Tuesday, August 31, 2010

low water and small brooks

Hi Folks, Guided yesterday morning on a small mountain stream for native brook trout.  Water temperature was 59 degrees and the water level was below the seasonal average.  Very clear stream and approach is always important as to not spook fish.  My guest is new to fly fishing and it was a lot of fun for me to see him catch his first trout on the fly.  Brook trout are very user friendly and not bashful about smashing dry flies.  Good confidence builders when learning to fly fish.  We worked upstream with a 2wt and a #12 stimulator and pretty much found fish every spot we cast to.  Did not catch anything too large but man are the brookies really pretty right now.  Continued heat wave with record setting air temperatures.  Really need some rain and trout fishing with the exception of small streams is not an option.  Bass fishing should continue to be good and I will be guiding smallmouth this week.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Monday, August 30, 2010

opposite ends of the spectrum

Hi Folks, Guided two fine fly anglers yesterday morning on the Winooski drainage.  We fished for smallmouth bass early and later chased brook trout and wild rainbow trout.  Hot day with a big sun and warm air temperatures.  The river we fished for bass was clear and low and the water temperature was 65 degrees at 6:30am.  Not much movement to the stream but it did not matter as we cast popping bugs for the smallmouth.  We had 6 smallmouth come to the fly and we hooked 4 landing 3.  The first and biggest of the day jumped 5 different times.  Loads of fun to watch.  We then changed directions and moved into a smaller tributary of the big water.  Water was low and clear and the temperature was 60 degrees.  We covered some ground to catch half a dozen brook and half dozen rainbows.  Cast a #14 green bodied hopper pattern, a #12 rubber legged royal stimulator, and #14 foam bodied caddis.  Did have the opportunity to do some sight fishing to a rainbow which is always fun.  Well looks like it will be hot all week so I will be chasing smallmouth and small stream trout.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Big Lamoille brown again

big Lamoille brown

Finicky bass

Hi Folks, Double dipped yesterday guiding morning and night for smallmouth bass.  Pretty warm out there as our water temperatures are on the rise once again.  Warm sunny days and warm nights have our larger trout waters too warm to f ish.  Small brooks are still okay, but we could use some rain and the spook factor is in effect.  So when warm why fish the smallmouth.  took out the motorboat in the morning where the water temperature was 74 degrees and water clarity was good.  It appeared that the lake level was down and the smallmouth had pushed away from shoreline areas.  We made lots of cast to catch 4 small bass.  Mostly worked the surface with floating shad raps in fire tiger, however we did jig fish a 4" crawfish colored tube on a 1/8th oz. jig head.  Drew a few strikes on the jig, but the strikes were extremely subtle.  All 4 bass and numerous yellow perch were caught on the floating rapalas around downed wood that stuck out into deeper water off shallow tapered shorelines.  In the afternoon my guest and I fished from a canoe where the water temperature was 72 degrees and it appeared like the leaves were starting to turn.  Lots of red maple or swamp maple was already bright red.  We had a bit of a north west wind in the afternoon and we made a point to get on the lee side of land and out of the shade.  Pretty bright afternoon.  The wind did calm down at dusk.  Same as the morning we made lots of casts for a few fish.  However, we did land a solid 3lb smallmouth that sipped in a fire tiger popper.  Also, tangled with 2 large pickerel that exploded onto the popper.  Awesome surface strikes from the pickerel and worth the wait.  Saw a mess of flying ants on the surface a numbers of smallmouth eating them.  They just were not interested in our offerings.  Well off to chase river bass this morning.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Saturday, August 28, 2010

massive Lamoille River brown trout

changing directions

Hi Folks, Spent the whole day guiding a fine fly angler.  He requested to catch brook trout and smallmouth bass and I was more than happy to accommodate.  We started midday on high mountain brook trout stream where the water temperature was 57 degrees.  Water level was twice its seasonal average and the definition of the pools was excellent.  We fished a #10 rubber legged royal stimulator and had countless brook trout come to the fly.  The brookies are looking pretty good as there spawning colors become more pronounced.  When then moved to some big river fishing for smallmouth.  Water level was below the seasonal average and the temperature was 72 degrees.  Saw a really good hatch of #20 BWOs, but no rising fish and not really significant to the smallmouth.  We mixed up our poppers fishing chartruse when the sun was still up and black at dark.  Black does stand out better to the fish under dark conditions.  We landed 7 smallmouth with the largest fish not quite 2lbs.  Missed probably half a dozen.  We found that the smallies were holding in the slowest parts of the river where there were big submerged boulders.  Nice flat water to view the strike on the surface fly.  Did see some #10 stonefly shucks and #12 isonychia shucks on the rocks.  Saw a fair amount of large green hoppers yesterday, but no flying ants.  Looks like the big water in our trout streams is about to really warm up again with the in coming hot days ahead.  Leave the trout alone if the water goes over 70 degrees as I suspect it will.  Chase smallmouth like I will be doing today.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Friday, August 27, 2010

dry fly fishing

Hi folks, Guided two trips yesterday on the Lamoille drainage.  Fly fished the main stem in the morning and a tributary.  Actually fished in Didymo stream so really had to clean the gear thoroughly last night.  It will not be me or my clients who spread this nuisance around.  Did not see any large mats of the "rock snot" but the spores are ever present and cleaning is a must!  Water temperatures were pretty good with the Lamoille hovering between 64 and 68 degrees from morning to night and the trib. was 62 degrees.  We could use some rain as our rivers are still a bit bony.  Not hard to locate the fish as the riffles and pools are very obvious.  Looks like the cool weather is about to get pushed out and warmer summer like weather will return for the weekend. You know the morning will be good when your client catches a trout within the first 3 cast of the day.  We fished a #12 hopper pattern and that could have resembled a stone fly adult and had pretty consistent action with it.  What was fun was my guest used a short 7'  4wt. that really bent when a fish was on.  We landed 6 rainbows with 4 being wild fish.  Missed a few. but the fishing was pretty decent for still being in August.  Pretty cool afternoon with a strong wind that made casting a trick.  Did find a few willing trout who wanted to eat an ant pattern.  It was difficult to detect rise forms due to the wind on the water.  Nice when you can spend the day fishing dry flies the entire time.  The hell with nymphing or casting steamers when fish are looking up.  So, off to chase trout and smallies later today with guests.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Thursday, August 26, 2010

trophy fish

Hi Folks, guided the Lamoille yesterday morning and evening.  Great fishing weather with overcast skies all day and cool air temperatures.  The water temperature was 65 degrees at 7:00am and 68 degrees at 5pm.  Water level came down all day as the power company shut off the flow.  Don't understand how the manage the flows but I know the fish are not a concern.  In the am we encountered a good number of flying ants.  Size #14 to #22 flying ants were carpeting the water.  We found specific rising fish and cast a #14 foam bodied flying ant pattern I tie.  Most of the fish were eating the ants in slow flats down stream from riffles.  We landed 4 wild rainbows and 1 wild brown trout.  Missed another half dozen fish.  Real explosive strikes to the fly.  You could anticipate the strike when a good cast and drift was made you knew the trout was going to eat the fly.  In the afternoon I guided a group of spin anglers on the Lamoille down river from where we fished in the morning.  We cast rebel crawfish lures and a rapala imitation brown trout plug.  We landed 11 rainbows between 8" and 14" and then the brown trout.  Maybe one of the largest brown trout I have ever seen in the Lamoille.  You could tell pretty quickly that my client had a big fish on the line when i saw his line ripping up stream.  It was a beautiful male brown trout with a big hook jaw that measured 22" .  I guess it would have weighed 4lbs.  We released this beast, but I think it would not have been a bad fish to have mounted.  A trout that size is on his last leg and he probably eats a fair number of young fish.  Pictures to come.  Not every day you see a wild resident river trout of this size.  Pretty exciting.  Not much for ants last night or rising fish. Lots of #12 isonychia shucks on the rocks along with some #10 stoneflys.   Off to chase trout this am.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

lots of casting

Hi folks, Guided with the boat yesterday morning for smallmouth bass on a large body of water.  Heavy morning fog with steadily increasing wind from the east.  Surface temperature of the water was 73 degrees.  We covered a lot of water and made lots of cast to a wide variety of cover.  Cannot say there was any consistency to where we located smallmouth.  We found them on the edges of wood, off rock points, soft bottom points, rock faces, and shoreline drop offs.  We caught a good number of bass, but nothing of major size.  The fly of the day was a black and yellow popper with a good concave face that made a good deep sounding pop when moved with the rod tip.  Saw a great hatch of flying ants last night in Stowe.  They really get the fish looking up.  Patterns in black and cinnamon from #14 to #22 will work.  Make sure you have ant patterns in your box as they can pop up anytime for the next few weeks.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

nice fishing weather

Hi Folks, Guide the Winooski drainage yesterday morning and then fished on my own in the afternoon.  Nice damp overcast day with passing showers.  Really cooled off as the air temperatures never passed 65 degrees.  The stream we fished in the morning was 62 degrees and the stream I visited in the afternoon was 62 degrees.  You have to likw when the water temperature stays pretty constant for the day.  We did receive a little over an inch of rain at my house in Stowe from Saturday night to Monday morning.  Welcome rain that raised the level in our rivers.  The Winooski was up but very fishable as it was slightly off color.  The streams I was on were higher than normal but still clear.  Spin fished in the am with my client and we landed 3 smallmouth bass and missed 2 other fish.  Did land a solid 2lb fish that put up a good tussle and took some line off the reel.  In the afternoon I walked  a short beat of water I had not been on in a few years.  Nice to see that it had not changed and still is stable with a good ratio of riffles to pools.  Caught trout in every pool I cast my #12 stimulator in to.  The fish of the afternoon was a beautiful almond colored female brown trout that came all the way out of the water and back down on my fly.  Great take and spectacular looking fish.  Had numerous wild rainbows attack the fly in the 6" to 12" range and they were certainly feisty in the cooler water.  Looking like nice weather for fishing this week.  I am off to guide with the boat this morning.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Finally some rain

Hi folks, Guided the main stem of the Winooski yesterday morning where the water temperature was 66 degrees at 6:00am.  Pretty cool breezy morning with increasing cloud cover.  Raining here now and I have thus far received 1/2" of rain at my house in Stowe.  Supposed to rain for a couple of days which we could really use.  Been pretty dry and our streams and rivers need a drink.  The Winooski was about as low as it gets yesterday and we were down stream a ways from Bolton.  Did not see any rising fish and only a few sporadic hatching small caddis.  Lots of #12 isonychia shucks on rocks as well as #10 stoneflys.  We spin fished with beetle spins in silver and caught 4 wild rainbows between 10" and 14", 1 1.5lb smallmouth, 2 young landlocked salmon, and a few decent sized fall fish.  All of the fish were in deep pools that were fed by heavy riffles.  The rainbows looked like they had survived the heat of the summer but were a bit thin bodied with big heads.  Not surprised considering how warm our big rivers got this year.  Should be a good fishing week with the rain and some cooler air temperatures.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Friday, August 20, 2010

Isonychia sadleri

Hi Folks, Been guiding trout on the last two days.  Fly fishing the Lamoille drainage and casting lots of dry flies.  The Lamoille main stem is still too hot to fish.  It was 74 degrees last night at 5pm and 69 degrees to 70 degrees this morning at 6am.  So we have been fishing tributaries of the main stem.  Lots of Isonychia shucks on rocks and saw a good hatch last night with rising fish.  Fished a stream with lots of rock and boulders. The temperature of the stream we fished was 67 degrees.  Isonychia also goes by the name Leadwing coachman or Isonychia bicolor.  Very significant hatch in late summer to early fall as it is a big bug #12 to #14 and it hatches for a long period of time and throughout the day with spinner activity at dusk.  It is a swimming may fly and moving the fly during and at the end of the drift often produces strikes.  Simply put the trout see this macro invertebrate for an extended period of time and it is a big morsel of food for them.  For nymphs I like to use pheasant tails, zug bugs, and exact nymphs ties in claret with a white dental floss back.  For the dry I like a gray wulff, adams, or hare's ear parachute.  Last night we got small wild rainbows to eat the parachute version.  Good explosive strikes as the Isonychia typically crawls out on to rocks to hatch and on windy days the duns get blown onto the water and are easy pickings for the fish. This am I changed directions with my guest and we fly fished small brook trout water for natives.  Lots and lots of action and beautifully colored brookies.  All caught on large stimulators.  Hopefully things will cool off and we can gt back on the big water for trout and enjoy fishing the Isonychia hatch.  Will be chasing smallies the next few days.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

last cast bass

Thursday, August 19, 2010

fussy fish

Hi folks, Guided the double yesterday for smallmouth bass.  Spent the morning river fishing for smallies with the fly and in the evening from my boat with spin tackle.  The river we visited yesterday was 64 degrees at 6am and low and clear.  Saw a few #22 trico spinners and sporadic number of #20 micro caddis that were tan bodied.  No rising fish and not that I expected bass to waste energy eating tiny little bugs.  We could sight the smallmouth and there were some very large fish cruising in the pools we visited.  Lots of denials from the bass whether we presented a surface fly or a sub surface fly.  Pretty frustrating to watch a 15" smallmouth come to the fly only to put the brakes on and turn off.  Witnessed it over and over again.  We had five fish eat the fly and we landed none.  In the afternoon under cloudy skies and calm conditions we found some finicky fish that we were able to get to eat.  Surface temperature was 76 degrees and water clarity was good.  We fished 1/8 oz. jigs with 31/2" crawfish colored tubes to some non-aggressive fish.  Working the jig slowly off deep points produced bass.  Really subtle takes.  As the sun set the top water bite turned on we saw larger smallmouth crush floating rapalas.  A jointed a balck and silver rapala and a pumpkin seed rapala worked well.  Most of the takes were while the lure was sitting still or  having just been moved.  We covered a lot of water to catch.  Well, fishing can be tricky at times and occasionally it takes some real determination and persistence to catch fish.  Off to trout fish this afternoon.  Love the morning fog.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

smallmouth bass

Hi Folks, Spent yesterday morning with guests on my boat chasing smallmouth bass on the fly.  Now in the dog days of August and the lake and river fishing for smallmouth has been a pretty good option.  Surface temperature of the lake we fished was 77 degrees under calm conditions.  Another warm sunny day and it seems like that has been the theme for August; bright and warm.  The consistent stable weather is a good thing for bass fishing and the top water bite has been dynamite.  We never changed flies yesterday as we cast a chartruse colored slider that made a nice subtle pop to shore line drop offs.  Water clarity was good and it enabled us to see the bass come to the fly or some instances turn off from the surface presentation.  We had a young angler aboard and who is learning the ways of fishing and we had him casting a small spin rod with a silver and black popper.  We landed 12 smallies, missed a few, and saw several very large bass look at the fly including one that appeared to want to eat a small hooked bass.  Patience once again with the presentation was important in giving the bass the chance to see the fly and respond to it.  So, the big water trout fishing has been slow as our water is still warm, but the bassing has been steady.  Did see some #12 isonychia shucks on rocks the other night and there are plenty of terrestrials around right now.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Monday, August 16, 2010

Big water and small water

Hi Folks, Spent the weekend chasing trout in small water and smallmouth bass in big water.  Still fairly warm out there and the small stream I visited was 62 degrees and the lower Lamoille was 77 degrees.  Pretty windy out there yesterday with a steady blow form the south/southwest.  Saturday was just humid and bright.  Water clarity is good and our rivers and streams are close to their seasonal average flow.  Extremely different environments to fish in from a wading perspective.  Both can be tricky to walk around with the uneven walking surfaces, but positioning for casting and the distance of casts is very different.  Lot more trees and bushes to contend with in the small streams while the large water is wide open.  Accuracy is much more important on the small water.  Either way caution is needed when walking around these environments and it is important to cover some water to catch fish.  The trout fishing Saturday was good with numerous native brook trout coming to the stimulator.  The spook factor is in effect so approach was important.  Smallmouth fishing was okay.  Landed 4 smallies yesterday afternoon and missed two other fish.  A crawfish clauser was the fly of the day and we only took 1 bass off the surface with a chartruse popper.  Loads of small crawfish in the shallows darting around and several bass puked up crawfish as we landed them.  Looks like some weather moving in this afternoon.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Friday, August 13, 2010

nice variety

Hi folks, Guided the Lamoille yesterday morning with spin anglers.  Water level was twice it s seasonal average flow.  The temperature at 6:00am was 67 degrees and it warmed to 68 degrees by 10:00am.  Probably too warm to fish trout in the afternoon.  Nice morning fog which kept the sun off the water until about 8:00am.  Lots of crawfish scurrying about the shoreline and we fished a crawfish imitation on light spin rods.  Landed 14 rainbows between 8" and 14".  A combination of wild trout and stocked trout.  No fish left the water while being released and every trout swam off full of piss and vinegar.  The trick to catching the rainbows was to imitate the movements of the crawfish with a slow steady retrieve and a stop and go action.  Also, swinging the lure into the current and starting the retrieve at the end of the drift was effective as we had several fish follow the lure right up to the anglers feet before striking.  Saw a decent #22 trico spinner drop., but very few fish rising to eat the little mayfly.  Also, a few random #20 tan bodied micro caddis hatching and did see a several splashy rise forms which would indicate a trout eating a hatching caddis fly.  Have not seen any #12 isonychia nymphs on rocks, but it should be only a matter of time.  Mid day I visited a small brook where the temperature was 65 degrees and I caught two brightly colored brook trout on a #14 hopper pattern.  Both fish were holding in fast water section of the run due to the warmer water temps and their need for dissolved oxygen.  After that I went fly fishing with a friend on local smallmouth lake and tugged on smallmouth bass.  Wind out of the north with a the surface temperature of the lake being 77 degrees.  We located smallmouth around old beaver huts and weed beds that emerged around rocky bottoms.  The largest fish landed was 2lb smallmouth that put a good bend in the 6wt.  A frog popper pattern with a yellow belly and rubber legs was the fly of the night.  We probably could have caught more than 6 smallies if we had fished until dark, but we pulled the plug around 7:00pm.  Patience was the key as we let the fly sit for a while prior to making the first pop.  Amazing how often you draw strikes after the fly has being sitting on the surface of the water for over 30 seconds.  Taking the day off from fishing.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Thursday, August 12, 2010

sight fishing smallmouth

Hi Folks, Guided a couple of spin anglers yesterday afternoon for some river smallmouth fishing.  Water temperature where we fished was 68 degrees.  The water was gin clear and about at its seasonal flow.  We found two honey holes that must have held 20 smallmouth a piece between 10" and 18".  You could see them plain as day and they were not spooked.  We landed 23 smallmouth yesterday afternoon casting fire tiger colored rapalas, crazy!  The best action was allowing the rapala to drift slowly in the current with slight movements in the rod tip and watch the smallies crush the lure.  Some real jumpers and tail walkers.  My guests did a great job landing fish and we did not lose many.  Several 2.5lb to 3lb fish were landed and they fought like their size.  Beautiful weather afternoon and the sun allowed us to target specific fish.  I could see the bass (polarized glasses help) and would direct where to cast.  Pretty fun stuff.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Off to chase trout as it looks like the Lamoille and Winooski should be fishable once again.  Have Fun, Willy

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

wet august?

Hi folks, Seems like the lack of rain in July is being made up for here in August.  Received another 1/4" of rain at my house in Stowe over night.  The small stream I guided yesterday morning was 3 times its seasonal average and slightly off color.  The water temperature was 59 degrees.  The big water, Lamoille and Winooski came up once again with the rain.  Brook trout fishing has been dynamite.  Greedy little char that eat dry flies with a reckless abandon.  Starting to see some really nicely colored brook trout as they prepare for fall spawning.  Most of the larger brook trout, over 9" have been males with hook jaws.  Small stream fishing is not about fighting moby dick on the fly, but more about making accurate casts and maintaining good line control.  It is important to minimize your slack fly line and make a good controlled drift.  This will ensure a good hook set when the trout hits the dry.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun,Willy

Monday, August 9, 2010

cool down

Hi folks, Guided yesterday afternoon for trout on the Lamoille.  Nice to be back on the big water.  Beautiful weather for fishing this last weekend.  The Lamoille was still above its seasonal average from the rain of the previous week.  Water temperature was 64 degrees with cloudy skies and rain showers.  I received a 1/4" of rain at my house in Stowe over night.  We worked for fish but the best action came at dusk.  There were some small micro #20 caddis hatching  tan bodied and a large #12 mayfly with a olive green body and slate colored wing at dusk.  We mimicked the mayfly with a #12 hare's ear parachute pattern.  The trout seemed to like it as we landed 2 wild rainbows on the dry and missed 3 others.  Also landed a decent 12" wild bow with a #12 tungsten prince nymph.  Nymphing was slow as we only had 3 strikes below the surface.  Should continue to be a good fishing week with cool night time air temperature which should keep water temperatures right inline.  Off to fly fish a small brook.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

good fun

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Back to the trout

Hi folks, Guided yesterday under beautiful weather conditions.  Nice cool day with morning fog and even cooler evening.  Water levels have been dropping and I visited the Lamoille in the early am to find the water temperature 59 degrees.  Still twice its seasonal flow average and off color slightly.  We drifted some heavy nymphs without a bite so we moved to a small stream for brook trout.  The brook trout stream was 55 degrees and gin clear.  Still it was 4 times over its seasonal flow average.  We had well over 40 brook trout come to the fly.  Big gaudy stimulator patterns were the ticket.  Great environment for perfecting casting accuracy and making controlled short drifts.  The brook trout are really colorful right now as they begin to prepare for fall spawning.  Should be another nice day for fishing.  I will be guiding trout late this afternoon.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Holy smallmouth

Hi Folks, Guided a river yesterday afternoon with a mix variety of species.  Beautiful day with a frontal change taking place.  Pretty breezy with cooling air temperatures.  Really cooled down last night with air temps dropping into the 40's.  River levels are still high and the Lamoille yesterday afternoon was still pretty dirty.  The river we fished was up, but certainly clear.  We worked beetle spins and a floating perch rapala into the slower parts of pools and the tail outs.  Landed 15 smallmouth bass, two stocked rainbows, and several fall fish.  Two of the smallies were legitimate 2lb fish.  Loads of fun with these jumping and tugging fish.  Interesting  to note that the fishing in rivers is generally pretty good when the waters levels are dropping after a high water event.    I think the fish are hunkered down riding out the big water and are simply hungry when the water levels come back down.  Going to be a nice weekend and I am off to chase trout.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Friday, August 6, 2010

after effects from rain

Hi folks, Guided yesterday morning with my boat on a large lake.  All sorts of debris on the surface of the lake from the recent rain storm.  Water clarity was decent, but not perfect.  Surface temperature was 77 degrees and an extremely humid conditions yesterday.  No wind which made for a good top water bite.  We worked a silver and black popper and a jointed floating rapala fairly close to shoreline.  The water level in the lake was up significantly.  Landed 10 smallmouth but nothing to large.  We did jig fish for a bit in deeper and hooked several bass, but once no monsters.  River levels are still dropping and lloks like some cool nights on the way.  Hopefully our rivers will cool off.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Big Rain

Hi Folks, Received almost 3" of rain at my house in Stowe the last 2 days.  Been awful hot and muggy.  Looking forward to fall and cooler weather.  Anywho, still guided a small trout steam this afternoon on the fly.  Man our rivers are cranking and most streams are high dirty and blown out.  Could be a few days before the big water is fishable and anyway it is still too hot for trout fishing  in either the Winooski or Lamoille.  We fished a small headwater stream of the Winooski drainage for wild rainbows and native brookies.  The stream was 5 times it s normal flow, but clear.  Good tree canopy with a gorge and no topsoil pouring into the brook.  Water temperature was 64 degrees which is probably 4 degrees warmer than normal.  We fished a big #10 royal stimulator into soft water off of big plunge pools.  Landed 3 wild rainbows between 7"and 10" and 1 9" male brookie.  Missed or lost 6 other trout.  Not to shabby considering the conditions.  Off to chase smallies in the am.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Monday, August 2, 2010

small stream brook trout

fishing with kids

Hi Folks, Guided two trips yesterday with young aspiring anglers.  Beautiful Vermont summer day with air temperatures in the high seventies and light cloud cover.  Water temperatures are still warm.  My morning excursion was bank fishing where the surface temperature was 76 degrees.  It is always rewarding for me to see young repeat anglers whose skill level improves.  We did away with the floats yesterday morning and taught the kids how to fish off the bottom.  Pretty bright out to have the fish rise so we went down to them.  Garden hackle was our bait of choice.  We hooked and landed numerous pumpkin seed, bullhead, perch, and smallmouth bass. Also, we were able to use a floating perch rapala and catch smallmouth as well.  Kids just want to have fun and they do not care what they catch as long as they catch something.  Fun process watching them became better casters and having them successfully hook a fish that bites.  In the afternoon, I took group of young people river fishing on the lower Winooski for smallmouth bass and fall fish.  The Winooski was low and clear and the water temperature was 74 degrees.  The irony of this trip was I did not want to fish for trout due to the warm water temperatures and the first couple of fish landed were 15" plus wild rainbows.  We landed them quickly and they never left the water while being released.  The rainbows were in excellent condition and did not look stressed from the hot weather of July.  So, after that we got down to business and caught numerous large fall fish and 1 2lb river smallmouth that put up a good fight.  The lure of the day was silver bladed beetle spin.  Looks like a good week for fishing with some rain hopefully and cool night time air temps.  We will see.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Sunday, August 1, 2010

mixing it up

Hi folks, Guided a double yesterday with smallmouth/pike trip in the morning and brook trout outing in the afternoon.  The pond we visited in the morning had a surface temperature of 75 degrees with calm conditions and lifting fog.  Really nice day yesterday and a couple of cool nights mixed in with air temps. dipping into the high forties.  We spin fished form my canoe casting a prop bait initially and them shifting to a large blue/silver and orange husky jerk stick bait.  We caught a wonderful 18" smallmouth off a steep ledge in about 15' of water with the prop bait.  We missed it initially and it came back after the surface presentation with a fury.  Helluva of a good fish that fought and jumped and appeared to be very well fed. Only bite on the surface so we worked the stick bait and landed another 2lb smallmouth and 3 northern pike in the 20" range.  It was interesting that we hooked all of the northern pike on a sunny shoreline with a deep weed bed.  We did lose one pike that appeared to have some girth, but we will never know as it escaped us.  In sharp contrast, I guided a new fly angler in the afternoon on a small mountain brook where the water temperature was 59 degrees.  Good tree canopy on this stream and stable pools.  Water was pretty clear and the flow was at its seasonal average.  We saw numerous brook trout come to the #12 royal rubber legged stimulator.   Best fish of the day was a legitimate 10" brookie that was lit up with color.  Awesome looking fish that love to eat dry flies.  On a sad note, I have noticed that the Lamoille river has been dropped to 42 cfs.  Seasonal average for this time of the year is 188cfs.  Shame on Green Mountain Power as they obviously do not give a damn about the trout.  Let out some water folks.  Run of the river dams are managed horribly by the power company and not good for the fishery.  Sorry to rant and rave.  I am off to do two kids program today.  Should keep me on my toes.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy