The river looks like the river the first week of April, except for the overnight lows.  There’s no true snowpack left, just some old ice in the shadows down by the water and a skin of snow from a few scattered flurries.  The river was a bit green from run-off this past weekend, but is crystal clear now.  The fishing was tough on Friday and Saturday, but was a lot better Sunday.  Some days in the winter seem too warm, too sunny, and the river gets snowmelt along with the sun and seems to slow the fish down.  Not something I hear too much complaining about.

I’ve been getting out, exploring, experimenting with new patterns and new rigs.  Today I meant to do some indicator nymphing but forgot to grab any weight.  There was just enough snow to see that someone had already fished up the run…a rarity in the winter.  So I worked on stack mending and fishing shallow drop-offs and managed a few trout aiming at places that the other angler might have skipped.  It was a very nice afternoon, if a little windy.

Snowpack or not, this time of year always seems to slow down.  The only sign of spring right now are new products starting to roll in on the big trucks, preparations we’re making for the season, and other winter projects that suddenly seem to be on a rapidly approaching deadline.  But on the river we aren’t seeing the black stones, or rises (ha ha) or anything like that.  The woods might look like April, but the river feels like February.

Not much has changed with the fishing conditions.  The next week or so looks to be cold.  Not so cold that I wouldn’t go fishing, but so cold that I may go ice fishing instead.  But for those that want to trout fish, you’ll find a river that is very accessible for this time of year, and wading conditions that are friendly, and a clear river that will require stealth and thought.  Indicator rigs with light weight and two nymphs fished at a distance over the dark water have been plenty successful, as have streamers fished on a slow swinging strip.

We’ll be tying flies again this Saturday, and I’m hoping that I feel better this week than I did last week!  Can’t wait to quit tying nymphs: I’ve got some streamers burning a hole in my head.  Next weekend, we’re opening the doors for a midwinter dinner…because, why not?  Info on both these events below.  Soon we’ll have our entire 2018 Spring/Summer events roster posted online, and a spring catalog headed out the door.

Free Fly Tying This Saturday, 9 am – 2 pm!  See you there..