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Southern tier fly fishing: July fishing report, events

The Tioughnioga is settling down but still has some stain to it. The warmwater rivers should continue to drop and clear provided heavy rain stays away.
The Tioughnioga is settling down but still has some stain to it. The warmwater rivers should continue to drop and clear provided heavy rain stays away. Bob Bruns

The Southern Tier is in full summer mode now. Daytime temperatures are reaching the mid to high 80's and the humidity is here. The warmwater rivers are finally starting to drop and clear after a lot of ups and downs due to heavy rain storms. And the Catskill rivers remain in good shape thanks to the good amount of rain we have had.

The West and East Branches of the Delaware River have been safe-havens for anglers during our many high water events. Even the 1 - 1.5" of rain we received on Sunday did not seem to blow the West out too much. It dropped quickly overnight and should be fishable by Tuesday. The East Branch is another story altogether, as is the Beaverkill. If you are planning to fish these waters, check the USGS Water Gauge before heading out as both are still very high. Ironically, the warmwater rivers came out of the storm with only slightly elevated flows. As of Sunday, the Tioughnioga was flowing decently. Water clarity was 2 to 3 feet - just a little stain - and the temperature was 70 degrees.

Fishing reports remain good in general. Ponds and lakes continue to produce, although panfish and bass are now out of spawn mode. Poppers and streamers will work well for bass and just about anything goes for the ever-willing sunfish. Hatches for trout include sulphurs, caddis, isonychia, light cahills, and particularly on cloudy or rainy days, blue winged olives. If fishing creeks, terrestrials are always a good choice as well. Smallmouth bass can be caught now, though the rivers still could use some more clearing and dropping in terms of flows. Dark streamers will work well on an intermediate or sink tip line. Nymphs can also produce in the riffles. And when the water is stained, poppers can be fished, but choose something that will make some noise.

Upcoming events include the following:

  • 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. They also have a Savage River Trip scheduled TBA.
  • The Beaverkill Anglers Fly Shop in Roscoe, NY, will also be holding Orvis Fly Fishing 101 on Saturdays and Sundays this summer. The Beaverkill Angler is also offering a "Summer School" fly tying course starting on Saturday, July 19th. The course will consist of 3 classes and over 9 hours of instruction. If you take this summer course you will learn the basic skills you need and can spend the whole winter tying flies for the next season! Contact the fly shop at 607-498-5194607-498-5194 to register for either of these fly fishing classes in the beautiful Catskills.
  • The Twin Tiers, Five Rivers chapter of IFFF is hosting a Chemung River float trip on Saturday, July 19. Sign up for this event is required and participants should bring a canoe, kayak, or boat, although canoe rental is available. Lunch will be provided for this great float on a beautiful river. Contact Kirk Klingensmith at 607-346-7189607-346-7189 or Gene Nowlan at 607-936-3988607-936-3988 for more information.
  • The BC Flyfishers chapter of IFFF is hosting a smallmouth bass fly fishing meet-up. The event is scheduled for Thursday evening, July 24th. More information will be provided in the BC Flyfishers calender of events later this week.

Weather for the week ahead is another mixed bag. A cold front will push through tomorrow but with it will come an 80% chance of rain. Daytime highs will drop for most of the rest of the week to the mid to upper 70's and the chance of rain will be nil. Nights will be a lot cooler with highs in the low 50's. Always check the USGS water gauge before heading out after a rain and remember to watch for thunderstorms, lightning, and high winds.

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