Autumn On The EB

Autumn On The EB
Fly Fishing The Millers - With over 30 years of fly fishing this river I will claim more knowledge and fish caught than anyone. There are over 40 miles of river and I will take you to the best sections and if you want to sections that never see another angler. Don't be fooled by those who say the Millers is a Spring and Fall river. I'll show you how to have great Summer action. The "EB of the Westfield" - Wild and beautiful is the only way to describe this river. There's a lot of water here but I know where to go to catch trout. After a trip you will too!! Solitude and trout IS the EB. The Swift - 20 trout days are not uncommon on this river if you know what to do and use. I'll show the way and you catch the trout. RATES - Full Day (6 hours) = $150.00 for one, $225 for two (lunch included). Half Day (three hours) $90.00 for one, $155.00 for two. Beginners Class - 3 hours ffor $90.00, all use of rods lines, reels included.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Summer On The Swift - Low And Cold



It felt like ice water or as cold as 54 degree water can feel at 6am on the Swift this past Saturday. The flow had dropped from the 120+ range to the high 40cfs flow which brought the temperature down as predicted. This is my favorite time on this river; skinny cold flows, small flies and thin tippets. It's how I always think of the Swift.

I was the first at the PIPE except for the blue heron that was intent on the flow below that outflow. I settled into the "tree pool", had made a cast or two and lost one fish, when two other anglers appeared above and below me. Five minutes later three more showed up so I went downstream to the first set of riffles. You find yourself casting under trees here but it was great. The 'bows grabbed my serendipity and that 20 yard section yielded a number of them.

The great section around the gauge yielded two rainbows and the PIPE brought four or five 6 inch bows, most likely recent escapees. All told I took about 15 fish from in that three hour span.

Serendipities and hot spots did the trick. It was fun!!

Ken

17 comments:

Kozman said...

I wet waded on the Swift 2 weeks ago. No problem with the temps. I wet waded @ 1pm yesterday when the air temp was 90+ degrees and my feet went numb. I think they airlifted an iceberg into the reservoir last week. Anyway, the trout were about as active during the day as I've ever seen them. I was getting them on real small brown ants (size 26), but my tippet kept breaking when I tried to land them. I overheard others getting them on sulphurs and hoppers.

bert said...

Now you know the difference between Quabbin surface water and bottom water. :-)

Millers River Flyfisher said...

Tiny flies (ants are good) and COLD water trout are a challenge. Thin tippets are a hard match when these fish EXPLODE at hook set. My rod is a very flexible 8ft and my leader/tippets are looped on as a shock absorber. I don't break off many since I settled on this outfit.

Let's hear it for bottom water!!!

Ken

Bob O said...

Hoorah! Had a blast Sunday morning. Pretty much alone at the tree hole till 9:30, except for the heron and eagle. Yep, broke off one that drilled it for the deepest part of the pool. Goes with the territory - wasn't using particularly small stuff (#14's), but on light tippet. Beautiful clear toe-numbing water. Just what's called for on a 90 degree day. Looks like we're in for a few more this weekend too. tightlines.
bob.

Anonymous said...

Ken,
Haven't made it to the Swift in a couple months, but sounds nice now. The Quinebaug was still holding stock bows as of a couple weeks ago, but the last one looked pretty tired after landing, and of course they are sparsely sprinkled after the "harvesters" have at it. I doubt they will survive this heat wave.
Do you think the poor fishing at the Swift this spring could be attributed to most of the river's flow coming from the spillover? It was a cool spring, but maybe spillover water is not as nutrient rich as bottom release? Or do you think the Swift just got another stocking of fish in the last month?? It just seems like things are "normal" there, where they were far from that not so long ago. Also, i was wondering about the brookies you were catching last year near the gauge area, have you caught or seen any this year?
Cliff

Millers River Flyfisher said...

Took two in the riffles below the tree section this evening in a two hour outing. I saw another elderly fly fisher take at least four from the tree pool and a couple of trout taken by spin fishermen who put them back. It was slow but that's trout fishing some of the time. The water was so cool. You actually went from a high 80 degree temperature (air temperature) to the mid 60's by just wading in. We will have 90+ temperatures through the weekend. The Swift will be a nice place to be except for the tubers, kayakers which are always a nuisance. Maybe the flow will be too low for them. To avoid them work the river in the hours before 11:00 am and after 5:00pm. They are a mid day hatch to be avoided!!

Ken

Millers River Flyfisher said...

Cliff,

The Swift has always had trout 12 months a year. This year was different. We have had spillway action this past decade but that never resulted in a scarcity of trout. I think that the really low flows this past Winter coupled with the heavy snow and ice sent the trout to deeper holes throughout the river. It's pretty much the opinion of "regulars" that the Swift below RT9 wasn't stocked until July 1st. The catch rate suggests that. Read-more than suggests that!!

The "spillway" water will always be more nutrient rich than what comes out of the sterile bubbler. Surface water has more "stuff" in it because it's warmer.

Ken

Bob O said...

Unlike many wet winters, the spillway didn't begin to flow till early/mid April. Up till then the bubbler was the single feed. Fishing below Rt 9 was very light from late January right through till recently. Don't think the spillway is the culprit. Rather that only the lower Swift (from Spring Street and below) was spring stocked.

bob

Mike F said...

Got out on the Swift last evening. Only was able to prick one fish, a ~12 incher, likely a bow who jumped out of the water a couple times (after my 6x snapped) in protest to the hook left in his lip.
No other action, but likely because of a worsening problem on my favorite section of the Swift near Bondsville--beavers! I had one (or two) literally stalk me for the ~2.5 hours I was on the water. Came up in every hole I fished (over 100 yards of river) and made a big racket! They are setting up a lodge near the old mill just north of Bondsville, unfortunately in one of my favorite holes!
Oh well. Rather have my fishing impaired by the presence of beaver as opposed to the "harvesters"!
--Mike F

Anonymous said...

I spent the day fishing the Swift yesterday. Myself and several other guys saw a very large black bear cross the river just below the Y pool.

Mike

Millers River Flyfisher said...

Mike,

One angler, fishing at night in the same area, saw 3 BEARS!!!

They are there!!

Ken

Anonymous said...

If you want to catch fish on the swift, hit it at 2am with BIG WHITE zonkers and hold on...I have been doing this for the last few years and the MONSTERS come out at night.

I would also warn you to NOT bring food of any sort at night. I lost count as to how mnay bears and I crossed paths...Instead of food, I would suggest a pursuader or 2...

Millers River Flyfisher said...

Anonyous,

" a pursuader or 2". By that I think that you're suggesting firearms which, I believe, are illegal on Quabbin grounds except doing special hunting seasons. Don't use this forum to even suggest an illegal act!!

Hundreds of fly fishers, including me, bring sandwiches and stuff and are never threatened by black bears on the Swift. THEY ARE THERE, WE SEE THEM, but they are not the threat that you think.

That's the way things are.

Ken

Anonymous said...

Ken,

Please dont put words in my mouth. BY a pursuader, I meant a hefty stick. :)


I would suggest trying fishing the Swift at night. I have been doing so with AWESOME success as previously stated.

Millers River Flyfisher said...

Anonymous,

A stick??? When you said "persuader" I figured you meant something like a Mossberg persuader which is a firearm made by that company. Good luck with the stick!

Falsecast said...

Any sulphers around? I picked up a few hot spots and serendipities as i can never find them in my fly shop.

Usually the heat brings out the sulphers and the ants---my favorite time on the Swift.

Regarding the bears, I just bring a persuasive argument---"don't eat me" and it works fine.

Millers River Flyfisher said...

Falsecast,

I heard of sulphurs above Rt 9. I didn't see any below Rt 9. Last year was another story!!