Monday, May 16, 2016

Monday 5/16/16 Report- Vitreus have joined the Caddis

Water levels are beautiful and fishermen-friendly: 287cfs in the permanent C&R section (New Harford/Pleasant Valley), with 181cfs from the dam in Riverton,and  106cfs & dropping from the Still River.

While Caddis have been the main hatch over the past week, as of Sunday Vitreus has joined the fray- pictured is a female Vitreus Dun. There was an excellent hatch of them between 4-7pm Sunday in the cold & wind, didn't bother the bugs one little bit. Vitreus normally run #12-16, and are well imitated with a Usual or Lt. Cahill dry. The winged duns emerge on the stream bottom and swim to the surface, so during the hatch swinging a yellow wet/soft-hackle such as a Partridge & Yellow can also be very effective.  Caddis are coming off anywhere from late morning 'till dark, with green/olive ones in #16-18 predominating, but some tan ones #14-18 in the mix also with egg-laying typically occuring later in the day (egg layers come back to the water give you a 2nd "hatch" later in the day, often at dusk). Most Caddis look tan when in the air, so make sure to catch one in hand and flip over to look at the body color. When in doubt, try both colors, the trout will tell you which one they prefer. Nymphing the medium to fast water with #14-16 Caddis pupa is deadly, and swinging wet flies/soft-hackles are also very effective when they are hatching. Also, Caddis are frequently most active in low-light conditions with mild air temps (mild & cloudy/drizzly days can be fantastic), but don't rule out midday hatches in the sunshine either. On really bright sunny days, Caddis normally get more active when the sun drops low on the horizon & shadows appear. Still a few Hendricksons hatching in the colder water up near the dam, above the Still River, from Hitchcock right up to the dam. Hatch is getting light up there and almost done. Spinner falls, however, can go a good week beyond the hatch. 

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The 6+ mile permanent Catch & Release section was recently stocked with 6,000 trout (including 1,000 large Two Year Old Survivor Strain Farmington River Brown Trout), as you might imagine its been fast & furious there at moments. Many anglers are doing well lately, with quite a few landing larger trout- both recently stocked and holdovers. Move around if you aren't doing well, the trout are literally all over. Also play around with techniques, because dries, wets/soft-hackles, nymphs & streamers are all catching at moments. Don't be afraid to venture outside of the C&R section, there are plenty of trout outside of it. The Two Year Old Farmington River Survivor Strain brown trout that the state recently stocked have a clipped adipose and a chartreuse green elastomer tag behind their left eye, and they typically average 14-18" are are unusually fat when stocked. The adults/yearlings are right eye red for 2016, and they will typically run 6-12". Some of these will hold over and become, big beautiful trout, so don't complain while you are catching 6-8" Yearling Survivor Strain browns, they are future trophies with fantastic genetics and will be extra pretty when they grow to a larger size.

Nymphing has been a very consistent way to catch trout when they aren't rising, and some truly large fish are getting caught on them. It's how I (Torrey) personally catch most of my bigger trout.  Underneath the water use Olive/green Caddis larva #14-16, Caddis Pupa #14-16 (tan, olive/green, brown), Hare's Ear #12-16, Triple Threats #14-16, assorted Soft-Hackles #12-16 (in green or Hare's Ear for Caddis pupa, yellow or orange to imitate Vitreus), Prince Nymphs #14-16, Quasimodo Pheasant Tails #12-18, Strolis Dark Brown Quill Jigs #10-14, Strolis Rock Candy (olive, green) 10-12, Black Stoneflies #12-16, Golden Stoneflies #8-12, Zebra Midges #18-20 (black, olive), and Hot Spot Nymphs #12-18.

DEEP Brian with a flawless 19" Farmington River brown he caught last week: