Fishing Reports

Mid-summer Report

It has certainly been a while since we have written a report and we appologize for that. Our lack of writing is not due to a lack of fishing guiding or catching. We have had a record June and July for trips this year and the fishing has remaind productive with thunderstorms every few days keeping area rivers at healthy levels. 

Small streams:

Small streams like the Ellis have been fishing very well. Midsized attractor patterns like hippi stompers, and small hoppers have done well on top with small caddis nymphs and copper johns working well subsurface. 

 Cecelia with her first trout on the fly! 

Cecelia with her first trout on the fly! 

Saco River:

With recent rains the Saco has been fishing very well for late August. Ants and hoppers are producing from early morning through about noon. Look for ant swarms to begin on warmer humid days. Browns, Brookies and Bows are all in the mix on the Saco right now. With high water possible at any moment be sure to throw streamers when waters rise. This writer lost a monster last week when the water was chocolate brown. I was sure I had snagged a log when suddlenly a violent pull snapped my 15lb tippet like a cobweb. The Saco has beasts that feed almost exculsively on other fish...including other trout.

Andro:

With the recent heat wave we have been off of the Andro over the past few days. However right before the last heat wave the big river was fishing very well for early August. We landed a few bows to 18" last week on a quick float. With cool temps over the next few nights the Andro should again fish well this weekend and hopefully for the rest of the season! Until water temps drop into the lower half of the 60's morning will be your best bet on the Andro with cloudy days resulting in more prolonged bite windows. Fishing right now on the Andro is primarily a nymphing game with prince nymphs, caddis larva, pheasant tails, and BWO nymphs like WD40's, and mighty mites, being bread and butter patterns. Now is the time to book your fall float on the Andro. Based on what we have seen from the andro so far this season we are anticipating another banner fall season!

 Wild rainbow from a recent float on the Andro 

Wild rainbow from a recent float on the Andro 

What's to come:

You can expect the fishing to only get better over the next few weeks. With night time lows falling into the 50's this week fall hatches of Isonychia mayflies and October Caddis are just about to start! Time to carve out some time to hit the water! We are currently booking dates for August, September and October. Let us know when you would like to get on the water and we will make it happen. See more of our recent catches on instagram @natefish83!

Tight lines,

Nate

Prime Time!

Well it has been a while since I updated the fishing report. This is not due to a lack of fishing or guiding, but due to an overly active schedule. Having a new born baby in the house has taken up all of the brief spare moments I have. Anyways, off the water today due to a rain delay. 

The fishing has been hot and cold on the Andro over the past few weeks with warm temps making for slow fishing at times and hatches spurring epic fishing at other times. It seems things have become more consistent over the past few days and it looks like this rain and cool weather will make for a great rest of June on the Andro. 

Green caddis have been the most consistent bug on the Andro as of late, but mayflies and stones have also had their moments of great importance early and late in the day for mayflies and late in the day for stones. I've done well guiding with my trusty large prince nymph stonefly jigs size 6-8nd PT nymph jigs size 12. My custom parachute purple haze dries have worked on the surface, as have elk hair caddis. Streamers have worked decently well when low pressure systems are incomming. Looks like good streamer fishing today and tomorrow. 

The Saco has fished decently well from what I have gathered from local reports. I've honestly not fished the Saco the last week as float trips have been the agenda and the Saco is running low. This cold rain should get the browns on the move for streamers.

The Ellis river and other mountain streams should fish well from here on out. Reports of wild brookies turning on have me excited for wade fishing trips in the comming weeks. 

No time for me to post pics right now but check out our recent adventures on Instagram @natefish83. 

 

Tight lines,

Nate

Early Spring report

Any time you are away for a month there is a long list of chores upon your return home. While I had plenty of nitty gritty things to get done, I couldn't help but feel responsible to check on our local NH rivers. So after a morning of doing laundry I grabbed the dog and headed to a local stream. 

My nymph rod was still rigged with an Arkansas midge and mega-worm so I decided to give that combo a try in NH. It wasn't long before I was hooked into a fat 16" rainbow. Shortly thereafter I missed some smaller trout before catching one that turned out to be an eight inch wild brook trout. I was happy to see a few fish biting this early in the season. With recent rains there should be plenty of trout moving from our lakes into local rivers and streams. April and early May provide a great window to fish for these larger trout in an intimate setting. We are now booking for April and May. 

 NH Spring run Rainbow trout. 

NH Spring run Rainbow trout. 

On Tuesday I decided to check on some bigger water for bigger fish. I had a hunch that the big browns would be hungry and I suspected that a warm midday sun would provide a bite window. I grabbed the dog and headed out to a slow pool where I knew large fish spent the winter months. I tied on a smaller streamer that I had designed for low water Arkansas browns and began making long casts sweeping through a depth change in the middle of the river. It might have only been my third cast when my line went tight. I stripped hard hoping it wasn't a snag, then the throbbing started and I knew...big brown. 

Fish like these require a pause in the fishing. One takes his or her time admiring the catch and releasing the fish. Then watches the water, thanking the river for showing us a glimpse of her mystery. As I watched another large brown rose to the surface, inspiring me to begin casting again. 

I never did see that second fish on the end of my line and shortly thereafter the air temperature dropped and the wind picked up. Although I kept casting I knew the brown trout were done for the day.

20180403_121741[1].jpg

Early season, or I should say "off season" fishing is often this way. With cold water temps and short periods of warm weather the "Bite" is often short lived. Still it is important to remember that the biggest fish in the river, those that need to consume the highest quantity of calories, will be the first to eat. Conversely these are also the smartest fish in the river who eat the fewer, but bigger meals. Thus early season angling takes a patient calculated approach. It often involves a constant eye on the weather, barometric pressure and wind direction, and then a deliberate conviction of when and where to fish. You must have confidence in your quest. 

This is not the time of the year to catch a lot of trout. It is the time of the year to hunt for THE ONE. I use the term hunt instead of fish, because in order to be successful you need to think about this endeavor as a hunt. If you land one it is a success, and if you don't you take what you have learned into your next hunt. We feel confident that we've learned enough to know when and where the hunt will give anglers a shot or two at success.

I've spent enough time on trophy brown trout waters to know that these fish will eat when they want to eat, not when you want them to eat. Figure out those times, and places and you will be greatly rewarded. If you would like to learn more, and join us on a brown trout hunt, we are currently booking. 

Flows and temps look to provide good bite windows through April and May this year. We look forward to hunting with you. 

Tight Lines,

Nate

Arkansas wrap up

We had a great stay in Cotter Arkansas this March. We were satisfied that all of our clients caught some amazing fish and had at least one if not two epic days on either the White or Norfork rivers. I arrived in Cotter on March 1st with my good friend Brian Boyle. We met up with my good friend Greg Inglis, (formerly of Lopstick Lodge) and began scouting the waters of the northern Ozarks. Last year, I got Brian hooked on chasing big browns with streamers on the Saco river. Brian had heard about the White River and asked if he could come along this season to help row the boat during our scouting session. 

Brian is the kind of guy you want on a scouting mission. Not afraid to get skunked or lose a big fish. He is willing to go through the arduous process of dialing in the fishing. Greg had never met Brian before, but I was confident that the two would hit it off well. It didn't take long especially after Brian showed Greg the cases of Micro brew we had picked up to fuel us through our quest for brown trout.

As is often the case the fishing was slow for us over the first few days. We were dead set on finding big fish on streamers, but the streamer bite was a bit lackluster. We were able to muster a couple fish from 18-20" an most days but we were not seeing much for numbers. Brian was fine with the challenge and seemed more concerned about Greg and I trying to guide in these tough conditions. "It will all fall into place." I explained with confidence. I had been trough this routine before. It was only a matter of time before the conditions improved and we dialed in on the right techniques. 

So after a few days of arduous streamer fishing we moved to the Northfork of the White river and Norfork river where we had much more success with numbers of fish, in the 16-18 inch class. Even though we were catching fish I could tell that Brian's focus was still on the white River, throwing streamers to brown trout. So we returned to the white and Brian did manage a good fish of 20". Still, we knew that the river had more to offer. Brian was confident. "I know I am going to have my best day on the last day here." 

Well Brian was right. if we hadn't had to get him to his plane he probably would have caught more, but in four hours he landed six fish over sixteen inches including his biggest fish of the trip, a 22" male. 

As is often the case, (and I'd have it no other way) Greg and I put our clients on far more big trout than we caught on our own. We had dialed in on when where and why, realizing that nymphing shad patterns, while not as glamorous as throwing streamers, was much more productive. As a high abundance of shad in the river had fish in a lazy snacking mood on most days. 

In the ten days that I fished with Greg and Brian we landed five fish over 20". Conversely in the sixteen days that I guided my clients landed sixteen fish over 20". It would take me all day to post the pictures here but you can find them on our instagram feed @natefish83. 

This is the job of a fishing guide. To go through the frustrations of figuring out the fishing before the clients arrive, and to have that part out of the way for the paying customer. It doesn't always work out perfectly, but, when we put in the time, it pays off. 

As for the future I am not sure I will be able to head back to Arkansas next year, as Alicia and I will be having our first child in May. For those interested in hunting southern brown trout I do have plenty of guide connections in the Ozarks. I'll keep you all posted, I do plan to get back there someday! 

Late Fall Report

Late September/ October wrap up

We apologize for for the lack of reports this fall. From guiding almost every day through late October to a trip to Idaho we have been very busy. Late September and October provided some of the best fall fishing we have seen on the Androscoggin River. We saw more wild rainbows over 15" this fall than we have ever seen! A warmer than usual September and October kept hatches of BWO's and Isonychia mayflies consistent through late October. Things changed with two big rain storms at the end of the month. Lucky for me I was in Idaho enjoying ideal conditions on the South Fork of the Snake river! 

 Typical October dry fly fish. 

Typical October dry fly fish. 

 Androscoggin River Brown...a good one. 

Androscoggin River Brown...a good one. 

 South Fork of the Snake River fishing with Teton Valley Lodge Guide Milan Krainchich. 

South Fork of the Snake River fishing with Teton Valley Lodge Guide Milan Krainchich. 

November Report

We have been out a couple times since returning from Idaho. We had a good streamer bite last Monday when temps were in the 60's with clouds and a light rain. Fishing has slowed a bit more recently as the coldest temps of the season are upon us. Fishing should improve next week as the fish acclimate to this colder weather. We are going to head out in search of some bigger browns next week and we'll let you know what we find. 

 November Rainbow Trout

November Rainbow Trout

Arkansas Update

We still have dates available for our Arkansas trips this coming March of 2018. If you are interested in getting spring started early chasing trophy browns, rainbows and cutthroat please let us know asap as dates are filling fast. Guiding dates are from March 7- March 31st. This is prime time on the White and Norfork rivers! Last year was epic with 50-100 fish days and 18"-22" fish landed nearly every day. 

 Arkansas Fine Spot Cutthroat. 

Arkansas Fine Spot Cutthroat. 

 An Average Norfork River Rainbow. 

An Average Norfork River Rainbow. 

 White River Brown Trout

White River Brown Trout