Autumn On The EB

Autumn On The EB

Sunday, July 3, 2016

The Swift - A Long Weekend Update And A Big Swift Brookie

"It's an odd fact that whichever side of the stream you are on, two-thirds of the best water is out of reach on the other side." - John Gierach

Here we go: what is going on with the Swift? I was there at 6am Saturday morning, passing the Pipe, on my way downstream when I spoke to a long time regular who said he was there most of Friday morning (July 1st) and said he never saw a fish stocked. But then he said he heard that it was stocked later in the day. The funny thing is that there are no fish by the pumphouse (a traditional stocking point) and no bows by the Pipe BUT the Tree Pool is LOADED. It's also not loaded with fly fishers so there's plenty of room for everyone.

How did I do and where did I do it?? On Saturday morning I took three bows that had a total combined length of 55 inches on top of a bunch of brookies. My friend Phil took a good 16 to 18 inch bow (see photo) and he was the only other angler I saw. On Sunday morning I took an 18 inch brown with the usual brookies and friend Lenny nailed a 3lb rainbow. Where was I? Read the second sentence in the post. That's all you need.

Everything that I caught was caught on a size 16 yellow and partridge or an olive and partridge. The bows could not be tempted to the surface but they loved that SH.

So, there are trout below route 9 but they are not swimming between your boots as in years past and that is a very good thing. The low water (50cfs) is back for a while (it may rise again soon unless we get rain) and that makes for some "fine and far off" angling which is the best. Leave the heavy stuff at home. You will not need it.

Fishing the Swift this year lets one realize just how fortunate we are. An exploding native brookie population, enough large browns to keep your heart pounding, some large bows for variety, and a COOL and stable flow makes the place unique.
Here's a 20 inch Swift brookie compliments of Lenny!

Have a happy July 4th



Bill/Tully said...

Thank you for the update! With so much of the Millers looking like a rock garden, time for a jaunt to the gauge and down! Are you using any weight on the SH's?

Francesco Pellizzari said...

I caught 55 inches too...just in smaller increments. Floating beetle was a hit with brooks and browns. Action heated up as the water warmed a degree or two around noon.

Anonymous said...

Good post. I was there on Friday morning, July 1st. At about 10 am, the truck rumbled down to the end of the path...right at the Cady Lane sign. He put in 3 nets full and he was off. Wasn't expecting it...was fishing with the 1 weight. Did well with yellow SH with a small pheasant tail trailing (size 18). Most were hitting the PT. Again, only one gentleman appeared around 2 pm. I had fun all morning. When the water level started to go down around noon, the fish seemed to slow the bite. I'm glad you had a good day yesterday.
Jeff from NH

Millers River Flyfisher said...


You nailed it. Mystery solved!


No weight with the SH's. Too many weeds to deal with.


Hibernation said...

Interesting reports. I've only been warm water fishing for a while... but the urge to hit the swift is growing...

Millers River Flyfisher said...


It's the brook trout that changed this river. This is the best fishing in 30 years and I'm not talking about the river above Rt. 9.


55 inches in any increment is cool. Good to see you.


Anonymous said...

Ken, I stayed until 12:30. I only saw two other guys, which was fine by me. I was catching them on everything from a size 10 streamer through a 20 serendipity!! My biggest bow was on the streamer, not the log I was going for! Good sized Brookies too. It was good to see you again. The tree pool was a combat fishing free for all!


lenny tamule said...

I looked at a tape measure and 20" is a lot more than I thought, more like 16 lol. Felt like 20 at the time haha.


Francesco Pellizzari said...

A black plastic fly box about 4x6x2 floated down to me from Cady lane this morning. If anyone lost it....please let me know and identify some of the contents to verify ownership. Text 5088688554

Parachute Adams said...

What a beautiful brook trout in that last photo, Ken. Looks like something that would be caught in the wilderness of Maine. We sure have a gift in the Swift River, no doubt about it.

I hope we get some rain in the near future this summer to help the other streams in our region. Lord knows we need it.

Regards, Sam

Bob O said...

Lovely brookie Lenny. What a gem the Swift is!

Millers River Flyfisher said...


You are so right about the rain. This is the driest I remember since the summer of 2010 which was horrible. The browns in the Millers survived though!

mw said...

The Swift below route 9 does seem to be a great emerging fishery and hope it continues to develop, I'm really starting to spend some serious time down there away from the sometimes 'combat fishery' above. I was wondering from your previous post where the 'tree pool' was, but that mystery appears solved by a lucky contributor. It left me wondering if there were other named pools either in common usage or personal favorites that could be made into a list from route 9 down to the cabins (or the bridge). In between these I've heard of: horse farm, duck pen, orchard, wardens, pipe, hatchery pool and tree pool/Caty Lane. There is a lot of other good water. The good rivers all seem to have a lot of good sounding names (evoking the river) and sort of helps you plan out the next fishing trip somehow. Anybody up?

lenny tamule said...

Thanks Bob!


Lance Holmes said...

So I went out in the evening on July 4 to see what I could scare up. I want to say the yellow partridge #16 was a good tip. I started out with a nice little 3 inch brookie followed later by his bigger cousins.

One thing I do want to mention is that it is so dry out, you really need to be careful with any and all smoking materials. There was one person fishing down at the last pool in the stretch starting from the pipe who was smoking and on his way out he must have carelessly disposed of his butt in the sawdust of the big tree near the last concrete building. I found a nice small smoldering fire going there and it was going to be just a mater of time before that whole area would have been on fire.

Millers River Flyfisher said...


I descending order from Rt.9 IMO:

Duck Pond
Crib Dam
The Gauge Run
The Pipe
The Tree Pool (the whole pool)
Cady Lane:I've always considered the start of this place as from the fast water below the Tree Pool to the boat landing. "Sub Sections" are the:

The Flats
The Horse Farm
The Cottages

The last three names are names I've picked up over the last 4 or so years.


Good point!!!


joe smith said...

Hi Ken - What's your thoughts on fishing the Y-Pool from the opposite to normal bank....where the rocks are. Picked up a couple there on Sunday am. Seems like a better angle to target the fish IMO, but is it frowned upon by the regulars to be fishing across from them? Thanks - Joe.

Millers River Flyfisher said...


Fish that side if you want. I've seen a "regular" or two doing that over the years. The people who "frowned upon" it always fish the same old spot. They should try something different. You're OK!!


Falsecast said...

In my mind there is still a "mattress pool" sans mattress :) Unofficial, as well!

Anonymous said...

I'm not the only one who's heard of "Wardens", Ken. I've heard the "bend pool" (Cady Lane) referred to that before.

a comment about a river that shouldn't be fished right now, the Millers, our dam controllers raised the flow from 71 cfs to 302 cfs over the span of 15 minutes this afternoon (2:45pm to 3:00pm). It topped at 477 cfs by 4:00pm before they started cutting back. I wish I was there with a video camera (on the bank - not in the water) to see and record that rise. Must have been fairly loud. Glad there's no recreational areas on the river where one might bring their little ones to play in the water cause there could have been some problems during that first 15 minutes. Fife Brook dam runs a safer release


Millers River Flyfisher said...


Wasn't the mattress pool up by the crib pool?


Deerfield releases are higher and of the same velocity as what the Millers experienced yesterday. We've fished the Millers in 470 cfs before. Anyway, we were told this was a draw down for dam work. Also remember that Starrett's in Athol DRAINS their pond EVERY year at this time. Could that have caused the spike.


Scott M said...

The river behind the Orange Dam was lowered yesterday to facilitate repair work on the dam. I've heard that will last 6-8 weeks. It needed to be done during an already low flow period. While I am not crazy about how fast they released the water, the dam does need work and hopefully they finally fix the problem with the pulsating flows we've seen for years now. On the bright side, it will afford an opportunity to do some clean up work with the lower water elevation.

Scott M

Falsecast said...

The "mattress pool" was a 100yds below the "crib dam", just upstream from the gauge. Lord knows how long that rusty mattress was in there.