Autumn On The EB

Autumn On The EB

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Late December On The Swift

Forget the ice shown in the above photo. It's an older photo of the Swift spillway from six or so years ago BUT it shows the condition of this river now. The PIPE is under a foot or so of water. The Y Pool really cannot be waded. The Bubbler Arm is flowing very high with the bows and salmon hugging the banks. In fact they are hugging the banks throughout the river. Places where we waded two weeks ago are now too deep and fast to wade successfully. That's what a 740 cfs flow will do and this may be the condition for many weeks if history is any indication. We passed the 700 flow range in July of '09 and it lasted for weeks and that was with Summer evaporation and vegetation draw up. There's none of that now.

Wait and see.

I worked the areas where one could safely waded and had a short strike or two using a smelt pattern. Why not?? LL Salmon and smelt patterns seem to be a good bet but the current conditions of high water really limit us.

Let's hope for a lower flow.

Merry Christmas to all of you!!!!



Mike C said...

Merry christmas ken....let us hope santa brings lower flows

Brk Trt said...

Merry Christmas

Bob O said...

Ken, I heard that lakers were being landed in the Y pool, and that one can only fish off the rocks because the pool level is so high. I watched the Harrisons float past the Pipe on Saturday. They were hurling big flies to the banks and getting big hits. I managed a few on a variety of flies. I expect the levels will be up for some time - what a difference a year makes (last year at this time water was trickling from the pipe - this year it's underwater.)

Have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. See you on the water.

Bob O

Millers River Flyfisher said...

Bob O,

As I write this the Swift River flow is down to 565cfs which is a good thing since I have most of next week off and intend to wring out what's left of my 2011 license on that river.

The Lakers - I've heard the tales from good sources (you included). Forty years ago there were walleyes in the Y Pool!! Whenever the spillway is running ANYTHING may end up in the Y Pool.

Tony said...

Forkies in the Y pool?!?!

Merry Christmas to all! Hope we all have a great winter with plenty of Vice time!!

browntrout said...

Harrison Bros drifting the Swift? I am sure it's true but that is down right ridiculous! Christ, you can rollcast almost the entire river below Rt 9. Even at high flows the river is no more than 20-25' wide in most places. I can't imagine drifing it and "casting to the banks", what is that 4'?
Oh well, anything for a buck I guess.

Tony said...

Looks like the Flows are beginning to subside a bit. Even the Millers gave a tease dipping below 1000 for the first time in god knows how long...

Falsecast said...

Happy Holidays to you too Ken! I enjoy your posts and those of the other visitors.

I agree with Brown trout regarding the drifting of the Swift, just seems pointless unless their goal was to go way downstream to wider water?

Hoping to chuck some weighted Streamers before the new year. Also, always hope for big snow at the beginning of the year to delay "the slaughter". :)

Hope you all have a great Holiday!

Millers River Flyfisher said...

Browntrout and Falsecast,

The Harrison's floated the Swift a winter or two ago from the boat landing, downstream from the PIPE, where the wading is hard even under the best conditions. Wading is now very hard below RT 9 BUT it (drift boats) will disrupt anyone who is trying to wade that area. They will not be able to drift that section under anything close to normal conditions. I would like to see a regulation that prevented any "floating devices" above that boat landing. Kayakers, canoes and inner tubes ruin it during the Summer.

Let's hope the flows continue to drop.


Tom said...


Some of the "floaters" probably would like to see regulations put on higher flows or regularized releases. I've never had a problem with any kayakers, most get to float behind fishermen, but if they don't all it takes is a kind suggestion. The next time they will most likely give you some space...

Millers River Flyfisher said...


I've had plenty of kayakers plow right through the run that I was fishing without a clue of what they were doing. Let's not mention the inner tube crowd!!This river is just too small in the C&R section to take on this traffic.

No way will there be a regulated release on the Swift for floaters!!!!!!!!! We don't need a mini Deerfield!! If they want to float the Swift then put in at the boat launch and head south away from the C&R.


browntrout said...

Any guide outfit that would fish the lower Swift from a driftboat needs to have their head examined.
And by doing this, the Harrison Bros will continue to pnly make more enemies of their guide service business than friends.

bert said...

Floating or kayaking the Swift in any way or form is pretty lame IMO. I can imagine it would be fun for kids, but I have no idea what adults are thinking when they do this. Its a small stream!

Anonymous said...

Ken, received the flies yesterday. Thanks for adding the kicker... Happy Holidays! T.Booth