Thursday, June 14, 2018

getting a little dry

Hi Folks, A little rain currently failing from the sky, we really need it.  Our rivers are super low for this time of the year.  The water level is and will impact the trout fishing.  Let it rain. With the low water and hot days the temperatures have been climbing. The Lamoille and Winooski have both climbed into the upper sixties. Luckily we have been experiencing cold nights that have helped keep temperatures down.  Plus today is cool and damp.  I have been guiding both the Lamoille and Winooski this week.  Rising activity has been an early morning and dusk event.  The trout in the morning have been on a #16 cinnamon bodied caddis and in evening #16 Sulphur duns and spinners.  With the low water the trout have been a bit fussy.  Good casts and drifts have been necessary in order to prompt a response.  We have had success drifting a #16 foam caddis, a #16 olive hare and copper, a #14 Rusty Spinner.  A rubber legged olive bugger has worked well dead drifted and worked slowly along the bottom.  The trout have been either holding in the deepest parts of big pools or up in the heavy riffles when the caddis have been hatching.  Small stream trout fishing is now a great option as the big rivers become more tricky.  I will be chasing trout the next few days.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Fish with teeth

Hi Folks, Spent a windy Saturday in the boat chasing pike, bass, and walleye with spin anglers.  Beautiful day.  Steady NW west that made boat handling a bit tricky.  The water temperature ranged form 62 to 66 degrees.  The water was off color and we used brightly colored lures.  A fire tiger Rapala and a #3 Mepps both produced smallmouth, pike, and small walleye.  We located all of our fish in less than 10' of water.  Pike fishing involves lots of casting.  After hooking and losing a big pike, land a couple of small ones, we got fortunate to catch a 35" hen.  Nice looking northern and I am glad I had a net.  We spent the afternoon fishing the river section of this body of water looking for smallmouth.  It appears that the bass are now post spawn and on the move to their summer haunts.  We located a bunch of fish in rocky section of the river where there was a big back eddy adjacent to the current.  4" Black magic Senkos caught several small sized bass.  We did land a large walleye that ate a Senko.  The fish had some teeth! It is a really nice time of year to fish in Vermont.  Just hard to decide on any given day what species to pursue. Lots of options.  Back to the trout water tomorrow. Fishing is best in the early morning or late day to dusk currently.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home. Have Fun, Willy

Saturday, June 9, 2018

parts unknown

Hi Folks, I had a great float with guests on a stretch of the Winooski river Thursday.  We floated on section of river that I guarantee no one has ever put a drift boat down.  I have 6 floats now that I can do with my 14' NRS.   Really nice way to see a lot of water.  the Winooski was 62 degrees and rather low.  We need some rain as it is getting a bit dry out there.  The trout fishing remains very good.  We landed a combination of wild rainbows, wild browns, and stocked browns on dry dropper rigs.  A #12 parachute with a #14 peacock soft hackle dropper and  used a #14 prince dropper as well.  We landed 20 fish and they ate the dry and dropper nymph about equally.  Lots of big slow holes we floated over with rising fish.  You really had to make an accurate cast and a good drift in order to get the fish to eat.  Not a lot of bugs hatching that night and it appeared that the fish were eating in the surface film.  It was really fun to fish water I have never seen.  Most of this section is not accessible from the bank. The only way at it is from my boat.  I am off to chase pike this morning.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  have Fun, Willy

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Brown Drakes






Hi Folks, Sometimes timing is everything in life.  Rowed the drift boat on the Lamoille with clients and was treated to a spectacular hatch of #10-#12 Brown Drakes (Ephemera similuns).  The Brown Drake is unique in that it is one of only a few mayflies in the United States that is the exact same genus and species from East to West.  The hatch occurs for 3 to 5 days and typically comes off in huge numbers.  The odd part about the this season was we witnessed the hatch in the morning to mid morning.  Typically it takes place at dusk.  I can only figure the big cold front that has moved in impacted the hatching schedule. We found lots of rising fish. The large pools seemd to have more bugs which made sense since this is a burrowing mayfly, the Drake need some somewhat of a soft bottom to live in.  A #10 parachute, #12 Drake Variant pattern worked well as the dun and we had dropper flies of #12 pheasant tails and hares ears nymphs below the surface imitating the emerger.  We caught fish on all of the patterns.  What I can I say, the fishing was really good and we had the river to ourselves.  The trick was to place the fly in the trouts feeding lane.  Lots of food in the water so the fish did not have to deviate much from their feeding positions.  Not sure how many fish we landed, but the action was steady and I used the net a lot.  In addition to the Drakes, their was a number of #14 Sulphers (Ephemerella invaria)  hatching.  I am off to row the boat again today down the Winooski.  The trout fishing is really good currently.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Give me a bugger

Hi Follks, Nice change of the weather here in Stowe. Feels like fall outside. Cold front arrived with a serious east wind yesterday. I spent the afternoon on the Lamoille under cloudy cool conditions and a steady wind.  Water temperature dropped a few degrees down to 58 degrees.  The water level was dropping and is currently right around the seasonal average flow.  There were a few bug hatching from a #14 Sulphur (large one- Dorothea), to a #14 caddis, and a few left over #12 March Browns.  A number of crawfish shells in the shallow.  Big trout in Vermont love to eat crawfish.  Its like a steak to a trout.  We had some pretty good success dead drifting with a floating line and sinking tip #8-#6 black and olive wooly buggers.  All wild trout yesterday and we worked for them.  All of the bows were nice looking and fought really well. One of the particular fish came out of the water 6 times.  Did miss and lose a few fish.  It seemed like the weather had the fish a bit tight as I saw several trout roll up on the fly and not take it.  It appeared there was some short striking going on.  There was a really good hatch of Sulphurs late afternoon.  No rising fish but we did take 1 nice wild bow on a #14 sulphur nymph.  Looks like cool weather for a few days, perfect.  Off to row the boat.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Friday, June 1, 2018

Foam is home

Hi Folks, The trout fishing has become an early morning and late day event.  Been unusually warm and muggy here in Stowe.  We could use some rain as it is fairly dry and the rivers are below their seasonal average flow regime.  Look like a weather front moving into town and it will bring with it some cooler air temperatures.  I have been guiding the Winooski and the river temperature was 62 degrees early this morning. It was a nice over cast morning with heavy air.  We found some rising fish in a slow deep pool.  All of the rising activity was within the realm of the foam line.  The foam line is where everything gets collected that is moving down stream.  It is a feeding area for trout but not necessarily where they consistently hold.  The particular foam line we worked this morning was abutted by a big eddy that collects all of the goodies for the fish.  The rises were obvious but subtle at the same time. Big bulges just below the surface.  There was not a lot of obvious bug activity.  A few hatching #14-#16 caddis but that was it.  Upon closer examination into the foam line there was a large number of spent #14 caddis.  The fish were gorging on spent caddis so we gave them a #14 Henryville special with a #14 peacock herl  soft hackle dropper.  Of the 8 takes, 6 came on the dropper and 2 on the dry.  Mostly stocked brown trout eating bugs. Fish feeding in this dynamic whether they be wild or stocked demand a good presentation.  They have a lot of time to study your drift in slow greasy water. Lots of fun.  I am off to trout fish all weekend.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun,Willy

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

nice to have options

Hi Folks, Been a busy few days guiding over the Memorial Day weekend.  I am always thankful in Vermont that there are so many places to fish without big crowds. We have a lot of diverse fisheries. I guided pike, smallmouth, and trout over a 4 day stretch.  The Winooski was fantastic last night. The river level is low for this time of the year and rain would be good.  The water temperature was 60 degrees and a nearby tributary was 58 degrees. The trout fishing has been slow during the day especially when the sun has been bright.  However, the last hour of the day has been pretty darn good.  Especially for rising fish.  Great spinner fall of #12 March Browns last night.  A #12 Rusty Spinner was the fly.  We did not get a single strike all afternoon and then in an hours time landed 5 wild rainbows and 1 wild brown on a dry fly.  Dusk and Dawn currently is the way to go. Lots of caddis activity especially on the brighter mornings.  At dusk a tons of bugs egg laying.  I ran the boat a few times this weekend. Visited 2 different bodies of water.  The pike lake was 58 to 62 degrees and the wind blew pretty hard from the south/southwest. We found fish in shallow water and were able to sight a couple of nice looking pike.  It was a bright day so black and white, black and orange, and black and red Bunny Buggers tied on a 2/0 hook did the job.  Pike fishing is fun because they just materialize out of no where.  However, it also requires a lot of casting and can beat up your arm.  Learning to double haul with the fly rod makes casting a lot more efficient. They can be lightening fast when taking a fly.  It is really important that one learns to strip strike when fishing large streamers on fish that pursue.  Good morning of action.  The smallmouth fishing has been okay.  Water temperatures on the lake we visited Saturday was 62 to 64 degrees.  We caught smallmouth on a variety of lures.  A perch rapala, a fire tiger popper, a crawfish colored Big O, and a 5" Senko in green.  We had good steady action. Not a lot of really big fish.  I did not see any spawning beds.  Most of the fish were holding in less than 10' of water.  It is the time of the year where there are many choices.  I will be floating in the drift boat this week.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Saturday, May 26, 2018

eating dry flies and eating each other

Hi Folks, Been a couple crazy days of trout fishing.  I have guided the Lamoille yesterday afternoon.  The river is in great shape.  Water temperature was 58 to 59 degrees and the level was slightly below the seasonal average flow.  We caught trout nymph fishing as well as on dry flies.  A double nymph rig with a #14 tungsten pheasant tail with a peacock hackle soft hackle dropper accounted for 2 wild bows and a stocked rainbow.  No comparison on how the fish looked and fought.  All of the fish were holding in the slower water.  Mostly in pools and not riffles.  Makes sense being that the water temperature was in the fifties.  We saw a few #10-#12 March Browns hatching and lots of spinners collecting so we moved down stream to long slow deep elbow pool.  We found sipping trout who were eating #14 Hendrickson spinners.  I had a very experienced fly angler who knew how to be patient in presenting to these finicky trout. We caught 4 more wild jumping bows on a #12 Rusty Spinner pattern.  The fish were moving about a bit so we had to time the cast properly and make a good drift. Nice afternoon on the Lamoille.  Thursday was still water fly fishing for brook trout at a private trout club. The brook trout in this lake are native and wild.  It was a windy afternoon with a breeze from the north/northwest so we set up on the lee of the lake at an inlet.  There were a number of small trout rising to eat midges.  We were casting a #18 Griffiths Nat.  We landed a few small fish and my friend caught a beautiful 16" brook trout on the dry.  Then the afternoon became surreal.  We saw a pack of wolves in the water (large brook trout) cruising in the shallows under the fish that were rising.  I caught a 6" brookie on a dry and as I was reeling it in, a 20" trout attacked it and ate the fish at the boat.  I fought it for a bit and when we netted it the mangled brook trout was spit out and amazingly enough, the Griffiths Nat was in the large male trouts mouth, Incredible!! We had this happen two other times and my friend landed one 18" that also ate a small brookie that was hooked.  You can't rule out that trout are not meat eaters and that they will not eat their own. I have seen large brown trout chase down small fish in rivers, but never have I witnessed large trout swallowing a small trout that was hooked.  Reminded me of pike fishing. Anywho, I am off to chase prespawn smallmouth.  Should be a wet damp weekend.  The forecast of rain might puff up the rivers so pay attention to flows.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

big brown, dry fly action, and more

Hi Folks, Been an interesting few days of trout fishing. I have been guiding wade trips and just completed my first float trip of the season.  Water temperatures are warming slowly.  A Lamoille tributary was 51 degrees on Sunday and the main stem of the Winooski was 58 degrees yesterday.  Saw a ton of #14 green apple bodied caddis coming off yesterday on the Winooski and we actually found  a few risers.  The fishing was slow until the last hour or so of light.  Big bright sunny day and the water level is slightly above the seasonal average flow.  The fish can be pretty spread out and hard to locate in the higher water in stream with not a high density of trout. We worked for the 4 fish landed.  We cast a double streamer rig for good part of the float with a #6 white zonker and a #10 black/olive bugger dropper. We cast a 200 grain sink tip keeping the flies down in the water column.  The fish ate the bugger and the risers were on an x-caddis.  Sunday produced quality not quantity. One beautiful 19" wild male brown trout that stopped a white zonker in its tracks.  Not much for bugs on Sunday so we resorted to prying deep primary pools with the tandem stream rig.  I'll take quality over quantity any day of the week. Taking the motorboat out for some pre spawn smallmouth action next.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  have fun, Willy

Sunday, May 20, 2018

wet Winooski today

Hi Folks, Spent a wet day guiding the Winooski yesterday with a  large group.  Perfect day for being on a trout with stream with damp cool conditions and eventually afternoon rain.  The Wonooski was fairly clear and the temperature was 51 to 52 degrees.  The water level was slightly under the seasonal average flow.  Saw a nice hatch of #14-#16 Hendricksons , #18 Baetis, and a few #14 caddis.  We landed around 40 trout mostly of the stocked variety.  The first trout of the day was a wild 11' rainbow that came out of the water.  We did not mix up fly selection too much.  An #6-#8 olive wooly bugger, #6 Black Girdle  Bug, and a #14 Pheasant tail.  The Bugger and Girdle Bug were drifted and swung off the bottom and accounted for most of our takes. The pheasant tail worked wonders dead drifted under an indicator.  Interestingly, the fishing slowed in the afternoon as a cold front pushed in.  Looks like rain.  Could be another cloudy wet day on a trout stream.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Friday, May 18, 2018

Wild fish

Hi Folks, Spent the afternoon on one of my favorite trout streams yesterday afternoon,  Water temperature was 56 degrees and the levels and flows were just about at a seasonal average.  Saw a few bug hatching, but not much for a trout to rise to.  Pretty sunny as well and we stayed until dark and did not locate any rising fish.  For insect life there were a number of #14 crane fly adults, a few #14-#16 Hendricksons and #18 Chimarra Caddis.  We saw all of our fish on sub surface patterns.  The first cast of the day with a sinking tip and white wooly bugger generated a response from the fish of lifetime brown trout.  The trout went nuts over the fly but just did not seal the deal.  The damn thing chased the streamer twice without committing. Later in the afternoon another large brown hammered a white bugger only to snap me off. I am never happy breaking off a fly in a trout's beak.  I needed a heavier tippet than 3x and honestly I think I could of gotten away with 1x or 0x fluorocarbon.  These large trout are not line shy when chasing down a streamer. We did catch some nice wild rainbow nymphing with a #12 double tungsten black stone fly under indicator.  The rainbows were in the heavier water and the browns were holding in the slower deeper pools.  Looks like the trout fishing is finally turning on.  Most of the rivers and ponds have been stocked though I prefer to chase wild fish.  I am off to chase trout again today.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Always a good option

Hi Folks, Ran the motor boat the other day with a client in search of northern pike. The fishing was pretty decent.  Water temperatures were between 58 and 61 degrees on the surface with a steady southwest wind. Dirty colored water we fished that looked like a swamp.  I have always liked catching pike and they are a good option in the spring when the trout streams are still warming up.  Pike come into shallow dark bottom bays in late ice to spawn.  After completing their mission they like to hang around in the shallow margins until the water  becomes too warm and uncomfortable.  We caught fish in 3' to 8' of water.  We worked a fire tiger mepps very slowly to draw interest.  We landed 5 pike and a 1 small largemouth bass.  The wind cut our day short.  Pike fishing is all about lots of casting and covering water.  It has been a nice weather week and the trout is starting to turn on.  I will be on a wild trout stream this afternoon.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  have fun, Willy

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Getting going and waiting for warm

Hi Folks, Back for another season of fishing in Vermont.  It has been a slow start for me.  I guess I am not inspired to fish in cold high water.  Been a cold spring here in Stowe and the weather is finally warming.  Our rivers are still bit high and cold.  I have guided several river trips for trout and the fishing has been tough.  I have found water temperatures in the mid to high forties.  Water clarity is pretty decent.  The Lamoille is looking pretty good while the Winooski is still pretty high and off color.  Until our water temperatures reach 50 degrees and holds there, I have always found the trout fishing to be tricky coming out of winter.  Not to say that fish cant be caught, you just have to really work for them.  I have spent a little time pursuing lake run rainbow trout or steelhead as well as lake run brook trout. When chasing lake run fish it is a matter of being on the river daily to catch them when they pass through. Constantly changing conditions with flows and temperatures.  A lot of drifting of various egg patterns and when the water is clear and warmer brown stone fly patterns.  I like a yellow egg pattern that represents sucker roe.  The good old #10 Spring Wiggler is an excellent stone fly imitation for these feisty lake run steel head.  Working various streamer patterns that represent smelt has been the tactic for the big brook trout. Stone fly patterns dead drifted with an egg dropper is a nice rig this time of the year.  The ice has just come off the lakes and ponds within the last two weeks.  Many of the spring flowers and plants like Trillium, Dutchmens Britches, Ramps, Fiddleheads, and Trout Lillys that grow in Ephemerella woods are behind by a couple of weeks.  For bugs, I have only seen a few #12-#16 little brown/black stone flies and I found a few #18 Chimarra caddis on rocks.  Under rocks in riffles I have found a number of pupating #14-#16 candy apple green caddis and a few #14-#16 Hendrickson may flies.  So, I left Vermont this week and visited the upper Delaware for a bit fishing.  We floated the main stem of the Delaware.  Big water that is awesome and very challenging to fish.  The Delaware is loaded with insects and big wily wild trout.  We drifted it on a day when the sun was bright.  A really good hatch of #14 candy apple caddis and a decent number of #14-#16 Hendricksons.  With the bright sun the fish were pretty fussy. One of my good friends caught a really nice 20" brown at dark on a dry fly.  Very impressive. The other two days on the Big D we worked white streamer patterns that represented Alewives.  Moved a lot of big browns under cloudy conditions. Well looks like a nice warm week that should jump start the trout fishing.  Happy Mothers Day.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Its all over now Mr. Fish for the Catfish

Hi Folks, Just completed my last day of guiding for the 2017 season.  The state wide trout season runs until October 31.  After that, for the hardy angler there are a variety of options.  You can fish sections of the Lamoille and Winooski catch and release, pursue lake run salmon and trout on the lower sections of the rivers where they deposit into Champlain, and fish for pike and bass.  Myself, I will put the fishing gear away and hunt for the next couple of months. I had a heck of a good season completing 146 trips since May 1.  A record for Catamount Fishing Adventures.  My body feels it.  I am tickled that I got to conclude my season with a bang.  Landlocked salmon fishing the last couple of days up north has been pretty good.  Water temperature was 49 to 50 degrees and the water levels have been creeping up from the much needed rain we received on Thursday.  It takes water flow to get lake run fishing moving and that is exactly what we got.  Salmon fishing can be tricky and takes some patience.  Lots of casting and a willingness to try different fly patterns as well as be really efficient in how you cast to the water.  I like fishing for lake run fish either early am or late day unless it is a rainy cloudy day.  Over the last two days we landed 4 fish in excess of 20" with the largest just short of 24". Also, caught a nice steelhead that jumped like crazy.  We did catch a number of young salmon that are learning to eat at an early age.  We swung streamers and dead drifted nymphs.  Not a lot of luck swinging streamers.  Nymphing seemed to be the method.  A #12 tungsten red threaded prince nymph has been the fly.  Really subtle takes with the indicator just stopping.  Of course once the hook is set, all hell breaks loose when these fish get air born.  You make countless numbers of casts to finally hook a big fish only to loose them in the battle.  They can test your ability to fight a big fish in heavy water.  I love it and these fish truly are Vermont Royalty.  In the near future I will post a season ending recap.  I hope everyone has had a great fishing season.  I know I did!  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Monday, October 23, 2017

winding down in style

Hi Folks, Had a heck of a day guiding the Winooski yesterday morning.  Pretty chilly start to the day and the water temperature was a cool 45 degrees.  The water is still low and we need rain. Not much for bugs in the morning and I only saw fish randomly rise all morning.  We nymph fished with a #14 olive caddis pupa and a #20 BWO dropper under an indicator.  We also tight lined a #8 black leech  pattern with #20 BWO dropper.  We landed 6 fish with one being a wild trout the and the rest hatchery products.  We were fortunate enough to land 3 20" rainbows.  The first two fish fought like crazy and the last fish laid down and came to the net.  Two of the trout ate the small nymph while the last one consumed the leech pattern.  These big fish were trout that appeared to have migrated up the Winooski from the petting zoo in Waterbury.  All of our nymphing was in slow pools within the foam line.  We had to adjust the indicator a bit to get the correct drift.  About a week left in the trout season.  Should be pretty decent with the weather really not cooling off significantly.  I have 2 scheduled trips left and then off to hunt.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Sunday, October 22, 2017

What a weird October

Hi Folks, It has been one of the strangest Octobers for fishing that I can remember.  Just unusually warm and sunny with no rain.  I am having an extremely busy guiding month and the nice weather has certainly helped.  However, I keep waiting to have to put on the long underwear and multiple layers to deal with cold weather and it is not happening.  The trout fishing has been decent but rather tricky as well. I have been mostly guiding the Winooski.  Water levels are so low that I prefer the Winooski over the Lamoille with the current conditions.  The water temperature has ranged between 48 degrees to 51 degrees. I have been putting guests on rising fish.  Like clock work everyday the trout rise to est tiny #20 BWOs.  The rising activity has varied depending ont he weather.  The cloudy afternoons have been way more productive.  More insects on the cloudy days and the larger fish seem more willing to rise.  We have been nymphing as well with #12 copper john nymph and #20 BWO emerger as a dropper.  On the sunny days I have been trying to fish in shady stretches of river.  Many of the larger trout are rising in slow water within the foam line and require perfect casting and mending.  These fish have a PHD in studying your presentation.  Many of the rise forms have indicated that the trout are eating the bugs in the film line.  You can see their dorsal fin and tail on the rise.  A  #20 spotlight emerger with a #20 soft hackle dropper has worked well.  The trick is to respond to the rise when you see the push of water even if you think it is not on your fly but close.  Can be tricky.  Anyway, I love this technical type of trout fishing.  We need rain big time.  I am off to guide today and about a week left in the season.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Finally, olives galore and big sippers

Hi Folks, I have been guiding pretty much everyday for October. I'm on pace to finally guide a 150 trips for the season.  The fall fishing has been slow to come this year, but finally over the last few days the river trout fishing has come to together.  From Saturday to Monday the fishing improved significantly.  I have been on the Winooski the last 3 days from the lower river to the middle section.  The numbers of #20 BWOs hatching has increased each day. The water temperature was 54 degrees on Saturday and down to 50 to 51 degrees yesterday afternoon.  The water is wicked low and we are accessing water on foot that is generally unsafe to wade.  The best fishing has been from 1pm to dusk.  It really depends on the cloud cover or lack there of.  If it is sunny then the rising will happen later in the day. We have targeted risers with emerger patterns.  Not until yesterday did I actually see trout eating duns off the top.  Prior to that, most of the surface feeding has been in the surface film line.  We caught wild rainbows and had them eat a dead drifted  #20 BWO spotlight emerger. An olive emerger with CDC has also been productive.  What has been interesting are the number of takes blind fishing the tiny flies on the surface.  This type of trout fishing is not easy.  It requires accurate casting and good presentations.  You have to be dialed in to strike the fish and mange your line.  Tough on beginners landing fish.  A slow action rod is ideal  and a 12' leader with 5x and 6x tippets are a good idea.  All about delicate presentations in the slow moving water where the trout have a PHD in studying your fly.  Looks like cool nights ahead but nice warm days.  Trout fishing should remain good.  I'm a little bummed about lake run salmon and brown trout.  I cant bring myself to pursue them in the low flows.  I'm sure they are getting hammered but honestly they should be left alone until flows change.  No one on the water which has been nice.  Lots of risers and no angling pressure.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Depends on the day

Hi Folks, Been guiding everyday.  I have been on the water for everyday of October and conditions have been variable.  I would say the last week offered up the best fall fishing thus far.  I have been wading the Lamoille with guests to chase trout and running my motorboat for bass and pike.  Water temperatures are starting to drop with the recent cool nights.  The lake I guided on Thursday was 59 to 61 degrees while the Lamoille was 51 degrees yesterday afternoon.  The bass fishing has been good.  We are not catching tons of fish but all quality fish.  The smallmouths have looked really good with big deep bodies and full of energy once hooked.  We located smallies on deep drop offs adjacent to rocky shorelines with weeds and wood.  We are still getting to eat of the surface but I think that bite is starting to slow.  Largemouth bass have been in around thick weed beds in less than 10' of water.  Not much for pike lately.  On the trout front, tiny flies have been the way.  We saw a few BWO duns yesterday and few raisers who had no pattern.  Pretty good number of spinners at dusk that got few more fish rising in slow water.  Tricky fish to get to eat as they have a PHD in studying your presentation.  We nymphed up trout yesterday using an indicator rig and tight lining.  We also swung #18 BWO emerger in riffle and hooked a couple feisty bows.  A #14 copper john with a #20 BWO nymph has been productive tight lined as well.  I think as the water cools the fish are not as willing to move great distances to eat the fly.  I am off to guide on the Winooski today and tomorrow.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  have fun, Willy

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

tight lines, rain, little flies, nice fish

Hi Folks, Amazing what some rain can do for the trout fishing.  Monday rained all day and our rivers came up a bit and the trout fishing turned on.  The foliage looks nice but not as brilliant as in years past. Finally some near freezing night time air temperatures have cooled down our rivers.  The Lamoille was 53 degrees today and 54 degrees  yesterday .  A Lamoille tributary was 52 degrees.  Been nice guiding fly fishing rips for the trout the last few days. There has not been tons of bug activity though, there were a fish risers at dusk today eating tiny #BWO dries.  With the water levels up, the trout fishing game has totally changed.  It went from being tough and not so great to pretty good in two days time.  We have been tight lining #8 buggers in black and olive with #20 BWO droppers and well as nymphing with a #14 copper john and #20 BWO nymph or soft hackle.  The fish are all over a the #20 nymph.  We landed a spectacular wild male 16" brown today on 6x tippet with a #20 nymph. The fish jumped like a salmon 3 times! I have been having guests swinging a 200 grain sinking tip with tandem flies  in some deeper slower pool.  Pretty productive. A little contrast with dark colored streamer with a light colored streamer tied off 2x  fluoro.  As the water cools, presentations need  to be slowed down.  Two weeks left in the season.  Get your casts in.  Off toc ahse pike and bass tomorrow.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home. Have Fun, Willy

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Nice time of year to be on the water

Hi Folks, Been an interesting 3 days of fishing.  Mixing it up between fly fishing and spin fishing for trout, bass, and pike.  It has been unusually warm and we still really need rain.  Looks like some substantial rain is on the way for the next couple of days.  Foliage is finally getting pretty nice.  Maybe not the best foliage year, but still is pretty magnificent.  Trout fishing has been challenging.  The water is wicked low.  The temperature of a Winooski tributary the other day was 49 degrees.  We fished in the morning and we should have been on the water in the afternoon.  We saw one large brown trout eat something off the bottom and that was it.  Not takes, nor risers, no nothing.  There were a decent number of #20 BWOs hatching and a good number of #14 caddis on the trees and and bushes along the rivers edge.  So, I changed directions and put the motorboat int he water to chase bass and pike.  Surface temperature of the lake I have been guiding has ranged from 59 degrees to 63 degrees.  The wind has been issue.  Blowing everyday steady from the west south/west.  Finally got cloudy yesterday.  The bass fishing has been pretty good.  I cant say we are catching tons of fish, but we are landing quality fish.  This particular lake is dirty and off colored so brightly colored flies and lures have been the most productive.  We got a number of smallmouth and largemouth to eat off the top. Even had a big pickerel hammer a popper yesterday.  Really impressive take.  We have locating fish off huge milfoil beds and lily pads that abut deep water.  Letting the lure or fly sit intially and then twitching it has produced some slashing takes.  A number of bass have chased our lures and flies back to the boat in deeper water.  A fast retrieve has been drawn the fish to chasing.  Flies and lures in in fire tiger, orange, yellow, and red and white have all worked.  Well, hoping for rain and more trout fishing to come.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy