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NJ July Fly Fishing

As we move into July, it's really starting to feel like summer here in New Jersey and I look forward to certain fixtures of the season. I've noticed that the tiger lilies are finally starting to bloom after a very wet spring which certainly has the mosquitoes celebrating in certain areas. Hot dogs and burgers taste that much better off the grill and so do fresh fruits and vegetables! I'm beginning to eye up my bass and panfish poppers and I am certainly going to try to catch a channel catfish or maybe a carp on the fly at some point. Having said all of that is NJ trout season over? The short answer is no, not this year. Many of our customers are getting ready to head west to Montana but our

June Trout High and Low

I've spent the last couple of evenings roaming the South Branch as I am fond of doing looking for rising fish. Of course Friday night was probably the best night with falling water and low humidity but I didn't do much fishing. Rather, I saw folks catching fish in a few places and despite the conditions, I decided to leave them to it. Frankly given the high water this spring, conditions for dry fly fishing haven't always been ideal. The subsurface action has been much more consistent across our region, including the rivers in western New Jersey and eastern Pennsylvania. Tthe action has been hot for the nymphing and streamer crowd. I ran into Tim Flagler tonight of Tightline Productions on th

June High Water Streamers

Today was a day I'd been looking forward to for some time. As a teacher, we too look forward to the last day of school. It had been a busy and productive time, my students are talented and it's my vocation but I was ready for a break. I had day dreams as I cleaned up my classroom of abundant hatches and either native Brookies splashing around me or maybe a submarine Brownie or big Rainbow sipping a big Iso Parachute or Yellow Drake. Instead, I was greeted by yet another rainy day, the story of our spring and rising dirty water. After closing the shop still a bit crest fallen by the prospect of more rain, I pondered what to do. An early dinner and a little rest? No, I decided. There had been

June: Father's Day Outlook

Tonight, I purposefully approached the river with a game plan in mind. The other night I had scouted an area that was holding a decent number of fish but it required a bit of stealth to reach casting distance. Normally, just a few small fish might be found here but with the above average flows we've seen this spring a number of larger fish were still using the slot just a above a riffle. I saw a couple of large Isonychia fly by. This was as John Collins likes to say a "night the fish want the meat." Isonychia bicolor or Slate Drakes are a primary hatch in June and they are large. In our area they are most often a size 12 although a size 10 isn't uncommon. On the larger rivers of the Catskil

June is Dry Fly Time

This spring has certainly been one of the wettest I can remember. Plenty of fish have been caught but most have on nymphs and streamers. My preference has always been to take trout feeding on the surface and conditions for dry fly fishing are improving significantly. There is an anatomy to a hatch. Most activity is centered around aquatic insects such as mayflies, caddis flies or occasionally stoneflies. Mayfly nymphs begin to stir about one to two hours before the visible hatch commences. This is the emerger stage. It is not uncommon to see trout flashing under the surface feeding on the insects as they struggle to begin their odyssey upward to the surface. Caddis flies hatch more rapidly b

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