Autumn On The EB

Autumn On The EB

Sunday, February 7, 2016

It's Finally Winter On The Swift And A Charlies Reminder

Fly tackle has improved considerably since 1676 when Charles Cotton advised anglers to "fish fine and far off" but no one has ever improved on that statement. John Gierach

We got away with one this past week with only 3 inches of snow at my home in Northampton but 20 miles to the east in Belchertown it was more along the lines of 8 to 10 inches. That left the PIPE lot EMPTY on Saturday morning (16 degrees helped too) with only two sets of tracks left in the snow from the day before. From 8:30 to noon I saw ONE other fly fisher from the gauge down to Cady Lane. Mine were the first tracks in the snow.

The fishing was slow as one would expect with water temperatures down to 38 degrees but a Pellet Hatch erupted which brought at least a dozen trout to the surface at the Tree Pool BUT not at the PIPE where you always see trout chasing "pellets". There are no trout there because they're all now in deeper water.

We've been lucky this year compared to last year. We are past the half way point in this winter. The sun sets after 5:00 pm. Just one more month to go!

Don't forget to be at Charlie Shaden's Evening Sun Fly Shop on Sunday February 21 from 10:00 till 2:00 pm to tie and talk flies and to view my presentation on the Millers. It's always a good time.

Just a thought - It seems that I'm seeing fewer and fewer people fishing with strike indicators. I've been beating the drum for years against those things and now it seems to be paying off. There's a time and a place for bobbers but not all of the time and not in every place.



Anonymous said...

With cold water like that everything starts to slow down.

BTW, I cut way down in indicator fishing. More fun that way.


Gary Cranson said...

Wow the guy that switched me from spin to fly was all about strike indicators(bobbers) if I told him I went 0for a day the first thing he wouid ask is if I was using an s/i. Of course I said no cause I hated the damn things yarn or bubble, then I would get a stern TU member look from him and a shake of the head.
I recently saw a guy fishing with one of those orange spring lines LOL I thought it was a bomb.

Millers River Flyfisher said...


Back in the late 1980's we got the second C&R section on the Deerfield from Pelham Brook to the campground. We spent a Saturday hanging CR signs along the bank and were up by Pelham Brook when I see this guy in waders and a spinning rod drifting a bobber along. I asked how he was doing and he said that he had caught a few. I thought he was using bait but then he showed me the business end of his setup:a big, black Montana nymph trailing a few feet beneath his bobber. "It's the only way I know how to fly fish" was his answer. I left thinking that fly fishers knew how to detect strikes and we would need that stuff and besides, how would we cast a rig like that? Boy, I was wrong. There's a time and place for indicators like drifting midges at mid current but not all of the time.


fischmeister57 said...

The debate about whether or not to use strike indicators is never-ending. I really do think it comes down to personal preference. I'll readily admit that it takes real skill to fish without an indicator - you have watch the end of your line very carefully and be extremely sensitive to the slightest movement or pull. I've often fished without indicators but most of the time I still prefer an indicator. First, because an adjustable indicator helps me suspend the fly at the right depth. Then because by treating the indicator like a dry fly, it helps me get a good drift. But most of all because when I see that indicator stall or go down, it makes me feel like a kid again when my bobber went down. That's a thrill I won't let anybody take away from me ;-)


Josh said...

I'm a fan of double and triple rigs with an indicator, they've worked well for me and let you easily and quickly adjust the ride height of the nymphs.

But i'm no professional.

Millers River Flyfisher said...

Herm and Josh,

Adjusting the depth of the fly can make a difference but much of indicator fishing is done over many depths without much in the way of adjustment. If you are fishing 10 inch riffles where is the adjustment needed? Frequent commentor Bob O uses a bright length of heavy mono between the line and the butt end of the leader. He says it works very well in detecting hits. I believe him.

Keep giving your view points!!


Anonymous said...

I like to use the most non-sinkable dry fly I have that may have a chance of drawing some interest as food as my indicator. Needless to say, "hopper season" is one of my favorites.

A side note for Josh - those "triple rigs" maybe illegal on certain regulated waters. Check the regs.

Al from Mansfield