Monday, March 7, 2016

Stream Visit: An Old Friend

This weekend I got a little time on a stream I've not fished in 20 years.  The trip started the Sunday prior, when my daughter scratched her eye while having a foam sword fight with her brother.  We had to go make sure her eye was ok at a local urgent care, and then from there to my folks - who we were going to visit - I had to drive past this stream.  I don't believe it has a name.  Maybe 15 years ago, a pond upstream suffered a dam break and really washed this little treasure out. 

In the years since, it's found it's path again and is happily rolling along.

Well, driving past the stream, I was really feeling a pull to get back to it.  So if I got a chance to go this weekend - that was to be my destination. 

 The weekend started though with me managing to finish work with good time Friday, so I was able to spin up a few little bugs I needed to restock - Picket Pin variations which are basically just picket pin's tied with the wing straight to the fly's head and no hackle palmering.  Works well, fast to tie.

At the stream, woody debris, largely from the 08 ice storm and 2010 Halloween blizzard created some awesome pockets, plunges and cover.  The stream was not unfishable, but it did have some unique challenges in sections which absolutely helps the stream.  It's awesome habitat for the fluvial creatures that call this water home!

This pic is a better example of the streams quality.  Lots of undercuts, riffles, pools, runs and frequent pine or hemlock cover overhead for much of it's run.

Another day, Ill catch a fish here..  Look at that plunge!  It's scoured a hole 3 feet deep and has all kinds of cover with overhead wood.  Today was not the day... But Ill get one there.

This pic, is the same stream above the pics I've already posted!  After crossing under a state road, it dumps out of the narrow concrete culvert and has absolutely scoured an amazing pool.  This thing is 15 yards across, 4-5 feet deep at the culvert with consistent 3 foot depths.  probably 20 yards long.  It's HUGE for a tiny stream.  It felt like there had to be a few fish here - it was only 28 when I left and the cold morning had felt like it shut the stream off... But as I walked up the stream preparing to leave, I happened to see a rise at the tail of the pool.  I had a white and orange streamer on from my earlier prospecting, so I took position above the fish, roll cast, and let the fly swing with a few little twitches.

And this gorgeous little trout attacked!  Awesome!  Look at those halo's and the way this fish has held the color of a fading sunset along it's lower flank.  These fish truly are jewels!  Not only do they remind us that the habitat is well, they amaze us with resilience and art.  I didn't fish any more.  I let him go, and headed home, ready to play with the twins and enjoy my day.

Lucky for me there was a D And D on the way (then again, in New England, it's hard to drive 2 miles without one!) to warm my cold hands.  I'm excited to get back here.  it's been to long, and looking at the stream, I'm convinced there are many more brookies, and possibly some browns given the river it flows into a half to three quarters of a mile down stream has a real healthy population of the latter... I just feel like the super cold morning I was there had the fish holding calm.  The predicted warm this week should have the stream ready to go over the next few weeks.  I'm going to head back.  And I'm excited about it!

Keep well


  1. Hey Will thanks for taking me to that naturally restored stream. Those halo are incredible. Early season brookies will respond well to small streamers.

    1. Alan - It's good to hear you say that. Sometimes it feels like a cop out and that perhaps I should nymph more or what not. But in the end, small streamers and wet's work so well for wild trout, that it's hard to try anything else... Unless dry's are working ;). It's a great little stream. I'm sort of ashamed to have missed out on it for so long!

  2. When I was down in the states, D and D was one of my favourite parts of the trip. Nice brookie!

    1. Hi Ben - it's a local treasure for sure ;). Thanks for reading!