Sunday, September 30, 2012

damp, drizzly day, perfect for trout fishing

Hi Folks, Guided a Lamoille tributary yesterday afternoon with the fly rods.  Nice wet day with constant drizzle.  Water levels are a still low and we could still use more rain.  Water temperature was 55 degrees.  Saw a pretty good hatch of #16 caddis yesterday.  Not much for rising fish but we did have fish coming to our dry fly.  We fished 3wt. outfits with dry dropper rigs.  A #16 Goddard caddis with a #18 olive copper john was the most effective set up of the day.  We landed 4 wild brown and rainbow trout and had another  7 fish come to the fly.  A lot fun watching larger browns and rainbows stick up their noses to eat the Goddard caddis off the top.  You see the trout flash at the nymph below the surface.  Lots of up stream drifting with very little fly line on the water.  One of the better afternoons of trout fishing i have seen thus far this fall.  Off to chase salmon this morning.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  have fun, Willy

Saturday, September 29, 2012

fall fishing

Hi Folks, Been guiding trout the last couple of days under beautiful fall foliage.  It seems like the leaves are changing ahead of schedule.  Good topic of debate.  Water levels are still somewhat low but temperatures are excellent.  Found water temperatures between 58 degrees and 62 degrees.  I have been guiding on small brooks for wild trout.  Lots of clear water.  The trout fishing has been tough this fall.  Generally this would be magic time and it has been just the opposite.  Really working hard for a few fish.  Not much for hatching insects.  Seen a few #18/#20 BWO's and some #16 olive bodied caddis but that is about it.  We have been working the small streams I have been guiding with  #12 orange stimulators with a #18 olive cooper john and a #10 yellow rubber legged foam fly with various small dropper nymphs.  Still spooking some fish in the clear water and approach and how you are dressed is important.  No bright colors.  Yesterday was pretty cool as we sight fished for wild brown trout.  Spotted several fish holding in and around wood in long pools off big riffles.  Great feeling when you make the prefect cast and watch the fish move to take the fly.  Landed 4 browns yesterday on the dry fly and nymph.  Missed another 3 fish.  Thursday we did not land a fish but had half dozen wild rainbows come to the fly.  Still working hard for fish.  Will be chasing trout once again today.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home. Have Fun, Willy

Thursday, September 27, 2012

nice day to be on the water

Hi folks, Guided a full day from the boat yesterday.  Pretty awesome when you have the entire lake to yourselves.  Flat calm al day with over cast skies and beautiful foliage.  Really nice contrast with the dark sky and changing leaves.  Water temperature was 65 degrees on the surface.  We fished the surface for most of the day and the smallmouth wanted to play.  We cast the good old original floating rapala in black and white and blue and white.  Plenty of smallmouth coming to the surface to eat.  Not a day with many large fish but lots of steady action.  We did take and miss a few smallmouth of a 4' crawfish colored Senko.  Most of the surface takes came after the lure had been stationery on the surface for a bit.  We fished pretty shallow and found fish off drop offs, points, and flats with about 15' of water.  Will be chasing trout today.  Hopefully the water levels will be manageable as we received 1/2" of rain last night in Stowe.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

covering water

Hi folks, Been enjoying the fall weather the last few days guiding on the Lamoille with the fly rods.  I have been drifting the river with my canoe.  Nice was to see and cover some water.  No one out there fishing and the leaves are getting better by the day.  Water levels have been decent for fishing and the temperature mid day in the Lamoille has been 58 degrees to 60 degrees.  Been awful bright and sunny and I welcome the rain we are receiving today.   Seeing a few #16 olive bodied caddis hatching, a few random #12 Isonychia, some #20 BWOs and still plenty of grasshoppers around.  Have seen some junk feeding trout lately.  Fish that rise once or twice at the most and you really can't get a gauge as to what they are eating.  We have been nymphing and swinging a #12 olive tungsten bugger.  Double nymph rigs with a #14 copper john and a #18 olive nymph has been effective.  Not catching any big fish but few wild rainbows who have been feeding below the surface.  I am finding that we are having to cover some water and make lots of casts for fish.  The trout seem to spread out a bit.  I off for a full day on the boat to chase smallmouth.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  have fun, Willy

Monday, September 24, 2012

nymphing away

Hi Folks, Guided the Winooski for trout yesterday afternoon.  What a nice fall day with sun and clouds, cool air temperatures, and leaves that are really starting to turn.  Water temperature was 62 degrees and the flow was pretty heavy from the previous nights rain.  The clarity of the water was slightly off.  Once again no hatches to speak of.  We nymph fished all afternoon with double fly rigs under indicators.  We mixed it up with a #14 tungsten prince an a #18 olive wire copper john, to a #16 flashback hare's ear nymph to a #20 peacock herl soft hackle.  We landed 2 very nice wild rainbows and lost 3 other fish.  Lots of casting and drifting for the end result.  Was nice having the river to ourselves.  Will be chasing trout for the next couple of days and then back to the boat and pike fishing.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  have fun, Willy

chunky smallmouth

Sunday, September 23, 2012

another beautiful day of fall fishing

Hi folks, Ran my boat with guests up north again today in search of northern pike and bass.  We left pretty early in the morning to avoid the heavy wind that came up mid day.  The lake turned into an ocean by mid day with big waves and white caps.  The water temperature was 64 degrees and the clarity was pretty good.  The fishing in the morning was excellent and probably would have been all day had the wind not blown us off the water.  We landed 6 northern pike, 4 chunky smallmouths bass, and 1 largemouth bass.  We fished large fire tiger stick baits and a large double prop Devil Horse.  We had the smallmouths all eat off the surface and two of the pike.  We caught all of our fish in less than 12' of water where there large weed beds with a hard bottom.  Had the entire lake to ourselves and the foliage is beginning to look nice.  Big cold front has moved in and I would guess that the lake fishing might be slow for a day or two until things settle down.  I received 1/2" of rain at my house in Stowe.  Off to chase trout today.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Thursday, September 20, 2012

blowing in the wind

Hi folks, Fished up north today with guests for pike and bass.  Cast the fly rods and spin gear.  Good stiff wind from the west at a steady 10 to 15 knots.  Beautiful early fall day and we had the lake all to ourselves.  Surface temperature was 65 degrees and the water clarity was decent.  We were looking for northern pike but invariably tangles with some largemouth and smallmouth bass.  Fire tiger and orange and yellow seemed to be the colors of the day.  A fast retrieve triggered most responses from pike and bass.  We located all of our fish on drop offs from 5' to 15' of water with a hard bottom, mixed in large boulders, and milfoil.  Missed several big surface strikes from bass because we just did not expect that type of take.  The two best fish of the day were an 18" and 18.5" largemouth bass.  Landed only small northerns and had several larger fish chase and one pike break off a large plug.  Caught a nice 2lb smallmouth had a few others chase but not eat.  I think the bright sun had something to do with our inability to seal the deal on every fish.  The wind made fishing challenging and I think had it not blown so hard we would have done even better.  Will be fishing pike again in 2 days.  Looking forward to it.  Our big rivers are high and dirty after good rain on Tuesday.  Smaller brooks and streams are perfect for fishing.  Nice time of the year to be on the water.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

not the target species

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

plunge pools

Hi folks, Guided a Lamoille tributary yesterday mid day with the fly rods.  Interesting stream as is offers a a wide variety of water types from a meandering meadow section, to several small gorges to heavy pocket water.  The water was low yesterday and the sun was awful bright.  The pocket water was the place to fish with the current water levels.  Water temperature was 58 degrees and the river was gin clear.  Not much for hatching bugs.  We cast a dry dropper rig of a #16 caddis dry with a #18 copper brassie several nymph rigs with a #14 prince and #18 olive caddis pupa dropper under an indicator.  Every fish that came to the fly was holding in and around heavy plunge pools.  The indicator was critical in detecting strikes in the heavy foam of the plunge.  We had 18 wild rainbows come to the fly.  All fish in the 7" to 12" range that were full of piss and vinegar.  Good strong fighters.  Fun way to fish.  We need some rain and it looks like it is on the way for today and tomorrow.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  have fun, Willy

Saturday, September 15, 2012

another day of summer

Hi folks, Guided on the Lamoille yesterday afternoon with aspiring fly anglers.  Another stellar weather day with record high air temperatures.  Afternoon clouds did help and kept the big sun off the water.  Water temperature was 64 degrees and the level was just below the seasonal average.  Saw a lot of #16 green bodied caddis larva on rocks and some hatching #12/#14 isonychia.  A few rising trout but nothing with any regularity.  We blind fished a #14 green grasshopper and a #12 Hare's Ear parachute. We missed several fish that aggressively rose to eat the hopper.  We did land a 3 little guys that were learning to eat at any early age and hooked a decent rainbow on a Isonychia nymph that let go on a country club release.  The trout fishing on the main stem of the Lamoille has been okay.  Certainly a product of the hot summer with low water.  I will be focusing my efforts on tributaries of the Lamoille where the fishing seems to be more consistent and the densities of wild fish greater.  Nice weather change with a big cold front arriving and cold nights on the way.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-nativre species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Thursday, September 13, 2012

chasing pike

Hi folks, Guided in the champlain valley yesterday at one of my old stomping grounds for northern pike.  Pretty breezy morning with a steady south wind.  Another blue bird sunny day.  Surface temperature was 70 degrees and the water clarity was a bit off.  We cast large Rapala Husky Jerks and attempted to fish some soft plastics.  The wind made the finesse fishing difficult.  We landed one decent sized pike and lost two other fish.  Did have a smallmouth bass attack the Rapala but we were unable to  get the fish stuck.  Not fast and furious out there yesterday.  Brightly colored lures or flies with flash are the ticket for northerns.  Anything that pushes water or creates a vibration in the water can be productive.  Will be trout fishing the next few days and it looks like a cool down on the way.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

what a day

Hi Folks, Beautiful day to be on the water yesterday with pleasant air temperatures and a big sun with blue sky.  Maybe not ideal for fishing, but awful darn nice.  Visited a Lamoille tributary and walked a fished a beat of water I had not been on in 20 years.  It was nice to see that it has not changed much since that time.  Water temperature was 59 degrees, clarity was excellent, and the flow was perfect.  No hatching insects or rising fish.  Certainly a stream that should be approached by fishing up stream.  The rig of the day was a #14 green bodied stimulator as the dry fly with a #18 copper john for a dropper.  This particular stream has a decent population of wild rainbows, wild brown trout and stocked browns, with the occasional brook trout.  It was interesting to watch trout and particularly rainbows materialize from under rocks to follow my dropper fly in the drift and then either decide not to eat or pounce on the copper john.  The fish would just effortlessly float right next to fly examining it carefully.  You could see the aqua green bodies of the rainbows and even witnessed a brown trout with big cherry dots do the same thing.  I landed 5 wild rainbows between 8" and 12" and 1 8" brown trout on a 2wt.  Not bad for the middle of the day and a couple hours of fishing.  I did rig a indicator with the small coper john for a couple of the lat bigger pools and missed 3 pretty decent sized fish.  All of the takes were pretty subtle due to the bright sun and size of the fly.  I could see the fish move to the fly and just simple pulled the trigger to late.  Love seeing trout in their domain.  Off to chase pike this morning.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Monday, September 10, 2012

big heads, small bodies

Hi Folks, guided on the Lamoille main stem yesterday morning for trout.  I have been fishing the Lamoille for trout in a couple of months due to warm water temperatures and low water levels.  Water temperature was 64 degrees at 7am and the level was spring like.  A little over a 1/2" of rain Saturday night helped with the levels.  Did not see any hatching bugs or any #12/#14 Isonychia shucks on rocks.  We nymph fished with a double fly rig  under an indicator.  We fished a #14 tungsten red thread prince with a #18 peacock soft hackle.  We also mixed in a #12 tungsten head olive wooly under as the top fly.  All of our takes were pretty subtle and the fish were holding in the soft water off the main current.  Not much fight in the trout and they all looked starved.  Big heads with really skinny bodies from a stressful hot summer.  The condition of the fish should hopefully only improve and and the fishing as well.  Nice weather right now with the cool nights and the feel of fall in the air.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Saturday, September 8, 2012

a little variety

Hi Folks, Spent the afternoon into dark yesterday with a guest casting flies from the canoe.  Water temperature is starting to cool off with a surface temperature on the lake of 68 degrees.  No Much to contend with though it is supposed to pick up from the south this afternoon and get a bit breezy as a big weather front pushes through.  We cast poppers the entire afternoon and in yellow and chartreuse.  Even tried a few foam slider flies.  We worked for the smallmouth we caught.  Lots of little fish looking at the flies.  However. in the mean time we were treated to a fair amount violent strikes from pickerel.  Pretty interesting how the pickerel absolutely crush the popper but miss the fly altogether.
we had several break offs where we would see our fly floating after the take with an inch or two of line still attached to the fly.  Lucky for us and lucky for the pickerel.  We did land several of these slimy bastards and they are good fun on a fly, just not the the target species.  Also, we caught a lot of yellow perch and some trophy pumpkin seeds.  The fish of the night was a 16" 2.5lb smallmouth that had some fight in it.  We missed a couple of good fish at dark as well.  I guess because yesterday was so hot and sunny the fishing did not turn on until dark.  We covered a bit of water and we found smallmouth holding off deeper edges that had big submerged rocks and weed beds.  With the cool down on the way I will be getting back on the trout water.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Friday, September 7, 2012

finally some rain

Hi folks, Spent yesterday checking out parts of the Lamoille watershed.   Nice to see water in our streams.  We received some rain on Tuesday and Wednesday.  At my house in Stowe I received 2.25" of rain but other parts of Vermont received even more.  Water temperatures still need to cool down.  The Lamoille was 72 degrees at mid day and high.  Several tributaries of the Lamoille were 69 to 71 degrees, high, and slightly off color.   Looks like another hot day and then things will begin to cool off this weekend.  Should be able to trout fish again.  Will be chasing trout this weekend.  Fly selection can vary from terrestrials like #14/#16 to #22 cinnamon flying ants, #12/#14 olive hoppers, and various beetle patterns.  Been some #12/#14 Isonychia and plenty of #16 green bodied caddis.  Will be bass fishing later today.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  have fun, Willy

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

labor day bang

Hi folks, Guided a double yesterday on Labor day and the smallmouth bass fishing was very good.  Pretty good weekend of guiding and fishing for bass.  Looks like rain for the next couple of days which is really needed.  Water temperature on the lake I was on was 73 degrees and the river we fished last night was 72 degrees.  Slight south wind yesterday with decent morning fog.  Saw no one fishing this weekend.  Nice having the water to ourselves.  Cast a lot of poppers to bass yesterday and even mixed in the spin rod with incredible edible Senko.  Landed a 18.25" and 16" smallmouth off the top in the morning.  Big strong fish who were holding in skinny water adjacent to downed wood and rock.  We also picked off lots of little bass.  We just covered water and kept casting.  In the afternoon we fished several large pools with low clear water and the smnallmouth were willing and jumping.  We landed 10 smallmouth between 1lb and 2lbs.  Good fun on light gear.  Been an awesome summer for bass fishing, yet I am now ready to chase trout if we get a cool down.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

holiday smb

Monday, September 3, 2012

stripping streamers

Hi folks, Guided for river smallmouth bass yesterday with the fly rods.  Another warm sunny day with no rain.  Sure could use some rain.  The river was 72 degrees at very low.  Pretty easy getting around the big water with the current levels.  Top water fishing was slow yesterday as we only had 2 smallmouth eat off the top.  We had a bit of success dead drifting some large stone fly patterns and olvie and brown wolly buggers under an indicator.  However, the best approach yesterday was casting and stripping erratically chartreuse colored clauser minnows.  Some really violent strikes and the fish seemed to want something moved fairly quickly.  We found smallies in all of the really large primary pools.  Beautiful morning for fishing.  Off to chase smallmouth from the boat this morning and then in the river this afternoon.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Sunday, September 2, 2012

scratching up some bass

Hi Folks, We really need some rain now.  Would be nice a get few days of sustained rain.  Our rivers are still really low.  Nights are cooling down and so are the river temperatures.  Had the boat out with guests yesterday morning and the surface temperature was 68 degrees. We fished a lake that is one big swamp with various river channels and wide variety of fish.  We targeted smallmouth bass where the Lamoille river forms the lake.  Lots of big rocks and boulders to cast around.  We caught and missed a couple of smallmouth early on with a fire tiger popper.  The top water bite did not last long once the big bright sun rose.  We fished below the surface with a watermelon red magic 4" Senko and a watermelon 5' Senko with a chartreuse tip.  We caught smallmouth and largemouth bass with the largest fish weighing in at a robust 2.5lbs.  We had to make a lot of casts and work hard for the fish we caught.  A day on the water that required patience and finesse.  Off to chase bass this morning.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy