Just returned from vacation. We spent the first half of the week up at camp in the NEK and then camped for three nights in Northern NH. We were fortunate enough to have great weather particularly when we camped as we had our 11 month old with us in the tent for her first camping trip.
The hex hatch on the pond was slow for all but the 4th of July which is to be expected because we had cool weather leading into the 4th. Trout were feeding more in the morning on the surface during those few days. On the 4th we had calm weather and warm temps. Perfect for a hex hatch. I went out on the pond alone from 7:30 to dark and caught some nice rainbows and fat brown.
We also floated the Upper CT with a group of friends the weekend before the 4th. The water was fairly muddy from a storm the night before, but we still managed to pick off rainbows, browns and brookies, though the fishing was anything from good.
The latter half of the week we were up in Northern NH. Water conditions were great as the river flows from several bottom release dams. The first day and a half the trout were not keyed into anything in particular and fishing was ok. We'd catch a few on dries then nothing, then a few on PT nymphs and then have to switch again. I really had to work to get fish to eat but managed to tight line nymph up some nice fish. After a storm system rolled through fish seemed to key into PT nymphs. To make matters more difficult we broke my wives rod in the cap of my truck and then I broke my tight line rod while fishing the first few minutes I got on the river. So for most of the trip we shared two rods with my wife taking my dry fly rod and me using my 6 wt streamer rod as a makeshift tight line rod. This took a bit of getting used to as I was missing many takes the first few outings. Not until I did some sight fishing to nymphing trout did I realize how many fish I had missed earlier and that without the sensitivity of a lighter tip, I was not even feeling many eats and that bottom and eats felt the same. Once I got this worked out my catch rate went way up and for the next few days I caught many many fish. The best fish of the trip was the brown pictured above. The best producing flies were yellow sally dry flies and PT nymphs from #14-18.
I also kept a few fish this week, which is pretty rare for me, but occasionally when we camp I keep a few. I do always make sure that the fish I decide to keep are all stocked fish and as you can see from the pic, these were. We were out of food and it was drive to town or go catch some fish to eat. I probably caught 15 before I had the 4 clearly stocked fish that I wanted to eat. I also kept a stocked rainbow out of the pond as a request from my 90 year old grandfather who asked my to please catch him a trout to eat.
Around here the water was very low and really warm, I hear temps here at home where higher than up north, pushing 90. That probably took a toll on some of our stocked fish but hopefully our wild ones survived. What I have seen about 6 years ago is that a prolonged heat wave is what can get the wild fish.
We are finally getting some much needed rain and it is coming with some nice cool weather. The fishing was probably great today and will be tomorrow. We then turn terribly warm again mid week. Thankfully we are going into that warm stretch with more water than we have had in a while. I am guiding some this week, and it will be on our one local tailwater that stays cool year round. I have some openings if you would like to get out. It can fish pretty decent when it gets warm but can be a finicky river and frustrates a lot of people.
Bass are a better option for most of the week. They should be happy with the increased flows on our lower rivers. The lower rivers also have a ton of other fish like fall fish, pike, perch, rock bass, crappie, walleye, and more so often you will be catching lots of fish throughout the day. I'd recommend going that route, I do enjoy guiding for them and every year I seem to enjoy fly fishing for bass more and more.
Ben Wilcox Owner/Guide Maple Country Anglers