Fly Fishing Report for the Upper Delaware and Catskill Rivers
RIVER CONDITIONS CHANGING RAPIDLY
There has been a good amount of change in the river conditions since my last report. The most significant is the dropping river flows. Across the system every river is steadily dropping with varying rates. The largest difference from last week to today is on the East branch. The Upper river went from difficult wading and dominated by drift boats to looking like a gentle spring creek again. The flow is down about 700 cfs. in a week to the current flow of 285 cfs. This is now a full access river and the fish are getting tough to fool at the lower flows. The LOwer East has also dropped to a point where unlimited wading access is possible.
The West is also down in flow to the unlimited wading zone. The flow of 734 cfs. is slit at 300 from release and the rest from spill over the dam. When the reservoir stops overflowing this river will go to summer like flows overnight.
The Beaverkil, Willowemoc and Main Stem are in great shape for the date. These are at the upper end of normal spring flow rates. There is some rain in the forecast but it is not expected to be much.
The insects remain a bit behind schedule due to lack of sun and lack of warm weather.
The Upper East and West are still pumping out the Hendrickson's. Right now the action is mostly with the smaller Ephemerella X variety #14. The action is steady and reliable in both rivers.
The Freestone rivers. Beaverkill, Willowemoc, Lower East and Main Stem are still caught between hatches. We need a run of good weather to produce som reliability on these flows. Currently the good fishing on these rivers pops up in spurts and it varies greatly by section. You can have some steady action in one area while the rest of the river seems void of insect life.
The only saving grace on the freestones is that the nymphing is improving with the falling water.
The inconsistent insect activity on these rivers should straighten out soon but anglers need to remember that it will improve with a change in location for the trout. As the bigger insects increase the Trout will spread out and the action is going to center more around the faster water and pocket water. Don't make the mistake of searching for March Browns where the Hendrickson's were.
As always I suggest that you stay late every day. The best action has been late in the day. Yesterday Dr. Bob and I had decent action from mid afternoon on but our best trout of the day came right at the time where day meets night.
The fly choices remain the same. Our guides are sticking with a combination of Knock Down Duns, Cripples, Comparaduns and Hackle Spinners for surface fishing. These styles cover the water types well and normally get confident takes. We also have some great March Brown Wulffs in the shop for fishing the really fast riffle water. These float like a cork and are easy to see!
Our guide staff has been timing our float trips very well and our guests are getting some great opportunity. We have been taking large mature trout every day by mixing it up with a variety of approaches and techniques. The Trout above and below are from recent trips.
We have some openings for float trips as we head into the prime dry fly period. Give us a call today to get on our calendar 607-290-4022