Mid-May, mixed results

Mid-May, mixed results

May 19 — An unusually warm spell sent water temperatures on the Housatonic into late-summer range. At the Elms, all I could scare up was a small smallmouth, who took a soft-hackle wet (olive).

housy smallmouthhousy spey

A fellow upstream was spey casting, for some reason. Maybe he just wanted the practice.

The water temperature on the Blackberry River in East Canaan was okay during the heat wave. This photo looking upstream looks pretty and inviting, but this stream is very difficult to wade successfully. Lately I have been using a 10-foot 4 weight rod in here, which is crazy, I admit it.

blackberry deceptive

I love fishing this hole, because the hits always come when the fly is on the other side of the boulder, out of sight. It’s pure feel and instinct.

blackberry holeblackberry hole 2

This long pool is in the stretch between Beckley Furnace and the bridge downstream. The left bank looking downstream in this photo is state forest; the right bank is private property and I have not asked permission from the owners, although I met them once a couple years ago. If they would allow me to fish on their side it would make life a lot easier.

As it is, the pool deepens and widens, and there is surface activity here when other popular spots are slow.

blackberry sucker pool

Complicating matters are a large herd of absolutely giant suckers. Know why they are called “suckers”? Because at first glance, in dim light, the herd looks like the mother lode of enormous brown trout. I waste an hour banging them in the snout with nymphs. Then the penny drops. “Sucker!” (referring to me).

So this is best fished with a slack line tossed downstream and toward the opposite bank. An indicator dry fly and a nymph on a long dropper is the ticket. A Hendrickson emerger and tung-head Prince brought these fish to the net.

blackberry sucker pool 1 blackberry sucker pool 2 blackberry sucker pool 3

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