Well - the weather is with us. We had a hot spell, but as of today the weather is ideal for Fall fishing in the great Garden State. The week ahead has cool days with the highest temperature at 75 degrees midweek. More exciting is the overnight low - 49 over Tuesday night to Wednesday! Our local streams were below the warning mark of 65 degrees this morning, but please still check temps onsite with a thermometer or with the handy monitormywatershed.org site on your computer or phone. We (South Branch Outfitters) also post these daily for reference on Facebook or Instagram. These low temps make it once again safe to fight trout as they return to favorite haunts after seeking shelter from the heat by finding cold groundwater springs or other thermal refuges. Trout are sensitive creatures, what can I say?
So that is the good news! Also good news is the aquatic insect activity is evident. October Caddis are making appearances and Isonychia are with us, too. (Stop by the shop and pick up some John Collins electric October caddis wet flies!) From river bed to meniscus trout are becoming active and will soon be joined by some cousins from the hatchery! The holdovers will enjoy chasing your streamers around and may take a break to sip some BWO and other bank loving bugs. Keep your eyes and ears open at dusk. There have been some heavy hatches just before dark. The sunnies, chubs, bass, and little wilds and native fish love an evening snack.
The bad news is, of course, the flows! While not disastrous, we could use some rain. Look for the deeper runs and pools and watch for reds while crossing what have become very shallow riffles and gravel beds. Steer clear of any bare spots on the river bottom and leave any fish that seems to be protected a brood of eggs alone. Brown and Brook trout spawn between September and December.
We all know the days get short quick. While I look forward to cold water and cold temperatures, the fall is the last chance for consistent dry fly action. Get your elk hair and RS2 indicator rigs out - it's time to dodge some leaves.
See you out there!
- Roy B.
Local hatches (from the archive):
Morning 9-11 am:
Spotted Sedge Hydropsyche spp. Tan Elk Hair Caddis #14-18, LaFontaine's Tan Sparkle Pupa #14-18, Hare's Ear Soft Hackle #14-16, Tan Bird's Nest #14-18.
Green Sedge Rhyacophila lobifera Olive Elk Hair Caddis #14-18, LaFontaine's Olive Sparkle Pupa #14-16, Partridge & Soft Hackle #14-16, Olive Bird's Nest #14-18, Henryville Special #14-16
Trio Tricorythodes Trico #20-24
Midday through Late Afternoon 12 noon - 5pm:
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.
Light Cahill Maccaffertium modestum Light Cahill #14-16
Isonychia bicolor Iso, Adams Parachute #12-14.