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Summer is the time for fast smallmouth action!
Spring has come and gone. What started out as a very late thaw turned into a very quick season. After a few weeks of dry fly action on the Mainstem Delaware, we are now well into summer pattern and I am switching to smallmouth until the water conditions cool off. The post spawn period is already oover and the bass are as fat and aggressive as I have ever seen them!
November is here and the fishing continues to be great on the Upper Delaware river! Daily hatching has big trout feeding on the surface throughout the river. The best fishing has been during the warmest part of the day. I have been having the best success with small (#18-22) olive parachute patterns. As the sun gets lower in the sky, the walleyes have been coming out to feed, and so far we have netted fish up to 28" (8 llbs) on suspending jerkbaits and soft swimbaits.
Consistant cool water temps and releases from Cannonsville reservoir have the trout in great shape this fall. The we have been catching lots of rainbows in the 17-19" range along with the occasional brown. Isonychias, cahills, and caddis have all been effective.
Walleyes have also been picking up. We have been catching quite a few walleyes in the 18-25" range as bonus fish on my bass trips. Young Nate S. had the time of his life last week catching walleyes on a float with his dad, Bill.
The agressive fish are biting in the fast water, and more walleye are starting to show up.
Trout are rising throughout the river system, but concentrating on nymphing is going to be the most productive technique. Cooler water temps have the hatching starting in the early afternoon and going on until evening. Trout are now spread out through the whole river and the section from Hancock down to Callicoon is full of cookie cutter 17-20 inch rainbows, with the bigest concentrations of fish in the riffle water. If you know your slots, you can prospect trout with an Iso Dun.
The smallmouth are now averaging 13-15 inches with a few bass a day reaching 18 inches. The walleyes have been bigger, and this week we caught walleyes 21- 26 inches long and up to just under seven lbs.
September is here and the Bass are schooling!
The continuing warm temperatures have the bass in a continuous feeding binge. On a daily basis we are catching fish throughout the water column. Flies, poppers, jigs, wacky worms are all producing big numbers of bass in the 12-17" range, with a few bigger ones up to 20" showing up. Last week we had the pleasure of watching a sow bear and her cubs swim across the river ahead of us!
Another great week for topwater on the Upper Del! Today was overcast and cool and fish were rising all day. Oives in the AM, whitefly in the afternoon. Smallies were hitting topwater lures and flies al day long. We saw quite a few fish come to the net averaging 14", very few smaller fish, and a few bass up to 17. The shad fry are rising in every deep pool, so if the fish don't want bugs, they can eat fish! We caught a 17" puppy striper today, and had a bigger fish straighten a hook.
Cooler water temps and good water levels combined mean Hatching! Bass and trout have been gorging on abundant mayfly hatches throughout the Upper Delaware system. Sulphurs, Cahills, Iso and stonefly have the fish feeding on top. Dry fies and topwater for bass have beenhaving great results, especially in the evenings.
The water clarity continues to improve as the water level drops to more normal levels following the rains of the past few weeks. The fishing is picking up with many of the bass caught today in the 14-16" range and a few pushing 17". We are also catching a few legal sized walleye in the fast water stretches. This is summertime smallie fishing at it's best! Today we caught upwards of eighty smallies and the fishing is bound to improve as the water level continues to drop.
Water temperatures reaching the mid-seventies have the smallmouth bass hitting aggressively throughout the water column. Poppers, gurglers and minnow imitations, as well as soft plastics are working well. A few 18- 21" walleyes are also showing up.
The fishing pressure seems to be slowing down on the West Branch, and the fishing has been very good. Sulphers, stenos and isos have been the predominant hatches and those flies have been working well. The cold water of the upper West branch is full of fish right now, and I can't think of a better way to spend a hot summer day than to float the river, then get out of the boat and wade while casting to rising fish.
On the lower river, bass fishing has been excellent (between storms!) Gurglers, poppers, spinners, minnow and worm imitations have all been very effective.
The river is now in summer pattern. Sulphers, Blue wing olives and slate drakes have been on the water daily and the fish have been eating them. The best success has been with Big stimulators and Iso patterns trailed by small spinners. Nothing beats the excitement of hooking and landing large Delaware river trout on a size 18 hook!
The bugs must think it is still mid-April. Very few Hendricksons have appeared so far, although the fly has been catching fish. I have been seeing good haching of Quill Gordon and Blue quill, as well as stonefly and caddis. The fish are starting to look up and we have been catching fish with dry flies as well as sub surface presentations.
The water temps in the mainstem Delaware river have reached the fifty degree mark. Black stonefly have been hatching daily and the early mayflies will be showing up in numbers any day now. Brown trout are taking the stoneflies on the surface with a splashy strike. The rainbows are getting ready to spawn in the tributary brooks and creeks.
Heavy rain has brought the water level up and pushed out the ice that has jamming the shorelines and deep holes in the upper Delaware. Early black stonefly have been hatching in good numbers throughout the river.
Another great season on the Upper Delaware comes to a close. Extremely cold nights have coated the river with ice, except for the extreme upper reaches.
10/14/13 Sunny skies and low water has the fish swimming near the bottom in the deeper fast riffle water, but it hasn't been stopping rinbows from darting to the surface to take a well placed fly. Smallies are also near the bottom near the riffles in the tailouts. The have been responding well to subsurface presentations with jarring takes.
Just when I thought it couldn't get any better, it did! Heavy hatching including Iso, steno, caddis and consistant, cool nights combined with low water is making for some tremendous dry fly action on the mainstem. Despite the absence of the browns, who seem to be spawning upstream, there are more than enough rainbows gorging in the riffles to keep me happy with either nymphs or drys. Yesterday we boated an even dozen trout on drys, a few on nymphs, and quite a few smallies to round out a great day on the water for one angler.
The Topwater fest continues!
Heavy hatches of mayflies every day has the bass looking up and the topwater fishing has been phenominal! Smallmouths to 18" are being taken on Poppers and gurglers as well as with subsurface presentations. The smallmouth fishing this fall is as good as I have ever seen it and it looks as though the current weather conditions will last for at least another few weeks. Walleye are also starting to get agressive as the water cools off.
The Topwater fest continues!
Excellent hatching has the fish looking up! Smallies were feeding thoughout the water column this week as good mayfly hatching activity had fish feeding on top all week. Shad fry are also everywhere in the river so the fish are respongding well to just about any type of presentation . John G and Mark S returned for their annual Upper Delaware fishing trip and had a great time with explosive topwater action.
Excellent hatching has the fish looking up! Smallies were feeding thoughout the water column this week as good mayfly hatching activity had fish feeding on top all week. Shad fry are also everywhere in the river so the fish are respongding well to just about any type of presentation . Joe P and Mike H spent the past couple of days fishing to explosive strikes on top and caught lots of bass.
A little high water? No problem for John G and his grandson Robert who managed to catch close to 50 smallies yesterday.
Bob G had his hands full yesterday with almost constant smallie action. More than fifty fish came to the net, with most fish legal sized and more than a dozen in the 15-16" range. Topwater action was fast and furious as the sun dropped low.
Ed K and buddy John from Long Island came for the day and absolutely crushed the smallies. After a somewhat slow start. the bite really turned on. The strike came fast and jolting. Soft plastics got the job done and the boys ended up with close to 100 fish caught and released for the day!
Dave S. and Brother George S. drove all the way from the state of Delaware to do some fly fishing on the Upper Del. The fly rod was the weapon of choice and smallmouth was the quarry. The Gurgler was the most effective fly accounting for close to 40 smallmouth bass! Helgramite pattern was also effective in the riffles.
Warm water and moderate water level is making for ideal conditions this week. The smallmouth have been very agressive.
Bass fishing is picking up again as the water level drops. Bob G and Joe M had a nice day with lots of action and lots of sunshine. Soft plastics caught most of the fish but quite a few succumbed to topwater.
Heavy rains earlier this week gave the fish a short vacation from fishing pressure. Water level has returned to normal and I expect the fishing to return to the fantastic action we have been experiencing this summer.
Yesterday's afternoon float on the lower West Branch was challenging, but rewarding. Five trout came to net, including a beautiful 19" brown. Sulphers, cahills and Isos all had takers.
Another 90 fish Day! The smallmouth were in the fast water and willing to eat just about anything we threw at them! Topwater accounted for about 25% of the fish with subsurface plugs and soft plastics productive all day.
The smallies kept Steve and Keith busy without a break in the action all day. Topwater was effective all day! The eagles were also busy and there was an eagle visible for most of the day too.
Bob G and Joe M had a busy day with agressive smallies. They were biting as soon as we got on the water and the bite never slowed down all day! A 3.5" green pumpkin tube was the lure of the day once again. Topwater bite was alsoexcellent despite the sunny conditions and the trusty Torpedo brought many fish to net.
7/24/13 Harry and Jake had a reat time yesterday during Jakes first Upper Delaware river float trip. The half day trip netted a total of thirty-eight smallies including several sixteen inchers!
7/23/13 Pat and Bill caught close to forty smallies yesterday on thir first trip to the Upper Delaware River. The fish are slamming paddle tail grubs, tubes and topwater plugs. Highest concentations of fish are in the fast water.