Saturday, June 20, 2015

Saturday 6/20/15 Report- Looking Good

The Farmington River is in beautiful shape, running medium & clear at 291cfs from the dam in Riverton, downstream to the confluence of the Still River. The Catch & Release area (C&R/TMA) in Pleasant Valley/New Hartford is running 372  cfs. Look for Sulphurs to be heaviest in the evening, following a potpourri of daytime hatches you can find in the report below. Caddis are prevalent during the day.

Well I ended my string of big trout Wednesday, but.... Thursday was fantastic, and I was able to put a perfect unmarked & unclipped 21" male brown in the net at the end of the day. Great evening Sulfur hatch, and the big boy came on a #16 Sulfur nymph. I fished with Andy Lyons, and he caught a perfect 19" wild brown in early AM on a big Golden Stonefly nymph (I'll put pix of his fish up this weekend). Big stones & tan Caddis pupa caught fish on & off throughout the day. Best bug activity was noon through dark. Stuck into piles of the big Two Year Olds they stocked for 2015, they ranged from about 15" all the way up to almost 20". Andy had 5 species- brook, brown & rainbows, a sunfish, and a smallmouth! The two brookies he caught looked wild, small & incredibly colorful. 

During many hatches, some of the big trout stay down and chow on the nymphs exclusively. There truly are big trout all over the river, from the dam in Riverton down through Unionville, and even below that. Years ago a friend hooked & lost a 30" brown on a streamer right above the Tariffville Gorge.

Sulfur hatches are cranking now, medium to heavy in almost all areas, upstream all the way up to the dam in Riverton now, and down through Unionville and even below that. Make sure to have matching patterns in nymphs (Pheasant Tails in #16-18 normally work great), emergers, duns & spinners. While it is traditionally an evening hatch, we've seen them coming off as early a 1pm some days. The closer you get to the dam, the more "evening hatches" tend to come off & end earlier in the day. Nature loves to defy the rules, and cold tailwaters such as this one can make traditional hatch calendars wrong at moments. Evening Sulfur spinner falls can brings some pigs to the surface. Still lots of Tan Caddis around too.

Isonychia are starting to appear downriver in the Canton through Unionville stretch (a few, not a lot yet), and even a few (not many yet) popping in the TMA/C&R section. It's not really a full-blown hatch yet, but soon. In the C&R section, Winter/Summer Caddis #18-22 have been hatching well early morning to 11am, with adults on the water in the late afternoon and evening. Sulfurs #16-18 are on the water from late afternoon until dark. Blue Wing Olives #18-24 have also been out in good numbers at moments, especially when it's cloudy. Caddis #14-18 in both tan & olive/green body body colors have been strong- the tan ones seem to be the dominant color now, but check body color because it can be the difference between a great day and a slow one. And FYI, they ALL look tan in the air until you catch one and turn it upside down. Lt Cahills & March Browns #10-14 are showing up from mid afternoon and on. March Brown Spinners (sz 10-12), Rusty Spinners (18-20), and Sulpher Spinners (sz 16-18) are on the water toward dark.

Subsurface, Caddis Pupa & Larva in both tan & olive/green #14-18, Hare's Ear soft hackles #12-16, Golden Stoneflies #6-12, Pheasant Tails #14-20, March Brown Nymphs #10-14, Fox Squirrel Nymph #10-14, Prince Nymph #12-18. We are seeing Golden Stonefly nymph husks on the rocks in fast water, so they are active & hatching, and are an especially good nymph choice in the mornings (they crawl out to hatch/emerge at night and in the early to mid mornings) FYI big trout LOVE them, use matching nymphs in #6-10 right now, and focus on the faster, rocky water where they live & emerge from. Streamers are working well in the early morning and again toward dark- look for either low light or murky water for best results during this time of the year on the Farmington. Mice, Rats and giant Streamers are working after dusk.

 UpCountry has just received a huge closeout of Hardy Zenith and Hardy Proaxis X fly rods- these are literally flying out the door, so don't wait or they will all be gone. As anyone who has been in earshot of me over the last few years knows, these are my absolutely favorite fly rods. These rods use Sintrix, a technology licensed from 3M which makes them stronger and nearly unbreakable under normal fishing conditions. You can find them in our flyshop or in our online store at a great discount. - Grady