July 2007 Report
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29 - Lehigh River News!!!!
Pasted below is some great news for all Lehigh
River and PA anglers. This very well might be a first-of-its-kind
study for PA and its tailwaters. Maybe this will begin a trend?
However, as with any study, the key will be to follow through
and implement the results. The language below is copied
from the website of Congressman
Water Appropriations Bill: $175,000 for data collection
and modeling by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, in cooperation
with local entities, to determine how the operation of the Francis
E. Walter Reservoir can be modified to effectively support a
cold water fishery along the Lehigh River.
29 - Francis E. Walter Releases
Finally, some rains!!! For the first time in what could be
close to two months the release from Francis E Walter is at
250cfs during a non-whitewater release. The reason for such
low-releases over the recent past is as simple as a lack of
rainfall in the Lehigh River watershed
upstream of Walter and restrictions put in place by the 2007
Flow Plan. However, due to recent heavy
rains (3.5" over the last five days), inflow into Walter
is (as of writing) well above 250cfs, therefore the Corps can
now release the Flow Plan's max release - which is 250cfs (unless
we are in a catastrophic event), until the lake reaches the
Plan's target lake level of 1,360'-1,365. The lake is at approx
right now. The reason for the max of 250cfs is to 'skim'
some water and replenish the pool for whitewater events as opposed
to matching outflow with inflow (450cfs as of writing). Now
if we do not get back to 1,360' and the inflow drops below 250cfs,
which is very likely, augmentation releases will kick-in depending
on what the rule-curve
indicates. Confused yet? Shoot us an email if you have questions...
24 - Upper D - Montague
Most fly fisherman know about the 1,750cfs flow target at Montague,
NJ. Lately it has barely been met and in fact over the weekend
the flows at Montague were well below the magic number. The
target is a mandate from the 1954
Supreme Court Decree, "in order to ensure adequate
19 - Update
A few weeks ago while on the Upper D, the Isos were hatching
good during the mid-afternoon period. Our go-to fly for this
emergence is what we consider to be an Iso emerger. Antron shuck,
maroon body and a grey cdc wing. This particular patternis tied
on a TMC 200R - which is not really necessary. A standard dry
hook - 2x long will do the job.
The real-deal photoed above. After taking a good
look at the color-scheme, a much darker dun body might need
to be incorporated into the next generation of iso patterns.
16 - Lower D Report
For a change of pace we fished the lower D over the weekend.
The stretch of water fished features some of the most structure-laden
water found anywhere along the entire length of the Delaware
River. Our hopes were to tangle with a few smallies - the bigger
the better, and maybe even a striper or two. Well, we found
the bass, but not the pigs we were hoping for. By far the most
effective fly was anything that had white in it - clouser, bugger,
bunny, etc. This is no doubt due to the abundance of YOY shad
which are throughout the river right now. They are everywhere!!!
Largest smallmouth only went 10" - really not too much
to write home about, but nonetheless they were a blast on a
light rod. With all the structure there has to be larger fish
roaming about. In the near future a bit more exploring is going
to have to be worked into the schedule if this trend for low
water flows continues.
12 - Upper D - West Branch
For hot weather trout fishing, you cannot beat the coldwater
influenced West Branch tailwater. And a recent trip up that
way did not disappoint. This time of year if there are steady
releases from the bottom of Cannonsville, you can find a consistent
mid-day sulphur hatch, along with isos, and caddis. The isos
can provide exciting blind fishing, with explosive top-water
swipes. We are talking lightning fast boils. The sulphur fishing
on the other hand is more of a stealthy rise-type situation
with maybe just a little dimple or subtle head-rise poking thru
the surface tension. The sulphurs tend to run small - 18-20s.
An orange-bodied parachute brought the fish photoed below. One other tid-bit is, don't overlook the skinny water,
or bank water - especially in higher flows. These West Branch
fish tend to position themselves along the banks. Tight to the
banks. Now, the other bug hatching this time of year in heavy
numbers, but not till just about dark is the summer steno. These
run very yellow to orange. They are also a bit bigger than the
sulphurs. A parachute does a good job imitating this bug. Of
course you cannot forget the trusty flashback pheasant tail.
These babies flat-out produce! One of these days we will get
pic of a tie up on the site.
Fat sulphur eater.
5 - Tully - Trikes - Report
Sorry for the lateness of this. Over the weekend we had out
Gary and Tim on the Tully. Both are getting back into the "game"
and wanted to reduce the learning curve...so they asked FFPA
for some instruction. Right off the bat there was a bit of 'rust'
to chip away, but with some helpful tips and a few casting reps,
a nice rhythm was found by both anglers. Just like riding a
bike, eh? Once on the water we were greeted to a heavy trike
hatch with big swarms of mating insects above the riffs. That
was a pleasant surprise since we have found the hatch dwindling
the last few years. The fish were on the feed right away, ad
rising pretty consistently. Even though the tricos were all
over, a cdc caddis did the trick. The Tully trout just could
not resist a well-presented caddis. Tim managed to get a hook-up
right away, and then there was a bit of a lull in the action...so
a move to different water was in order. Good thing, because
we found the "honey" hole and both guys were putting
a hurtin' on the fish in no time. Dry-dropper rig was the ticket
with both anglers ended up with close to 6-8 fish to the net
by end of the morning. Numerous LDRs also made things exciting
for the last 2 hours of the outing. It was a beautiful morning,
but the crowds made it hard to move around and cover different
stretches of water.