Thursday, July 31, 2014

Two very different results

Hi folks, Spent the day chasing smallmouth with clients yesterday as I guided a river trip in the morning and from the canoe in the afternoon.  Cool weather outside and it does feel a bit like fall.  Water temperature in the river in the morning was 68 degrees and in the lake in the afternoon was in the low seventies.  Water temperatures did drop several degrees and undoubtedly affects fish behavior.  We worked for bass in the morning only managing to land 5 small fish and lost another half dozen. The strikes were very subtle and line control was essential. The fish did not appear willing to move to far to eat.  A slowed down 3" Senko dragged on the bottom of slower pools was what eventually got the fish to eat.  In the afternoon was totally different deal as the smallmouth and big ones were on! A slight south wind affected where we could fish, but it laid down by dusk.  No top water bite to speak of last night.  We got the smallies to eat a 5" Watermelon Magic Senko.  We landed a dozen fish with 4 fish over 16" and weighing in between 2lbs. and 3lbs.  Strong bronze backs.  The fish were holding on rock and drops offs with downed wood.  It seemed that the larger fish would pick up the Senko and swim to the boat.  You had to reel down and really come tight to get them hooked. Nice evening on the water.  I am off to chase river trout today.  Should be good.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  have fun, Willy

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

same day, different bass

Hi Folks, Doubled up on the boat yesterday and chased smallmouth bass in the morning and largemouth bass in the afternoon.  Feels like fall outside.  The water temperature on both lakes I fished ranged from 71 degrees to 74 degrees. Water temperatures actually dropped by a couple of degrees with the arrival of the cooler weather.  Pretty steady northwest wind for most of the day and with partly sunny conditions.  The water clarity was slightly off from all of the rain from the previous two days.  My morning trip was a combination of fly fishing and spin fishing.  We cast poppers with both spin and fly rods.  Nothing large coming to the surface.  Steady action, but mostly 2 and 3 year old smallmouth.  The spin angler who was casting rubber worms produced the larger fish.  The larger bass were holding in deeper water and certainly needed to be finessed.  We located them in 15' to 18' of water off sharp drops offs with large rocks on the bottom.  Baby bass was the color for the morning for the rubber worms.  I think the cold front made the fish a bit neutral to non-aggressive and we had to slow down our approach.  In the afternoon I guided on a lake that is fairly shallow as has slow tapering shore lines with lots of weeds.  No smallmouth to speak of, but we did manage to catch a few largemouth bass including a solid 3lb fish.  We located all of the largemouth in skinny water of less than 4'.  The bass were tucked under lilly pads and we had to cast right to their edges.  Keeping the bail open while the rubber worm dropped was critical in order to hold the presentation right on the pads and prompt a response.  We got broken off by one pike and had another one follow a worm back to the bait and slash at it.  Certainly a day on the water that required patience.  Off to do it again today with river fishing for smallmouth this morning and cane fishing this afternoon.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Fishing in the Rain, fishing in the rain

Hi folks, Wet one on the water yesterday morning as I took out guests on my boat for some smallmouth bass fishing.  We got on the water early and were able to avoid the heavy until about 9:00am.  Calm conditions off the get go and no wind until later in the morning when it picked up from the east/northeast.  Surface temperature was 75 degrees.  Really good to water in the morning as we landed 4 quality smallmouth on a blue and white concave popper.  These fish were fat.  Disproportionate girth to their length and it appeared that they have been gorging on crawfish.  We located the smallies on a flat in 14' of water that had an abundance of downed wood and big boulders.  When the top water bite slowed we cast 5" watermelon magic Senkos at them and picked off another 6 smallmouth.  Certainly a day of mental endurance with the weather.  The rain is good for the long haul.  Could be a couple of days before our trout streams improve, but the cool weather that has moved in is certainly welcomed.  Off to chase bass all day.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  have fun, Willy

Monday, July 28, 2014

dodging the weather

Hi folks, One of those days yesterday with rain and thunderstorms.  Trout fished with the fly rods in the morning on a small brook and had to cancel my afternoon trip due to the weather.  Not a big fan of standing in a stream with a graphite rod during an electrical storm.  Looks like the storms are moving out but not before it leaves behind some heavy rain.  Could receive up to an 1" of rain today which will shut our streams down for a few days.  The temperature on the brook we fished was 61 degrees and the level was at its seasonal average.  It was a morning for brook trout.  Had the square tails eating a #14 orange stimulator.  Spooked one large fish that I am sure was a brown trout.  We had to cut our trip short due to a nasty storm that moved in.  Off to chase smallmouth bass in the boat this morning and tonight.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  have fun, Willy

Sunday, July 27, 2014


Hi folks, Had a spectacular trip yesterday morning fly fishing on a small tributary of the Winooski river (not in the Stowe in area).  Water temperature was 60 degrees and the clarity was excellent.  The water level had just recently receded from big rain and storms on Wednesday.  Yesterday morning was one of the better dry fly fishing experiences I have seen for large fish in Vermont.  We landed 5 brown trout yesterday with 2 fish measuring in at 15" and 2 fish measuring at 17" and another small 12". All caught on 6' 2wt. rod.  We fished in primary pools in small water and we did not see any trout in any secondary water. Pretty impressive when you watch a large brown trout emerge out from under a rock and crush a dry fly.  The amazing thing was we did not lose any fish and let me tell you these trout fought hard.  We caught all of our fish on a #14 royal trude.  The clincher to the brown trout experience was the 20" to 24" brown we saw in pool that swam right up to my client's feet.   He came over to check us out after we had cast into the pool.  Absolutely incredible and hard to believe such a large fish in a tiny brook.  We could see the cherry dots and the eye ball of this large brown.  I have him marked for the future.  After the brown trout we settled in for some brookie fishing and landed 12 native brook trout.  I guess what makes this morning special is that it is not every day in Vermont that you catch in a river a legitimate 15" wild fish.  The fact that we landed 4 over 15" is special.  The average wild trout in Vermont goes 7" to 12".  Do not care about hatchery mutants and the trophy fish stocking.  That is for beginners and people who do not care about wild trout.  Looks like big rain coming in today so the river fishing might get shut down for a few days.  We need the rain and it will be good for the long haul. Off to chase small stream trout today.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  have fun, Willy

Saturday, July 26, 2014

night and day bass fishing

Hi folks, Guided for bass yesterday in the morning and afternoon.  We fished from my boat in the morning where the surface temperature was 73 degrees.  The water was very clear and there was a slight wind from the south.  We hooked two smallmouth right off the get go on a fire tiger top water that promptly tossed the popper on big jumps.  We had to finesse fish with 4" and 5" Senkos in green with flake to entice half a dozen bass to the boat.  Several very nice large mouth and as well as smallies.  We hooked all of our fish around downed wood in fairly shallow water.  The afternoon was totally different ball game as we landed will over 30 smallmouth bass and could keep the fish off the line.  The water temperature in the river we fished was 70 degrees and slightly off color.  We caught all of our fish on 3" Senkos on #1 red octopus hooks in olive and crawfish.  We did land 1 bass on a fire tiger popper and missed another, but the best bite was below the surface.  We even managed to catch a 10" stocked rainbow on a crawfish senko.  The trout did not fight and the bass put it too shame.  The smallmouth were really feisty and almost every fish came out of the water multiple times.  We hooked all of our fish in slow section of the river in and around downed wood and large rocks.  Very good afternoon on the water.  Off to fly fish for trout in small streams this morning.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Friday, July 25, 2014

a little relief

Hi folks, Changed directions yesterday morning and went fishing with a friend.  Guided Wednesday for river smallmouth bass.  The smallmouth fishing has been excellent and the water temperatures have been holding in the low to mid seventies.  Small 3" Senkos on red hooks have still been the ticket with different shades of green being the most productive.  Lots of hoppers showing up in fields now and should be considered in any fly anglers arsenal.  Laker fishing was interesting. We were on the water at 4:30am and the surface temperature was 73 degrees.  Pretty warm for a trout lake in the kingdom.  We fished fly rod blanks and glass rods spooled with braided line attached to long fluorocarbon leaders.  We fished humps that came up out of deep water with 1/4oz. to 3/8oz. jigs tipped with rubber swim baits.  Snap jigging produced 3 lake trout and 5 other fish on that we did not land.  A real finesse technique as you needed to feel the slight tick by the fish as they ate the bait then come tight.  It was interesting that the small pieces of structure we located with electronics were the most the productive.  the big obvious spots held some fish but they were much more fussy.  Fun morning of fishing.  Off to chase to smallmouth.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  have fun, Willy

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

get up early

Hi Folks, Ran the boat yesterday morning with clients spin fishing for bass.  We were on the water by 5:45 am. as we are currently suffering through a nasty heat wave with high humidity.  Hopefully it will break this afternoon with thunderstorms.  Water temperature was 76 degrees in the morning.  Pretty warm.  Certainly too hot to trout fish the big rivers currently.  We caught all of our fish within the first two hours of the morning and the bite shut down as the sun came up.  Mostly landed smallmouths, but did catch 1 decent largemouth bass and several large rock bass.  The top water bite was good off the get go and we cast fire tiger poppers.  We worked a river system that flows into a lake and we cast to the bank into slow seams and eddies.  Lots of little fry in the water that were being crushed by bass and it appeared to be walleyes as well.  You could see the bait fish schools and watch large fish coming out of the water on the bait fish.  Pretty damn hard to get them to eat our swim baits.  5" Senkos produced a few strikes but even the rubber was tough going under the sunny skies.  So get out there early and enjoy the coolest time of day on the water. Off to do a kids program.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Tuesday, July 22, 2014


Hi folks, Introduced a group of Floridians to the smallmouth bass on a river fishing trip yesterday.  Water is low and we could use some rain.  Temperature was 72 degrees and the water gin clear.   Nothing fancy yesterday as we worked 3" olive and crawfish colored Senkos on red hooks up against shady banks in deep pools.  Focused on the slow water.  Any downed wood or obstructions in the river held a bass.  All pretty subtle takes and you really had to give the fish a chance to eat the rubber bait.  We ended up landing 17 smallmouth bass.  Pretty warm out there so the big trout water is off limits currently due to warm temperatures.  Small streams are in good shape but are low and warming.  Off to chase bass in the boat this morning.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Monday, July 21, 2014

back to the basics

Hi Folks, Been keeping out of trouble chasing smallmouth and river trout over the weekend.  Nice fishing weather to be outside. Looks like a heat wave this week and dry weather.  We could use some rain as it is getting a bit dry out there.  Fly fished still water for smallmouth Saturday and the surface temperature was 72 degrees with very little wind and over cast conditions.  Beautiful for popping bass.  The fishing was consistent and with a #6 frog popper with rubber legs we landed 8 smallmouth between 9" and 15".  We found fish resting on the outside edges of weed beds on drop offs.  Any downed wood seemed to really hold fish.  The trick was being patient on the hook set and making sure all of the slack fly line had been recovered prior to hooking.  Good afternoon.  Yesterday morning I took two young boys and their dad trout fishing with spin gear on the Lamoille.  We were on the water at 5:45am and the water temperature was 68 degrees.  We had some back to back cool nights with air temperatures in the mid 50's that lowered the river water temperature a bit.  I taught the boys the basics I learned at their age about river fishing for trout and we even kept a few stocked rainbows for them to eat on the camp fire.  We fished crawfish lures and perch lures actively we limited results.  When started dead drifting baits on #10 red hooks with a little weight we crushed the stocked trout.  All of the fish were holding in large primary pools.  We caught 15 fish and all of the them we removed the hook from.  Barb less hooks actively fished and the hook was not swallowed.  Pretty basic and simple trout fishing.  Our next outing will be with fly rods.  It was fun to watch these kids catch a trout and clean it for dinner.  At the same time they were educated about wild fish and stocked fish and the fine balance of river fishing.   Nice experience and made me  feel like kid.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.

Saturday, July 19, 2014


Hi Folks, Been chasing smallmouth bass with clients lately.  Been very consistent fishing.  Fished for river smallmouth yesterday.  Water is low and clear and we could use some rain. Water temperature at 5:45am was 70 degrees.  Nice morning fog keep the sun off the water until about 8am.  We landed over 2 bass drifting 3" crawfish and olive Senkos on #1 red octopus hooks.  All of the fish were holding in deeper pools out of the main current.  In and around shady banks and downed wood worked well.  I rig the Senkos weedless so the hook set is really important.  Imperative to the let the fish take the Senko and swim with it until the line becomes tight.  The hook set is a big sweep and needs to be aggressive.  Loads of fun coming tight on a jumping smallmouth.  Off to chase small stream trout this morning.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Friday, July 18, 2014

tugging on smallmouth morning and night

Hi Folks, Guided a double smallmouth bonanza yesterday with a morning boat trip and afternoon boat trip.  Water has warmed up with the surface temperature in both lakes I fished holding between 73 degrees to 76 degrees.  Fairly calm in the morning with heavy fog.  The afternoon was bright and sunny with a steady NW wind.  We hammered the bass in the morning landing over 25 fish between 4" and 16".  Nice mixed bag.  Popper fishing was pretty good early morning and non-existent in the afternoon.  We landed a nice jumping smallmouth on the first cast of the morning with a fire tiger chug bug.  Most of our action came from Senkos in olive with red worm hooks.  We located bass in 10' to 12' holding right off drop offs.  Seemed like we hooked fish all morning long.  In the afternoon, the fishing was slow to start.  Probably due to the sun.  As the low got low the bite really turned on.  We set up the boat in 5' of water and cast out to 15' of water on the back edge of milfoil beds.  All hard bottom that was littered with wood and rock.  We caught 6 smallmouth and lost another 6 on a 5" green Senko.  All quality fish in the 2lb to 3lb range.  Really were coming out of the water.  Great day on the water and good fun.  Off to chase river bass this morning.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Covering some ground

Hi Folks, Guided a full day with a fly angler on one of our local tail water fisheries.  Nice environment to fish in this time of year when it is sunny and warm.  We fished under tree canopy all day and the water temperature was 62 degrees to 65 degrees.  We walked this entire stream in 9 hours.  It did pay off as we landed 34 trout and mostly on dry flies.  Not an easy walk and it was not for the faint of heart.  Rugged terrain.  Pretty cool to catch wild trout all day in the middle of July with good water temperatures.  We caught all 3 species with 8 wild brown trout, 4 wild rainbows, and the rest native brook trout coming to the fly.  We mostly dry fly fished with a #12 royal wulff, #16 parachute hare's ear, and #16 elk hair caddis with bright yarn.  Due to the clear water, stealth was key.  You could see the fish rise to the dry fly.  We had several brown trout that we caught and missed rise ever so slowly to sip in the fly in slow glassy pools.  Lots of patience in setting the hook.  We did nymph several large plunge pools with a #14 tungsten prince and #12 double tungsten black stone fly.  Small stream magic.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

wearing out some boot leather

Hi folks, Been spending some time with fly anglers guiding small trout streams lately.  One of my favorite environments to fly fish in and really not conducive to spin angling.  I have learned over the years that fishing small streams involves some walking.  There is only so much caring capacity in these small brooks for trout so there is not a high density of fish per spot.  The streams have a high density of fish, but you are not going to find 30 trout in one hole.  More like 1 or 2.  You have to cover water to catch a good number of trout.  The trade off is the brookies, browns, and rainbows in small streams are greedy and pretty willing to eat dry flies.  Yesterday morning, we fished a small Winooski tributary and landed 4 wild brown trout and 3 native brookies.  Missed another half dozen fish.  The water was low and clear and the temperature was 63 degrees.  We could use some sustained rain.  The fly of the day was a #12 Royal Wulff and a #14 Orange Stimulator.  It is pretty common to have a fish eat the dry fly on the first or second cast.  Prepares you mentally for setting the hook.  These fish in small streams are greedy and it is important to not spook them.  Well. looks like I will be dodging thunderstorms today and could get blow off from my afternoon boat trip.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Monday, July 14, 2014

What a day

Hi folks, Guided a double yesterday with some trout fishing in the morning and smallmouth bass fishing in the afternoon.  Nice fishing conditions yesterday with over cast skies and then late afternoon showers. Water levels are down and we could use some steady rain.  Spent the morning on a Lamoille tributary that was 63 degrees and low and clear.  Very good dry fly fishing.  We fished pocket water with a 2wt. casting a #14 lime green stimulator and a #12 royal wulff.  Caught trout on both flies.  We landed 7 brown trout and 3 brook trout.  The fish of the day was a measured 20" brown trout that sipped in the royal wulff.  The opening of my net is 17".  Incredible that we landed this fish in heavy water.  We had to chase it down in the brook.  It was not sitting in an obvious spot as it was nestled up against a large boulder off a small run.  This is the third large brown I have seen in a week guiding as I have now had clients land a 16", 18", and 20" brown trout and all in different streams.  Not much for hatching insects and we blind fished the stream with the dry flies.  In the afternoon, the smallmouth river we fished was clear and 72 degrees.  We pounded on the smallmouth landing 14 fish and missing and losing another 8 fish.  Not much for a top water bite, but they were pounding a 3" watermelon magic Senko.  We hooked fish on our first three casts.  Most of the bass were holding in big eddies or around large rocks in deep pools.  All about line control and watching your line move when a fish picked up the rubber.  Really consistent day on the water.  Off to do it all over again today.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  have fun, Willy

Sunday, July 13, 2014

spook factor in full effect

Hi Folks, Been guiding fly anglers river fishing the last couple of days for smallmouth bass.  The water is low and clear and we could use some rain.  Looks like we are going to get some rain with in coming thunderstorms.  Any rain will be welcomed but the steady variety versus a thunderstorm would be better.  I have been a on a river that is very clear and you can spot the bass more often than not.  The water temperature has been between 72 degrees and 75 degrees the last couple of days.  Lots of #8/#10 stone fly shucks on the rocks on the waters edge.  Also, a lot of #8 Damsel fly nymphs where moving around the bottom of the stream and were very visible.  Big morsel of food.  Not much for a top water bite last two days with bass coming to look at the fly and turning off.  We have been resorting to nymphing with #8 double tungsten stone flies under indicators and #10 olive/black tungsten bead wooly bugger.  Nice dead drifts have produced some good fish.  Trout tactics for fussy fish.  Trust me, when you can see the fish, more often than not they can see you as well.  Trout almost always swim off and hide when spooked.  Bass do not necessarily swim off, but they still will not eat your fly.  Approach to the water is pretty important in these conditions and not getting in the water is also a good idea.  Will be chasing small stream trout this morning and bass fishing in the afternoon.  Hopefully I will be able to dodge any nasty weather.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Friday, July 11, 2014

get out of the sun and good things happen

Hi folks, Guided a double yesterday with a family trip in the morning and a boat trip in the afternoon.  Big bright sunny day with really pleasant air temperatures.  Water temperatures in our lakes are now holding in the mid 70's.  Perfect for bass fishing.  Pretty good steady northwest wind yesterday.  I think one of the bigger determining factors in bass fishing is finding low light.  The sun seems to be the biggest deterrent in getting fish to eat.  In the morning we did some bank fishing and caught all sorts of fish with spin gear from pumpkin seeds to suckers to perch to bass to even a rainbow trout.  Pretty simple fishing with lots of action for the kids.  Little kids do not care what they catch as long as they have a bend in their rod.  In the afternoon was a combination of a fly angler and two spin anglers on the boat. The water where we fished was off color.  We moved around and finally fished a shoreline out of the sun with big weed beds that dropped from 9' of water to 20' of water.  The fish were holding on the edges.  No love fishing in the sun.  We made lots of cast and worked our poppers really aggressively.  A little chop on the surface with dirty water dictates that the popper is worked more aggressively.  We landed one of the larger smallmouth I have seen this season with the fish really pressing the 5lb category.  Absolute pig that fought like crazy.  It crushed the fly. On its first jump I thought it was a largemouth bass because it was so deep.  Pretty good fun on a fly rod.  The fish ate a #4 chartreuse popper with rubber legs and large saddle hackle tail.  We had several other smaller bass eat but nothing in comparison to the big boy.  The big fish made up for the lack of numbers in the afternoon and the fly guy out fished the spin anglers.  We did see a few #6 Hexs' coming off at dusk and an almost full moon makes me think that the fish are really feeding heavily at night.  Makes sense with the big sun all day and then a bright night sky.  Off to chase bass and small stream trout over the next few days.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Wednesday, July 9, 2014


Hi Folks, Finally a reprieve from the hot humid weather. A cold front blasted through last night bringing some rain and of course wind for today.  I guided a small stream in the valley yesterday with great success.  Water temperature was 63 degrees and the levels were low.  It appears that the trout are now holding in the primary pools and there is not enough water to hold fish in the secondary water.  Starting to see more #8/#10 Stone fly shucks on rocks and #10/#12 green grass hoppers in fields.  The time for Stimulators is now.  The Stimulator is an adult stone fly imitation, but creates the profile of a grasshopper.  Great dry fly that floats well and is a good choice for putting a dropper nymph underneath.  The trout were on yesterday as we landed 16 4" to 8" native brook trout and 4 wild brown trout between 13" and 16".  Good fun a 2wt. and a real challenge landing the larger brown trout.  What is fun in clear water is seeing the fish come to the fly.  The two largest brown trout emerged from wood piles that were jammed up against large boulders.  Each fish chased the fly down stream and grabbed it.  Never under estimate how often a trout eats your fly after it has drifted past them. We mixed up Stimulators in size and color using orange and lime green from #10 to #14.  Also took a number of brook trout on #12 Royal Wulff.  I love small stream fly fishing and I believe it is Vermont's best option for wild fish.  Small streams make you an accurate fly caster.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

small stream action

Hi folks, Been chasing trout in small stream environments with the fly rods lately.  Great place for beginning fly anglers to start out their fly casting career.  Long cast are not required, mending a short line is easier, and the fish tend to be user friendly.  Water temperature on the brook I guided yesterday was 64 degrees and the water level was low.  A few morning showers but generally just over cast yesterday.  The trout were a bit tight yesterday morning and we located fish in a few pools.  It appeared that the spook factor was in place and with the low water levels the fish have moved around.  The fly of the day was #12 royal wulff.  Had two nice wild rainbows smash the dry as it was presented under a tree with lots of roots in a down stream drift.  We took a 10" wild brown on a #18 olive caddis nymph.  Tons of #18/#20 micro caddis hatching and as well as #8 stone fly shucks on rocks.  Off to chase trout in a small brook again this morning.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Monday, July 7, 2014

a little relief from the heat

Hi folks, Spent a nice weekend guiding trout in small water and chasing river smallmouth bass.  Friday night brought a cold front to town to that pushed out the hot humid weather that had been hanging around all last week.  Pretty windy both Saturday and Sunday making boat fishing a bit if challenge.  The small streams I fished were fairly low and it appears that we could still use some steady rain.  Water level was dropping after heavy rain from the storms produced from the cold front. Water temperature has dropped and the two small streams I guided over the last 2 days were 62 degrees.  Pretty decent number of micro caddis hatching both mornings.  #18/#20 tan bodied caddis coming off in big numbers, but nor trout rising to the small bug.  We fished #12 yellow bodied and green bodied stimulators with a #18 olive copper john dropper nymph.  Most of the trout we hooked smashed the dry fly.  Wild rainbows and browns and native brook trout.  A little nymphing with a #14 black double tungsten stone fly under indicator was effective in some larger deeper pools.  As long as the nights stay cool the trout fishing in the small brooks will remain consistent. The big rivers are still too warm and the Lamoille was off color all weekend.  On the bass front, the river fishing has been very good and the lake fishing challenging.  The challenge with the lake fishing was the wind and boat control.  The river fishing was very good last night as we caught 5 nice smallmouth and missed or lost another half a dozen fish.  We cast popping bugs at them and spin fished.  Mots of the bass were holding in slower deeper pools with wood.  Pretty clear water and you could see the fish a times coming to the fly.  The river bass fishing will be the best option over the next couple of months as summer is now full on.  Off to chase to small stream trout this morning.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Saturday, July 5, 2014

celebrating the 4th with smallmouth

Hi folks, Guided from my canoe yesterday morning for smallmouth bass with a spin casting client.  Pretty damp morning with showers for the first part of the day.  A constant wind from the northwest forced our hand in where we could hold the boat and fish.  Looks to be very breezy one today and fishing from a boat could be challenging.  The water was warm and the temperature was 74 degrees to 77 degrees.  Not much for a top water bite so we got down and dirty fished 4" Senkos on Red Hooks with olive and craw fish colored soft plastics.  We landed 9  bass with the largest fish weighing in at 2.5lbs.  All Pretty subtle takes and there really was no pattern as to where we caught them.  We picked them off from the edges of lilly pads with downed wood, to rock islands, to rock cliff faces with downed wood.  It was a morning of lots of casting and patience as most of our takes were subtle.  My client did a nice job of being patient and continuing to cast and fish hard.   I suspect the weather has an impact on the fishing. Off to chase small stream trout this morning.  Feels pretty cool outside as as a big weather front has moved in.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Friday, July 4, 2014

muggy, thunderstorms, and brook trout

Hi folks, I have bee dodging thunderstorms the last couple of days while small stream fishing for brook trout with clients.  It has been awful muggy and hot out there with thunderstorms each afternoon.  Brook levels are low and below the seasonal average.  Been pretty dry.  The only game for trout fishing right now are small brooks.  All of the big rivers are too warm and the fish should be left alone.  I have found water temperatures on low sixties on the brooks I have been guiding.  Yesterday the water temperature was 63 degrees which is pretty warm for this particular stream.  Been working up stream in clear water with a #10 parachute hopper pattern.  Seems to be brook trout in every spot you cast.  Brook trout are not giant, but awful greedy and willing to eat dry flies.  Nice dead drifts with little slack fly line is the key to getting strikes and hooking trout in these small brooks.  Our small streams are our best trout fishing options for native brook trout and wild rainbows and browns.  Our big rivers have a mix of wild fish and stocked fish.   Not a big fan of stocked trout.  Going smallmouth fishing this morning.  Looks like a cool down for the next few days which will make fishing a bit more pleasant.  Happy 4th of July. Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have fun, Willy

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

pulling the boat around

Hi folks, Guided with the boat yesterday on the lower Lamoille where it forms a lake.  All sorts of fish to be caught, though our target was smallmouth bass and walleye.  Awful hot and humid out there.  We got on the water very early to avoid the big sun. Surface temperature at 6:00am was 72 degrees with a steady south wind.  We landed two smallmouth bass off the get go on a storm fire tiger chug bug, but then the top water bite tailed off.  We resorted to fishing 4" and 5" Senkos on 1/0 red worm hooks in green flake with pretty good results.  Landed all in all 8 smallmouth, no monsters, several rock bass, 1 short walleye, and a massive 8lb Bow Fin.  We focused on big eddies and the slow seems off the main current.  Lots of rock for cover for the fish where we cast.  The Bow Fin, a prehistoric fish, was incredible. I did not know they lived in this body of water as I had only caught them previously in Lake Champlain. Let me tell you that these fish fight!  It took us several minutes to land as it pulled the bow of my 16" Grumman around.  My client did an excellent job fighting this fish on 6lb test and we got lucky that its razor sharp teeth did not break us off.  The Bow Fin ate a Senko.  Not the easiest fish to handle for photos.  Notice the bend in the net handle.  I could not get my hand around the top of its head.  Pretty exciting.  In the afternoon I did a little exploring and checked out a small Lamoille tributary that was 72 degrees at 6:00pm.  Trout fishing for the most part is on hold until things cool off.  Small mountain streams will be the best option as well as smallmouth fishing early and late in the day.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

until next time

Hi Folks, Took two spin anglers fishing on the Lamoille yesterday morning.  We were on the water at 5:30am.  Pretty darn warm out there and the Lamoille is now too warm to trout fish.  The water temperature at 6:00am was 69 degrees and by time we finished up, the temp. had reached 70 degrees.  Hot summer days will do that.  Give the thermally stressed trout in the bigger rivers a break and move to small streams for trout fishing now.  We fished big primary pools had some good success with the stocked rainbows of the Lamoille.  We landed one 13" wild bow, but every other fish was a hatchery product.  We cast a rapala brown trout imitation and a rebel crawfish.  There were crawfish all over the river bottom.  Pretty interesting to see the number of follows from fish.  Most of the strikes are usually on a pretty good wallop on the plugs.  We landed 8 fish and missed a few others.  Looks warm over the next few days so getting on the water early will be good.  Off to chase walleye and bass this morning.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy