Our store hours through March: Monday through Friday, 8am-6pm, Saturday & Sunday 8am-5pm. We are now open until 6pm on weekdays (not weekends) and will be on that schedule through October. When entering the store please try to maintain a 6ft distance from other customers if possible, and as per the governor's decree you must wear a mask/face covering of some sort inside the store. We are happy to deliver curbside if you are uncomfortable shopping inside. Just give us a call.
A few nice fish pics for ya: Nathan Mumford up top with 1 of 2 beauties he nailed on the surface, wow. Second pic is a looong brown by customer and outdoor writer Will Ryan, fooled by a streamer. Third down is Trevor with a perfect brown from a day of dialing up his Euro game with Zach St. Amand. Fourth pic is customer Jeff Halloway with an unusual catch for the Farmington, a golden rainbow- they stock a few every year for the Riverton Derby. Last pic is Derrick with another big fish, almost annoying isn’t it? Haha
Flow bumped up due to rain Monday night. Total flow this morning is high but definitely fishable at just over 700cfs total flow in the permanent TMA/Catch & Release (C&R)- Riverton is only about 200cfs above the Still River if you want to fish lower water. Higher flows generally means the best tactics will be subsurface with streamers, nymphs, and wet flies/soft hackles. Dry fly fishing will be limited until flows drop, but you may find some risers in big, wide, flat, slow pools like Church Pool. Fish closer to the stream edges, out of the heavier current. Junk Flies (Mops, Eggs, Squirmy Worms, Green Weenies) can be top producers right after a flow increase. Flow bumps also dislodge lots of bigger bugs such as Cased Caddis, large Stonefly nymphs, and Fishfly larva. FYI Fishfly larva look like inch long helgramites, and are dark brown in color. A chocolate Mop fly is about as perfect an imitation as you could ask for. Streamer fishing can be fantastic in higher, off-color flows. It gives you a shot at the biggest trout in the river. Favorite streamer colors for these conditions include black and yellow. If clarity if decent, white, brown, olive.
The Hendrickson hatch is working it’s way upstream, I’d focus on New Hartford (near UpCountry), upstream throughout the permanent TMAC&R, going as far up as Whittemore, Robert’s, Pipeline & Lyman’s Rock. Above that water temps are colder, and I imagine in Riverton (above the Still River)you won’t see a legit Hendrickson hatch maybe next week (possibly earlier). I’d say the hatch is about done in Collinsville/Unionville, prob Canton too- stay upstream from there! Somedays the hatch has been relatively light, and as short as 15-30 minutes in duration, with other days going 1-2 hours. Mother Nature is never 100% predictable, far from it haha.
The books say the Hendrickson spinner falls happen in evenings, but on the Farmington I’ve seen them mid to late morning, at lunchtime, mixed with the mid afternoon hatch, and also in the evenings. Look for mild days with minimal wind and no rain- if conditions are not right, the spinners mass over the riffles, but instead of mating in the air and dropping spent onthe water, they go back into the trees and wait for better conditions. But when a spinner fall does happen, it often brings some of the biggest trout to the surface. Where riffles dump into pools is a spinner fall hotspot, but pool tails often also are great in the evenings for big trout. Make sure to bring your “A” game for the pool tails: long leaders, stealthy wading, and delicate drag-free presentations.
Don ties a cool Parachute Egg Sack Spinner for UpCountry, and don’t forget to grab some Dick Sablitz Hendrickson/ Red Quill Soft Hackles, and some of Bruce’s BMAR Hendrickson nymphs.
Stocking Update: The entire river has been heavily stocked several times including fairlyrecently, the permanent Catch & Release (C&R)/TMA was stocked in mid April. Hard to go wrong with Woolly Buggers (black, olive) & Junk Flies (Mops, Eggs, Squirmies, Green Weenies) it you are fishing for fresh stockers. #14-18 Hare's Ears typically work well too.
We received a batch of the new Hardy Ultralite & Ultralite LL (Euro) rods. While I have not yet personally fished them, they feel amazing in hand, and I’m predicting they will be big sellers in 2021. Euro specific rods received: Ultralite LL series10’ 2” #2, 11’ 2” #2, 10’ 8” #0/2. 9’ 9” #3, and 10’ 8” #3. In the standard Ultralite the 9’ #4, 9’ #5, 9’ #6, 9’ #7, 10’ #4, and 10’ #5.
The new T&T Contact II series (10' #2, 10' #3, 10' 9" #3, 11' 2" #3, 10' 9" #4 & 10' 8" #6) is a home run, the best Euro rods currently on the market according to most serious Euro nymphers. New improved materials, new guide spacing, down-locking reel seats are standard now, plus a new fighting butt design that is more comfortable. Recovery is noticeably better/crisper, the actions "tweaked" for more big fish playing power, plus the newer materials they use to make the rods inherently store more energy and give the rod more power for casting and playing big trout. The blanks are incredibly strong and much much harder to break, even when you do something stupid. These rods are easier to cast, will give you more distance, and they deliver with improved accuracy. Retail is $825. FYI demand is often exceeding supply with these rods, so if we don’t have what you want in stock get your name on a waiting list.
-Hendrickson #12-14- mid afternoon hatch, from New Hartford up thru the permanent TMA/C&R up to about Pipeline/Lyman’s Rock. Should be in Riverton by next week, possibly sooner
-Rusty Spinner #12-14: imitates Hendrickson spinners, try Don’s Parachute Egg Sack Spinner
-Blue Winged Olives (BWO/Baetis/Olives) #16-20 (afternoons, esp. cloudy/crappy days)
-Early Stoneflies #14-16: almost done,afternoons (especially sunny/mild days)
-Summer/Winter Caddis #18-24: pupa & winged adults, typically early/mid AM
-Midges #20-32: anytime (365 days a year)
-Parachute Adams #12-24: different sizes imitate many bugs including Hendricksons, Midges & BWOs
-BMAR Hendrickson Nymph #12
-Olive Nymphs #16-18
-Frenchies & Pheasant Tails #12-20: various sizes imitate Mayfly nymphs like Blue Wing Olives, Hendricksons, Paraleps, etc.
-Darker Nymphs in brown, black, peacock#12-18 (such as Prince Nymph)
-Caddis Larva (olive to green) #12-18
-Cased Caddis #10-14
-Early Stoneflies #14: brown, black- most active in afternoons
-Egg Flies #10-18: assorted colors (yellow, pinks, oranges or mixed colors)
-Junk Flies (Mops, Eggs, Squirmies/San Juan Worms, Green Weenies)
-Midges/Zebra Midges#16-22: black, olive, red
-Bigger Stoneflies #6-12: golden/yellow, brown, black- often works when smaller stuff doesn’t
-Antoine's Perdigons #14-20: black, brown, olive
-Attractor Nymphs #14-20: anything flashy, gaudy, or with a hot spot such as Rainbow Warriors, Haast Haze, Blue Lightning, Miller's Victim, Triple Threats, etc.
-Hendrickson Soft Hackles #12-14- Dark Hendrickson & Red Quill (tied by Dick Sablitz- deadly)
-Assorted Patterns #10-18: Hare's Ear, Partridge & Orange/Green/Yellow, Partridge & Flash, Starling & Herl, Leadwing Coachman, March Brown, Partridge & Pheasant Tail
-best fished 2-3 at a time, on tag end droppers
-BMAR Yellow Matuka #6
-Zuddler #4-8: olive, yellow, white, brown, black
-Complex Twist Bugger & Mini version #2-6: assorted colors
-Sculp Snack #8 (George Daniel pattern)
-Home Invader #2-6- tan, black, white, yellow
-Woolly Buggers #2-14 (black, olive, white, brown, tan)
-Rio's Precious Metal #4 (Kreelex copper, olive)
-JJ Special/Autumn Splendor/Tequeely #4-8
-Matuka #4-8 (yellow, olive, brown)
Report by Torrey Collins