Looks like some very mild weather through mid-week, then highs drop down into the 30s by the weekend. As of this morning, the river is high & dropping (upper 700cfs range at 8am). We definitely got more rain than predicted yesterday, but we should drop back down quickly. All the extra water is coming from the Still River, and she drops fast. You always have the option of going upstream of the Still in the upper 2 miles below the dam, its almost unaffected by rain in that section due to the controlled dam release. Personally I love fishing in higher flows, as long as it's not muddy (and it's not). I tend to catch some bigger fish when the flow comes up. When fishing in higher flows you can use bigger flies & heavier tippet. It's a great time to throw a big streamer in search of a big trout, they come out to feed in higher flows and are more prone to making a bad decision on what to eat. Nymphwise, think Junk Flies for sure: Egg flies, Squirmy Worms, and Mops. Also big Stonefly nymphs. High water makes it easy to find the fish: out of the heavy current. They tend to move in closer to the banks.
Top pic is a brown with a big motor (tail) that Justin Barden tricked on a streamer Sunday, and below that is his buddy Paul Battaglia with a nice brown he nymphed up. 3rd pic down is a late season Atlantic Salmon Parr (notice heavily forked tail). 4th pic down is the view behind UpCountry this morning.
I've been advising people to focus on later morning to late afternoon when water temps are higher and there is more bug activity, and most of you have been doing just that. The one exception would be the Winter/Summer Caddis, they typically hatch in early/mid mornings, and during the recent cold snap they were out in decent numbers so keep your eye out for them if you are out early.
new T&T rods that just debuted this month: the new Contact 10' #3, the Zone mid-priced 10' #4, and the Paradigm dry fly series. All are in stock except the new Zone.
Guide Mark Swenson is doing a beginner fly tying class this December, a two day class on 12/8 & 12/15, click the link below to go to that page:
Less hatches in late Fall and dropping water temps means the trout won't normally be in the faster water, so start targeting deeper runs, pools, and softer/deeper riffles. Trout may move into the heads of runs/pools/riffles as water temps rise in the afternoon when the Blue Winged Olives & Midges get active, so keep that in mind. In the mid afternoons look for rising trout in the softer pool water where the riffles slow down and below that- same in early/mid AM when the Winter/Summer Caddis are popping.
Don't show up here at first light and quit at noon, but rather focus on the late morning to late afternoon time slot when water temps are rising, trout metabolism peaks, and you have your best shot at finding feeding trout. It's also a hell of a lot more pleasant to fish during the milder part of the day. Sunshine can be a good thing this time of year, as sunny days see noticeably higher water temp spikes. Fish smarter and maximize your results.
Streamers can work anytime of day in the Fall, but especially early & late in the day during low light. Trout, especially browns, get extra aggressive toward streamers this time of year. Go with bigger streamers for less but bigger trout, or small to medium for better numbers but smaller trout- 3" long (give or take) would be the in-between size choice for the best of both worlds.
Fall/Winter Store Hours:
8am-5pm 7 days a week
We've received a veritable pile of used rods & reels as trade-ins recently. Some are listed on our website, but many of the least expensive used rods & reels are for in store purchase only and are not listed up and can only be found by looking on our racks. Stop in the store and check it out for yourself, there are some really good deals!
Total 8am flow today (Monay) in the permanent Catch & Release is high & dropping at 779cfs (272cfs from the dam, and 507cfs from the Still River). Flows are dropping fast, and even though 779cfs is high, it's fishable for sure with bigger nymphs, Junk Flies, and streamers. 8am water temp in Riverton was 42.5 degrees. Lowest water temps will be at first light, highest will be mid/late afternoon. Currently trout are most active when water temps are at their highest and/or moving upward, the early to mid morning period has typically bee slow, fishing picks up as the day progresses and water temps rise.
As of September 1st, the entire Farmington River from the dam in Riverton for 21 miles downstream to the Rt 179 bridge in Unionville is now Catch & Release until Opening Day in April 2020. If you see anybody keeping fish in this section, please call the CT DEEP at 1-800-824-HELP and report the violation. Even if they are not able to respond to it on time, the info goes into their database and helps to create better/more policing of the area in the future.
Zach St. Amand, one of the top local guides and frequent flyer in our big fish pictures, is leading a trip with Andes Drifters to Patagonia for big wild trout, February 8-15th 2019. He still has some availability, call him at 646-641-5618 to find out more or to get onboard.
8am-5pm, 7 days a week through March.