What an unbelievable Memorial Day Weekend! Our sincerest thanks and respect to all who gave the ultimate sacrifice so that we can enjoy the freedoms we do.
This warmth and sunshine feels great, but it will affect when you should fish. Target mornings and late afternoon into the evenings to avoid the sunniest part of the day, which has made the fish a bit more wary. These midday fish can still be caught, but you are going to have to work for them. The flows throughout the Deerfield are much lower in general than last week, which makes for much improved wading opportunities. Hendricksons are winding down but can still be found, especially further upriver. Expect to see March Browns and Pale Evening Duns in the coming weeks. Caddis are abundant throughout the system. When the trout are not rising, nymphs continue to work, especially pheasant tails in sizes 12-14, hare’s ears in the same sizes, bigger stoneflies like Pat’s Rubber Legs and Buggy Stones, and caddis larvae and pupae in size 14, both in olive and tan. The usual suspect streamers will work as well. When the water comes up, mop flies can be very effective.
Though the Millers River is a touch on the high side of ideal wading conditions, it is fishing really well right now. Look for caddis in the mornings and afternoons and mayflies at dusk, especially as the river continues to drop. Size 14 on the caddis and light mayflies in 12 to 14, with Light Cahill patterns and lighter colored parachutes likely to be successful.
The Westfield continues to fish well, though some reports are trickling in that the gorge section of the East Branch has been hit pretty hard. Try some different sections above or below the gorge or the other branches for some solitude and less harassed fish. The same nymphs as above will produce as will smaller streamers.
This is a great time of year to target other species, too, particularly in the lower Deerfield. I haven’t heard any reports yet but expect shad will enter the lower D on their yearly spawning migration any day now if they aren’t there already. Smallmouth bass will start to bed up in anticipation of their spawn over the next few weeks on the lower D and also in the lower sections of the Millers, where some true hogs will come up from the Connecticut River.
Guided trips and lessons available, and we will start floating the river again next week! The shop is open for curbside starting Monday! I will be here all next week from noon to 5, Monday through Sunday. If you can’t make it in then, call us at 413-397-3665 and we will try to get you what you need!
Dries: Midges, tan and olive Caddis 14-16, BWO 16-20, Hendrickson’s 12-14, Light Cahill 12-14, March Brown 12-14
Nymphs: Pat’s Rubber Legs, Golden or Black Terminator Stone 8-12,14-18, Pheasant Tail Nymphs 12-18, Frenchies 12-16, Tan/Olive Mops, Natural/Olive Caddis Puppa/Larvae 12-16, Red/Copper Johns 12-16, Sexy Walt 12-16.
Water release schedule for the next day is posted after 5pm. Check again before you head to the river. Minimum Flow 130 CFS (Cubic Feet/Second). Ideal for wading and Dry Fly Action. Normal Release 800-1,000 CFS