Although I will get out a few days in september and october, this week marks the end of my endless summer days on the water. We start in service days next week at school.
All of the streams near me are at a trickle going from puddle to puddle. There was spotty rain on wednesday night, and I pinpointed a stream that got the brunt of it for thursday morning. I got out of my car and made it 100 yards and 4 wild browns just as a downpour erupted. I decided to wait it out under a bridge, which I did for 20 minutes. When the rain stopped, the stream was completely brown. Due to the limited scope of the rain, the other streams nearby were still too low. I went home.
1.Friday, I made it back to the same stream as thursday and took my brother. We started at the same place I left off during the rain and worked up 1.5 miles which we fished in 2 hours. The water was clear and low, despite the 1.5" of rain over the last 2 days.
There were plenty of wild browns and a few native brookies out and about taking advantage of the still low, but recently elevated water level. I caught a wild tiger here last year so that was in the back of my mind.
This last brookie may be stocked, I'm still not perfect on wild/stocked identification.
There were a few nice stockers holding over since the last stocking in april. These were the biggest two on this stream. A 14.5" brown and a 14" brookie.
And a rainbow to round it out.
We moved quickly as much of the water between deep runs was too shallow to fish.
We encountered some stocked fish too, including this snubnose brown trout. It fought vigorously and seemed completely healthy. I caught one like this a few years ago. I did some internet searching when I got home and found this is fairly common as far as deformations/mutations go in trout.
We totaled 52 trout here. There certainly were many more trout we spotted and missed due to low water. Many times, even when casting from sometimes as much as 15 yards below the bottom of a hole, I just ran out of water and couldn't retrieve any slower as a trout was pursuing my spinner. Under normal flow, I would have had a little extra space for the trout to commit.
My brother left and I made a late morning trip to the only other place I could find water.
2. Fog hung intermittently in the valley.
I haven't fished this water since late may when the water was equally as low, and apparently not many spin fisherman have either as the trout were not spinner shy. Rainbows were the most common species, ranging from 6-15".
A few browns showed themselves as well. A high percentage of the browns I have caught here over the years have the swirly dot type pattern shown below. I haven't seen this pattern consistently anywhere else. All such browns are usually 7-10" range which leads me to believe they must be coming from the same hatchery.
One nice brookie came up from the depths.
I also caught 7 smallies on the same spinners.
Three hours here produced 35 trout for a personal total of 68 for the day.
3.Today, I treated myself to my 3rd time ever fishing a limestone stream. I fished here in early june as my first time ever on limestone water. It is an hour and 50 minute drive over the chestnut and laurel ridges into the ridge/valley region of the state.
I started fishing at 6:15am and did not catch a fish until 6:40. I was completely dumfounded as on my previous visit I landed 99 trout. I did start at a slightly lower spot, but I couldn't understand this. Then, I caught 8 wild browns in 20 minutes.
From then until 10am, the action was extremely spotty, to the point that I would go 20+ minutes without a strike, and then slam 5-10 in a 75 yard section.
One definite that I found was the trout were only caught at the tail end of a pool or riffle, and most of the time, only when the sun was hitting the water. It has been relatively cold the last few nights so perhaps this played a role. I caught 48 wild browns here in 4 hours and 1.6 miles of water.
After eating lunch with a friend who was staying at his camp nearby, I headed to a smaller stream that he recommended.
It was running nearly empty, and I wouldn't have fished if it wasn't my last stop before going home and I was just there to explore.
4.I caught more chubs here than anything, but also 9 wild browns and 3 stocked brookies in 1 mile of stream for a total of 60 today.
[img]<a href="http://i1023.photobucket.com/albums/af357/reg9198/0814151147_zpsl09xlfcj.jpg" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">http://i1023.photobucket.com/albums/af357/reg9198/0814151147_zpsl09xlfcj.jpg
[img]<a href="http://i1023.photobucket.com/albums/af357/reg9198/0814151153_zpstsnyhxjg.jpg" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">http://i1023.photobucket.com/albums/af357/reg9198/0814151153_zpstsnyhxjg.jpg
The last two pictures won't load, I think there is a 20 pic limit so I will post them in a reply. But, I think I will try a different stretch of this stream.
I was looking back on my numbers from the last 2 years which were my best two for trout respectively, and I'm just over 300 ahead of last year. However, we had some major rain events in september last year which helped me get a few more good outings in. I am really hoping for a similar early fall, as there is a stream 10 minutes from me that accounted for 400ish trout last year in 3 outings that I haven't fished yet this year. I will be close whether or not I can surpass last years totals, as I start getting pulled in all directions teaching, coaching, and preparing for archery and trapping season.