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Opening Day 2018

Well after a long cold wait, its that time of year again! To us at the Baxter House, and trout fisherman all over, April 1st is like a holiday, and after a winter like this one the anticipation is palpable. I couldn’t be more excited to share another season on the Upper Delaware with my trout fishing family.

Currently, the watershed is in great shape and we are on track for another spectacular spring. Both the Cannonsville and the Pepacton are 92% of capacity. I took a ride up to the Cannonsville recently, and the water level was not far below the spillway. There is also plenty of heavy snow up in the hills, in some shady areas I bet we have over a foot of heavy wet snow pack. Additionally, the ground is still frozen and I would guess there is A LOT of ground water locked up. Cross your fingers that this nice slow melt continues and we have a nice wet cool spring.

We have plenty of openings this time of year and we are running an early season special of $375.00 (full day) until April 15th. If you want to get on some early season monsters give us a call. Even if its last minute, we will do our best to accommodate you. Also, if you’re in Roscoe stop by the new fly shop, its on main street directly across from big dog arms.

Fishing wise conditions are normal for this time of year. Marty Yi (our new shop manager), myself and associate Matt Jensen got out earlier this week and had some pretty good action. We landed four fish and lost another half dozen.

With this increased melt, don’t expect the fishing to be red hot just yet. That being said, this time of year is one of our favorites to fish. There’s very few anglers around and the really big fish are more vulnerable after not being messed with all winter.

Anglers should focus on deeper slower sections of rivers. When the water creeps into the low 40s, some trout will move into faster water, but don’t expect to find many fish in classic riffle water. The exception to this is close to the dam where water temperatures are relatively stable most of the year. We are having success on streamers (3”-5”) and larger nymphs. Where you’re fishing is more important than what you’re fishing, this time of year half the battle is finding the fish and getting the flies to them.

Unfortunately wade anglers don’t have a ton of options right now, stick within a few miles of the dams, and maybe in some of the head water sections. Boats are especially useful this time of year and most of the system is floatable. Be aware that high cold water can make early season boating dangerous, especially for inexperienced guys. Wear a life jacket, avoid side channels and above all use common sense!

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