Fall Flyfishing on the Farmington River 2010

Date: 11/30/10
Water flow: 320
Visibility: good
Water temp: n/a
Water conditions: good
Hatches: Winter/Summer Caddis 20-24, are out in good numbers in the early to mid morning. Blue Wing Olives 22-24 mid-morning and again in the afternoon. Tan Caddis 16-18 sporadic throughout the day.

Comments: The Winter/Summer Caddis have been on the water in the early mornings bringing lots of fish to the surface to feed on them. I love this hatch and enjoy fishing it with just a couple of simple foam and CDC pupae imitations. If you don’t fish this hatch…you should! It’s longevity and potency are matched by no other hatch on the river. Most trout will be feeding on this hatch all winter long. Presentation can be tricky but if you take a moment to observe the naturals and how they act and skitter across the surface on their way to the rocks along the riverbank to finish their transformation into adult Caddis. The skittering is the important part for the angler you must make your presentation act like the natural. By observing the pupae themselves you can make a better judgment on whether to use an upstream or downstream approach. I often try both until I find which one is best suited for a particular hole or stretch of water. Don’t forget you can fish the Winter/Summer Caddis Larvae as well! Nymphing with these tiny larvae may intimidate some but these small nymphs fished in an 18 or 20 can really get it done.
     BWOlives have been coming off fairly well at the larger pools on the Farmington. Other smaller areas that I like to fish on the Farmy have seen spotty hatches of the Blue winged olives. Parachute patterns with just a thread body work well on these. I have been catching most fish on 24 BWO wet fly dropper that I have tied off the bend of my parachute dry fly. Fish tend to refuse the parachute and sip the wet fly trailing a short distance behind. On these windy fall days it can be hard to tell if trout are taking these tiny insects, many times they are taking them under the film, and masked by the ripples created on the water. Look closely and observe the shoreline for BWO’s that have been blown into the grass and vegetation along the waters edge. If these little green troopers are a no-show, or I don’t notice the trout taking them in the film, I normally switch to fishing nymphs rather quickly trying some small BWO nymphs instead.
     The fall is a great time of the year to hit these hatches which can be spectacular but remember to have a plan “B” and be prepared to fish streamers or nymphs when they are not producing. Good luck and we hope to catch you out there on the water!
JW

  • Rain, Rain, gone away. Farmington River pick your day they all look nice through the weekend!

    Thank god for cellphones!

    Date:  10/7/10

    Water Flow:  625Cfs

    Visibility:  ok

    Water Temp:   

    Water Condition:  slightly stained 

    Access Point:  Upper TMA

    Hatches (in order of importance):

            AM: Winter/Summer Caddis 20-24 

                   BWO 20-24

                   Rusty Spinners 20-24     

      Midday:  Tan Caddis 18-20

                     Ants and Beetles 12-16

     Evening:  Isonychia 10-12

                         Tan Caddis 18-20

                         Rusty Spinners 20-24     

    Comments:  Water is running high again after the recent rains.  Not many fish have been rising in the early mornings but a few are sipping small Spinners and Winter/Summer Caddis.  I have been fishing down for them with Caddis larvae and Stonefly nymphs until I notice fish visibly rising then grabbing my dry rod and throwing small spinners or W/S Caddis.  Olives are starting to gather on the riffles in the evening.  Not many trout have been coming up for the tiny spinners.  However I have been taking lots of fish on small Pheasantail nymphs down to size 22 imitating small BWO nymphs.  A pattern that has been tearing it up out there for a good couple of months now is Aaron Jasper’s Pineapple Express.  I want to thank Aaron for his great patterns and here is the url to the video of Pineapple Express TPO fly of the Month June 2010.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sdrtvM4F6l4

    JW's pineapple

     

    The fly I have pictured here is just a spinnoff of the Pineapple Express that I tie a bit differently.  This fly is mainly a small pheasantail with a rusty, yellowish dubbing mix for a thorax and a hot collar of UTC fire orange thread for the hotspot.  Stonefly 10-14 and Isonychia nymphs 10-12 have been very effective in the high water.  I like French Nymphing these patterns in current seams and along shelf water.  The rain is supposed to stop and with moderate temperatures this weekend you can count on the fishing being good as the water recedes.  Good luck to all out there this weekend.  Hook em up!

    JW

  • Too many bugs to count!

     

    Date: 6/17/10

    Water Flow: 372

    Visibility: clear

    Water Temp: 58*F

    Water Condition: good

    Access Point: Upper TMA

    Hatches (in order of importance): Sulphurs 14-18 March Brown/Grey Fox 12-14, Isonychia 10-12, Winter/summer Caddis 18-22, Tan and Green Caddis 16-20.

    Comments: Early am the winter/summer caddis have been driving trout bonkers causing them to line the banks and softer water snatching pupae that are swimming toward shore, I prefer to fish Dave Goulet’s foam pupae skittering down and across the current. Mid afternoon and evening have been frantic with Sulphurs, Caddis, Isonychia, BWO’s, Potomantis, and a few March Browns. When the hatches get frantic like this it can be a frustrating time if you are waiting for a specific hatch. Stay focused and hone your powers of observation by finding a few fish and watching them closely for clues as to what they are feeding on. When watching trout feeding be mindful of escaping insects, and rise forms to help you put the pieces of the puzzle together. Fish aren’t taking your dry imitation? Tie a dropper off your dry to imitate the emerger. Switch your flies frequently until you can match the hatch. Rusty Spinners in larger sizes such as 12-14 are putting some of our bigger trout on the line in the late evenings. As far as nymphing we have been catching lots of nice trout during the am Caddis hatch on simple yellow Caddis larvae patterns. There is a strong population of Golden Stoneflies in various sizes my favorite are size 12 and 6. These flies always produce fish for us. I have personally been using the French Nymphing tactics to target some specific hatches with great success. If you have started using this technique don’t be afraid to use those hatch specific wet flies on the top of your brace. We have been putting a bunch of fish in the net in the afternoons by positioning Sulphur wets as a dropper on our brace of flies. I am planning to trying this same thing with Isonychias which are a much bigger insect and food source for trout. These larger insects seldom pass without large trout noticing in my opinion. Whether your voice is hoarse from screaming obscenities at the trout or shouting “Fish on!” have a good week and enjoy our wonderful Farmington River.

    JW

  • Caddis AM, Hedricksons getting stronger!

     

    Date:  4-21-10

    Water Flow:  329

    Visibility:  Clear

    Water Temp:  47F am 

    Water Condition:  Good

    Access Point:  Lower TMA

    Hatches (in order of importance):  Caddis pupae 18- 22, Bwo 18-20, Mahogany Duns 16-18, Rusty Spinner 14-18 in the evening.

    Comments:  The morning Caddis hatches are still going strong bringing lots of trout to the surface.  There have been some Bwo mixed in with them and I have been taking fish on them as well.  Yesterday morning I used all my pupae in my box up and I started casting 18 Bwo’s and the trout took it eagerly.  I have been spotting Hendricksons  yesterday fish were feeding on them from Unionville to People’s State Forest.  With the weather looking good for the next couple of days and warm temps this hatch should progress nicely.  The Dep will be stocking the TMA this week and just in time with the Hendricksons well on their way.  Be on the lookout for the evening spinnerfall!  Good luck!

  • Farmington River Series Nov. 2009

         November was a great month on the River with lots of big fish aggressively moving about as the spawn is on!  I had a great month fishing on the bottom with nymphs.  Some of my better producers were Isonychia nymphs in size 12-14, and the San Jaun worm tied on a #12 caddis hook weighted with wire. 

         There was a consistent hatches of Blue Winged Olives in smaller sizes #22-24.  The bigger fish have been sitting  in slack or slow rolling water and refusing a vast majority of dryflies, and eagerly take the emerging insects one right after the other. I had great success fishing tiny BWO wets as droppers, off a CDC parachute Blue Winged Olive.  This method addresses the problem with bigger fish seemingly feeding stricktly on emergers.