September 9, 2018 – River flows have increased on the Moose, East Outlet, Roach, and Upper West Branch at Seboomook Dam. Even through water temperature was warmer than we would like some new fish have moved into the river and are being caught on all the rivers. Its not fast and furious but folks who have been doing the catching say the fish are beauties. The next two nights are predicted to be cooler with a frost warning posted for Greenville north tomorrow night. A few degrees drop in water temps and spawning runs will begin to pick up speed. We may even get some measurable rain the beginning of the week, which will help the cause.
When fresh salmon and trout enter a river on their spawning run they tend to be aggressive and very willing to chase down a streamer fly. Often a big Grey Ghost will do the job because those fish are just coming off a steady diet of smelt. After they are in the river for a bit fish are more likely to chase some sort of attractor pattern like a Montreal Whore, Shufelt Special, or Black Ghost. Once fish have been in a river for a while they tend to settle in and not be as aggressive. They’ve seen their share of streamers, maybe been hung by one a couple times and not too anxious chase another. There was a time when we thought late season river fish could only be caught on streamers but over time we realized they will eat a Lays potato chip now and then. It’s a long wait before they actually spawn, sometime in October for brookies and not until November for salmon. So, as September progresses along fish begin peckin’ away at a nymph here and there and nymphing becomes an important component for catching. Think of it like delivering a Lays potato chip to a couch potato. They have eaten plenty in the past so when one more goes drifting by their nose, why not if its easy pickin’. And every fish doesn’t necessarily want a plain potato chip, some want barbeque, others salt and vinegar, or maybe a corn chip. The point we are making here is there isn’t one nymph that works the best come fall. Most hatches have come and gone so aquatic insects are all starting their lives again as nymphs so everyone’s crawling around down there. And there comes a time when it takes five different nymphs to catch five different fish. On days like that when someone lands a fish on a particular nymph we’ll say “you might as well chop that fly off and try another”, only because we can’t catch two fish on the same fly.
As water begins to cool on our remote ponds trout are freed from their lengthy mid-summer stay at the spring holes. The only way they’ll survive the heat of summer when small pond water reaches the mid-70’s is retread to the spring hole where 55-60 degree ground water enters from the bottom. They were fat and happy when they settled into the cooler spring hole water sometime in late July but when they finally get to wander off they are hungry and begin circling a pond looking for anything they can find. There are few fall hatches so finding rising fish can be a chore. In still water fish have to go looking for a meal so trout are constantly on the hunt. So if you tie on a Royal Wulff or a Wood Special and twitch it around on the surface trout will find it. By giving your fly a twitch it produced concentric rings fish key in on. It’s the same act preformed by a crippled bug struggling on the surface. Small bright streamers work just as well when cast a good distance then retrieved just under the surface. You’ll be pleasantly surprised how successful you can be fishing a trout pond that looks like nothing is happening.
So the countdown is on. There isn’t a lot of time remaining before most waters close for the season. This is our favorite time of season when we often land some of the nicest fish of the season.
Stop by the shop on your way through. We can tell you what’s going on & where.