Anglers who are planning to fish this weekend will still find summer conditions in most of the Upper Delaware region. The best action is still on the east and west branches if you are targeting trout. The recent rainfall and cooler weather have improved conditions on our freestone rivers but not enough to expect good trout fishing yet. The freestones have now put together a string of a few days with cooler water temps. if these conditions are stretched to a week or two fishing will improve rapidly.
The East and West branches have the cold water and decent enough insect hatches at this time. Anglers planning to hit these water should be prepared to fish Dry flies, Nymphs and Streamers. The current insect activity is spotty and you have to take the dry fly action when you find it.
The best action is early in the day with Tricos. This activity is pretty reliable. You can usually count on a few hours of activity each morning. The mid day period has been producing some sporadic surface feeding but not anything reliable. The only exception to that is on the upper West branch which has a decent rise some days. This action however has not been reliable
The late day activity has been decent but the intensity of the feeding activity can be best described as slow and steady. The insects to have at this time include Sulfurs, Olives, Isonychia, Cahills, Tricos, Small Spinners and terrestrials especially ants and flying ants.
My guests have taken some big fish blind casting our Iso. Cripple patterns on recent floats.
The nymph and streamer fishing will produce fish every day. This action is not hot but if you are persistent and cover the water you will regularly hook up. We have been using mostly small nymphs #18 and #20 in most instances. Pheasant Tails, Copper Johns, Soft Hackles, Ice Pupas are producing. For streamers it is best to stick with food sized items in the clear water. #2 buggers, zonkers etc. will be best. Most of the patterns that we use are custom designs but the key to success at this time is fishing a bait that is 3" to 4" in total length.
The Smallmouth Bass activity still remains consistently good. I had 2 Smallmouth trips this week and both were excellent.
With the cooler water the bite has been best later in the day. You can watch the level of fish activity increase as the water warms. On all of our recent trips we have been taking lots of fish. Catches of 2 dozen per person is about acerage at this time. On one of the section of river we have been fishing this week the average Smallie has been really up in size. We have been taking quite a few 15" to 18" fish. We have also been averaging a few Walleye on every outing.
One last note on the freestones rivers. On all of my recent smallie trips there has been decent insect activity especially late in the day. There are not a lot of any one insect but there are lots of random insects in the air and on the water. On yesterdays float we saw quite a few Isonychia emerging and we saw some isolated groups of huge ISO spinners in the air late day.
We are taking bookings for both Trout and smallmouth bass trips at this time. Give us a call to book your next Upper Delaware Float trip.
We are also taking advance booking for fishing on the Salmon RIver this fall and for Flats and Back Country fishing on Florida's west coast. You can check out our web pages for both of these great fishing destinations or give us a call to discuss.