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Water Clarity: Clear-Stained-water levels and clarity will change quite a bit over the next week

Water Temperatures: 34-40

Hatches: A few midges and winter stones

Suggested Patterns: Zebra Midges-#18-20, Small P Tails, Small Copper Johns, Montana Prince Nymphs, Girdle Bugs, Kaufman Stones, Spanish Bullets #14-16, Frenchies, Squirmies, Mops, Small Jig Streamers

We hope everyone has been having a good winter. It’s definitely been an odd one. With the really warm temps over the next week, if you haven’t dusted off your fly rod it’s time to. A few of the guides have been doing a little winter fly fishing here and there and a handful of our customers have been getting out a ton this winter. It’s definitely nice to be able to get out and hit all the local streams with the expanded year round waters from a few years back. If you’re not familiar, be sure to go check them out on the state’s website. 

All the fish being caught right now are either on nymphs or streamers, mostly dead drifted although a few good trout have hit streamers on the swing and strip. With the temps still on the cooler side, a lot of the fish are still in the slower, deeper pools. This will likely remain the case for a while. Don’t forget there’s always exceptions to that so be sure to take a few casts in the shallower, faster water as well. Be sure to be on the lookout for spawning rainbows, it’s probably still a little early but you never know. If you see fish paired up in shallower gravel it’s safe to assume they’re spawning and should be left alone. Also be on the look out for redds, and be sure not to walk on them.

As far as flies go, there’s no huge surprises as to what will be working over the next few weeks. Smaller, heavy jig streamers dead drifted along with traditional streamers slowly swung on a dead drift will be aq good choice. On the nymphing front, worm patterns, mop flies, stoneflies and larger p tails should all catch fish. With the cooler temps, getting the flies in front of fish are likely going to be more important than the particular pattern you’re using. If you’re using a bobber be sure to adjust your depth and determine where the bottom is. The best way to do this is to run your bobber higher than you think you need to, once you see your flies are hitting bottom lower your bobber just enough that your flies aren’t dragging bottom. It’s important to remember this step every time you change pools as they won’t all be the same depth.

After tomorrow the weathers going to be fairly warm most days. This will add some snow melt to the rivers and bring the flows up a decent amount in some areas. If you plan to go out, focusing on areas with less snow may not be a bad idea, think champlain valley, otter valley, etc… The less snow there is the lower the streams will be and in theory the warmer the water will be. All good things to seek out when fishing this time of the year. 

For everyone getting out, good luck and enjoy the warmer weather!!




The Fly Rod Shop is Northern Vermont’s finest fly fishing guide service and fly fishing gear retailer. Visit our shop on Route 100 in Stowe, VT or shop our online store to find gear from Simms Fishing Products, Redington, Loon Products, Montana Fly Company, Lamson Waterworks, Winston,  Sage, Rio, Scientific Angler, Thomas and Thomas and more