Autumn On The EB

Autumn On The EB

Thursday, November 15, 2012

The Millers And The Top Three Rivers In 2012

Three cheers for the Millers!! It's been fishing well this past week or so EVEN when the flows have been all over the map. In the past week the flows have gone from about 380cfs to 760cfs with little or no rain. This yo-yo pattern (Erving gauge) is most likely (likely) from the dam operators in Orange. We've seen 100+cfs increases in the flow in a matter of hours. This isn't good for the trout and it isn't good for the anglers. The hydro-power on this river is supposed to be "river run". No hold backs like the Deerfield. The home chapter of TU should be on this as we would think they should. Let's see what happens before they take action. There are ways to resolve this and I will leave it (for now) in the hands of a group that say that they are protectors of this river.

My Favorite Rivers For 2112:

I have done this rating for six years. It is centered around three rivers: the Millers, the Swift and the East Branch of the Westfield. This is where I fish 75% of the time unless the call of the Farmington cannot be resisted. The Farmington is, in my opinion, the best fly fishing river in New England! If I lived in Pleasant Valley (I think that is the name) I would fish no where else. Any different opinions are welcome.

Third Place 2012 - The EB of the Westfield - One Colorado person that I guided here in October, 2009 said "This place looks like Colorado". It does!!!! We caught trout on tiny drys and wb's. That is after two Summers of great dry fly fishing.

There is a problem. This river gets bony very quickly. If the rainfall is below average (2010,2012) then things get tough by early July. Trout were caught in a very deep pool miles below the starting point this past season. I'll let you explore to find this place. There are many trout there. I caught a lot of surface browns in June all over the river.

Second Place 2012 - My Old Friend The Millers - There seems to be more stocked fish in this river than ever before. Maybe or maybe not. There are a lot of trout for sure and there are a lot more fly fishers from everywhere which is a great improvement over the previous condition which was "don't tell anybody about this river.

2010 was the GREAT DROUGHT YEAR!! Local experts said that the BROWNS didn't survive. The BROWNS SURVIVED!! We caught them that early Fall. This year was dry and hot too but the BROWNS SURVIVED. We are catching them!!

If we have a NORMAL Summer (average rainfall) we will not have to wait until

1st Place 2012 - THE SWIFT - It's the early morning of New Years Day 2012 and I'm swinging a tiny marabou smelt pattern just below the Y Pool. I want a landlocked salmon on the drift, New England style, on this morning. Yes, I could be watching an indicator over an egg pattern or whatever but I want something that reminds me of things, of many seasons past, of old school lessons that are now maybe forgotten.

The line stopped, for second, and the salmon was hooked. It came up from four feet of water to grab the smelt pattern as it drifted helplessly near the surface. For a second I thought I was in Maine!

I guided a client a month before over the same water, using the same method, and we caught salmon. Land locked salmon, like their Atlantic brothers, like that approach.


The Swift held strong through the Spring, Summer and Fall. It's my favorite river of 2012. It doesn't have to go through the cycles like other rivers. It will challenge you with it's tiny flies and very picky trout. We like that, right??

BTW, My favorite dry fly fishing experiences of the last five years were on the EB in 2009. I pray for another Summer like that. Backcast through this blog to read about it!


Saturday, November 3, 2012

The Dark Season Is Upon Us

Tonight we move the clocks BACK!! It is sad! Gone are the wonderful evenings on our favorite trout streams like the Millers and the EB. What is left is our great tailwater, the Swift. One can wade the Deerfield but it is a game of chance. Can one wade it as planned?? Maybe not. Tell me if you can.

At the start of each season we dream of steady flows, of hatches that fill the waters with hatching duns and reliable spinners. If we are lucky to see these events they will give us days and evenings that dreams are made of. That has happened every year.

Those days are past us now for the next six months. The Swift, if the flows are NORMAL, will give us mid day surface and subsurface action. Let's hope for that!

The Millers is cresting at the 2000cfs level. See you in 2013 unless the flows drop a lot. Probably not.

I get a lot of good responses from this blog. I thank all of you!!