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Southern tier fly fishing: Warmwaters dropping, BC Flyfishers on the water again

The Tioughnioga and Chenango Rivers are fishable, have nice flows and great water clarity.
The Tioughnioga and Chenango Rivers are fishable, have nice flows and great water clarity.

Summer moves on. It's hard to believe the end of July looms before us. We've had some heat but all in all, it's been a nice start to summer. The warmwater rivers are finally dropping to fishable levels, the Catskill reservoirs and watershed is well stocked with water, and the periodic rainstorms we see have been enough to keep most creeks at a nice level.

Fishing reports remain the type to keep anglers smiling. Ponds and lakes are hot with panfish and bass action. Topwater is a great way to go in low light conditions, but fishing during the day in shaded areas and sight fishing for cruising bass can also work when fishing a streamer or big wiggly nymph. The warmwater rivers are finally letting anglers wet a line and results for smallmouth have been decent. Both the Tioughnioga and the Chenango are flowing at nice flowing levels with decent clarity. The white fly hatch appears to be starting, at least on the lower Tioughnioga and Chenango. It's nothing like the blizzard it can be, but it's a nice sign. Look for these mayflies to be hatching, starting around 6 - 7 pm. And if you are a dry fly enthusiast looking for a break from trout, pack some white wulffs in sizes 10 - 14 and head down to one of the warmwater rivers towards evening. The Catskill Rivers are also fishing well. Primary hatches are sulphurs, isonychia, light cahills, caddis and BWO's, but don't forget the terrestrials, particularly ants.

Events for the rest of July are as follows:

  • Kurt Nelson and BC Flyfishers are looking for a little help with a fly fishing event this Wednesday, July 23, at a real fine bass pond. Anglers can bring their own fly rod and fish with a student or two. Most are good on their own but just need some help once in a while. Others could use help with casting. Please contact Kurt at or 607-372-6330607-372-6330 to help out with this great cause.
  • BC Flyfishers will be hosting another "on-the-water" event, this Thursday, July 24th. Yours truly will be leading the charge, set to begin at 6 pm at the Tioughnioga River DEC Fishing Access. We'll be fly fishing for smallmouth bass and river levels are great! See the BCFF calendar for more information.
  • 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.

A&G Outiftters has launched a new website. Take a look, here. You'll be impressed!

The week ahead will be typical summer weather. Daily highs will edge up to 90 on Wednesday, but on Thursday, a front will pass through and highs will drop to 75 - 80'ish for the rest of the week, with lows in the mid 50's to low 60's. There's a 30% chance of isolated thunderstorms for Wednesday - otherwise the week looks to be dry. This is the time of year to be careful with sun exposure. Daylight is at a maximum now and the sun can be intense on clear days. Wear a hat, sunscreen, and SPF-rated clothing.


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