Saturday, March 1, 2014
East Branch Westfield River Presentation At Evening Sun Fly Shop March 9th!! And some Midge Patterns
First, I said in my last post that I would be hitting the Swift today to take advantage of this 30 degree weather but other things happened that had to be taken care of and a 5 degree temperature at 9am made that certain. So, time to do some domestic things and tie some flies. It has been a hard winter. April is one month away!!
Second, Charlie Shadan of the Evening Sun Fly Shop asked me if I could do a presentation on the EB. I said "of course" and I will be at this great place on Sunday, March 9th with the program starting at High NOON! These shows have always been well attended and I will give you everything that I know about this great river. I'll also talk about the Millers and the Swift if time is available (it always is). Thought I'd add a couple of Summer photos of the EB. We can use them!
ALSO, Charlie is kicking off a March/April sale that, in my opinion, may be the best deal that you will see this year. Charlie has a great selection of quality equipment (rods, lines, reels) that will be heavily discounted by free additional merchandise. Charlie has a great fly shop that is growing in reputation every year and he does it by continually keeping things affordable to the fly fisher. The "big guys" want you to pay top dollar for the "name". Don't do it!!! SHOP LOCAL AT EVENING SUN!!!!!!! Check the website for details.
This pattern worked for me during the chill of last week. Size 20-22 hook, stripped peacock quill or brown thread body and a tuft of grey (best) or white marabou at the head. When trout start rising I'll switch to a CDC tuft. Simple and effective.
Posted by Millers River Flyfisher at 1:00 PM
Labels: guided trips on th East Branch of the Westfield River, Guided trips on the Miller River, guided trips on the Swift River
Monday, February 24, 2014
On this past Saturday the temperature crossed 50 degrees. Wonderful!! On Sunday the temperature was in the mid 40's. Still very good on the Swift during this lousy Winter. I was there both days. How did I do? I landed a few and lost a few. Although the overall action was slow others did better and that may be because I was experimenting. I've had Chironomidae on the brain for a month and I was working some variations that proved to be somewhat successful. The same patterns worked around the pipe but above RT 9 they were just so-so. Trout above RT 9 get a good, slow look at things instead of in my favorite spots below RT 9. I get to fish often enough on the Swift during the Winter that I can afford to experiment with fly patterns without thinking that the day is wasted because of fewer trout in the net. I fish a lot so I can take that luxury. I catch a lot too so I don't feel so bad when I work a pattern too long.
Anyway, here are a few observations from above RT 9 - The otter is at the Y Pool!! I saw few fish in this fish sanctuary on Saturday and the few that I saw hugged the bottom and were not moving. The first photo shows the ice shelf at the overflow arm of the Y Pool were I saw the otter. Just missed a photo of that critter.
Because of that mammal most fish were stacked up by the power lines. The water is shallower there than at the Y Pool and the trout have better defenses in that spot. There were many trout (caught some) downstream where the new foot bridge is just upstream from the parking lot.
Bill (the Swift regular) and I spotted a robin working some soft dirt just below the Y Pool. I saw that bird digging around moving leaves and such. Bill figured that the bird may have been pecking away at tiny winter stoneflies. I've seen hundreds of robins in and around where I live. They seem to be clustered around berry trees/bushes. It seems so early for those guys.
I included a photo of the Y Pool in mid May. We are heading in that direction. Spring will be here soon!!
Posted by Millers River Flyfisher at 4:29 PM
Labels: Fly Fishers Guide To The Millers River, guided trips on th East Branch of the Westfield River, Guided trips on the Miller River, guided trips on the Swift River
Sunday, February 16, 2014
Fly fishing has ground to a very slow crawl in central and western Ma. on my favorite rivers. The Millers is frozen over and so has the EB. A Saturday road trip up RT 9 proved that the EB is asleep. So is the Millers. The Swift is still moving along without ice but the water temperature is very low and so is the activity of anything that lives in that water. Last Saturdays experience brought that home. We need a few days in the mid 40 degree range to kick start the next "season". That next season will shrink the snow/ice pack and that is a good thing.
So....what to write about? I hate discussions about rods, reels, lines and leaders. It's all marketing BS. I don't like the pros and con discussions about stuff like rain gear but I have an opinion about vests and packs. Because I have nothing else to write about here it is:
VESTS SUCK - My last vest was worn by me in 1988 and I didn't like it even then. In the cold season it's something that just doesn't fit well over warm garments and in the Summer it's another layer on clothing that I have to deal with. Also, vests over the years came with more pockets which would cause me to fill them and then try to remember where I put weighted nymphs, tiny flies, ants and beetles, soft hackles, streamers, wooley buggers, basic mayfly nymphs, hackled dries, comparaduns and so on..... Things got confusing and complicated and they didn't have to be.
Over the past 20+ years I've used packs exclusively. I've tried many but have come to the realization that most provide what I need: low weight, easy entrance, good capacity without being bulky. They should also feel comfortable.
I have two trout packs. The upper photo is my Swift River pack. It would work on any smaller tailwater/spring creek available. It's loaded with dozens of flies but the flies are small because Swift River insects are small. The containers are slim but carry many flies. No wooley buggers make it to this Swift River pack. Big flies are not needed. If I can't catch trout on the Swift with small flies then I give up. I bought this minimalist pack from Orvis in 2002. It is the perfect minimalist pack. They dumped it a year later. I guess it wasn't big enough to hold more Orvis stuff. Too bad.
The other pack is my EB/Millers pack. Yes, there are some size 20 somethings in this pack but this is where I store the hardware, the bigger (standard) flies and boxes needed for my favorite freestone rivers. You may be able to make out the brand name for this pack. It's not an endorsement. I cut off the useless waist straps and ripped out the "fly holding pad" that only got in the way. I improved this pack by doing the above!!
The Swift River pack stays in my vehicle all year. The freestone pack is in the trunk from April through November. Each has it's own leader supply, floatant, microshot, tweezers, thermometer, micro and the rest of the stuff we just can't seem to do without. My lanyard holds 4x to 8x tippet, micro flashlight and clippers.
I am fully armed!!
Daylight Savings starts March 9th. Short trips after work?? Can hardly wait!!