My angler’s calendar is very large, having about two inch square spaces for each date. This allows plenty of space for me to write in where I fished that day, the water temperature, the hatches, water level, my catch and any other important information. Each January when I get a new calendar I write in the above information from previous years. This brings back wonderful memories as I record these previous trips. It also helps me plan future fishing trips as I correlate the present stream conditions and hatches with what I did on past trips under similar conditions. Great fun!
I have a good friend who injured his right shoulder badly. Since he cast with his right hand he was very disappointed that he would loose a season’s fishing while he recovered from surgery. I encouraged him to just switch over and cast with his left hand which he did and he was able to fish the whole season.
In my fly fishing schools I have always had to cast with both hands to help all of my students. If you have not tried this give it a go. You will be pleased how well you do. After all you already know the proper casting technique.
“I am new to fly fishing and need advice on rods for freshwater fishing”. This question came in as email and I believe many anglers are at this point. In order to answer this in a meaningful way I will discuss the outfits I use in various types of fly fishing and why. I will break this down into four separate blogs and post one each week:
(A) Small Mountain Streams
(B) Large Eastern Trout Streams and Western Spring Creeks
(C) Large Western Trout Streams
(D) Bass Streams and Lakes
(A) Small Mountain Trout Streams
These streams require rods that give good accuracy and delicacy from twenty to thirty feet which are short enough to cast under the overhanging tree limbs. In rod design this calls for a rod with a delicate tip and a butt section that is firm enough to turn the tip over. Three weight rods are excellent for this delicate fishing with flies from size 22 up to size 10. Rods which are 6 foot 10 inches long up to 7 1/2 feet are ideal. My favorite is the Murray/Scott Mountain Trout Rod which is 6 foot 10 inches long, 3 piece and 3 weight. This approach will help you select the correct tackle to use on small trout streams all across the country.
The next section of these blogs will be posted next Thursday!
When I hike into the remote hollows to fish mountain trout streams I wear my felt sole boot foot hippers if I am going two miles or less. If I am going to hike in more than two miles I wear hiking shoes and hang my hippers over my shoulders. Then when I get to the area I plan to fish I put my hippers on and hide my hiking shoes behind a tree. When I finish fishing I retrieve my hiking shoes and wear these back to my jeep. I never wear chest-high or waist-high waders when fishing small mountain trout streams because they limit my ability to crawl along the streams.
In this fly fishing report podcast Harry Murray discusses in three parts the stocked trout fishing, mountain trout fishing, and smallmouth fishing along with what flies and techniques are working.
Part 1–Stocked Trout Streams and Delayed Harvest Streams–Harry explains how to fish nymphs effectively for the large trout which are stocked in our trout streams. Effective flies include: Murray’s Dark Stonefly Nymph size 12, Murray’s Yellow Stonefly nymph size 14, and Mr. Rapidan Soft Hackle Nymph, Brown size 10
Part 2–Mountain Trout Streams–Harry explains the wonderful fishing which can be found in the mountain trout streams with the tactics and important feeding stations. Effective flies include: Blue Quill Dry size 16, Mr. Rapidan Parachute Dry size 14, Mr. Rapidan Emerger size 12, Murray’s Little Yellow Stonefly Dry size 16
Part 3–Smallmouth Bass–You can catch many large bass now by using the tactics and flies Harry discusses today to fish the protected feeding stations in our rivers. Effective flies include: Shenk’s White Streamer size 4, Murray’s Olive Marauder size 6, Murray’s Pearl Marauder size 6
Fly Fishing for Brook Trout in the Shenandoah National Park today found plenty of 39 degree water in the streams. There is still plenty of snow to melt off of the North facing slopes. Neither the cool temperatures or extra water deterred the Brook Trout from jumping on a Mr. Rapidan Parachute #14!
We still have a few spots open in our Mountain Trout Fly Fishing Schools if you are interested in learning to catch these guys in their native habitat!
At this time of the year many brook trout eggs are still in their beds so be very careful where you wade.
We are currently filling our Mountain Trout On-The-Stream Schools which take place in the Shenandoah National Park. These schools focus on the tactics and techniques for catching trout in high gradient streams. We are blessed with great numbers of Native Brook Trout throughout the Blue Ridge Mountains and these schools focus on the intricacies involved in catching these beautiful fish. Bring your lunch, license raincoat and waders/ hip boots and we will bring the rods/ reels and fishing guides. We start each day with a slide show then head to the stream for some real world classroom lessons.
The dates for these schools are: April 4-5, April 14-15, April 18-19, May 2-3
Register Online or give it a go the old fashioned way, 540-984-4212 and talk to one of us.
As attention around the fly shop shifts to our 2011 Catalog and new products, we cannot give up on the fishing. The local stocked trout streams have been or will be stocked shortly. The Smallmouth Bass have the idea that things will be slowing down very soon and their subtle strikes are proof that the energy levels of mid-Summer are only a memory. The Brook Trout are spawning and we encourage everyone to leave them alone from now until late winter when the eggs hatch and the fry leave the redds.
The warm weather has kicked the local fly fishing in to gear! The North and South Fork of the Shenandoah River are both in great shape and are fishing well (for April). Kelly landed this 15 1/2 inch Smallmouth Bass on an Olive Marauder #6 on 4/7/2010. A Sink Tip III Fly Line will work well for helping to swim your flies deeply through the ledges and deep pockets. An 8 Wt. Fly Rod will help you cast the heavy flies and lines a bit better than a 6 or 7 that we typically use in the summer.
Fly Fishing for Brook Trout in the Shenandoah National Park has been very good with mayflies and caddis coming off throughout the day. There is still a lot of water so if you are willing to hike into the upper reaches of your favorite stream, you will likely be rewarded with a few more willing fish.
Filmed throughout the 2009 fly fishing season from Virginia to Alaska and many parts in between. We were fortunate enough to find a few willing participants for this video.
There are still a few mayflies available to the Brook Trout in the mountain streams throughout our area. These Mayflies hatch predominately late in the evening, so plan your trip accordingly. Also expect to find a Little Yellow Stoneflies and Caddis coming off the water. 5x Tippet material will do the trick as long as you stay down low and DON’T spook the fish.