Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Memorial Day and more

Hi Folks, Guided out of my motorboat with the fly the last two days.  Our rivers are coming down and there are a few small streams I know that could presently be fished.  Unfortunately, the weather forecast for tomorrow is looking ugly and we are supposed to receive another inch of rain.  Lots of carnage from the weekend storms along the 15 corridor the parallels the Lamoille river on the western slope of the Green Mountains.  I feel for any farmers who already had planted corn that got drowned by the flooding. It seems that there has been no middle ground with the weather in May.  It has been either totally dry or rained cats and dogs.  So, nice weather the last few days with cold mornings, warm afternoons, and big bright sun.  The lake I have been on has maintained  surface temperatures from 53 degrees up to 56 degrees.  It was a little warmer today than yesterday.  The bass are in spawning mode.  I have seen occupied spawning and abandoned spawning  beds.  We leave the spawning fish alone.  Even with all of the rain, the lake I have guided has been gin clear.  We have been catching both largemouth and smallmouth bass.  Mostly taking them on large #4 and #2 poppers in chartreuse.  Lots of quality 1.5lb to 2.5lb bass.  We have been locating fish on sharp drop offs that are littered with large rocks and boulders along with emerging weeds.  I have seen several smallmouth take a surface fly in as much as 15' of water.  We have also been casting large deceiver and bunny flies for pike.  Using mostly sinking lines to keep the fly down in the water column.  Not a lot of success of the pike front with a few northern following our flies, but not sealing the deal.  All of the pike we have located have been in less than 10' of water.  Probably due to the cooler water temperatures and young weed growth.  Lots of young perch and bait fish balls in the shallow margins.  Well. we will see what the weather brings and go from there as I am guiding a bunch over the next few days.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Sunday, May 26, 2013


Hi Folks, Crazy weekend of weather.  Lots of rain, big wind, and cool air temperatures.  I had to cancel a trip yesterday in the boat due to the harsh conditions.  I did manage guide today out of the boat with fly and spin gear.  Still pretty breezy out of the north/northwest and water temperatures had dropped on the surface by 6 degrees.  Surface temperature was 57 to 58 degrees. We had a some rain and an even saw glimpses of the sun at times.  Still pretty cold out there but I guess things are going warm and clear up over the next few days.  The water level where we fished had risen by almost 10' and the clarity was not very good.  We were literally casting into the trees. Chartreuse today was the color for spinning gear.  We had two smallmouth chase a yellow/red deceiver and but they did not seal the deal.  We landed 1 bass and lost another on a 1/8oz. jig with a chartreuse Mr. Twister.  Tough conditions with the weather, floating debris, super high water, and cooling water temperatures, but patience and persistence paid off with a nice smallmouth.  On the river front, water is high and will be for a few days.  Small streams certainly will be the best bet for a few days and they do tend to clear quickly.  The main stem of the Lamoille and Winooski will be high and dirty for a bit.  I will be chasing pike and bass with the fly the next few days on the lake front.  I would love to see the wind lay down.  Well, fishing is never perfect, but always fun.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Friday, May 24, 2013

Tight Lines and big water

Hi folks, Well, I have been saying we need rain and we finally got some and more.  Flash flooding problems right now as we have received substantial rain over the last couple of days.  Our rivers, big and small, are stuffed!  Matter of fact, not even safe to go near and think about fishing them.  I own a fishing boat for a reason, so I can still guide when we have high water events.  Guided from the boat this morning with 2 fly anglers.  Water temperature was 62 to 63 degrees and the clarity was way off.  Pretty dirty colored water and the level had risen several feet.  Lots of floating debris in the water.  We worked the shore line right up tight to the bank with our casts.  Still fished points, hard bottomed flats, and downed wood.  Landed 15 smallmouth bass and every fish took a popper off the top.  I think the fish are beginning to get on the beds.  We fished big #4 poppers in frog and chartreuse colors.  Pretty subtle takes for the most part though the fish wanted the popper worked aggressively.   Probably due to off colored water. The first couple of hours of fishing was really good as the wind was light and the rain not too over whelming.  Towards the end of the trip the fishing really turned off.  I think the cold front was settling in and the rain and wind really picked up.  Looks like cool damp weather for the weekend and I will be running my boat every day.  On a side note, looks like the Lamoille from Cadys Falls in Hyde Park downriver to Fairfax is now saturated with northern pike.  Several more large pike have been ccaught recently in locations that shocked me.  Not a good thing as the fragile wild trout fishery of the Lamoille is not going withstand the onslaught of apex predator like a pike.  Man if I were a northern, the stocked rainbows would be an awful nice easy meal.  Too bad that some dumb ass decided to stock pike into the drainage.  Oh well, guess I will be carrying a trout and pike rod for now on.  Stay dry over the weekend and look to fish lakes and ponds until our rivers clear.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Tuesday, May 21, 2013


Hi Folks, Guided the Lamoille watershed yesterday afternoon.  Pretty perplexing day.  Water levels are still low, but up a bit from previous days due to some shower activity.  Water temperatures were perfect at 60 degrees.  Pretty nice afternoon for fishing and with cloud cover and some humidity.  Not too many hatching insects.  Saw a few #10/#12 March Browns and Grey Fox or lets just say Stenonemas.  Sporadic caddis, but no responsive fish.  We covered some water yesterday nymphing  and even casting a muddler minnow.  We hooked 4 trout all afternoon and all in one hole.  What the F#**!  Not sure what was going on except it made me really wonder how many wild fish are swimming in the water we worked.  I am not interested in stocked trout.  The fly of the day was an #10 heavily weighted olive bugger under an indicator.  Looks like some substantial rain on the way which we really need.  Hopefully the trout fishing will improve, or else could be a lot of bass fishing this year.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  have Fun, Willy

Monday, May 20, 2013

early action for smallmouth

Hi Folks, Guided with the boat yesterday for pre-spawn smallmouth bass with spin anglers.  Really nice fishing day with calm overcast conditions.  Water temperatures ranged from 60 degrees to 62 degrees on the surface.  We landed 20 smallmouths fishing in the shallow margins around rocky points and gravel laden shoreline.  I did not see any bass sitting in spawning beds.  I think the smallmouth are staging to spawn currently and I do not like to tug on bass that are on spawning beds.  The lure of the day was a blue and white J-7 rapala and black and white jointed rapala.  We did also have some success with a 4" crawfish colored Senko and several shallow running crawfish patterned crankbaits.  The trick yesterday was moving the lures slowly.  We drew a lot of strikes when the plugs just hit the water and sat still. A little movement and whammo from a smallmouth looking up.  We also landed a wild rainbow on a plug several huge yellow belly perch.  We kept moving and casting.  Today I am guiding trout on a local stream.  Should be really good with the rain we received last night and overcast, humid conditions today.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Saturday, May 18, 2013

landlocked action

Hi Folks, Put  a full day on the water today guiding up north for landlocked salmon.  Beautiful weather day with a big blue sky and warm air temperatures.  Water temperature was 59 degrees and the levels were low.  We really need rain.  Saw a decent number of #16 olive bodied caddis hatching as well as a few sporadic #12 March Browns.  On a few different pools we witnessed a number of #14 Hendrickson spinners.  You could see the egg laden female spinners carry brightly colored egg sacs.  Only found a few rising fish and none that wanted to eat a dry fly.  The fishing was pretty darn good in the morning and really slowed midday as the sun shined brightly over head.  We landed 2 large landlocked salmon in the 18" to 20" class and another two salmon per.  We lost a really big submarine salmon that was easily in the 2 foot range.  In addition we tugged on couple of beautiful lake run rainbows that weighed around 2lbs. and lost another real bruiser.  We nymph fished all day with double rigs and an indicator.  Flies fished today were a #10 red thread Prince nymph with #14 and #16 olive wire caddis dropper.  We also had success with a #14 tungsten hare and copper.  Lots of fishing pressure today, so getting on the water early was bonus.  We did tug on a few fall fish and hooked a 4lb smallmouth.  We spotted some other smallies but left them be as we were after salmon.  I will be running the boat tomorrow for some lake fishing.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Sunday, May 12, 2013


Hi Folks, Guided from my boat yesterday with a spin angler for northern pike.  Pretty wacky weather with a big cold front moving into town.  Shifting winds from the south west to then due north made for some interesting boat control.  Water temperatures ranged from 61 degrees to 63 degrees.  Well, we fished hard and certainly put forth a solid effort trying to catch fish.  The fish did not want to play.  We landed one small northern pike and had one a decent fish follow up to the boat prior to turning off.  I can only guess that the weather had the pike not in a feeding mode.  I have never found unstable weather to be ideal fishing conditions, but it does keep me from fishing.  The two fish we did see came from less than 5' of water in emerging weed beds with downed wood.  A double bladed spinner bait with a red skirt was the lure of the day.  We did try a variety of large plugs and soft plastic baits to no avail.  Will be cool over the next few days and we still really need some rain.  Remember to clean your gear keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Saturday, May 11, 2013


Hi folks, Been guiding withe boat the last couple of days.  My 16' Grumman is running well and the bearings on the trailer are full of grease.  Boats are a pain!  Water temperatures have really warmed up.  I have been finding surface temperatures on the lakes I am guiding to be anywhere from 66 degrees to even 70 degrees yesterday afternoon.  I have been fishing skinny water so certainly the shallow water will warm more quickly. We have been casting big hair flies and deceiver patterns for northern pike.  Color combinations of yellow/red, chartreuse/white, and red/white.  A few darker colored patterns as well.  All of my pike flies have lots of flashabo incorporated into the body.  So, the pike fishing has been pretty slow.  Yesterday we did hook a really big northern and got it to the boat only to lose it, damn it! Besides that mostly small fish following or biting us off.  Really slamming large yellow perch and stupid rock bass, but they are not the intended target.  I will be running the boat again today for pike.  Nice cool wet day.  Our rivers are perfect for fishing right now with very low levels and water temperatures from the high fifties to mid sixties.  Too warm and low for this time of the year.  We need rain big time.  If do not receive some significant rain soon, trout fishing will have a short window of opportunity this season.  Hatching insects these days will #14/#16 Hendricksons, #16 apple caddis, and #16/#18 Blue Quills.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Sunday, May 5, 2013

river clean-up and Green Up Day

Hi Folks,  Been out of town for a few days fishing in the Catskills on the upper Delaware.  Great fisheries with strong wild trout that really pull back.  Saw a great #14/#16 Hendrickson hatch and rising trout.  Should start to happen around here any day.  Yesterday I floated a stretch of the Lamoille River with the Lamoille River Anglers Association for Green Up Day.  Always good picking up trash and tries and giving a little something back to the resource.  Man, we need some rain.  Awful dry and dusty out there and the Lamoille is pretty darn low for this time of the year.  Water temperatures are heating up and the river was in the 50's by midday yesterday.  We did see some #14 little brown stone flies hatching, but no responsive fish.  Not surprising as big bright sunny days are not always the best to fish trout in.  I do know that the fishing on the Willoughby River this spring was decent for the first time in a few years.  Also, large smallmouth bass has begun their ascent of Lewis Creek in Ferrisburgh for their annual spawning run.  I have been tinkering with the boat and will make my annual test run day today and cast some flies for northern pike.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  have fun, Willy
BBQ for LRAA after the river clean-up.  Young aspiring angler (my kid) looking for a dog with mustard.