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Fishing Report: Week of April 30, 2023 – Get a grip...

Thanks to David Bogart for sharing the cover photo of this beaut he caught in the Gorge this past week! Send us your photos at or tag us on Instagram @sboutfittersnj and we'll feature yours as well.

The notoriously short lived Mayflies are here. Don’t miss it. Make a concrete plan for at least one day - one evening - to catch a hatch! Guides are still available for weekday evenings - generally from 4:00 to 8:00. We can help every angler get a handle on casting dry flies and this is the time of year. When you get to your favorite spot, look up once in a while to see if swallows are swooping for the adult mayflies 30 feet in air. Fish through dusk and begin with a good grip - on the handle of the rod, the flies and the flow, and finish with a delicate presentation.

March Browns (Maccaffertium vicarium) are followed quickly by Grey Foxes and each only live about a day in their final winged adult form. Trout key in on these bugs while they can and carrying each stage, nymph to spinner, can help increase efficiency while fishing in the course of a day when hatches are imminent. To cover the spread, Matt Grobert’s emerger pattern is effective: March Brown Emerger

Sulphurs (Ephemerella invaria) may be seen soon. Named for the mineral color they beautifully represent, and sometimes spelled “sulfur,” these isolated hatches signify the height of Springtime. They are not only easy to spot but they ride for a long time while their distinctive gray, upright wings act like sails in the breeze. Presentations of this fly must be drag-free given how long the trout have to inspect each passer-by. Equally frustrating is wondering why they ignore our perfect presentations when they happen, which likely won’t be every cast. We can go easy on ourselves! Like Mr. Grobert’s pattern, an emerger during the Sulphur hatch, can be key. John Collins sulphur emerger arrives in the shop this week:, and they sell out quickly, so come pick some up early!

You can also try your hand at another Tightline production of my favorite emerger with a breadline thorax; biots are amazing and fun material to work with: Sulphur Breadline Emerger 4K

The Blue Wing Olives are third in this report, but should probably be first in the water. If trout don’t take #20 or #18s BWO, try Griffith’s gnat or the Bi-color/Renegade. RS2s come in a variety of colors and Al’s rat can be a nice midge to use in film.

Weather is friend and foe. The rain seems to get the bugs going - the BWO and March Brown hatch is helped with a change in water temperature - but of course the rivers around here quickly become unreadable and unsafe. Timing is everything. That being said, the roll cast is our friend and much can be accomplished from the bank. A good roll cast is all in the grip - thumb on top and power snap...

Hopefully May will see fewer low fronts from the North and more consistent temperatures for days on end. We do not want to see the rain go away entirely, but it would be nice to see less of it on weekends. -- Roy B.


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