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October Opportunities

As we move into October, anglers find themselves with many choices here in our area. Baitfish should begin their exit from bays and estuaries triggering game fish such as Striped Bass, Blues and Albacore to follow them. Hopefully, am inshore run will set up. Up in New York State, the Great Lakes tributaries such as the Salmon River will see continued runs of King and Coho Salmon in the first part of the month followed by increasing numbers of Steelhead and Brown Trout as we move towards Halloween. In this strange and difficult year it has been most encouraging to see new anglers on the water. Fly fishing is really a perfect "Social Distancing" activity. We are really pleased to announce our annual Fly Fishing School on Sunday October 11th and that our popular Guide Service is taking reservations for some memorable fall outings. We have all kinds of tackle for a variety of budgets, and we welcome new anglers- just stop in or drop us a line!

In our immediate area of western New Jersey major trout streams such as the Musky, Pequest, Flatbrook, Paulinskill, Pohatcong and the North and South Branches of the Raritan will all be included in the NJ Division of Fish and Wildlife's Fall Trout Stocking Program. The popularity of the program is due to the size of the fish. Approximately 27,000 two year old Rainbow Trout measuring 14-16" in length will be released the weeks of October 6th and the following week of October 13th. 1000 additional Broodstock Rainbows averaging 18"-22" in length will also be stocked at this time. The rivers will be stocked and the public informed afterwards giving many more folks a chance at catching some substantial fish. More news can be found on the Division's website:

It is certainly an enjoyable second season for trout anglers here in New Jersey. Due to popular demand, Shannon's is happy to announce that we will be running our annual Fly Fishing School on Sunday October 11th at Califon Island Park from 9am until 3pm. The morning consists of a discussion of tackle, hatches and casting practice. We will break for lunch and then students will fish with our guides for the afternoon. The cost of the session is $200.00 per person and is limited to ten anglers. Tackle and waders will be provided. This small number of students helps the five guide/ instructors work closely for maximum results. We will reschedule for the following Sunday if there is a rain out. Call the shop to reserve your place. A $100.00 deposit is required.

The Earnest Schwiebert Chapter of Trout Unlimited is offering a limited number of fully framed trout prints of several popular species including Brook, Brown and Rainbow Trout from the late Mr. Schwiebert himself. The cost per print is $150.00 and the proceeds benefit the chapter's cold water conservation efforts. These prints are really beautiful and make a wonderful holiday gift.

Insect activity on our waters will feature remnants of late summer mayflies such as Isonychia and Light Cahills through the first week of the month. On cloudy days, look for strong hatches of Baetis known commonly as Blue Wing Olives. Small #18-22 Pheasant Tail nymphs and RS2 Emergers are must have patterns this month. The most prolific hatches will be caddis, the Little Dotwing Sedge is the most common. The trout will focus not only on the emerging insects in the late morning but also the egg laying adults in the late afternoon to early evening.

Local Hatches 10/02/2020:

Morning 9-11 am:

Little Dot-winged Sedge Neophylax spp. Tan Elk Hair Caddis #16-18, LaFontaine's Tan Sparkle Pupa #16-18, Hare's Ear Soft Hackle #16-18, Tan Bird's Nest #16-18.

Trio Tricorythodes Trico #20-24

Midday through Late Afternoon 12 noon - 5pm: After September 15th.

Caddis may continue to hatch. see above

Blue Wing Olive Baetis levitans, interclaris, quebecensis, vagans. RS2, BWO, Pheasant Tail Nymph #18-20

Don't forget Ants in Cinnamon or Black and Hopper patterns.

Evening 6-8pm:

Light Cahill Maccaffertium modestum Light Cahill #14-16

Isonychia bicolor Iso, Adams Parachute #14.

Pycnopsyche spp Great Autumn Sedge Orange Stimulator #10-12

October Caddis Pycnopsyche spp. Orange Stimulator #10-12

Here are a couple of Tim's fly tying videos on October Caddis patterns:


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