There’s nothing like that first trout on a fly!
I had the pleasure of guiding two wonderful young ladies last week and introducing them to fly fishing for the first time. It was a great day on the water and the perfect picnic weather. I had to post a few pictures and say “Thank You” to the Sitar Art’s Center for connecting us. For those of you who don’t know about “sitar”, it’s a wonderful organization that’s putting art and music in the hands of DC’s kids. I can’t think of a tool that’s more powerful than creativity to help propel them into the future. Check them out and think about getting involved. It’s a remarkable place filled with some great folks.
Not a bad day for a steamside lunch!
With Spring dragging its feet and the air temps making wild swings, the Hendricksons have been slow to show themselves and hot/cold depending on the day. Fortunately there are still a few stoneflies buzzing around the Big Gunpowder Falls to keep anglers out of trouble. Grey comparaduns (think #12 & 14) have been working on rising fish feeding on emerges. A pocket full of midges can save an evening. Last night was no exception to that rule. Finally, there have been a few sulfurs popping out of the water here and there. Get you snow-shoe patterns and your Frog’s Fanny ready!
Not sure about where to start on The Big Gunpowder? Give Knee Deep Fly Fishing a call (or e-mail) and we’ll help outfit you and get you started right.
We’ll see you on the water!
We’ve waited long enough!
It’s about time!
The early black stoneflies are the first real chance we get to fish dry flies in Maryland. Trout are looking up and skittering stones across the surface of the water is a great way to cover a lot of water and catch fish!
We’re booking up for April but still have a couple days left on the calendar for the month. If you’ve not had success in the spring on Maryland’s streams in the early spring, give Knee Deep Fly Fishing a call and let us guide you. We’ll help you make the most of your time on the water.
Ok, it’s only Wednesday but we’re planning ahead. The forecast looks great for Friday and Saturday. With highs close to 60 degrees, there should be some great stonefly action.
What’s that mean for fishing? Dry little black stoneflies and nymphs will be a safe bet but the warm water will be getting bugs of all types stirring. They’ll be moving around in search of the perfect place to take off for their upcoming emergences. Employing wet flies and small streamers (think small wooly buggers and Pax Specials) will bring spring strikes out of the slack water and seams. Don’t forget to wing a wet fly through shallow riffles before crossing the streams and slashing through! I’ve spooked a dozen or more fish out of what seemed like 8” of water while heading to “the good water”. It’s a lesson that’s hard to learn.
In short: fish it all! Don’t be afraid to switch flies often and switch that tippet out when you need to float or sink faster. Can’t escape till Sunday when the forecast looks wet? Grab that rain jacket and hit it anyway. The fish should be active.
Keep your boots in the water!
Micah and the Knee Deep Team
A fat rainbow from the Patuxent River last week
This morning I thought I’d be over dressed for fishing. I started my day south of the Big Gunpowder in 50+ weather and ended at 34 degrees with rain and snow flakes. I know we just have to hang in there for a couple more weeks and we’ll be fishing in t-shirts. – Micah
I met Peter Johnsen at Tie Fest last weekend. He’s working on a film project that sounds pretty cool. His “Great Salmon Tour” is setting out to “document the diversity of salmon and explore the deep cultural and personal connections we humans have to these fish.” That sounds good to me. I happen to have a deep cultural connection to fish
Check out the clip on his Kickstarter page. It looks promising. Maybe skip the mocafrapachino this afternoon and send that $4 his way. He’s already off to a good start. If it goes well, maybe there’ll be a brook trout film in the future.
Keep your tip on the water,
For us here at Knee Deep (it’s a group effort) the show and expo circuit is wrapping up and, while sitting in a pile of boxes, plastic tubs, and extension cords, it’s nice to know that the air is warming up outside. Traveling to the shows and meeting so many anglers has been rewarding. It’s especially refreshing to meet new anglers and see their enthusiasm. Nothing makes you want to hit the water like hearing someone talk about their first trout on the fly. For those who really get the fly fishing bug, that feeling is the same for every fish caught after that first one.
For me the winter is a time to see old friends from near and far. As a kid, it was when family would come to town and we’d fish tiny streams for brook trout up in NJ. Nowadays, it’s a reminder of all the great fishermen (and women!) that I’ve been lucky enough to have fished with in the last 25 years and who’ve shaped who I’ve become. One pal I tied next to at the shows has known me since I was a 10 year old kid riding my bike to the river with a fly rod in hand. Some of the guys who let me tag along on trips to NY state all those years ago came to see me in in NJ and there is no way to describe how fantastic that feels. They’re still letting me tag along on their fishing adventures all these years later. It’s all been a reminder that the fly fishing family is very large but has a great spirit and will continue on for many years down the road.
Last but not least, during this season’s show circuit I’ve met so many supportive spouses along the way. Some of us have wives who may or may not fish but are supportive enough to set us free from the house every once in a while to share angling with others. Maybe it’s easier to let us run than listen to grumble while painting the house or working on the car. I don’t know how they live with us sometimes. I know I couldn’t have done it without my wife and I’m sure there are many other fishermen out there who feel the same way. Thanks Dear!
Thank you to everyone who attended the shows and stopped by to say “Hello” this winter. Knee Deep Fly Fishing wouldn’t be here without you.
Keep your tip on the water!
Tie Fest Is almost here! Saturday is THE day to go get your tying fix with some of fly fishing’s most addicted tiers. There will be people tying, telling big fish tales, and shops showing off their gear. I’ll be there tying and telling some of the hardest to believe stories. IT’s going to be a fun day and I hear the facility will have a great restaurant with tasty grub AND a bar. What more could you ask for?
Get yourself there!
Micah & The Knee Deep Team
For anglers, this is the time of the winter when cabin fever starts to take hold. Maybe it’s when we’re in the car in the mornings and we notice we now need sunglasses again rather than headlights. For the hardcore trout bums, perhaps they notice the dog is waiting for them to get up and get moving. Whatever it is, we know spring is coming. We just have to hold on!
If you didn’t make it to Somerset, NJ for The Fly Fishing Show, you’ve got another chance to get your fix. The crew is on their way to Lancaster, PA for the weekend of March 2nd/3rd. I’ll be there tying and telling even bigger fish stories (it’s been a long winter) and hope to see some of you there.
The next weekend, March 9th, is Lefty Kreh’s “Tie Fest” closer to home in Grasonville, MD with the gang from CCA Maryland. This one is going to be pretty cool. It’s the region’s best tiers and guides getting together to share what’s coming out the jaws of their vises. There’s even a bar so you can buy them a beer and try to get them to let go of a few secrets. I’ll be tying there too so be sure and stop in for an hour or two just to say hello.
Looking forward to these two events should help to ease the pain of winter. Last year the stoneflies were climbing out of the water by the second week of March so there’s an end in sight!
From the Cumberland Times-News:
Looks like Sandy did a number on one of Maryland’s trout hatcheries.
Warm weather this week has water temps hitting 43 on the Gunpowder Falls river gauges and the weekend looks great. We’re crossing our fingers for 45! Here at Knee Deep we are big fans of Foote’s forecast for Maryland. It’s spot on for the Baltimore/DC area. While they are calling for a warm weekend – maybe some stonefly action – there’s a cold blast out to the West that’ll bring winter right back to us. Thanks to the folks at Gentner Consutling for turning us on to that Foote’s!
So what’s that mean for the fishing? It means you’ll need to get back to dredging nymphs with a hat and gloves. Not your cup of tea? Don’t have a hat and gloves? Get yourself to one of the upcoming expos put on by the folks at The Fly Fishing Show!
As a youth, I made a trip every season to the Somerset, NJ show with my father and brothers. It was a great chance to catch up with old friends in the isles and meeting the folks rewriting the book on fly fishing was inspiring. I’d go home with bags of hackles and threads with a refreshed enthusiasm for tying flies and rod building and spend the following weeks of winter in the basement with my family tying flies and building up for the warm weather to come. I recall a few icy trips to the Ken Lockwood Gorge with newly built rods in hand and Korkers on our feet just to get close to the water’s edge. I also recall snapping at least one on a frozen maiden voyage!
As a young fly-tier, The Fly Fishing Show was a chance for me to spend a weekend asking every question under the sun and shake the tying tables of guys like Bob Clouser and Bob Popovics; heroes to a kid who grew up fishing the surf. I’d run into the gang from my local TU chapter and ask the advice of my older fishing and tying friends about which necks to buy and dig through mountains of materials just looking for the perfect new thing that would catch me more fish. It was a great opportunity for a kid like me and the trip to Somerset became a pilgrimage for my family.
This year will be a great chance to catch up with friends at Somerset, NJ (Jan 25-27th) and at Lancaster, PA (Mar 2-3rd). Yours truly will by tying flies at both shows and can’t wait. I’m looking forward to seeing lots of old familiar faces at both shows. With any luck they’ll put me next to someone like NJ ‘s Matt Grobert and my table will get some overflow traffic.
Get out there this weekend if you can and get planning now for the Fly Fishing shows coming to the area. Don’t miss the chance to fill your winter with fly fishing!
Keep your tip on the water,