wild brown this year. He ran the pool from top to bottom and side to side. My glass 3wt had a battle to win. Eventually the brown took me into a snag and was hung up. I had to wade over and free him up.

I laid him alongside the rod to try to get a measurement, he was a very nice fish.

A very overworked Crowningshield fly.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Palmered Variants and the Mini-Stimi

Over the past few weeks I have been experimenting with some patterns. I have been using some basic materials of hair two types of hackle and both thread and dubbing for the bodies. Some of these patterns are variants of other known flies.

The first fly is a simple palmered dry fly. It uses woodchuck for a tail, opossum dubbing for the body and brown hackle palmered forward. I have used this fly several times and it works very well.

Palmered Dry Fly

The next fly is a variant of the Ausable Bomber. It is tied using woodchuck for the tail, opossum dubbing for the body, brown hackle, and elk hair for the wing. Using the elk hair for the wing makes for easier tying, and when fished wet it creates some irresistible water movement.

This fly is the mini-stimi. It's a variant of the stimulator. It is tied on a Mustad 9671 size 14 hook, the regular stimulator is tied on a Mustad C53S hook. This fly uses woodchuck for a tail, orange thread for the body, brown hackle for the body, and grizzly hackle for the head, the wing is elk hair. I tried this fly yesterday and the trout liked it very well.

The Mini-Stimi

Sunday, June 28, 2015

A Forest Walk, and More.

Well folks it's raining here in New England, has been all night and will probably continue the day. We have been fortunate lately with beneficial rains almost every week. Yesterday was a cloudy day but it was to rain free for most of the day. So while doing some chores in the morning Jeanette came over and said she wanted to take a walk, a woods walk to be exact. She said take your fishing gear and I'll walk and you can fish. Well an hour or so later we were there. I parked along a forest service road and we headed out. The woods road follows the stream which is nice, and it is also gated so there is no vehicle traffic. Nice and quiet, with only a few day hikers. I said to Jeanette I'm heading to the stream, and she said I'll see you later and began to walk. I figured we had a couple of hours before the sprinkles would start and dampen the day, enough time though for both of us to enjoy.

Lots of flowers in bloom.

The stream was in super shape. A few brook trout were taken in the pools on dry flies.

I came upon this pool and inviting it looked. On the first cast a trout rose and missed. Several casts later and up he came, this time he was hooked.

As the fish swirled near my feet his amazing colors were seen. As I lifted the jewel I was in awe of him. The colors were so pronounced. A strong male with that slight hook in the jaw. A brook trout for October indeed.

They look like snow flakes.

Upstream, I will try these rugged pools when I'm alone the next visit.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

The Passion Only Grows

The desire to fish small streams is high for me, if able to I'd do it everyday, well I can't so when I have the time I make good use of it. I also like looking at the maps and try to find that next small blue line that just may hold a trout or two. While gazing the other morning I found such a line and decided to make the drive to explore it. The morning chosen was after a nasty night of storms, some of which laid down a lot of rain in a short time. My concern was that the runoff would cause the stream to be muddy and swift. Well the decision was made and off I went.

I arrived at the stream around 6:30 and the sun was just starting to crack through the trees. As I got out of the car the first thing I noticed was the air temp,"chilly" to say the least. I quickly put on a heavy outdoor shirt and never took it off all day. I was geared up in short time and up the woods road I walked. The air was still and the ground and woods were wet. As I walked I soon heard the sound of moving water, a sound that was somewhat louder than normal. That seemed to say maybe "high, fast" water. I soon reached the spot where I would try to walk down to the stream. Upon seeing the water I was relieved. I was flowing pretty good but not to where it would cause problems.

The gentle part of the outing. A nice walk on some soft earth.

The stream was so inviting, its rapid plunges, and soft tails just spoke of a beautiful day.

I tried to show just how steep it is in this blue line valley. Once down to the stream walking along it is not to bad.

My first reward of the day. The brookie grabbed the fly just as I was lifting it out of the water, he seemed to be swimming the falls to make sure he did not miss the morsel of food that was about to fly away. Several brook trout were taken from this pool at various locations.

The stream is a series of pools, runs and riffles making it a perfect home for brook trout.

Most of the trout were about the same size or smaller. That's not unusual for these mountain streams, being the pantry is pretty meager.

I chose to wet wade this day. I had a pair of water shoes, which by the way are wonderful, "no slipping" and light weight. The water was cold and I took the water temp and found it to be 56-58 degrees.

Cold water clarity. Going back to the size of the brook trout in this stream being all about the same size. I knew there had to be bigger trout in this stream and in this pool I saw just that. Only the camera never did, perhaps another day. But the pool did give up another trophy.

Several casts later, just as the fly hit the water a trout rose and went to the bottom with it in his lip. My little glass 3wt bent and had the task of subduing the wild creature, which it finally did. You would think that after so many trout it would be no big thing. Not with me, it's like it was my first. The passion only grows.