Swift River

Swift River
The Millers - Experience the best brown trout fly fishing in Massachusetts. This river only gets better as the Summer rolls on with Autumn being prime time!! Day long trips or "Evening Rise" excursions are available. There are over forty miles of river and I will take you to the "best" sections. I have over twenty years of experience on my "home" river. The "EB of the Westfield" - Wild and beautiful is the only way to describe the EB. There's a lot of water here but I know where to go when I want to catch trout!! After a trip you will too whether it's surface or subsurface action that you like. If it's a wilderness experience that you're looking for then let me take you to the "EB". The Swift - Let's "de-mystify" this river. 20 trout days, year round, are not uncommon on this river. It's technique and fly selection that counts. I can introduce you to that experience. "Dry Fly 101 - Dry fly fishing is the "soul" of fly fishing. The "fly fishing schools" will "scan" this method but I teach the classic upstream approach in depth. In over forty years of fly fishing I have caught more trout on a dry fly than with all other methods. I teach this method on "a river" so you can carry it forward season after season. RATES Full Day (7am-1pm) $150 per per person, $225 for two (lunch included) Evening Rise -(5:30 till dusk) $90 per person, $155 for two Dry Fly 101 - $60 for 3 hours

Monday, September 29, 2014

A Soft Hackle September

Soft Hackles - they always work and sometimes they REALLY work. They were my top sunken fly on the EB for a year now and this year they just seemed to beat the Swift River trout especially this month. I will admit that the Swift soft hackles are a size or two smaller than I use on other rivers although a size 12 did work well.

I like to experiment with this style and I believe that I may have posted two of these flies last Spring but a refresher course is in order.

First is an olive body S.H. with size 5x tippet material wrapped around the body. The tippet worked pretty well getting the fly down quick and it gives a slight shine to the fly which also seemed to work. 5x works on sizes down to 14. I like 6x on smaller sizes. Sometimes the Grouse and Flash just seems too bright. The "6x soft hackle" does it just right. Don't ask if one brand of tippet is better than another!!

The dark S.H. has a tiny wingcase of mylar which makes this fly more visible. It works well!

Try them out.

As you all know by now we need rain. The rivers are still mostly fishable in the deeper pools and where the river's flow gets pinched down to give good flow and depth. The good thing is that the weather is now cool enough so water temperature is not an issue. Just one good 1 inch storm will set us up for the rest of the season.

The rest of the season - Last November was great on the EB and the flow was low then too. I'll show you this river. Just email me for availability. The same goes for the Millers and the Swift.


Sunday, September 21, 2014

The Swift - First Day Of Fall

No rain at home during the night but 20 minutes into a 30 minute drive to the Swift I had the wipers on. When I arrived at the Pipe lot there were puddles and a light rain. So goes the first day of Fall. The upside of this was that at 6:45am mine was the only car there. That means there's only one thing to do: Hit the PIPE.

This 120 cfs flow gave me the opportunity to fish LARGE meaning size 14 and 16 soft hackles and the trout agreed. In three hours I landed 21 and missed another half dozen. The top of the food chain came to the net with some 14 to 18 inch DARK bows followed by some 8-10 inch fish of the same species. These guys reminded me of this past Spring when the place was crowded with them. Maybe they stocked some recently or this high water made those Spring fish come out of hiding. Bob O. (who was the second to show up at 9ish) floated the theory that maybe these guys are young stream bred fish which intrigues me. Then came a few 4 to 6 inch brookies. The top soft hackle was a size 14 olive and partridge tied on a scud hook. This short, heavy hook gets the fly down AND it looks buggier than a standard hook. Overall, a good morning.

I left at 10am leaving only Bob and a new arrival to have the place to themselves.

Rain - In short supply recently. The EB is low but the cool days and very cool nights have saved this place. One storm of about 1 inch of rain will fix this place up quickly. Let's hope this happens!


Thursday, September 11, 2014

September - What The Rivers Are Doing And A Lost Camera

I managed to be on all three rivers over the last week and for the first time this season I'm looking for a little rain for the EB. All is not lost and in fact I like the flow flow because of the dry fly possibilities. If swinging sunken offerings is your game than the going will be a bit rough. But the water temperature is in the mid 60's at mid day but lower very early in the morning.

The photo above shows the great isonychia nymph which is all over this river. A quick, darting swimmer this nymph acts like a stonefly by crawling up onto rocks to hatch and then flying away usually around dusk. There are plenty of imitations that you can find online so I will not bother with the recipe. The dun is dark colored with smokey grey wings (unusual for this time of year) and trout will take that surface imitation EVEN THOUGH it doesn't ride the surface like most other mayfly duns. Don't leave home without them!

The other photo is of the great Hemlock Pool. As the Eastern Flyfishing Magazine article pointed out it also has another name: Les's Pool. I believe I met that man years ago when he was a driving force behind TU (when it was a driving force) in Massachusetts. I'll call it by the latter name going forward. Anyway, fish this pool and the riffles at it's head. The gate is still closed so it's a 15-17 minute walk to get there but well worth it.

The Millers - I love this low flow and I love the fact that darkness falls at 7:30 instead of 9:00. You don't have to wait f o r e v e r for surface action. Again, water temperatures are fine. Even the rainbows made it through the Summer. Don't forget to bring some large light colored flies so you can see them in the failing light. They have worked the last few times out.

The Swift - Every thing works at the Gauge down through the Tree Pool from 30's to #14 soft hackles. Also, weekend evenings have been sparsely attended by fly fishers in this section. On Wednesday evening I saw only two other anglers which appears to be the norm over the last few weeks. Spend an evening down there before our evenings are gone.

I have some open dates through late September and October. October Fridays are mostly open (weird) with a few weekend dates available. First come, first served.

Summer is winding down with Fall right around the corner. Fish the next two months before everything shuts down (except the Swift).


9/12 Update - The lower gate on the EB is open so you don't have to endure the 15 minute walk to get to Les's (formally called the Hemlock Pool) Pool. It was windy as hell which made dry fly fishing dicey but worth it. I rose 4 and landed 2 in the 3 hours there. Long floats through the pool brought 3 up with 1 hooked and then 1 in the riffles at the head of the pool. Ok under the windy conditions. Probably could of caught more with a nymph BUT I like dries. Rises were on and off and If you see a rise cast to it.

Update #2 - The lower gate was closed on Wednesday evening BUT was open on Friday morning. Go for it!!

This Just In: a camera was found on the way to the Y Pool. Email me and I'll connect you to who found it.