River Report : January 12th, 2020
Wow, this is the 1st river report of the new year. River reports during the winter are generally the same; Rivers are cold, air temp is cold, the bit is slow and the section that you want to fish is tough to access and may be iced over. That narrative only changes when someone we know gets out and has some success or we get some big change in the weather.
Over the weekend we had a big weather change. Winter storm Isaiah hit and had air temps in the upper 40’s to a high of 55 in Westford yesterday. I received .80 inches of rain while other areas received 1.5 inches. The warm temps caused significant snow melt making rivers rise to bank full and breaking up any ice that was there. Safe to say fishing conditions for the next couple of days will be tough.
The outlook is good as we get back into seasonal temps and only some snow later in the week. By late week, rivers should be more fishable. This is the window of opportunity that winter fly fishermen look for. With the rivers dropping and water temps up a few degrees, trout will start to move back into there normal wintering lairs and could be more active feeding.
If you do get out, know that it is still winter. Water temps are generally in the low to mid 30’s all winter. Air temps are seasonally in the 20’s for daytime highs, so dress appropriately and be safe. Trout are cold blooded so the cold water temps will have their metabolism as low as it gets all year. During this time their activity is very slow, so the need for food for energy is low. The combination makes them more of an opportunist, they only eat what comes naturally to their face.
2 tips for this week. 1)Make sure you have your 2020 fishing license when you go out. 2) if your fishing for trout, fish low and slow. Trout will be holding on the bottom in slower sections of the river . Make sure you cover the water in these areas with dead drifted nymphs and streamers. Small black stone flies are about the only aquatic insect that will be active this time of year, so fish are generally not feeding on anything specific. The size of your fly is not all that important either. What is most important is that you present your fly right to his nose.