In general, it was a pretty nice 4th of July week. Once again, however, the area was stricken with a wave of heavy rain late in the week and that caused the dropping warmwater rivers to muddy up and rise again. The Catskill tailwaters fared well but the freestones were another matter. It remains to be seen as to whether this year will be a repeat of last year's water flow yo-yo. Fishing for smallmouth on the rivers last year was frustrating to say the least due to the multitude of high water events.
Fly fishing is changing as we move into the heat of summer. While trout fishing is still good, the infamous hatches of spring are over and timing can be everything. Isonychia, caddis, gray fox, and sulphurs are the main hatches, but this is the time of year to start also thinking about midges and terrestrials. For the creek anglers, green weenies can be deadly as can worm patterns after a good rain. Lakes and ponds will only get better as largemouth bass move off the beds and feed up. Make sure you have your topwater rig set and focus your fishing during low light conditions. Sunfish are done with spawning and can now be caught on everything from nymphs and dry flies to poppers and terrestrials. Once water levels drop and the rivers clear, smallmouth bass fishing should be very good. Provided we avoid another dousing, the Tioughnioga should be in great shape this weekend. The Chenango will follow suit and as always, the Susquehanna will be last to clear and drop. If fishing in murky water, big dark streamers and nymphs will produce best.
As posted last week, July is an off time for events. Al Hazzard TU, like many TU chapters, will not be holding events for July and August. But there are some activities still going on, as follows:
- The BC Flyfishers will host a private pond fishing event on Tuesday, July 8th. Meet at 6:00 pm at the Dollar General in the Town of Maine. In order to go, you must email John Trainor and be put on the list. The event is open to the first 8 people to sign up and IFFF members have first choice.
- A&G Outfitters of Dickson City, PA, will continue to hold Orvis Fly Fishing 101. This event is held at the shop and is free. It is specifically designed for beginners and novice fly fishers. Contact the fly shop at 570-489-1650570-489-1650 for more information.
The week ahead will start off with rain but get nicer as the week goes on. Monday has a 60% chance of scattered thunderstorms - Tuesday drops to a 30% chance of isolated thunderstorms. Both days will have highs in the mid to upper 80's. The rest of the week will have partly cloudy to sunny conditions with highs in the 80's and little chance of rain. Remember to be mindful of thunderstorms when waving that graphite lightning rod on the water. If clouds gather and skies darken, it's best to move off the water. And with summer in full swing, always bring water when fishing. Dehydration can cause fatigue and disorientation, something no angler needs when wading rivers.