It was a very strange week in terms of weather. Our area was hit with very high summer-like temps, heavy thunderstorms that created flash flood conditions, and most recently, cold and overcast. Trees are starting to hint at fall with dabs of color. And most flowing waters are high to very high due to continued wet conditions.
One sure sign of fall is the restart of local TU chapter monthly meetings. The Al Hazzard chapter of TU is doing just that with their first chapter meeting after the summer break scheduled for Tuesday, September 17 at 7 pm in the Vestal Library public meeting room. The monthly speaker series opens with professional fly fishing guide Tim Barret who will speak about how to select a guide for your next fly fishing adventure. Remaining meeting dates are as follows:
- Tuesday, October 15
- Tuesday, November 19
- Tuesday, December 3
- Holiday Party - TBA
Fishing reports are mixed, mainly due to the recent weather. The warmwater rivers are once again blown out as a result of heavy thunderstorms, mid-week. Wednesday's extreme storms dumped 3" to 4" of rain on the Southern Tier, causing the Chenango river, for example, to rocket from 1,000 CFS to 10,000 CFS. As of yesterday, even the upper Tioughnioga was running high and muddy. About the only fishable flowing water right now are the Catskill rivers, but even they are on the full side. Hatches are tailing down - but expect the ubiquitous BWO, some Iso's, and increasingly now, caddis, to be around. Streamers are also a good choice in the early and late hours and certainly always after elevated flows. Remember that it won't be long before spawning browns turn real aggressive. Largemouth bass and panfish should continue to provide good action on the warmer days. With the recent cooler weather it may be best to fish these species towards evening when the water is warmest. Reports from the Salmon River indicate the early to mid-week heat put a temporary hurting on the fishing. More recently, fishing has improved for salmon. Some big browns are being caught as are some steelhead. Flies and tactics seem to run the gamut, from swinging streamers like bunny leeches and marabou streamers to dead drifting large nymphs and egg patterns.
The week ahead will start off cool and end on a higher note. High temps will range from 60 in the beginning of the week to the low 70's for the remainder of the week. There is a little rain in the forecast but for the most part, it appears we will see mainly sunny to partly sunny days which should afford the area some drying out. Remember to check over gear for cold water fishing. It won't be long until water temps start to drop. Pesky small wader leaks, worn boot soles, unreliable fishing gear should be attended to now.