Saturday, April 15, 2023

Claret & Ginger....And Brown.

With an hour left of an 85 degree day, I was less optimistic than normal.  Expecting less activity due to the abnormal heat we were experiencing. I began the night with a dual nymph rig. Tying on a Squirrels Nest Drake as my bottom fly and a C2C on a dropper 12" up.

The Fish were there, but slowly to the take.  They were taking both flies equally with the largest bow choosing the SND. 

I worked the run pretty hard and pulled a few fish for my efforts.  Fairly slow as I had expected, but still a great night to be on the water.  As I worked my way down to the main pool, I began to notice a number of fish working.  The shadows were getting long with only about 30 minutes of prime light remaining.  I drifted the nymphs through the slot where the fish were feeding with no luck.  Not able to see what they were feeding on I decided to try a wet fly that I figured just may split the difference.  

Claret and Ginger
Hook:  #12 Standard Nymph
Thread:  Claret Danville 
Tail:  Dark Barred Ginger fibers (Hen Neck)
Abdomen:  Claret tying thread
Palmer:  Dark Barred Ginger (Gape Length)
Rib: Small Copper Wire
Hackle: Dark Barred Ginger (Gape Length x2)

Removing the indicator and clipping off the nymphs, I tied on a Claret and Ginger Wet.  It is a staple in my box wherever there is a steady March Brown hatch. I fish it as a classic wet, swinging it just below the surface. My first cast produced a roll, but I was too anxious and pulled it away.  My mind raced...I knew it!  Taking another step downstream I cast again and was rewarded with a large roll and take. Setting the hook to 3-4 heavy head shakes and an immediate run downstream, I was along for the ride. It took the remaining light to land it, putting the finishing touch on a great night. 


It was a joy setting the hook on a brown of this size on a classic wet fly swing.  A refreshing change of pace in the current world of Euro-Nymphs and lobbing heavy rigs.

See you on the water!

Wednesday, April 12, 2023



My Grand-Daughter Lillian's Easter artwork captures the hatch of the day.  I'm thinking a Green Weenie and Wooly-Worm should match it adequately. :)

While only 2 of my daughters were on hand this year, along with their fiances and the Grandson, we were able to have a very enjoyable holiday.

The Grandson with Pop Pop, watching the Hatches

We did get some fishing in. A beautiful rainbow on a clown egg rig Sunday morning, while under the direct supervision of Brook

Benjamin and Aunt Becky on their first meeting

A fat Bow on the Little Crappie Fly 

It's still unclear who stole the first scoop of the apple-crisp?

Brook probably knows the guilty party, but she's sworn to secrecy.

All-n-All, a Great holiday.  Family and a little fishing.  Hoping to have the whole crew for 2024.

See you on the water! 

Saturday, April 1, 2023

PA Opening Day 2023


Opening Day 2023

The morning began with questionable weather.  Fortunately however, I stayed on the water throughout the rain.  Despite being slow early on with most of my time spent re-rigging, fumbling with numb fingers and donating more than my fair share of flies and fluorocarbon to the tree and rock gods.  Immediately following the last downpour, the skies brightened and the fish turned  on.

I opened the season with the Livingston Glass rod, expecting nymphing throughout the day.

 First fish of the day was a brown that I only glimpsed briefly before 3 to 4 heavy head shakes and slow reactions allowed him to snap off my fly. Then shortly after I fumbled and grumbled at myself for not reacting fast enough while tying on a new fly, I was rewarded with a fat 18" brown.  I felt a little better. 

Spotting the tell-tale orange glow of a Palomino, I opted to throw something at it and after a short while was able to bump it in the nose with a C2C nymph and it took it. Pali's are either the highlight or the scourge of PA fishermen, but I will say, at 21" and ample girth, it was like playing a Steelhead.  It was a blast, and I thank the glass rod for protecting my 5x tippet all the way to the net.

They are pretty, even if they are crowd magnets. But it's still swimming so somebody else can have fun as well.

The morning gave up another fat brown before my bones said it was time to get out of the waders.  Which was good timing because my crossing had increased  in flow and if it weren't for my wading staff waiting for me I would have arrived back wet for sure. 

Some observations.  The water was clear, and even after the rains it only slightly colored up.  I saw no hatch activity until just after lunch. The Early Brown Stones (Willow Fly), easily copied with a #14 2x long pattern, was more abundant than I have noticed in recent years. Which would explain why they took so well to the Squirrels Nest Drake. 

See you on the water