Finally we get some nice weather on the weekend! This warming trend and the bright sun is what we need to get the insects active and the trout should respond to the heat and influx of food. As far as fishing not much has changed as far as techniques, the water is clear and getting a bit on the low side for winter levels but is still in good shape. Look for fish to hold in deeper areas especially around wood, but some of the active fish will move into smaller faster areas adjacent to these pools to feed. Stoneflies are big on the menu right now, but don't discount craneflies and worms, and we should begin seeing the first of the Blue Quills soon so small pheasant tails will be a good option especially with the clear water. Streamer fishing will be tough on sunny days but there may be some decent action early and late on cloudy days, swinging smaller streamers will pick up some fish in the mornings especially. Keep and eye out for the first rising fish of the season, on warm sunny afternoons we will see midges, a few black stones and as mentioned the first blue quills will show up any day. Stick to small drab colored drys for the early season bugs, Griffiths Gnats, small Adams and winter black stone dries should have you covered.
Hopefully things will be warming up shortly, but for now it looks like we will be fishing in the cold a bit longer. The Mad has still been fishing well most days, with nymph fishing still the best bet. More of the same with Craneflies, small stonefly nymphs and worm patterns taking fish, as the water clears #16-18 red and black midges will take fish when they get picky. Streamer fishing has been ok, small and medium sized patterns fished tight to ambush points have been taking some nice fish especially on cloudy days. If nymph fishing is slow swinging small sculpins or wooly buggers has also been picking up fish. The stretches around Urbana have been best lately, hopefully we get some warm weather soon to get the first of the hatches going.
Things are finally looking up for the anglers in central ohio! The forecast is showing warmer weather this weekend and next week, this means good fishing on the mad. The water should stay clear this weekend with the slow warm up. Nymph fishing will be the best bet with cranfly larva and small black stones being the best choices for nymphs, smaller midges will also be good trailers. Look for slower areas especially around woody cover. Streamer fishing will be difficult with the low water but with rain in the forecast next week expect excellent streamer conditions next weekend.
Good news for anyone looking to wet a line this weekend, the mad river does not freeze so despite the extreme the past weeks there will be plenty of open water this weekend. Nymph fishing will be the most productive method with the cold water, small black stoneflies from a #12-16 and #16-18 midges and red copper johns will be the best bets. Anglers will also still have some success with craneflies and san jaun worms. Streamer fishing should be slow as the water has dropped to lower levels and the extreme cold. However swinging buggers will take fish, and the large fish will somtimes break the rules and take fast moving flies in the cold.
After the rain the other day the mad has dropped back into prime water conditions. Anglers have already been out catching some nice fish, with streamers producing well and that should continue through the weekend. With the cold conditions patterns that can be fish a bit slower and deeper can help, try dungeons and a cold water favorite the Bottom's up. The big fish will still cruise around and feed in the cold contitions but they often want to be pegged into the cover so fish close to undercuts and logs. Nymph fishing should be great this weekend, high water events wash out lots of big food items for the trout. We can't say it enough, get out there with the big nymphs, craneflies and double stones trailed with San Juans, copper johns or small stones can lead to some of the best numbers of the season. Look for areas of slow water where fish don't have to use as much energy and look for subtle strikes! The mad doesn't freeze so it may be the best bet around to cure cabin fever!
Quick update on the Mad. With large amounts of rain last night the river has gone way up. But it is already beginning to drop and the upper river should fish but be off color by tuesday, the middle and lower river mid and late week. These high flows will just mean more exceptional streamer fishing, and we have heard reports of several really large fish taken this past week. Nymph fishing in high winter flows produces some of our best numbers of the year as well. Fish will key on larger items washed out with the flow, craneflies and big stones will be the most effective patterns.
The cold has kept us from the river for a few days but the weather is warming so we will be out in force this weekend. Fishing was excellent before the cold snap, with streamers producing big numbers of fish and some nice ones, and nymph fishing producing some of the best numbers that we see all season. Keep an eye on the flows, if the rain coming does not blow the river out the fishing will be exceptional saturday and sunday. If we get enough to raise the water levels the fishing will be excellent when the flows drop, we will try and keep you updated if things change. Right now try moderate to large streamers and cover ground, lightly weighted or unweighted streamers on sink tips have been best. Remember to animate the fly as much as possible and be ready, the strikes have been fast. As far as the nymphing is concerned things are pretty much the same, try a large stone or cranefly with a small stonefly, caddis larva or #16 red or black midge behind it. The key has been good drifts and keeping the flies on the bottom where the fish are.
These are the conditions we wait for in the winter on the mad! High stained water and aggresive fish plus mild weather will make for some great fishing this weekend. Anglers have been catching big numbers of fish nymphing with larger nymph patterns such as double stones and san jauns, trailed with small black stones and caddis. When streamer fishing think big, larger patterns such as the Peanut Envy, sex dungeons and bottoms up work best. Keep changing colors until you find what the fish want.
Quick update on the mad. After almost 3 inches of rain and rising to some of the highest levels we have seen in a long time the mad is dropping fast and should be in good shape later this week and great shape this weekend. The upper river may even begin to fish tomorrow, and by thursday the whole river should be in great shape for streamer anglers. For those who don't want to throw streamers, large nymphs are very effective in the high stained water. This next weekend should be exceptional!
Here comes the water we have been looking for on the Mad! Lots of water in the forecast and the snowmelt already has blown the river out. This means the streamer should be excellent next week when the water comes down. Unfortunately there will be no fishing this weekend as the water should just keep going up. Remember when streamer fishing keep changing colors and covering ground, we normally use full sinking lines such as the streamer express and short heavy leaders ending in 12-15lb maxima tippet. Slap the flies as close to the bank as possible and rip them out, be prepared to loose a few in the roots and branches. Once the water begins to clear next week nymph fishing will be very productive. Larger nymph patterns often take more fish in stained water, #8-12 double stones, hares ear's, and cranefly larva are top choices, trail these with caddis larva or small black stones. Focus on areas near woody cover are where the bottom drops and the fish can get out of the main current. Big fish will be caught this week!
Classic winter conditions on the mad right now, moderate flows, clear water, and snowy banks. This normally makes for some very good nymph fishing. With the clear flow larger patterns may not take many fish, #14-16 black stones, green or white caddis larva and pheasant tails are always good producers in these conditions. Trailing a #16-20 zebra midge or red midge is very effective in these conditions as well. Focus on areas of moderate or slow current especially near woody cover or areas where sand bottom meets rocks. We are still hooking fish on streamers but mostly smaller fish swinging buggers, we need a major blowout before the streamer bite takes off.
The mad is clear and fairly low but the water levels have been holding well. With some snow on the ground this is real winter fishing. Streamer fishing has been difficult most days with the low water, if the water raises or it is a stormy day the bite will be good. On most days nymph fishing has been the key to good catches. Small winter stones will be important throughout the winter, #14-16 black sloans, copper johns, or microstones are good patterns to have. With the low clear water small pheasant tails and copper johns or larger midges work well as trailers below a stone. Large double stones and craneflies will take larger fish as well and a key if the water comes up.
A good bump from the rain yesterday has the mad up and muddy today. This means a real start to streamer fishing this winter. A few anglers have already taken some fish throwing big flies and the next few days should offer good conditions for anglers looking to score a big brown. Remember to fish fast and cover ground, try a mix of colors as the best color varies day to day, yellow, white, olive and black are staples, but any color may work on a given day. As the water drops the nymph fishing will get good, by wednesday the water should clear enough for nymphing. While the water is still stained fishing large nymphs such as Double stones and craneflies can produce good numbers as well as larger fish. Once the water clears we are starting into the winter pattern where small black stones and red midges produce well once the water is clear. There may still be a few fish rising around on the last few olives and on midges this week, so if your looking for dry fly fishing this may be the last chance for a while.
Not much has changed from the report last week except that the water is stable meaning the streamer bite will be difficult, try low light periods for the best shot at big fish. Nymph fishing remains good with more nice sized fish getting caught as more begin feeding as they finish spawning. Caddis larva have been very effective, along with larger nymphs and copper johns. Swinging flies has been taking good numbers of fish, soft hackles are always effective on the mad, try giving the fly a few small twitches though the swing. For those of you looking for some late season dry fly fishing the BWO's in the late afternoon are bringing fish up in some areas, try a #20 sparkle dun or a parachute, a few fish are taking caddis on sunny afternoons as well. Things probably will stay the same here until we get a major blowout, then hopefully streamer season will officially start.
Finally some rain! The mad made a big jump last night after the rain, this should push most of the leaves out of the system and get a few of the bigger fish moving. Level are dropping fast, tomorrow the flows will be fishable but the color will most likely be stained and possibly muddy, by sunday conditions should be good. Streamer fishing tomorrow may produce some big fish as the spawning activity has slowed down and a few are starting to feed. Try some standby patterns such as Dungeons, Fatheads, and Meal Tickets and cover lots of ground. Nymph fishing has been and will continue to be the most productive method, with smaller attractor nymphs and caddis larva producing best, don't for get some larger nymphs especially cranefly larva after these rains. There has been some good dry fly activity with #14 Tan caddis mid day and #20 BWO's in the evenings, if the fish are rising and not taking you dry try swining a soft hackle.
Fall fishing will continue on the mad despite the sudden cold snap. Fishing report is pretty much the same as before, water is clear and stable, leaves are still pretty bad, fishing is pretty good. Stick to caddis below and on top, with olives becoming more important especially on cloudy days. These cold temps will help move things along to streamer season so be prepared for the big fish to go on the feed here soon.
It looks like fall on the Mad, low clear water, lots of leaves, but there are plenty of fish to catch. There are good numbers of #14-16 caddis hatchin in the late morning and afternoons, these are important as dries but soft hackles often catch more fish. Nymph fishing with caddis and large nymphs has been working as well. Streamer fishing will take a back seat until the fish are done spawning, the larger fish have not been interested in eating as they have other things on the mind.
Some rain has finally hit the mad and it got a good flush of water, this will help with the leaves that had collected but they will remain a problem for some time. Fishing has been a little tougher on the mad lately with low water but this rain should help the bite. Nymph fishing will continue to produce the best, not much has changed since the last report, except the fishing will improve with the higher water. There is a chance of hooking some larger fish on streamers the next few days.
The fall season is upon us on the Mad. This means that the leaves will be a problem for anglers out for the next month. The fishing has been good but has slowed a bit with the super clear water. Nymph fishing will be the big thing here for the next few weeks, smaller caddis and Pheasant tails will be more important, but large nymphs are still effective. There have been some fish rising, especially on cloudy days in the upper and middle river. The White millers have all but disapeared but the Fall BWO's have started and the fish love these #18-22 olives, we will also begin to see some #14-16 caddis hatching over the next few weeks. Streamer fishing in the low water will be slow, but some anglers have continued to have some success in low light or even after dark.
Sorry for the lack of reports lately, we will be a bit more on top of things as the fishing continues to improve this fall. Right now the water is its normal low and clear and cool that we usually see in late summer. There have been some decent white miller caddis and ephron hatches in the evenings, and on cloudy or rainy days you can expect to see a few BWO's. Fishing the dries has been good when the fish are rising, but if they are not looking up try a soft hackle. Nymph fishing has been very good, fishing large nymphs such as Double Stones, Craneflies or a #10-12 PT or hare's ear, followed by a caddis pupae or large midge has been the go to rig. Rainy days have been better fishing, this weekend should be excellent and may bring enough rain to jump the water levels and give us some good streamer fishing.
Got to love what this cool summer has done on the mad. The water is in the low 60's or cooler depending on where you are in the river. This means the trout are in tip top shape and feeding heavily. Mornings and evenings have been best but there are fish to be caught all day. There are some fish rising to midges in the mornings, as well as great nymphing, terrestrials are still working mid day if it's sunny, then caddis and ephrons in the evenings. There are also some small olives around especially on cloudy days. Fish have been scattered so keep a watchful eye as you wade, there have been lots of very nice fish taken lately by anglers fishing shallow areas. Keep an eye on the weather, if we get some rain the streamer bite should be great.
More good news from the mad river, it continues to sustain excellent flows for this time of year. This coupled with the cooler weather has produced great conditions. Right now much as before terrestrial fishing and nymphing are top producers. But we finally are starting to get the late summer hatches. The White Miller caddis and Ephron mayflies are starting up and should continue for the next month. Look for these to hatch in the late evening and just after dark, a #12-14 white wullf or Parachute Ephron are great for up top, as well as a #14 caddis. One of the best tricks to these fish when they are rising to the caddis is to swing a green soft hackle, often they are eating the pupae and not the adults! The fishing is good so go and enjoy the nice weather.
The mad is in great shape for this time of year! After all the rain the river has good flow and great clarity right now. Fishing has been good, with terrestrial fishing and nymphing being the top options. Ants and various beetles have been top picks for dries, fish under limbs and on deeper banks near cover. Nymph fishing in faster runs has been a consistant producer as well, drop a caddis pupae or smaller pheasant tail below a large hare's ear, double Tunghead Stone, or cranefly. The streamer bite has been ok in low light condidtions.
Finally the rain has slowed and the mad should be stable this weekend. The fishing when the water has been down the past couple weeks has been good, especially the streamer fishing. This weekend will be no different with the higher than normal flows anglers looking to score a big fishing should be throwning large streamers looking for aggresive fish. With the warm water streamers such as Galloup's Fat head work great, along with staples such as Meal Tickets and Sex Dungeons. With the dropping water the terrestrial fishing should be excellent in the middle and upper stretches of the mad this weekend, try Japanese beetles and large foam attrators, Parechute ants are great if the fish are refusing the beetle's. Nymph fishing will also be effective, cranefly larva are a staple after periods of rain on the mad, also try attractors like copper johns and caddis always work in the summer.
Despite the round of storms that we have had this week the mad is still flowing steady and very clear. With the unstable weather the fish activity should be very good this week, especially during or just before rain. Try streamers in the low light or cloudy conditions, especially if the water level begins to rise. Nymph fishin and terrestrials have been the go to techniques right now. When nymphing many of the standard patterns, Hare's ear's, PT's, and caddis have been working well, but have some larger patterns such and double stones and craneflies just in case. One of our favorite techniques right now is blind fishing with beetles, try the Japanese Beetles, fireflies, ants, or inchworms and fish to overhangs. This is a great way to cover ground and catch fish with explosive takes, it is also a great way to take larger fish, a few anglers already have taken fish over 20 inches on beetles this summer. Keep an eye on the water levels, but for now the mad is the best thing going with the high water everywhwere else, get out there and fish!
With some much needed rain the Mad made a nice jump in flow and the river is now back in great shape. The Brown Drakes have been hot on the mad for the past week, and there should still be good numbers in the middle and upper river until the end of the week. This hatch can last well after dark so keep an eye out in the evening for these big bugs. The fish have lots of other insects on the menu through the day as well, there are still plenty of caddis around, as well as a few Light Cahills, and the first of the good terrestrial fishing has begun. In the afternoons look for the attenuata mayflies (#16-18 light Olive Mayfly), the fish seem to love these little mayflies and they lead to some great catches. Nymph fishing has remained excellent with caddis larva, pheasant tails, cranyfly larva and DT Stones as top producers. Soft hackles remain effective, especially in the faster areas, and streamer fishing in the morning and evenings should be great this week, especially with rain in the forecast.
The Mad continues to produce good fish and excellent fishing. The only major change in large nymphs, imitating brown drakes and tiny sculpins have started to produce really well. Try #12 Trophy nymphs, double tungsten stones, are large hare's ears. Sulpurs and caddis are still strong, but don't ignore the huge number of craneflys out there, this is a great time to fish a Daddy Long Legs cranefly imitation on the surface. Soft hackles also continue to produce really well, especially in areas of broken water.
Not too much has changed on the mad, there has been some rain and the river came up for a day and dropped right back down, remember the mad clears faster than any other stream in the state so always check the guage if it rains, it may be fishing. Heavy insect activity has continued with good numbers of caddis and some suphurs taking the attention of the fish. Nymph fishing and soft hackle fishing has continued to be productive when the fish are not rising, but prospecting with a dry often takes fish weather or not you see them rising. Streamer fishing has been good on cloudy days and in low light.
Good conditions continue on the mad right now. The water is clear with good flow and the bugs are out. There is a big mix of insects out right now, Caddis, Midges, Craneflies and some sulphers, henny spinner, and olives in the mix. Many of the fish have been taking caddis and swinging a soft hackle has been a great method for these fish. If your planning on nymph fishing PT's, Caddis, and hare's ears are all working well, though good drifts have been more important than the fly. Many anglers have been doing well and with the mix of insects most techniques have been taking fish, so pick your favorite and get out there.
This is going to be a really excellent week of fishing on the mad! Water levels are elevated but still fishable, the water is fairly clear, and the fish are feeding like crazy. With these conditions you can pick your technique; streamers, dries, nymphs, soft hackles, everything can produce in these conditions. The main event this week will be the fish looking up to all the caddis and hendricksons hatching with the warm sunny afternoons. The top choice here will be a #14 Hendrickson, but the fish are also taking tan caddis. Don't be afraid to prospect with a dry before and after the hatch as the fish are looking for bugs. Fishing nymphs will produce, especially in the mornings, PT's from a 12-16, Caddis, Princes, even craneflies and a few stones are producing well, the key is good drifts near the seams and cutbanks. If the fish are rising to the caddis and you can get them to take, try a green soft hackle. Streamer fishing will be good this week, especially early in the day. The warming water has the fishes metabolism high so look for them to aggresively take streamers high in the water colum, Fat-Heads, Zoo Cougars, and Swimmin Jimmy's fit the bill here.
Right now the mad is a bit on the high side but the streamer fishing conditions should be excellent this weekend. Look for fish to react well to aggresive presentations and bigger flies, Galloup style flies and techniques will be a great way to land a large fish. By tomorrow the upper river should be low enough to nymph fish as well, Hendrickson nymphs, Cranefly larva and attractor nymphs will all take fish. Remember to use enough weight to get down in the fast water. There should be sporatic Hendrickson and Caddis out, there may be fish rising in slower pools.
More rain and cold today but if there is a bright side it's that the streamer bite should continue well into next week. The river got another bump of water today but should be in great condition by sunday. The upper river should have good water for nymph fishing and possibly some fish looking up, hendricksons are key top and bottom. As for streamers, the large fish should be active so cover ground and fish gaudy patterns to triggers reactions, Fatheads and Meal Tickets have been great lately.
Looks like great conditions this week for streamers, stripping big articulated nasties should turn some large carniverous browns with the high water. Fish fast and cover ground looking for active fish. The upper river should also have excellent conditions starting tomorrow for nymph fishing and perhaps some hendricksons as well. There is rain in the forecast this week that should jump things back up but the fish will be on the feed until then.
Things are just about to open wide on the mad! There are finally a few Hendricksons hatching during the late afternoon, and with the warm days they should beging hatching consistantly. Right now Hendrickson nymphs and pheasant tails are critical, fish are really looking for these guys in the drift. Blind fishing a Hendrickson or a Parachute adams has brought a few fish to hand in the afternoons weather or not there are fish rising, drop a nymph below and you have a deadly combo. The warmer water temps have made swinging soft hackles a good option as well, try areas of brocken water for the best success. Unfortunately with the low clear water streamers will have to wait for the rain, but just after a good rain streamers will be excellent.
Great conditions on the Mad right now. With winter finally (hopefully) loosing its grip we should be heading into the best fishing of the year. The cold temps have delayed the major hatches but there are some olives and Blue Quills out, as well as a few stones. The fish have been looking up on some days but the nymph fishing has been more effective. Stoneflies and pheasant tails, as well as hendrickson nymphs have been the top picks for nymphs, but in the days after the rains don't forget the crayfly larva! Keep a close eye on the weather, if we get a good warming trend the Hendricksons should get going and the fish will go nuts. Streamer fishing has been excellent in the short windows after the rain, however once the water has cleared the streamer fishing has been more difficult.
It looks like it will be another good set of weekend conditions on the mad. As it warms in the spring the fishing on the mad tends to get more and more forgiving and this weekend should kick off the beginnings of spring fishing. Nymph fishing should be the top method this weekend and mayfly and stonefly nymphs are on the menu, it is even time to start thinking seriously about hendrickson nymphs. Fish are moving there way out of the deeper wintering areas and into good feeding zones, especially on warm days, so don't neglect the faster water! With these good sunny days the insect activity should start cranking as well. There should be some stones and Blue Quills out this weekend, try Winter Black stone dries or a #16 Para Adams if you are looking for the first dry fish of the year. There is some rain expected at the end of the weekend and this should make for some great streamer fishing for a few days, but then it will be right back to the spring hatches.
Great conditions for the weekend on the Mad! With the rains this week the water is a bit elevated and has some color making the fish a bit easier to fool. Streamer fishing should be very good the next few days. Anglers have had some success swinging wooly buggers and smaller streamers, especially for numbers. The largest fish should be looking for a big meal, try larger Kelly Galloup style patterns and fish them fast looking for the big feeding fish. There are lots of midges, as well as a few Blue Quills and Stoneflies already hatching, this means that the spring dry fly fishing is just around the corner! Right now the fish are concentrating on the nymphs that are getting ready to hatch, nymph fishing with #12-16 stonefly nymphs and pheasant tails is getting plenty of action. However with the off color water this week and weekend Cranefly larva have been excellent as well. This should continue to be good as the warmer weather in the forecast arrives.
Finally a bit of warm weather after more cold winter. River levels and clarity are very good right now on the mad and the fishing should be good this week. Anglers have had success nymphing and there have been lots of reports of some nice fish taken swinging buggers and moderate sized streamers. The winter stones will be very important the next few weeks, on warm days there should be some adults hatching soon, but the nymphs are the important stage. Large midge patterns in the #14-18 range are also important in the clear water conditions, but don't forget cranefly larva, these big bugs produce big fish.
It looks like the Mad is holding in prime shape for the weekend! There have been a few anglers getting out to streamer fish with the higher flows already. With the warmer weather early this weekend that will be a great option. Nymph fishing should be very good, stoneflies should be at the top of the list for patterns, but don't forget to drop a PT or a midge in the #16-20 off the back. Looks like it will be really cold next week so get out while you can!
Quick update, the mad got a big shot of water today and is blown out at the moment. This next week should have great streamer conditions!
Water conditions are still stable and not too much has changed, but with the weather forecast this week things should change. Warm weather and warm rain should mean great fishing this week and weekend. There should be a great window for anglers looking to streamer fish after the rains come through. However anglers looking to catch good numbers of fish should do very well this week. Larger stoneflies and craneflies are top bets after rain on the mad, but trail a #16-18 midge of PT for the picky fish. Don't miss out on this break in the winter weather!
Happy New Year! Mid winter water levels are moderate with very clear water, and very cold water. The mad river does not freeze but the snow melt and cold nights have cause the water temps to drop into the 30's. While the trout continue to feed they do slow down in the extreme cold and you should adjust to the conditions. Streamer fishing will be very difficult until we get a bump in flow and some warmer water, though the biggest fish will still normally be caught by the guys throwing big flies. Dry fly fishing may be a possibility on warm days, there are midges and small winter stones hatching, however there have been very few fish willing to rise. Nymph fishing will remain the top bet when the water is cold and clear, fish slowly and deliberately, these fish will not move far. Stonefly nymphs are a great bet this time of year, as are red and black midges and pheasant tails. Look for the fishing to improve as soon as the water warms.
Winter flows have been holding well on the mad and with the rain a few days ago we got another nice bump. Today the water is stained but fishable, perfect for streamers if you want to brave the cold. The rest of the week the water should be great for anyone looking to get out and nymph up some nice browns. Fishing patterns should hold steady through the winter with craneflies, midges, and stoneflys being the top food items. Try larger patterns if the water is up or off color and give the bigger fish a good reason to eat. When the water clears look for little black stones #14 or so with a #18-20 red or black midge to be the top combination. If you are looking for a big bite try large streamers after rain events.
The water is looking great after a needed bump in flows this week. A mix of techniques is catching fish and many anglers are choosing to forgo the indicators and swing wooly buggers or strip big streamers. This has been effective, especially swinging, but the bite has been hit and miss on the big streamers. Nymph fishing has been consistent with the classic winter food items,craneflies, stones, and red midges all catching good numbers of fish. This is a good time of year to take a few more drifts through a cut and add one more split shot as the trout will often be a bit more lazy to move for a small meal.
With the lack of rain the conditions on the mad have chaged very little since the last report. Nymph fishing remains the most effective technique but a few anglers are connecting with streamers, especially swinging wooly buggers. Look for fish to begin concentrating in deeper areas and feeding more in the afternoons when the sun is on the water.
The water has dropped and is running clear and stable at great flows for fall fishing. Most of the leaves have washed out which means we can once again make a drift without snagging leaves. Nymph fishing is the top choice for techniques with caddis pupae and pheasant tails leading the charge, but don't neglect copper johns and midge larva. Swinging soft hackles and small streamers is also very effective right now, this is a great way to find fish and learn new water on the mad. Streamer fishing will continue to get better as the fish recover from the spawn, look for the next major rain event to get the big fish on the hunt.
It took several days of rain but the mad has finally gone up. This should really take care of most of the leaves in the river and get the fish on the move. Nymph fishing has been the vest bet and will still be a top choice through the winter. Right now it often pays of to try and grab some attention with an attractor pattern such as a copper john, or a large nymph, and follow them up with a caddis pupae or a pheasant tail. Look for fish in slower pools near wood or along seams, as well as in smaller cuts. There are a few BWO's and midges bringing smaller fish to the surface but not in any large number. Streamer fishing is once again beginning to work, right now fishing lighter sinking lines and natural colors has worked best, it should only get better from here.
With a few good showers in the past few weeks the Mad has some more water in the system and better flows. While the flows are good the leaves are a problem, on calm days they are not to bad but if it is windy they become a nuisance. This will be a problem for the next several weeks but if it is calm it shouldn't keep you from fishing. Nymph fishing has been the way to go lately, with caddis pupae, pheasant tails, and copper johns being top producers. Look for active fish to key in small pockets and near cutbanks, many of the large pool accumulate leaves so they are difficult to fish. On cloudy days you can still find some rising fish in the flat areas, there are still sporatic #20 BWO's hatching and a few fish are taking advantage. Streamer fishing will pick up after the leaves have dropped.
The lack of any drenching rain has kept the mad from moving anymore than a quick bump with the recent showers. This weekend should bring a few more showers and hopefully the flows will bump and the trout will feed heavily. Nymphs have still been the go to, the fish are still in areas where they feel secure with the low water. Deeper holes, areas near woody cover, and broken water are all hot spots for trout right now. Caddis pupae, prince nymphs, and pheasant tails are still the go to patterns, remember the fly is much less important than the presentation. There are still a few good dry fly opportunities, the white millers and ephrons are winding down but are still available to the fish. On cloudy days and in the evenings there have been some large BWO hatches, fish will key on these more a little later in the season but some fish have been looking up. The leaves have been a nuisance on windy days but are not to bad when it is calm.
It looks like the low water may be coming to an end on the mad! With rain forecasted tonight and tomorrow followed by cooler weather. This should really kick things into gear for the fall fishing. There should be a short time of good streamer fishing, but the dry fly and nymph fishing should be very good next week. Right now there are still white millers dancing around the riffles in the evening, as well as plenty of Ephrons just before dark. The biggest hatch right now are the olives, there have been large hatches of smaller #18-#22 olives during any low light periods. When the fish have been coming up they have been suckers for a #18 parachute or sparkle dun. Nymphing larger pheasant tails and hare's ears with caddis pupae or small copper johns has been the hot ticket during the day. Look for any area with a little depth or some good current and there should be fish.
Now that the fishing has begun to improve on the mad we should be updating the reports more often. With the recent cool nights the first of the late summer hatches have started and the fishing has gotten better. We saw the first of the White miller caddis this past week, as well as a few Ephrons. This means make sure you have some #14 Green soft hackles, especially in the evenings, these large light colored caddis are very active at dusk and the fish eat lots of the pupae as they hatch. During the same time the Ephron mayflies should be hatching in moderate numbers and the fish will take the duns readily. Look for both of these hatches to be the strongest just before dark in the middle and lower portions of the river. There are still tiny BWO's hatching sporatically mid morning and again in the evening, these will bring some fish to the surface especially in the mornings. Nymph fishing has also been productive, caddis pupae, sparkle maggots, and small pheasant tails are working well, but don't be afraid to put on a large nymph or small stream and drift a bigger meal in front of the fish.
Recent rains have given a little flow and added some color to the river for a short time. If you can catch the river with some stain the fish can be more forgiving than they often are in the low clear water. Currently the only hatch bringing fish to the surface is the pseudocleon hatch, look for the very small #24 blue winged olives to hatch mid morning and again just before dark. Beetles and ants are still taking fish, especially in the morning and late afternoons, don't be afraid to offer a larger meal to a fish sipping those little mayflies. The fish have been responding well to many different nymph patterns. If your nymphs keep snagging bottom try a dry dropper rig with a hopper on top. The fishing has been technical and will remain so on the mad until with begin out fall hatches in a few weeks, but there are some nice fish getting caught and just after rains the fishing can be much easier.
Despite the continued lack of any real rain and the beating summer heat the Mad is holding some flow and the fish are still biting. There have even been a few good reports of nice fish being taken on beetles. With the bright sunny days fishing has been best in the mornings and evenings. There have been some caddis dancing around in the evenings and the fish have been receptive to swung caddis pupae. There have been very few reports of good trico hatches this summer, but there have been a few small Blue Wing Olives hatching in the mid to late mornings. Fishing beetles under overhanging trees in the morning has been producing fish. Fishing nymphs has been producing fish in the deeper faster areas, however, with the low water the algae has been difficult to keep off of the nymphs.
Sorry for the lack of reports lately, we have been busy and the reports got put on the back burner. With the lack of rain the Mad is low and very clear, and to add to the challenge the biggest hatch on the river right now is the Canoe hatch. But even with the tough conditions don't be discouraged. The fish are very used to the boat traffic and often begin feeding only moments after the canoes float by. The biggest challenge to the angler right now is getting close to feeding fish, stealth is key to catching many fish right now. With the food items on the mad in the summer ranging from caddis to mayflies, midges, and lots of terrestrials, fly selection has not been as important as patience. Make your casts count, look for areas where fish have some overhead cover and a little depth. Ants and beetles have still been top fish producers on the surface, you may not see many fish but each one should take on a good cast. Fishing nymphs in areas with current or near cover has been the most effective technique lately, try any midsized nymph, with caddis and pheasant tails being excellent. In the mornings there have been some Trico's, mostly in the middle and upper stretches of the river. These little mayflies bring lots of fish up in the early morning, a #22 trico spinner is all you need for this hatch. There are some cooler nights in the forecast and even a chance of rain this weekend so hopefully the fishing will improve.
Summer has arrived on the mad with clear water and lots of brush overhanging the water. This means the terrestrial bite has begun with japanese beetles on the top of the list, especially on warm, breezy afternoons. However, just because the beetles are out doesn't mean there are not any hatches to fish. There are lots of caddis on the water, and the fish are feeding heavily on the pupae prior to and during the hatch, swinging soft hackles in the riffles has been a great option during the morning and early afternoon when they are looking for the pupae. There are still some mayflies out as well, the attenuatas are hatching in the evenings in the middle and upper streches bringing lots of fish to the surface. The brown drakes are done but there have been reports of a few Hex's on the water in the late evening, these are not a major hatch here but fishing the dry in the evenings may bring up a few fish and the nymphs will take fish well around soft bottomed areas.
Perfect flows and excellent color combined with good hatches has made the Mad a great place to fish lately. There has been lots of mayfly activity with Sulfurs hatching in the late afternoons bringing lots of fish to the surface. Ants and beetles are already catching fish, and there are plenty of caddis hatching so there is no shortage of insects for the trout. With the number of caddis hatching and the good flows swinging soft hackles has been a go to for many anglers and some large fish have been landed swinging lately. The big show has already begun however, anglers are reporting Brown Drakes have begun to hatch in the lower portions of the river. This big bug (#8) hatches in the evening and the spinners fall after dark, this hatch may be the best chance at a large fish on a dry here. The Nymphs for this hatch are very important as well, fish them deep or as a dropper during the day, and then in the evening fish the emerger under and adult or swing the nymph. This hatch will only last for a week or two so if listening to a large fish taking a dry at night appeals to you get out while you can.
Summer like weather this week has kicked off the sulphurs on the mad and really made the dry fly fishing the top choice. Look for these to start hatching early to mid afternoon and keep and eye out for spinner falls in the evening. The sulphurs on the mad tend to be very green so have some #16-18 Olives as well as the classic yellow immitations to keep on top of what the fish want. Cloudy and rainy days have brought good olive hatches as well as excellent streamer fishing for those anglers willing to brave the rain. Nymph fishing with caddis pupae and pheasant tails has been a great way to catch some fish before the bugs begin to hatch, many anglers are simply dropping a nymph below a dry to find what the fish want more on a given day. Keep and eye on the gauges, recent rains have muddied the river but the water has cleared by the next day, currently the river is in excellent condition.
Good spring fishing continues as the bugs continue to hatch. Yesterdays rain has the water stained but the mad usually clears within one to two days and is already in great shape. With plenty of rain in the forecast streamer fishing should be excellent on rainy days or if the water is off color. This time of year cover lots of ground and fish the streamers fast! as the browns are out to chase. The other big bonus of the rains is big BWO hatches, look for fish feasting on the #18-20 spring olives during the afternoons of cloudy or rainy days. There are still some handricksons hatching in the afternoons, and there are more and more caddis hatching everyday. Swinging soft hackles has been and excellent way to catch good numbers of fish any time of day, the same can be said of fishing a larger dry with a pheasant tail or caddis pupae dropper. Nymph fishing with a caddis larva or attractor pattern followed buy a small caddis or baetis nymph has also been effective. Look for fish to use the pockets along wood and the cuts below riffles heavily this time of year.
Despite the lack of rain the Mad is still running with good flows and the water is exceptionally clear. The Stoneflies are gone but the Hendrickson hatch has been gaining momentum and as higher numbers of bugs hatch more fish look up for a meal. As far as method not much has changed the fish are just rising more steadily. Fish Hendrickson nymphs and caddis in the morning, switch to swinging soft hackles and fishing emergers in the early afternoon and once the bugs begin to hatch go dry. Make sure you have plenty of Henny's and the emergers in your box, the clear water gives the fish a good look at your immitation so having the right one can be the key.
It looks like the Mad has been missed by the rain that has been through the state this past weekend. This means the river is still in great shape with good flow and very clear water and lots of bugs hatching! Lately there have been huge numbers of stoneflies every afternoon, as well as some sporatic caddis. Both of these are more important as nymphs but the fish have been taking them of the surface as well, try skating a #12 black caddis or stimulator to imitate the stoneflies, and a #14 tan Butch Caddis for the big early caddisflies. There are still some blue quills hatching in the afternoons, fish will rise to these mayflies more readily than the abundant stoneflies, try a #16 BWO or adams when these are hatching. The hendricksons, our main event on the mad are already out and the fish are taking them. This hatch should strengthen over the next week and should be strong through the first half of April. The fish eat these #14 mayflies from top to bottom. Start out in the morning nymph fishing with a hendrickson nymph or a pheasant tail, when the hatch starts you can just fish the dry or drop an emerger of the back for the picky fish. For the dries you check out the hendrickson on our early season hatches page, Bears Para henny is a favorite especially if you want to put a nymph below the dry, and try galloups drowned spinner in rust, this pattern doubles as a great henny emerger! Another great method right now is swinging soft hackles, this is a great way to pick up fish through the afternoon and evening, especially in the faster pools. Nymph fishing has taken a back seat to the dries, but it is still a good option, especially in the mornings before the hatches start. With all of the insects hatching caddis, stonefly, midge, and mayfly immitations will all work, but keep a hendrickson nymph on for the next month. Streamer fishing has slowed with the warm sunny weather, however some big fish are still on the move in the mornings and evenings.
Spring is starting to show on the Mad and it is time for the dry fly season to start! Right now the Blue Quills are begining to hatch and giving anglers the first good opportunities at fishing dries since the fall. Look for these #16-18 Mayflies to hatch during the warmest portions of the afternoon. Classic blue dun patterns, #16 BWO parachutes, or even an Adams will take fish rising to the Duns. Nymph fishing with Black stonefly nymphs, Pheasant tails, and Phlamin Pheasants has been effective. Right now the fish are keyed on the insects getting ready to hatch over the next month, look for fish moving into faster feeding lanes and keying in on these #14-16 nymphs. Streamer fishing has still been a good choice, but with the water remaining very clear the best times for streamers have been cloudy days or mornings and evenings.
Sorry for the lack of reports lately, we have been busy in the shop and reports have taken a bit of a backseat, this won't be a problem now that we are moving into march. The Mad has leveled out with good flows and very clear water. This has given anglers stable fishing through the past few weeks. Nymph fishing has been the most effective with small stoneflies being a key pattern, small Pheasant tails or copper Johns have been good droppers. Streamer fishing has been OK with the best days being overcast or rainy, on sunny days stick to early morning or evening for the best chance at a big fish. There have been some insects hatching, small winter stoneflies and midges are popping up on the warm sunny days and a lucky angler may find some fish rising in the upper river, but so far there have been very few fish looking up. This should change in the next few weeks, especially once the Blue Quills begin hatching in march.
After another big shot of rain the Mad is out of shape for a few days, but the river clears very quickly and the upper river should be fishable Sunday. This winter the Mad has been a yo-yo but for those anglers willing to watch the guages and change with the flows have had consistant success. With the high flows throughout the winter many anglers have been fishing streamers and some very large fish have been caught. With the cold water finding the right retrieve is the key to success, so keep experimenting and keep at it, once you find what they want it has been great. Nymph fisherman have been having the most consistant success this winter. Fishing deeper pools and cuts has kept many anglers hooked up. The best flies change with the flows, shortly after a spike in the flows larger patterns such as San Juan Worms, and craneflies with stonefly droppers have been best. Once the flows stabilize fish key on midges and small mayfly nymphs fished behind stoneflies.
It looks like the new year will be more kind to anlgers than 2011 was. With unseasonably warm weather this week and no rain before the weekend things are looking great for anglers looking to get the first brown of the new year. Flows are still on the high side but are very fishable through most of the river, the lower portions will still be difficult to wade for a few days but should get easier as the water drops. Nymph fishing will rule as the water drops, the water is clear and cold so getting your flies to the bottom will be the key to catching fish. With the high flows craneflies are still a top producer and will usually account for the larger fish taken on nymphs, #12-16 black stoneflies are also a top option and will remain so until late winter. Small midges and Pheasant tails are always a good option in the winter, #16-20 zebra midges, brassies, and red copper johns are always great trailing patterns, especially in the upper river. As the winter progesses we can usually expect to find some fish rising to midges, especially in the upper river, though with the high flows this winter this will sporatic at best until the flows drop. Streamer fish has remained great with the high flows, swinging streamers is always a great way to take winter fish in high water, swinging wooly buggers slow and low will take some fish on almost any winter day. With no snow to cool the water temps the fish have remained aggresive to stripping streamers. Weighted patterns the drop on the pause have been the best producers lately.
Like the mad the clearfork should fish very well this weekend. The same nymphs and buggers will work here, but the fish often lean to smaller patterns here, midges are always a good bet on this fishery when it clears up and the stoneflies should be out in numbers. The upper clearfork should have a few rising fish with the warm weather, definantly have some midge adults ready for these guys.
The clearfork normally produces well this time of year, after last weeks rain the upper river should fish well this weekend, the river below pleasant hill is in great shape as well but the lake is high so keep an eye on the guage as they should be letting more water out of the dam soon. Indicator fishing with small stones, midges and worm patterns is the best bet here, but buggers always take fish here. With warmer temps forecasted tomorrow there may even be a few fish taking midges and maybe stones on the surface in the upper river. As with the mad as soon as we get some warmer weather look for some good insect activity.
Both the upper and lower clearfork should be in good shape for the weekend. Small black stonefly nymphs and midge or caddis larva are good fly choices. There should be some stoneflies hatching with the warm weather next week! Black winter stonefly dries can make the first good day of dry fly fishing of the year.
Water levels are back in good shape on the clearfork. The upper streches should fish this weekend, and the lower has just dropped back down and has great flow. The upper river will get slushy but the lower normally stays ice free unless it gets really cold. Anglers looking to get out and catch fish should stick to nymphing with small black stones, #16-20 midge larva and smaller attractor patterns. Focus on deeper slow areas and watch for subtle takes, the fish will be less aggressive in the cold.
Water levels in the lower river are now back in fishable shape, a bit high but fishable and the water should drop as long as we don't get too much rain. The upper river has been fishing well especially with nymphs. Try cranefly larva, san juan worms and larger midge patterns. The key has been focusing on the deeper holes where fish have plenty of areas to get out of the current. Swinging buggers has also been productive in both stretches.
Pleasant Hill reservoir went up twenty feet this weekend, it will be a good while before the lower clearfork fishes as they lower the lake back down. The upper stretches should begin to fish later this week and should be good this comig weekend.
Clearfork is on its way up with snowmelt, the area below the dam may still fish tomorrow but after that it should be blown out for several days. Once its back down large nymphs should be top produces, and don't forget san jaun worms here.
Clearfork is fishing well with both the upper and lower stretches in good shape. Nymphing and swinging small streamers both have been producing. Fly selection is very similar to the mad this time of year, focus on the deep water and cover ground until you find them.
Clearfork is low and clear but fishing well. Swinging small streamers always works well here, especially is you trail them with a soft hackle. Nymph fishing is usually the most productive here, clearfork standards such as san jauns contimue to produce but in the winter smaller scub patterns and midges take lots of fish as well. Try the deeper holes and when you find one there are usually more.
Clearfork has jumped with the rain last night but later this week should be back in good shape. As the water drops swinging wooly buggers is a go to here, as well as fishing large attractor nymphs such as san juan worms. When the water drops smaller attractor nymphs and midges will be the best bets. This stream fishes well through the winter so don't forget this stream when it gets cold!
Clearfork is running high but the upper portions should be fishable this weekend. Swinging buggers should be very effective this weekend, don't be afraid to hang a soft hackle off the back. Nymphing with the standard patterns will take plenty of fish as well, lots of attractor patterns here mixed in with caddis a midges.
The rain has elevated the flows on the upper and lower clearfork, look for the water to drop as early as sunday and certainly by early next week. Nymph fishing has been a staple here with San jaun worms, copper johns, and caddis larva producing well. Like the mad there has been good insect activity with caddis and BWO's, as well as lots of midges out on the clearfork. Fish have been taking dries but swinging a soft hackle has been the most effective. Stripping and swinging buggers and small streamers will be effective especially in the higher water.
Like the mad not much of a change in the report here. Think caddis above and below, midges and bwos are both important here as well as attractors. Some good reports from here lately both in the upper and lower river.
The clearfork is fishing well right now with good numbers of fish around and they are getting aggressive with the cold nights. Nymph fishing has been productive with caddis pupae and attractors as top bets, small streamers are also producing. There have been good numbers of caddis hatching, as well as BWO's and Midges. The fish have been taking dries, especially caddis, but often they are keyed on the pupae so soft hackles have been more productive.
As the water cools the clearfork continues to improve, this fishery typically picks up in mid oct. but has been better than average this summer. Fishing the upper river has been more productive, caddis and BWO's are the biggest factors here, nymphs will be the most productive but you can find some rishing fish late in the day or when it's cloudy. The lower river still has a few trout but the bass and warmwater fishing has been good there as well.
Clearfork continues to fish better than normal for this time of year. Terrestrial fishing is slowing down though it continues to produce a few fish. Midges and caddis, especially caddis are the main game here. Nymphing with an attractor followed by a midge or caddis pupae has been good. Fishing a #14 elk hair with a small soft hackle or pupae behind it will take the rising fish you come across, and is a good way to prospect. The water is low for streamers but there are some bass and saugeye around that will certainly eat a clouser or wooly bugger.
Clearfork is down and in great shape this summer. With the cool weather and the rain the water temps have stayed low enough that the trout fishing has remained pretty good. The upper river fishes best in the summer, with terrestrials and caddis taking fish up top. Nymph fishing with caddis and san jauns has been very effective in the faster runs, as well as swinging soft hackles. Clearfork rarely fishes this well through the summer so get out and take advantage!
Pleasant Hill lake is currently 17ft above summer pool so the lower clearfork will not be fishable for some time. The upper river should still be cloudy this weekend but may drop to fishable flows. In the high water large attractors and small streamers will be the most effective flies here.
This weeks rain has really effected the clearfork, look for the water to take 4-5days to clear.
Great late spring conditions here on the clearfork. Cahills are the main draw right now, but caddis are holding strong plus a few sulphurs. Terrestrials are also starting to produce here. Try dries in the afternoons and nymphs or soft hackles in the fast water in the mornings.
The clearfork has continued to fish well with the good flows. Look for rising fish in the afternoons and evenings, cahills and caddis are taking fish. Nymph fishing with caddis and san juan worms has also taken lots of fish. When all else fails soft hackle fishing has been killer.
Finally some really good conditions on the clearfork, the upper river has been fishing well and now the lower river in the park is in great shape. Look for the fish to be very active with caddis, midges, and the begining of the Light Cahills being the target. Swinging soft hackles will be very effective here, as well as fishing nymphs such as Caddis, San Juan Worms, Copper Johns and hare's ear nymphs. For dries caddis and a #14-16 light cahill will be a top pick. Don't forget a few streamers, the trout will take them but so will the smallies here.
The water is finally going to drop in the lower clearfork this week, it is high right now but the lake is close to pool and there is little rain in the forecast. The upper river is dropping into good shape and fished well this past weekend. Fishing attractors such as San Juan worms and copper johns, with PT's and Caddis will produce very well. With the warm weather look for rising fish in the afternoons, caddis, hendricksons, small craneflies and midges are all in the mix. Often a caddis or hendrickson is all you need, but have some other patterns on hand for picky fish. Swinging a wooly bugger with a soft hackle below is a great way to catch fish right now as well, as well as a good way to cover ground.
With the rain this week the clearfork is blown out, we'll let you know as soon as it's back down.
The Clearfork looks great right now! The fishing has been getting better as the water warms and the fish have been looking up. Midges and Hendricksons have been catching the eye of the fish, but weather or no they are taking midges they are very willing to take a Handrickson drifting by. Small attractor nymphs and hendrickson nymphs are taking fish as well.
Great water conditions on the clearfork should lead to good fishing into the next week. Dry fishing fishing should be good with Midges, Olives, stones and blue quills all in the mix, and hendricksons on the way. Nymphing in the mornings before the hatches get going with pheasant tails and copper johns or swinging soft hackles if if there is no surface activity will work as well.
Water conditions are great here this weekend. The fishing has been best in the upper portions. Fish here respond well to little black stones both deep and on the surface. There should also be sporatic blue quills as well.
The water here is still high from the weeks rain, look for the fish to be looking for stonefly and mayfly nymphs when the water level drops.
Not much has changed here, the water levels are good and the fish are in winter feeding mode. Swinging streamers will remain a top bet here. When nymph fishing make sure to have some stoneflies and copper johns.
Great water conditions on the clearfork should lead to good fishing with the warmer weather this week. With the warmer water swinging buggers and soft hackles should take some fish. Nymph fishing will be good with Copper johns, hare's ear's and midges all taking fish.
The Clearfork is in great shape above pleasant hill, but below it is currently very high. Nymph fishing with caddis, midges, and small stones will take good numbers of fish, on sunny days you may even find a few fish rising to adult midges. With the water a bit elevated swinging big buggers by wood might pull a big holdover out of the cover.
Clearfork is currently high and off color but as soon as the water has dropped we will let you know. Keep an eye on the guage if it drops below 2ft fishing small steamers and wooly buggers should be good.
It's getting good on the clearfork, flows are good and the fishing is best from now through the winter. Nymph fishing is very good with copper johns, san jaun worms, and caddis being favorites. There are also some caddis and BWO's hatching, dry fly fishing will be best on cloudy days. Leaves here a a problem but the fish should still bite.
With cool weather the waters temps have dropped and the fishing has improved on the clearfork. The lower portions in the park typically donnot fish well until october but the upper portions have some nice fish to be caught. Nymph fishing in the pools has been the most productive technique. Caddis, princes, and san juan worms have been the top fly options, if nothing is going try a small streamer. This fishery is best in the winter months but can be a fun option from now on.
Low warm water has turned the lower portions of clearfork into a smallmouth and carp fishery, and the warmwater fishing has been good. However for trout the best option will be early mornings in the upper stretches. Look for good trico hatches in the mornings with fish keyed into the spinner falls in the riffles. After the tricos fishing nymphs in the deeper areas has been the best option, caddis pupae have been most effective here. There are some fish taking terrestrials throughout the day and into the evenings as well. The fishing here should pick up as soon as the water cools in the fall.
Still running low and very clear here and as the water warms the fish are feeding like crazy before mid summer heat sets in. Terrestrials are a major player here with beetles and ants taking fish well. Smaller nymphs fished in deeper, faster runs will take fish, especially if there is wood cover nearby. In the lower stretch try trout in the morning and carp or bass in the afternoons!
The water is running low and clear here but the fish are feeding heavily. Cahills are still the main attraction, especially in the upper river. However the caddis are making a strong showing, and terrestrials are taking fish as well. This stream fishes best before the summer and is also a great place to fish a streamer for a mixed bag of warmwater and coldwater species.
The rain this week is a welcome change to the low clear water up on the clearfork, the water is running a little higher now making the fish less spooky. The Light Cahills are the main event right now, and fish have been eager to rise to these big mayflies. Nymph fishing in faster runs has been productive as well, caddis pupae and attractor nymphs are often top on the menu on this stream, but when the fish get picky don't forget smaller patterns such as a zebra midge.
This is a great time of year to fish the Clearfork, both the upper and lower stretches are fishing well and there are good dry fly opportunities. Caddis often get the attention here and there are lots of fish willing to come up for a caddis adult, but the Light Cahills have begun and the trout have trouble letting a big helpless mayfly dun drift by. Look for the afternoons to be the best time to find rising fish. Early in the day try dropping a nymph below a dry or indicator deep runs. Fishing smaller streamers such as wooly buggers can be lots of fun here in the spring, the browns will come out for the attact, but so will the many warm water species that share the water with the trout here.
Clearfork is in great shape and currently is fishing pretty well. Lots of caddis and some Hendricksons have kept the fish looking up for an easy meal. As is often the case here nymph fishing with a caddis pupae and pheasant tail always takes some fish. Once the begin to rise try a Hendrickson and if they don't want that try the caddis. Often this time of year your will see fish making splashy rises when they are eating caddis pupae just below the surface. So if you can't get the fish to eat swing a green soft hackle and hang on! There also have been a few nice fish taken by anglers fishing with small streamers and buggers.
The clearfork has been hit pretty hard by the recent rains and is running high right now. Once the water returns to normal expect some of the same hatches as the mad. We will let you know a soon as the water drops.
Fishing has been warming up on the clearfork. Nymph fishing down in the park has continued to produce fish. Streamer fishing the park in the spring is always exciting, swinging a shad pattern may produce a brown trout, a smallie, and saugeye or one of many other predators that call lower clearfork home. In the upper clearfork look for fish beginging to look up for clue quills and late winter stones. Nymph fishing the same patterns as the Mad will also produce here. Look for faster areas in pools and deep runs.
The water has been up and down here but anglers are catching fish in both the upper and lower stretches of the river. Now the water has stablized in good condition look for good fishing. Nymph fishing with caddis and stonefly nymphs has been the ticket, but a few anglers are also picking up fish with wooly buggers. Keep an eye out for rising fish in the next few weeks, especially in the upper streches. Cloudy days should provide the best action, but if you are looking for some early dry fly action stick to sunny afternoons.
The water on clearfork is on the high side but in fishable condition. Indicator fishing with large nymphs followed by midges has been working well here all winter. Small streamers always have thier place in this fishery, try white to imitate the shad and olive for the sculpins, you can even swing two wooly buggers at once to get the fishes attention in the higher water. When the water drops here keep an eye on the surface on sunny days, the fish will often sip midges of the surface all winter here, try fishing griffiths gnats and Brian/Ryan Midges to these risers. If the fish are being difficult, try dropping a small zebra midge behind and small parachute adams.
The flows in clearfork have dropped into great shape and the winter full will be in full swing here. Nymph fishing with midges and standared nymph patterns such as copper johns and hares ear's has been productive. Fishing wooly buggers through the holes is always an effective and fun way to fish the stream as well. There may be some fish rising to midges on warm sunny days through the winter here, try griffiths gnats and Brian/Ryan midges to these picky fish.
Steelhead anglers are chomping at the bit to get to some open water after this winter. Right now options are very limited, the upper rocky and the grand have some open areas to fish, the Hoga will also offer open water for anglers looking for a challenge.There is still snow on the ground so as that melts this weekend it should open up some areas. Truly we still need more warm weather and some warm rain to open up the areas at the mouths of the river to allow fresh fish in. If you need to fish there is some water to fish but reports have been mediocre at best from most anlgers. If you do get out low and slow with black stoneflies, buggers, and eggs in deep pools. Hopefully spring arrives soon.
We have been neglecting the steelhead reports with the freezing temps this winter. Anglers looking to get a few fish will have a nice window tomorrow with the warmer weather for a day. The rocky will be the best bet in ohio, unfortunately the ice jams have made the flow guages impossible to effectively read. The Elk will also have a bit of fishable water, stick to the upper reaches as the lower rivers are jamed with ice and will not allow any fresh fish to move in. There is a good amount of shelf ice and there will be slush in the morning but if you need to get out those will be the best bets. Fish deep in the slower pools with stoneflies and eggs and keep a sharp eye for subtle takes.
Well it looks like we may have a real winter with lots of frozen water. After last weekends blowout the water on several rivers has dropped and anglers are catching fish. Right now the Rock, Chagrin, and conneaut creeks are fishing, though conneaut is rather high but dropping fast. The PA streams especially elk creek are still fishing as well with a few fish getting caught in all the streams. However anglers are already dealing with slush and the shelf ice is beginning in the slow areas. Fishing late afternoon anglers should be able to find some open water and a few fish, bright egg patterns have been the most effective. Next week we have another deep freeze looming that will again lock up most of the alley. Keep you fingers crossed for an early spring.
Things are pretty locked up in the alley, the rain this weekend should clear out the ice but will probably blow out the rivers for a few days. This is mid winter fishing where you get out when the water is open, we will let you know when the rivers are coming into shape.
What a weekend to steelhead fish! Conditions in ohio are looking great as is the weather. Conneaut, chagrin and the Rocky are all in prime shape with good numbers of fish, the vermilion will be stained but fishable sunday, the grand will remain too high. In PA the conditions are good on elk but a bit low in the smaller streams. Fish should be aggresive with the mild weather, look for fish in slower runs and deep holes, but there will still be a few in fast runs as the day warms. Make sure to have some stoneflies in the box as the winter stonefly nymphs should be out in force, mix in some egg patterns and a few streamers and you have all you need. Get out now before winter comes back!
Steelhead anglers will be happy after this past weekend. The water is on a fast drop and things are looking good later this week and very good for this next weekend. The smaller PA creeks are already fishable and a few anglers are out there catching fish. Elk should be fishable but high tomorrow and will be prime late this week. In Ohio the chagrin and rocky are droping fast and both look like they will begin fishing wednesday or thursday, most of the small ohio streams should fish by then as well. The Conneaut, Grand and Vermilion are all still very high and just beginning to drop, the conneaut should be good by the weekend, as for the V and the grand we will keep you posted. All the high water is also warmer than the lake this week, this means that we should get some big waves of chrome manistee fish this week. These aggresive fish will take swung streamers very well for those who want to get out and swing. Anglers indicator fishing should try larger eggs and drifting small streamers.
Finally a good warm up on the way. The rivers are on the way and going way out! The high water coupled with warm rain should warm the water up and bring lots of fresh fish in to the ohio streams. We will let you know early next week when the streams should be fishable, right now our best guess is that you could find some water to catch fish by late week and definatly next weekend.
After the warm weather and snowmelt of last week ohio has had some great fishing. Right now the Conneaut and chagrin are both low and clear but fishable, the conneaut has been fishing better. The Rocky, Vermillion and the smaller streams have fish but the water is very clear and with the cold weather on the water they should begin to have slush and ice as early as wednesday. The grand though high has good color and has had some great fishing and will be the last river to freeze with all the water. The PA streams have been slower than normal and should have ice by mid week. Indicator fishing has been very effective, remember to match the flies to the water color, thing big and bright in stained water and muted colors in clear water. We have done very well lately with chicken littles, wiggle stones, and hare's ears. Swinging streamers has been very effective lately as well, despite the colder water the fish have been taking the large streamers well. Sometimes in the cold the large flies are more of a threat and can work very well. Keep an eye on the weather, lots of bright fish have been moving in so any break in the cold will provide excellent fishing.
It's winter steelheading at its best right now on the alley. Early mornings slush has been a problem, especially on the smaller streams that are low. The fishing has been pretty good in ohio, good numbers of fish are in all the rivers from the vermilion to the conneaut. Finding the river with the right flows has been the key. Right now the vermilion is low, the rocky, chagrin and conneaut are all fishably low and fairly clear and the grand is in great shape. Find the deeper wintering holes with fish and the action has been really good. With the lower water stoneflies and small streamers drifted with eggs have been really good. Swinging streamers has been effective as well, the big meal can get the fish to move in the cold.
Well after the last few wind storms and the big storm last night it looks like the leaves will no longer be the problem they had been. Right now it looks like everything is out for the day, PA got more rain than ohio but the smaller PA tribs and the mile creeks will fish tomorrow. Even the elk may fish tomorrow if you like swinging in high water, but will be in great shape by wednesday. In ohio the rocky has fishable flow today but will be off color, it will fish tomorrow as will many smaller streams in the state. The chagrin and possibly the vermillion should fish by wednesday and if there is no major rain later this week the conneaut should follow. The water temps jumped up with last nights wawrm rain, this will bring in good numbers of fish and get the fish moving. Try swinging streamers to find where the active fish are, this past week streamers where doing really well even better than nymphing some days.
Looks like another good weekend of steelheading this weekend. Right now the rocky is the only good option in ohio, but the chagrin should be in good shape by sunday and might fish tomorrow, the conneaut is the same story as long as the water continues to drop quickly. Think swinging streamers and fishing bright eggs in ohio this weekend. PA is in excellent shape and is fishing well, mix it up in PA but make sure you have plenty of nymphs, wiggle stones and princes have been effective. Color and flow will be just about perfect in PA this weekend.
Right when the rivers where getting a bit low we got the big rain to blow them out again and bring more fish. This weekend looks great in PA, Elk will fish well tomorrow as well as the smaller streams. There is some rain in the forecast that may or may not muddy elk for sunday, if it does the mile creeks will be exceptional. In ohio the Chagrin and Rocky may drop by sunday, as well as some small streams, more fish have been arriving in ohio though the big numbers are still east. Techniques have remained the same, swinging streamers in the larger streams has been producing. Indicator fishing has been the most effective, especially with the colder nights, remember try large bright patterns in stained water and small patterns in clear water. Early next week will be great across the alley for those that can fish weekdays, take monday off!
We got some rain on the east side yesterday so the Grand, chagrin, and conneaut are currently blown out. PA is in great shape and will fish really well this weekend, these are the conditions you wait for on Elk! In ohio the smaller streams are coming down and the Rocky is in good shape with some fish spread throughout the river, the Vermilion is low and has a few fish scattered in the lower river. Nymphing has been the go to but this will be a great weekend to swing flies. The chagrin should be in good shape to swing sunday and the conneaut and grand should be good early next week.
Well the cold rain that everyone hoped was coming is here at the alley and the fishing has responded. With light rain forecasted on and off the water has been in good shape and that should continue throughout the alley. Right now everything except the grand and conneaut are in good shape. Conny should be down in a few days and the grand by the weekend. Anglers have reported catching fish throughout the east side of ohio, and some great catches have been coming out of PA. Indicator fishing has been the most effective method but the Grand and the Conneaut should swing well this weekend. The season is now in full swing and it should be good fishing from now on out.
Feels like steelhead season outside! The nights are cold and there has been rain through the week, that means this should be the first good weekend of the steelhead season. Right now in ohio the smaller streams are back down, the rocky and the chagrin are fishable but a bit turbid and the conneaut is on its way and should be in shape this weekend barring any further rain. Pa is in great shape and if there is more rain it will stay that way. Right now ohio has had decent numbers of fish especially on the east side, PA has lots of fish, but has plenty of people as well. These early fish are aggressive so swinging streamers can be a great way to cover ground and find fish. Indicator fishing is still the most productive, in the off colored water have some bright eggs, orange and chartreuse, and in clear water try smaller nymphs and pale eggs. It looks like this will be a good year so it's time to get out there and get some chrome!
This rain should really help kick steelhead into gear up on the alley. Water is dropping fast and PA was fishable yesterday, and producing some fish. In Ohio the rocky and chagrin fell into shape today but are off color, the rocky is still a little high but should be good tomorrow. The conneaut still needs rain, and the Grand should be in good shape this weekend. With no rain in the forecast most of the streams will be low by the weekend but early anglers will be hooking fish this week! These early fish love to take streamers either swung in the higher flows or in low flows striped though the pools. Small nymphs and pale eggs will also produce in the low water that we will see by the end of the week.
There has been alot of talk and buzz about steelhead this past week. Last weekend after the rain some early anglers found good success, especially in PA but there where some fish caught on the east side in Ohio as well. The numbers of fish are not bad for this early in the season but the water is extremely low right now. We need lots of rain before any serious fishing gets done. It looks like late next week there is some rain in the forecast and that may be the event that kicks of this steelhead season. Keep an eye here and on facebook and we will let you know as soon as it gets good.
Oh yeah it's almost steelhead season! There has been talk and rumors already and with the cool weather there have been steelhead staging at the mouths and even a rare few that have moved up. Just remember it is still very early, this is the time to tie up the flies, dust off the rods, and score points with the family so you can get time off in a month. If we get some good strong storms the first true pushes of steelhead will show up, we still consider the start of the season Oct. 15 but there are always fish around before. We will have current reports up here as often as we can through the season, be sure to check out the steelhead central page for river levels, and never hesitate to give us a call for current conditions, we always have some friends and guides on the water during the season. October and November are prime months and they are right around the corner!
This will be the last report of the season, with the warm weather the streams quickly heated up and the remaining steelhead got out quick. Anglers are still finding a few but they are mostly old fish that eat smallmouth flies. There are a good number of large lake run smallmouth around so if you are looking for some fun this can be great all the way to june. Fish streamers of poppers in deep pools, or sight fish with crayfish and poppers, these can be some of the biggest smallmouth that a wading angler can reach anywhere so hold on!
It's amazing that there is still good steelhead fishing but with the cool and wet spring we have plenty of fish left. Currently the smaller streams and the Chagrin are in good shape, with everything else on it's way to fishable by the weekend. Many of the fish are spawing or drop backs, but there have still been a few late fresh fish showing up. With the warmer temps the fish have been aggresive and streamers swung or drifted have been effective, as well as smaller egg patterns and nymphs. As the water clears pale eggs, princes and wiggle stones have gotten the nod. This may be one of the last weekends to steelhead fish but it should be a very good one. There are also good numbers of lake run smallies in the streams that can provide lots of fun for anglers stripping streamers around.
We still have a bit more of steelhead season left with the cold conditions. Fishing has been pretty good in ohio the past couple weeks. The fish have been coming in fast and quickly moving to spawning areas. Fresh fish are getting caught in deep cuts on nymphs as well as swinging flies. Indicator fishing and swinging are both working well, with the indicators taking more fish but swinging gets the big bonus smallies. Right now the Rocky, Chagrin and Conneaut are all shaping up for the weekend, the Grand and the Vermillion may be fishable as soon as sunday, keep and eye on the rain. There is still time to get some steelhead, take advantage before summer!
Despite the forecast for heavy rain the alley was for the most part spared and should fish well this weekend. The Grand will be to high and the Chagrin, Vermillion and Rocky will be a bit high but they should fish saturday and be in great shape sunday, as will the smaller streams and Conneaut. The fish have been moving around this week, with some days being better than others. With a mix of fresh fish, spawners and drop backs the key has been finding areas with concentrations of fish that want to bite. Look for deep fast chutes with adjacent gravel, these areas serve as staging areas for fresh fish. Eggs, nymphs and streamers have all been taking fish but nymphs have been taking the most fish, especially in clearer water, try wiggle stones and the Fly Formally Known as Prince. Swinging flies has been taking some fish, with some nice bonus fish as well.
This rain has brought in TONS of bright crome fish and the fishing should be excellent for the next few weeks. There is more rain on the way but if you can fish fishable water they will be there. The small tribs will fish today and through monday, Sunday the Rocky and the Chagrin should be high but fishable and the fish will be aggresive. We will keep a close eye on the weather and the water levels and let you know as things drop into shape. With the killer conditions pick your technique, swinging streamers will be great for aggresive fresh fish and dropbacks. Nymph fishing with small streamers and bright eggs will be great until the water drops, as the water clears try smaller eggs and nymphs as well. After the cold winter and spring this is what we have been waiting for!
Here comes the best fishing of the season! Right now the water is low, the Grand is in good shape and the conneaut and the chagrin are low but fishable, everything else is too low and clear. But there is rain in the forecast and lake erie is just warming up, this next week of rain should bring in lots of big chrome fish. With the warmer water the fish have been crazy once hooked so be prepared to loose some fish! There have been a mix of chrome fish, dropbacks, and fish on the redds, just keep moving and you will find some fish that want to grab.
Spring like conditions have made steelhead fishing much nicer, but with lake erie water temps in the mid 30's we need some warm rain to get the fish moving to the rivers. The fishing has been ok with the winter fish staging below riffles, and the dropbacks hungry for streamers. But the giant wave of spring fish is still waiting, luckily there are more fish showing up every day and it's a matter of time before the crazy numbers show up. There is some rain in the forecast tomorrow, this should help. Right now the Vermilion and rocky river, and the small tribs are all fishing well, the east side is still dealing with some snowmelt.
Finally! some spring like fishing for steelhead! The water is still cold on the alley but the warm days will make the fish happy and willing to eat. Right now everything is in good shape, the Conneaut, Rocky, and Chagrin are all fairly clear and have medium flows, the Grand and vermillion are both flowing great and have fair visibility. There should be fish spread throughout all of the streams it's just a matter of finding a larger pod. Most of the fish are a bit darker but the warm weather should bring a bunch of chrome fish in the next few weeks. With the streams in such good shape indicator fishing and swinging should both be great. Large streamers will bring some aggressive takes, especially on the Grand this weekend. With the clearer water on most of the streams look for stoneflies to be effective as well as chicken little's, steech's, and pale colored eggs. The fish will still be in the holes but some will be shifting to faster water, especially on warm evenings.
It looks like the end of winter is finally in sight! This weekend the upper portions of the Chagrin and the smaller streams should fish, and the rocky by sunday. There have been lots of fish throughout the alley but the cold has made them reluctant to bite. Next week it looks like the weather will warm up and this should kick off the fishing. Right now try and concentrate on slower holes and tailouts, keep the flies near the bottom. With the off color water this weekend larger bright flies will be in order, we will keep you updated as conditions change next week.
Sorry for the lack of reports here, there was a few weeks with lots of ice. But now we have good conditions again! After the snowmelt and rain this week the water is quickly becoming fishable in the rocky and the chagrin rivers. There have been good amounts of fish around in both and this weekend despite the cold the fishing should be good. The rest of the alley should take some more time to drop, the Vermillion and the conneaut may clear this weekend. We will keep you posted. Remember with the cold water give these fish a reason to move, large nymphs and egg patterns in bright colors, and big streamers swung deep will draw strikes from the fresh winter fish.
Perfect winter conditions! That is what it looks like tomorrow and saturday. Today the Chagrin and the Rocky are in perfect shape, the Conneaut is going to fish tomorrow and the Vermillion should be fishable on saturday. These are great conditions for swinging streamers for the fresh fish that just came in with the last rain. For anglers drifting eggs and stoneflies will be top options. Look for fish holding in the core of the pools and in the tailouts. This may be the last chance to fish for a week or two so take advantage of the good conditions.
The water came and the streams are way out at the moment, but this should bring in tons of fish. We have more rain in the forecast this weekend but by the end of next week the Ohio Tribs should be fishing again. If you need to fish some of the smaller PA tribs might fish but it looks pretty grim at the moment, we will let you know as soon at the conditions are back in shape.
It's on! across the alley! This break in the weather should bring excellent fishing this week and hopefully this weekend. All the tribs in ohio are fishing well with good numbers of fish throughout the systems. The warming water will kick start these fish into a big bite before the rain comes, this is a great time to get some fish on the swing! Look for fish to be holding in deeper areas and tailouts, and moving into faster water as the water warms in the afternoons. The warm rain this week may blow out the tribs but it will bring in more chrome winter manistees and should keep the fishing good for some time! We will keep you posted on what streams are fishable as condtions change.
Happy New Year Steelheaders! We have been welcomed in to the new year with brutal cold but some surprisingly good fishing. Right now all the streams are fishable but several especially the grand are on the high side. There are problems with self ice and slush on most of the streams, especially in the mornings. But on warm afternoons the fish have been responsive to dead drifted and swung presentations. With the green stained water larger patterns have often been more effective, as long as you can get them to the bottom where the fish are. It looks like there are some warmer days in the forecast next week, any days, especially sunny days that warm into the upper 30's should burn the sluch off faster and warm the water just enough for a good afternoon bite.
The Yo-Yo water levels of the past week have made it a bit difficult to guess what will fish when, but the fishing has been good whenever we get windows of low water. Right now it looks like PA and the smaller ohio tribs should all fish very well tomorrow and in to the weekend with only the smallest getting to clear by the weekend. In Ohio the Rocky should fish tomorrow though it will be stained. Look for the Conny and the Chagrin to be borderline on Thursday and great by the weekend, same for the Vermillion on the west side. Anglers have been catching lots of bright fish in the past week and this week should be even better!
Finally some rain! After a couple weeks of low water we have had some much needed rain and more is on the way. Today the Rocky river, the small creeks, and the PA streams are all in great shape, and we already have reports of people catching fish this morning. Tomorrow there is more rain in the forecast so we will keep you updated with conditions. Look for the PA tribs to fish very well later this week and into the weekend, in Ohio the rocky and chagrin usually fish first and unless we get tons of rain everything except the grand should fish this coming weekend! This rain has all of the right factors for bringing lots of fish so get ready.
The fall season continues as more fish come in and spread out with each push of rain and others continue to trickle in despite the low water. The fish are spread out through most of the tribs and anglers that are willing to move are finding the most consistent success. Currently the larger tribs with the most water are the best bets, the chagrin and conneaut are still holding some flow and the grand is in good shape. The PA tribs as well as the west side are very low but there are fish to be caught for the stealthy angler. With the low clear conditions nymphs have become key with pycho prices, caddis and small stones taking fish, however if the fish are not eating well try something different such as stripping a streamer through the pool or drifting an ice man minnow. On the grand anglers can still find good conditions for swinging flies if they want to cover ground, and with the stained water egg patters are a good bet when indicator fishing.
After and excellent week of steelheading across the alley we are looking at a great weekend as well. The PA streams have dropped and you are looking at low water conditions there and in the small tribs in Ohio. The big news all of our major streams will fish this weekend. The Rocky, Chagrin, Vermillion and the Conneaut will all be a bit low but fishable, and there are good numbers throughout them, especially east of clevland. The Grand will be exceptional through the weekend but expect other anglers to have the same idea. In the clear streams think small with nymphs being top bets, but don't hesitate to strip a streamer through the pools. In the more stained areas try swinging big streamers are drifting bright eggs and wooly buggers. The season is in full swing right now!
Quick update on the conditions. The water across the alley is dropping like a stone. Right now the PA streams are fishable, today the large streams where a bit high but dropping and the small streams are fishing very well. These streams will continue to drop and will be running low by mid week. In Ohio the smaller streams and creeks will fish well tomorrow, the rocky will be off color but maybe worth a look. By Tuesday the Rocky, Chagrin, and the Conneaut should all be in good shape and the fishing should be excellent through the week. Swinging streamers will be a great way to find some big bright fish this week, as well as larger nymphs such as chicken littles and Steech's, and brightly color eggs. The fish will be on the move and spread out so get out and have fun.
This is it! the hurricane has passed and brought the big blowout we needed. This high water will push all the leaves out and bring in lots of chrome fish. The low water the past few weeks has kept the fishing slow but that is over now. The PA streams should be excellent this weekend as long as we don't have any major rains. Ohio will be out of shape until at least mid next week. These fish will be aggressive so for those that enjoy swinging flies the next few weeks will be excellent. For nymph fishing, especially when the water is first fishable stick to bright eggs and small streamers. This should be the best few weeks of the fall season coming up.
Steelhead season has finally truly started and many anglers are looking to go up and catch the first chrome of the season. Right now we could use some more water, but the PA streams got a bit last night. PA should fish well today and tomorrow, by the end of the weekend we will be facing low clear conditions here as well. In Ohio the Grand and Chagrin have the most water but the conneaut has just enough to try. Most of the fish are in the lower portions of the streams, but don't expect to fish alone. There are some fish scattered upriver but it is difficult to find any numbers. With the low water nymphs and pale eggs have been the go to but small streamers have been very good as well. If the fish are in the slow pools don't hesitate to strip a wooly bugger or Ice Man Minnow over their heads. These early season fish can be very aggressive. With each rain we will get more and more fish, swinging streamers in the high flows can contact some of the hottest fish of the year. Keep an eye on the gauges and follow the water. Don't forget our Steelhead Central Page has a list of optimum flow and links to the gauges.
I always love the first report of a new steelhead season! The nights a cooling, the lake temps are dropping and despite the low water a few determined and lucky anglers have connected with some early chrome. The season is still a few weeks off but it is time to dust off the long rods and start tying up steelhead flies. As soon as we get a good blowout the season will begin. Timing in the fall is everything, so far most the fish caught have been shortly after rain events and in the lower portions of the rivers. Once the water drops the fish become very skittish. We will keep you posted as soon as the fishing takes off, but each rain event from here on will bring more bright aggressive rockets into the rivers!
With this week of summer like weather the steelhead should be more or less finished, there are still a few around but the smallmouth have taken front stage. Try the lower stretches with streamers for some of the biggest smallmouth available for the whole year.
With this extended period of low water it seems like most anglers have decided that the steelhead season is over. This is a good thing for the anglers that don't like crowds, but know that with the lake temps along the alley still in the upper 40's there are still lots of fish around in the lake. Recent rains allowed the flows to bump in the Conneaut and the fish responded. We are nearing the end of the season but there is still some time to go catch some fish for anglers willing to run up when the flows are good. There are also good numbers of big lake run smallies in the alley, the grand, rocky, chagrin, and conneaut seem to have the best numbers. Anglers can have a great day stripping clouser for a mixed bag of drop back steelhead and smallmouth this time of year.
The water has dropped to very low levels for the spring throughout the alley. Without any more rain this leaves few options for anglers looking to steelhead fish. Right now the Grand is the best game in town, but the Rocky and Chagrin rivers though low and clear have enough water to fish, but the fish are extremely wary in the clear flows. Fishing has been pretty good however, anglers have been taking some very nice fish along with lots of drop backs and skippers. Indicator fishing with small stones, wiggle stones, and small streamer has been the most consistant method. But many anglers have been taking aggressive dropbacks and big lake run smallmouth swinging big streamers. Keep and eye on the weather, if we get some rain in the fishing should be excellent after the water comes up and invites more fish into the rivers.
Spring is moving very quickly on the alley and the water temps are warming up fast. The steelhead are still moving in good numbers, but many fish are quickly moving on to the redds. Right now the streams are blown out but there is only a chance of rain this week, so the weekend looks good right now. Eggs and nymphs have been hot but as we see more dropbacks the streamer bite will heat up.
Spring Steelhead Season Is Here! Lots of fresh fish filling up the rivers with each rain and nice warm days to enjoy while catching them. Chasing good water levels is still the key, right now it looks like the Rocky, and Vermillion will fish tomorrow with the Chagrin coming on strong by sunday, the PA streams will also begin fishing tomorow. With the rising water temps the fish are aggresive and will respond to many techniques. Swinging streamers will be a very good option the next few weeks, this is a great way to get some heart stopping strikes. Indicator fishing with egg patterns get the nod when you want to bring numbers of fish to hand. Fish large brightly colored eggs in off colored water, when the water clears light colored egg patterns and stonefly nymphs are excellent choices.
After the strange and mild winter it looks like we are going to be in for one heck of a spring season. Anglers are finding consistent success on all of the Ohio tribs with many nice bright fish being reported. The key to finding early success is timing, looks for warm trends and dropping water and you should be into fish. This coming week should be excellent, the rocky and chagrin should be fishable Sunday. These streams both will be in good condition on monday through the week, with the Vermillion and the Conneaut dropping into shape by mid week. Most of the fish have been caught in classic mid depth wintering holes with egg patterns fished below indicators. But there have been more and more fish showing up in pockets and smaller holes as they move upstream. The hot flies have been brightly colored egg flies and wooly buggers, but when the water clears black stoneflies have been excellent. In the higher flows anglers can swing big streamers with success when other methods don't get the attention of the fish.
Anglers are still catching steelhead throughout the alley whenever the water levels are in shape. The high flows are keeping the fish spread out throughout the streams but the thought of big chrome winter steelhead keeps anglers searching. Right now the Ohio tribs are blown out and it doesn't look like they will be in fishable condition until next week. The PA streams should be fishable on Sunday and into good condition by Monday. Most anglers are finding success fishing egg patterns under indicators, remember to keep a keen eye out for light takes in the cold water. With the high flows some anglers are still out swinging and finding some success swinging large streamers, this is a great way to find bright fish in high marginal water contions.
It looks like winter is going to give us every chance to fish for steelhead that we can handle. Right now every stream in the alley is fishable except for the Grand. Fish have been spread throughout every stream and the angling pressure has been spread out as well. This is a great time for anlgers who like fishing for steelhead without the crowds. Look for fish to be holding in deeper slots and tailouts with the low water temps. Brightly colored egg patterns and wooly buggers drifted through these areas are great ways to contact what can be some of the biggest fish of the season. Keep an eye on the indicator though, cold water takes can be very subtle.
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