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, April 17, 2016

Welcome To The Ware! More New Water

"It's not now many you catch. It's how you catch them!" Anonymous

Ok, I had two hours to fish today at mid day before other things had to be done so that time was going to be spent on the Ware River. First off, I took a wrong turn that wasted 15 minutes but recouped in time for the best surface action of this young season. Imagine beautiful, choppy, runs flowing over a bed of cobblestones with a flow that was between knee and thigh deep and at a rate of around 150 cfs. Imagine caddis flies EVERYWHERE and the start of a Quill Gordon hatch which had browns and bows making those splashy "get-it-before-it-flies-away" rises. This river had everything working today including a row of rising trout along the far bank. This was not going to be a high stick'n Bulgarian Commando nymph dredging party! It was going to be the real thing - work that soft hackle in the first few inches below the surface to mimic THE REAL THING, the emerging insect which is what the trout wanted.

I had only 90 minutes today (I have to schedule things better) but I took 4 browns and 2 bows all just at the surface. I stayed away from the full fledged dry because there were no mayflies on the surface (Quill Gordons don't ride the surface) and the SH did just fine. I really had to rip myself off this river today.

Before I forget - I saw no other fly fishers on this section of the Ware. Just one guy with a spinning rod and a lure who said I should of been there yesterday!!!!! Today was fine!

You should take a break from the Swift and the Farmie and work this river over the next few months. Monster insect hatches, long, beautiful drifts and willing trout!

I'll be back again!

Ken

16 comments:

Quinneyfish said...

Where on the ware?

Anonymous said...

Ken, why do you always say how many fish you catch? I thought you once said you were not a fish counter!

Millers River Flyfisher said...

Quinneyfish,

Sorry for the late reply (busy day).

The airport at the Church Street Bridge and up and down from that.

Anonymous (It's always anonymous)

I said that I'm not a fish counter many times. I also don't take shots of every fish I catch! Simply, I'm not beating the drum for me but beating the drum for the WARE River which gets NOTHING for publicity. People should fish this river!!! I did it for the Millers when NOBODY fished it and I'm doing it for the Ware. Saying that I caught trout on an unnamed freestone only promotes ME, get it??? I don't do THAT!!!!

Ken

Mike from Andover said...

Ken, me and my buddy were looking for a new place to fish on Patriot's Day - and you came through for us just in time! Never having fished the Ware before, we stumbled on the Church Street access. It is a nice looking stretch of water - especially when you get away from the bridge. Maybe the power of the internet, popularity of your blog, or the fact that it was a holiday (for some), but there were probably at least 20 fisherman who came and went over the course of the day (we fished it from 8-4). Great hatches - caddis, midges, and what looked like Hendricksons (#10-12 mayfly), and some RISERS - to caddis late morning, and late afternoon to the mayflies. Great fun targeting the rising fish - had to try a half dozen different caddis imitations before I finally hit on a gray emerger with a trailing shuck, which picked up a couple bows and a brown. Got a few more rainbows later on a midge pupa, and my buddy got a couple browns on a #12 soft hackle mayfly emerger. Oh, and I also got a fat 16" sucker that pulled like a horse. Didn't see any of the spinning guys catch a fish. MA put some great looking fish in there. We will definitely be back to explore other parts of this river. Please keep the suggestions coming - it's always fun trying out new water!

Millers River Flyfisher said...

Mike,

Good to hear from you again.

That is a popular spot regardless of the internet or me. I saw only ONE fisher there at mid day on Sunday so it must of been the Holiday. I did see over two dozen cars at the Y Pool lot around 2pm on Sunday so we know where people were fishing. If the spinning guys are not catching anything word will get around and then it's ours!!

Really good to see you had some good action. Browns and bows on a warm April Day. Wish I was there. Thanks for the report!

Everyone, this is a great river. Explore it above and below this spot (above & below = at least a half of a mile). Go up river and fish around the covered bridge or go above that into Barre!!

New water is a TRIP!!!!!!!!!
Ken

Mike C said...

Ken,
Thanks for the information on another river. I did another trip to the quinnie. I went Friday afternoon. There was quite a lot of insect activity still mostly caddis and stoneflies but I think there were some mayflies here and there. I still did not see much surface action so I was nymphing. I got no takes with the nymph so I switched to a soft hackle. I got one fish a very small brown. I am wondering if it was stream born. I had heard rumors browns spawned in the Quinnie but I had never seen one until this year (Of course I only caught my first grown up brown this year too)

Mike

Millers River Flyfisher said...

Mike C.

Thanks for the report! It appears that the quinnie has native browns as well as brookies. Maybe someday they will take down the dam by the aqueduct. Then things will get interesting!

Ken

Paul Narreau said...

Ken,

Thanks for the info on the Ware river. My brother and I were looking to fish it and now that we have some info on where to go, now looking forward to the trip.

Andrew said...

Mike C (and Ken),
I have fished the Quinnie since the early 1990s. Starting in the late 90s I started to catch wild browns. First in the main stream downstream of Trout Brook. And then in Trout Brook as well. The first few years, the Browns were all less than 5" long, often hitting small dries. The first one larger than 8" hit a Black Ghost cast just upstream of the junction pool where Trout Brook joins the Quinnie. It spit up a 3" brookie (not digested).

I was a bit concerned when I started catching relatively large (8" to 9") browns in Trout Brook while using ant patterns for brookie. One fall a brown came in with a distended belly. While I never kill trout from the Quinnie, I was very curious to see what was inside that brown. So made this one time exception. Opening it up I found the remains of two frogs (or toads) , one recognizable brookie (3") and one unrecognizable fish in its stomach. When stretched out, one of the frogs was actually longer than the trout. Amazed that this brown trout could swallow such large prey.

So I agree with your assessment that browns are reproducing in the Quinnie. I fear to the possible detriment to the brookies there. At the same time, I have seen a decrease in #s of large (>8") brookies in the Quinnie. But that could just be due to greater fishing pressure I have seen on the stream in the last decade plus. Agree that it would be helpful if there was a CR section on the Quinnie.

Andrew said...

Ken,
If that dam comes down, I wonder if LL salmon will figure it out and start trying to spawn in the Quinnie. The stream bed of the Quinnie seems much better for spawning salmon than does the Stillwater. Have seen LLs milling around below that dam before.

BobT said...

Way back in the 1980's I started on the Quinnie-we used to catch LLS there. I have not fished it in many years as I am no longer very close. There was a fish ladder at the dam-not sure if it is still there or working. I assume there still are if they can get beyond the dam. The Quinnie has been managed as put and take for rainbows since I can remember-despite that, browns and brookies and maybe LLS make it proving the stream's ability to support a wild fishery. IMO the entire river or a huge portion of it should be trialed as a wild C&R for the brookies and the LLS (if the ladder is viable or if they can take the damn dam down). This blog is helping this river and a few other fisheries in the state by bringing them to the attention of more anglers. I lived roughly 7 miles from the river through the early 90's and fished it a ton. The easy access points(above the dam, the first lot on river road and at the bridge and Trout Brook) you'd see three or four powerbait/worm guys but if you ventured 50 yards past the first bend nobody would be there except maybe twice a year you'd see a fly guy doing what I was doing. I used to have some outstanding days on the Quinnie and its a tough little river that deserves some TLC.

Millers River Flyfisher said...

I fished there too back in the 1980's and that fish ladder never worked. Back in the early 1980's the Stillwater and I believe the Quinnie got stocked with fingerling LL salmon. They came back in the Stillwater but It's hard to believe they made it over the dam. If the dam comes down the Quinnie will be one of the best LL salmon rivers in New England.

Ken

Andrew said...

Ken,
My sincere apologies for all of us taking the comments section to your GREAT article about the Ware River hostage to a thread on the Quinapoxet. I never knew there was a fish ladder. Having spent 15+ days per year every year on the Quinnie since 1993, I can share that I've never seen a LLS above the dam.

Seems like some real work is being done to assess if the dam can be removed. See this for more details: http://www.mwra.state.ma.us/monthly/wscac/2015/101315-quinapoxet-dam.pdf

I have marginally been involved in having some dams removed on the Shawsheen River in Andover, MA. I wonder if these folks have been queried regarding fundraising to remove the Quinnie dam: http://www.ecorestoration.org/

Mike C said...

The ladder is still there but as Ken said it doesn't really attract many fish. It is not in the main flow so I wouldn't be surprised if a few salmon find it but probably by accident.

Andrew,
I am not going to claim to know much about the quinnie I have only been fishing there a few times a year over the last 5 years. However I have noticed in the last few years the water has gotten very low in the summer. Perhaps this also gives the edge to the browns over the brookies.

Mike

Millers River Flyfisher said...

I believe that I heard that money has been set aside for the dam removal. The Central Ma TU chapter should know more about this. Can they chime in on this? The removal is no small thing because it's next to a public water supply. Plenty of environmental hoops to jump through.

Ken

Anonymous said...

Spent this morning on the Ware and the afternoon on the E. Branch of the Swift. Ware- started at @8:30 at covered bridge. No bug activity. Tried above and then below the bridge. No success. Parked at Church and walk .5 miles up and fished down. Two browns (one on BH Hares Ear, one on BH Olive Woolly Bugger). Then it warmed. First Caddis and then Hendricksons. In one deep run picked up two SM bass. The first was a dink; the 2nd was almost 16+". Broke off another.

Fished back to car then stopped for sandwich then fished below bridge. 3 bows on #16 EH Caddis. Each cast to sloppy rises. Two other fly fishers (upstream of Church St) and one spin fisher (below bridge). Not many out on such a nice day.

Went back to Covered Bridge. Fished up to canoe takeout (across from Hardwick Pizza). One hit on Prince Nymph. Looked v. fishy but I could not find anyone home.

E. Branch of Swift - Tried two spots. Skunked at first spot. V. nice at second spot. Bunch of 7"-9" brookies on dries. No rises; just prospecting in all the fishy looking spots.