JIM'S TIPS -- Fishing After the Flood!
Throughout northeastern Pennsylvania the 2018 trout season will be one for the record books or one most people would rather forget. Here in Fishing Creek Valley the town of Benton made the national nightly news showing the flooding throughout the town. Fortunately no lives were lost in this historic flooding throughout Pennsylvania.
Most streams are back to more normal water flows and it's time to get back on the water and catch some fish. I've been out several times in the last few weeks checking out different areas and finding that things have changed in most areas along the streams.
First time I was on the water after the water receded I actually found some trout caught in small pools and I was able to net them and return to the stream. Unfortunately, I also found several trout that didn't survive the ordeal.
With the Fall Season just around the corner it's a good idea to go to your favorite fishing spots and checkout to see what damage has been done to roads and trails leading into and around the stream. Many trails and paths are blocked by huge log jams and debris is everywhere on the banks and in the stream. I found refrigerators, chairs, dumpsters, pumpkins and other trash. And it would be a good idea to bring a garbage bag to pickup some of the smaller debris that litters the area.
More than likely the stream as you knew it has changed. Some holes are filled in and some have deepen. With the uneven stream bottom wading can be more difficult and be aware of the changes in the stream bottom. Using a wading staff would be a very good idea in these new conditions.
Be aware mosquitoes are everywhere and will drive you crazy. Bugs spray or lotion is a must. I understand that the West Nile Virus has been found in mosquitoes in this area. Natural Fly, mosquitoes and tick repellent made by Pixie Soaps is the best I found to keep mosquitoes and ticks at bay.
In the areas that I fish I've found that the majority of the fish have survived and many are spread out because of the different changes in the stream bottom. One technique I use to locate fish is to use a small white or yellow streamer or wooly bugger and work it through the pools to see if the trout will chase it or flash at it. In shallow riffles a large stimulator dry fly will often get trout to come up take a look.
Here on Fishing Creek the water flow is good and water temperatures are in a good range to catch trout. Although now I'm catching trout early in the morning before the heat of the day, next week's weather forecast calls for more September-like weather conditions and the fishing will improve.
Late summer and early fall trout fishing can produce some of the best fly fishing of the season. The second brood of Slate Drakes should be hatching here on Fishing Creek soon, although I haven't seen many of the shucks on the rocks yet. Fishing a Slate Drake size 12 nymph usually works well in early September. Slate Drake nymphs are swimmers and they don't hide under the rocks but sit on top gathering food as it floats by. One of the more productive ways I like to fish them is without an indicator and slowly retrieve the fly towards the shore line. Don't forget BWO's and October Caddis as the season progresses. Terrestrials such as beetles, ants, small caddis dries, and hoppers are my go to flies this time of year. In deep pools a stone fly pattern such as a Ugg nymph with a pheasant tail nymph as a trailer fly can produces some nice trout.
On sunny days in small pools and riffles small size 16 to 20 bead heads nymphs such has a Rainbow Warrior, Flashback Pheasant Tail, Copper Johns (in different colors) and small Caddis nymphs can bring a few trout to the net. As we get later into September small egg patterns will also be a good choice.
Maybe it's been a while since you've gotten out because of the high water and flooding this summer. So it's time to get on back the water and check out the areas you usually fish and make up for the lost time. In general, there are plenty of trout and they have not been fished over much in the last few weeks. The one thing that you'll find is a very different stream than you knew before the flooding. In a strange way it's exciting to relearn the pools and riffles and decide what is the best way to fish them. As I get older seasons go back so quickly and I don't plan on wasting a moment of what is left of the 2018 season.
Dr. Slick Fans
Dr. Slick fans will be happy to hear about new Razor scissors and pliers. Serious anglers and fly tiers will recognize the Dr. Slick name as a name they can trust. Thank you Angling Trade News for bringing us this news release.
Hosted Trips 2019
This is what our 2019 schedule is looking like.
January 12-19 Coyhaique River Lodge, Chile
February 9-16 Laguna Verde, Argentina (Jurassic Lake)
February 17-23 Estancia Tecka, Argentina
March 16-23 Tres Valles Lodge, Argentina
March 24-30 San Huberto Hosteria, Argentina
March 30-Apr. 6 Limay River Lodge, Argetina
Apr. 27-May 4 Belize River Lodge, Belize
June 19-28 Slovenia
July 25-Aug.10 Africa Photo Safari
Aug. 23-Sept.7 Bighorn River, Montana
October Spain (dates TBA)
Nov.30-Dec.7 Tres Valles Lodge, Argentina
Sage BackCountry Season
Is the trail calling.....come before winter? Mike Tea reminds us that the days are getting shorter, the nights longer, and we better get out there.