It's taken a little time but rivers are really starting to chill down. Conditions are typical of the fall - low and clear but the water is cooling down with a succession of evening lows in the mid to upper fifties with daytime highs mostly in the mid to upper seventies.
It would be nice to have some rain and maybe we'll get some by Thursday evening but as they say, "The game is afoot." There are some Tan Caddis on the water and small Pseudocleons - might as well call them BWO's even though they're not. Tonight, John Collins identified Light Cahills, some Hexes, even a few Little Evening Yellow spinners or better knowns as Hebes from Luecrocuta hebe but his fish came on a Hopper and then two on a Cahill Hammer. Steve Barosonek has been fishing soft hackles with a degree of success while I've been sticking to dry fly imitations of the aforementioned bugs with some success as well. My fly of choice tonight was a small parachute Tan Caddis #18 fished on an 11' 6X leader. For all the nymph anglers out there my advice right now is to fish the faster runs with small flies and light 6-7X leaders. The fish are there and the water is cool. The holdover trout are in good condition.
Rises are there and a good cast will induce a strike but use stealth. This is a good game but please understand, now you have to actually fish to be successful. Take care in wading and try to avoid just wandering in the water. Consider your approach to the pool keeping in mind the trout may see you.
I am proud to report that our efforts at river restoration on the South Branch passed a major hurdle this past week when the Califon Town Council voted unanimously in favor of expanding Califon Island Park and will now work with Raritan Headwaters and other partners to remove the old Weis' Mill Dam just above Califon and restore the water above and below the structure. There is much work to be done but this was an important step in the right direction. I'll continue to provide updates as they become available.
Local Hatches 9/07/2019:
Morning 5-10 am:
Trico Trorythodes spp. Trico #22-24
Spotted Sedge Hydropsyche spp. Tan Elk Hair Caddis #14-18, Green Rockworm or JC's Electric Caddis #14-18, LaFontaine's Sparkle Pupa #14-18
Green Sedge Rhyacophila sp. Elk Hair Caddis Olive #14-16, LaFontaine's Sparkle Pupa #14-16
Little Brown Quill Pseudocleon carolina Adams #20 Pheasant Tail # 20, RS2 #20-22
Light Cahill Stenacron interpunctatum Light Cahill #12-14, Hare's Ear #14
Hex Litobrancha atrocaudata and L. rigida Ausable or Grizzly Wulf #10
Slate Drake Isonychia bicolor Iso #12-14
Little Evening Yellow Leucrocuta hebe Sulphur #18-20
Dun Midge Paraleptophlebia debilis Adams or Blue Quill #18-20 Use small #18-20 Pheasant Tails!!
Here is a great video for the clear conditions, the WD40 Plus and the RS2: