Posted on April 18, 2013 | Permalink
Brook Trout in the Mountains
Location: Washington County Stream
First time fishing this stream, and I swear some sections looked exactly like the upper Rapidan in Shenandoah country. Not many stones were coming off like previous days in the Catoctin mountains, but I was able to draw a bunch of strikes on a Humpy, and even landed one or two. After, fishing my way upstream, the stream got narrower, and more and more plunge pools started showing up. I broke out the woolly bugger, and started stripping for some better sized trout. As I was reeling up to move on to the next hole, I lift my rod, and there is a solid 10" brookie. Measured. I have caught brookies longer then this guy, but none as fat. I called it a day, and decided to scout a few tribs, that might be worth a trip.
Posted on November 13, 2012 | Permalink
Trout Fishing at Owens Creek
Location: Owens Creek
I hit Owens Creek a couple weeks after the stocking, 550 is still closed but you can still take the detour through Cunningham and reach some of the nicer pools. I met a couple of live bait guys who said not to even try the deep hole. I go to the hole armed with joe’s flies ... nothing. Switched to a Trout Magnet white color... nothing then I tried the salmon color and that turned them on. I caught 2 rainbows and 3 browns including a 9 inch and an 11 inch. I had about a 15 - 16 inch rainbow on but it came off because he didn’t bite it well enough. I saw that someone else must’ve had him and broke his line because he had a flashy spinner in his mouth. Those browns fight hard. Owens is just about done in terms of catching them easily. I’ll go there with a fly rod in a week or two with some mayflys probably.
Posted on November 7, 2012 | Permalink
A Little Spring Creek in Washington County
Location: Stream in Washington County
Washington County can be defined as the limestone center of Maryland just because of the karst area, and with that most streams in the area can certainly be defined as limestone spring creeks (if it's a spring creek to begin with) or at least a spring creek with a limestone influence. This little stream is no different. No more than three feet wide in any location, this little stream is not special in size, but it is big in beauty, and the wild trout that call it home are just an added bonus.
This spring creek starts on a little farm, where the watercress is plentiful and so are the cows. As the stream meanders, it runs through many farms, backyards, under a major highway, and gains more and more cold spring water with each passing farm from small feeders or springs. The stream runs for a couple miles before flowing into a larger water system. This stream, throughout all its reaches, is all private property, and you must ask permission to fish it. After meeting some friends of a friend and gaining access to the stream, I climbed an electric fence (that was live, but I didn't know that at the time, so always be cautious) and immediately noticed the big 2"+ grasshoppers that hopped every step I took. This section of the stream is definitely not the best part to fish as far as size and numbers. The first thing I noticed was that there were no fences. The livestock had access to walk into the stream whenever they pleased, in fact a couple cows came by while I was casting to the little runs and riffles. To keep it short, no fish were landed whatsoever, but I am sure they are here on this property, ready to be caught. I fished a couple attractor dry fly patterns including a size 14 march brown and other mayfly imitations, as well as some hopper patterns.
Posted on September 4, 2012 | Permalink
Beaver Creek Has Been Good To Me
Location: Beaver Creek
Beaver Creek has fished well lately, hoppers, scuds, as well as wet ants have been the ticket. This is a great fishery with great potential and lots of fish. The presentation must be good, no drag. Fished a couple sections including the upper fly only, and some private water which I was lucky enough to gain permission to fish it. Biggest brown has been right around 13", and a couple wild rainbows reaching 9", but most of the wild rainbows I caught were around 7" and their colors are beautiful. Biggest fish from the private water was a 19" rainbow who fought like a wild, but was not "born" in the stream, but sure did have some awesome colors.
Posted on July 12, 2012 | Permalink
Owens Creek: Take Advantage of It
Location: Owens Creek - Above Rt. 15
With the summer stocking of browns and rainbows into Owens Creek, the fish have been plentiful. This far into summer, the fish have become very wiery and are concentrated in the deeper pools below riffles that give the fish plenty of oxygen. I have caught fish on ants, small prince nymphs-tan, and a couple on an olive woolybugger, size 6, tied with a conehead. I personally, have found more fish concentrated aboveRoute 15, but still caught a couple nice ones below as well. I fished a 7'6" three wt., and for fishing some of the woolybuggers and other streamers, I fished an old school 7' fiberglass 5wt. Rod.
Posted on July 6, 2012 | Permalink
Potomac Valley Fly Fisheries
Location: Greenbrier State Park
About a week and a half ago, Potomac Valley Fly Fishers had an outing to Greenbrier. Most members who came either brought a kayak, canoe, etc, and those without one was paired with someone else. I brought my kayak and rigged it up and after a couple minutes of discussing what to use, everyone was off. The fishing was kind of slow in the beginning but heated up as the sun was setting. I fished a popper with great success, I landed numerous largemouth bass, a couple bluegill, and one green sunfish. Most of the others caught a couple too, including Jack's (another youth of PVFF) huge redear sunfish that hit a popper. It wasn't about catching fish though, just a good time on the water with fellow fly fisherman.
I thought I would also include that PVFF will be having a Youth Learn to Fly Fish Course at Catoctin Creek Park, July 21st from 9:00 to 4:00. For more info go to www.pvflyfish.org.
Posted on June 22, 2012 | Permalink
First Carp on the Fly
Location: Secret Mudhole
Ever since I started fly fishing about a year ago, I have wanted to catch a carp on the fly. They are renowned for their long runs and stubborn-ness to take a fly just when you think everythings right, then they reject it. I have tried multiple times to attempt to catch my first carp on the fly and all were fails. But, that all changed when Matt (former owner of Beaver Creek Fly Shop) offered to take me to a backwater bog, called "the mudhole." And the name speaks for it all; mud knee deep, snappers as big as a four-year-old, and probably snake infested. But it has carp, and lots of them too.
We were out around 11 a.m. and the rain continued to pour, but maybe it was for the best. I rigged up my seven weight fly rod that I won from the casting contest from The Brotherhood of the Junglecock with about six feet of 8lb test leading to a crayfish pattern tied by Matt. We looked around a little and saw feeding carp and fresh mud although they were very hard to see with the rain. I started blind casting to some fresh mud while Matt inspects some other water. Three casts in, I'm hollering and yelling, and I have my first ever carp on the fly on the end of my line. After a couple minutes of fighting, Matt beached it and can't believe on the third cast I caught a fish. It was a solid carp that put up a great fight, not a mark on him. After a couple photographs, we release him back intothe water.
We set up on another spot and saw a fish feeding about five feet in front of us, he doesn't like it but there is another one mudding about 15 feet out. I make a roll cast about one foot in front of it and six inches to his left. I see him turn on it, my line tightens, and boom, my second carp on the fly. After plenty of running, we get him close in about six inches of water and he then splashes and the muddy boggy water goes directly into Matt's mouth. That repeats several more times, and finally he learns to keep his mouth closed when landing fish. We are still trying to find what diseases can occur because of this situation. It is another solid carp; and a great day so far and it is only 45 minutes into fishing.
We head to the last section of the backwater and see plenty of fish mudding. After about 20 casts, I finally find a fish that wants to eat a pink San Juan worm. He screams line off and all we could see were ripples going everywhere because all of the fish were retreating. After another fight, my third ever carp on the fly comes to hand. All in all, it was a very fantastic day, although it probably was a fluke because the carp just wanted to welcome me into the world of fly fishing for carp. So thank you carp, and thank you Matt for taking me to this special place to "play around" with some carp.
Tackle: Seven weight rods with crayfish patterns and a pink San Juan worm also did great.
Summary: Carp fishing is fantastic, nothing else like it.
Posted on June 20, 2012 | Permalink
Project Healing Waters Event on Beaver Creek
Location: Private Section of Beaver Creek
To start off, Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing is a great organization which helps veterans and active wounded warriors. PHWFF sets up plenty of events on special waters and the warriors that show up are usually met by a local who guides them on the water. These events are everywhere, from Belize to Alaska to our local Beaver Creek in Washington County. On this date we fished a private section of water which is very well maintained and has an excellent stocked rainbow and wild brown trout fishery. Wild brown trout occur throughout Beaver Creek and can exceed great size in this small water as the DNR did several electrofishing outings which yielded browns over 20 inches and one over 24 inches. The rainbow trout populations in both the private water and public sections achieve great size, with some being caught over 29 inches.
The day started with the guides meeting the warriors at the Beaver Creek Fly Shop. James Harris, owner of the fly shop, was grateful enough to give each warrior a container of flies, and later in the day ran back to the store to get a pair of forceps for a warrior who forgot his own. My warrior was SFC Walt Morse, who I guided a couple months back at the event on Little Owens Creek. I was surprised with the gift of a engraved custom fly box from Walt for helping out at previous events. The guides and warriors then left Beaver Creek Fly Shop and headed to the private water. Walt rigged up and we headed to the stream; in the upper reaches of the private section, the water is deep and is protected with plenty of shade, plus because it is a limestone stream, the temperature hovers around cool temperatures year round. A little bit downstream, the stream splits in two, and one side includes a huge waterfall which is a very good fishing spot. On the other side, the stream goes over a man made chute which creates a large pool and then reconnects with the other side before flowing off of the property. We rigged up with a mayfly pattern and green weenie as a dropper, as we saw plenty of risers. After a half hour of no action, we worked our way downstream and changed to a size 4 kreelex fly tied in an orange/gold pattern. He begun swinging the streamer in the deep pools, after about 10 minutes, he left to take some photographs of fellow warriors fishing. He gave the rod to me, and before you know it, I was hooked up on the second cast. Just a small rainbow that gave a hard fight. Two casts later, a little bigger fish, and I was landing him the same time in which Walt was returning, he was disgusted ;). "I leave you alone for five minutes and this...!" I land the fish and we measure it, 17 inches, not too bad, we then release back to it's home. I then give the rod to him and he lands a rainbow about 19 inches two casts later. We snapped a photograph, and back he goes. We fish until lunch with him landing (I think) two more small ones. Lunch was hotdogs and hamburgers, I wasn't hungry, all I could think about was hooking my warrior into one of those 30 inch beasts that live here. Well, no 30 inchers landed today, and after lunch, a few more casts then back to the vehicles to head home. All in all, it was a very successful day and some nice fish landed. Other warriors landed a couple two, with one guy landing four (thanks to chumming...hmmmm....James...). I'm glad to help out any day especially to Project Healing Waters. Potomac Valley Fly Fishers has several outings with PHW this year, you can go to their website to see more. devinsfishingreports .com
Tackle: I wasn't fishing, but the fish were caught on streamers, mainly the kreelex. I recommend fishing a five weight no matter where you are in Beaver Creek, just in case if you hook up with a beast, you will be able to stop it from breaking you off.
Summary: Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing is a great organization, and I encourage you to help out in events like this one, it is really rewarding.
Posted on June 12, 2012 | Permalink
Fishing on Frank Bentz Memorial Lake
Location: Frank Bentz Memorial Lake
Frank Bentz Memorial Lake is a small sediment filled pond in Thurmont Md, named after a great fisherman and one of the founders of The Brotherhood of the Junglecock, Frank Bentz Sr. The lake doesn't get much more than six foot deep and you can wade out into the middle of the lake where Big Hunting Creek flows into the lake. Wading out to the middle is the ideal fishing location as you can easily cast anywhere in the lake, during the height of stocking season, the pond becomes littered with anglers catching their limit. During opening day every year, you will not be able to find a spot on the lake even at 5:30 am
When stocking settles down there are lots of trout leftover, and these fish will feed on all of the insects that wash down from Big Hunting Creek, plus the many hatches of mayflies that occur in the lake. The fish will be positioned in six inches of water feeding on incoming insects, so you should wade out carefully and cast to each rise.
Late May or early June are prime times for fly fishing for these trout which can be caught on a variety of mayfly patterns. I also have had some great luck fishing a size 14 or 16 princehead nymph, be sure to add a little Xink to make the fly sink down quicker and you have a greater chance of letting the fish see your nymph.
This outing, I landed several and missed a ton, it can be hard to get the hook set on fish that you are casting to 50 feet out. Play the fish quickly not to scare the others. If you don't see risers after you land one, give it a break and head down to below the dam for some smallmouth, which many do not know about.
Tackle: Long leaders are a necessity in order to not scare the fish; be sure to match the natch and present the fly with a delicate presentation. I usually fish a three weight here, although some fish a five in case you do hook up with one of those 26 inchers that the DNR stocks.
Summary: Many people think, "oh it hasn't been stocked in two weeks, it is no good." Well, most of the time that is not true unless the lake experiences severe hotness. NOTE: Because we have received over 90 degree temperatures several times, there will not many fish left, but the ones that do survive, are the ones that pile up to the cool spring fed water of Big Hunting Creek.
Posted on June 7, 2012 | Permalink
The Brotherhood of the Junglecock WeekenFly Fishing Camp
Location: Camp Airy Ponds and Owens Creek
Friday, May 18th - The alarm went off and after 20 minutes, we were on the road headed up for Camp Airy to help with the fish stocking. I met my sponsor and we drove to a private section of Owens Creek to stock the trout, all 500. We stocked two places, one section for the third and fourth year boys, and one for the fifth year boys. I was put in the fourth year boys although it was my first time. We waded down the creek carrying a "box of Trout," releasing a couple every 10 feet. After stocking, we went back to camp, checked in and went to our cabins. After that, we were off to the ponds to fish for the Trout stocked a couple days ago, they opened up at one o'clock. 15 minutes of waiting later, I cast my line and I'm quickly rewarded with a decent 15" largemouth and a 1/4 oz. Joe's Flies. The next cast I would land a rainbow, and the next cast I would land another rainbow, then no trout the rest of the day. I then fished for sunnies and bass, and caught plenty of each on both fly and spin tackle.
When the bite slowed down, my sponsor and I headed to the freshly stocked Owens Creek, only managed one, saw plenty…
Saturday, May 20th - After getting some breakfast, I walked down to the ponds to see if I couldn't get something to hit on the woollybuggers that I just tied in the Frank Bentz Hall. Well, I got nothing, so it was time for lunch. After lunch, fourth year students got on the bus and headed to a private section of Owens. First it was fishing time, I landed some chubs and redear sunfish, and a new species, the….hornyhead chub. The horn blew, and a group went to entomology. After that, we headed back down to the stream for some casting practice, and that's where I caught some trout that we stocked the previous day. They were rising to what looked like a small mayfly hatch. But me and a friend landed something, or had something hit every good cast under an overhanging tree with just a small princehead nymph under a lightning strike indicator.
We got back on the bus, and on the way back dropped whoever wanted to participate in the casting contest off at the ponds. The targets were three hula hoops positioned with a weight at different distances. I think I did pretty well, I received third at dinner that night, and I picked out a 8'6" 7wt HT combo with Cortland First Cast WF7F line.
That night was the special program and campfire in which I got initiated into The Brotherhood. The day was great.
Sunday, May 21st - The last day was sort of a wrap up of everything that happened on Saturday and Sunday. There were no classes, and we mostly fished the whole day along with a little breakfast and lunch when my family swung by. The morning arose early, and I packed up my belongings, and my next goal was to get a little food in my tummy. After eating, I headed down to the pond. Tons of people were there enjoying the last day of fishing, I did catch a few sunfish (bluegill + redear sunfish) and bass, and even a couple trout on nymphs. The trout were relating to shade and sometimes they were also rising to maybe damselfly hatches. I caught a great 17.5 inch rainbow, which was the biggest fish of mine during the weekend. The whole week was great, and in case you did not see the May 27th Frederick News Post Outdoor section, Dan Neuland (fellow member of PVFF, and will be the featured guest speaker at June's meeting) did a great write up about the whole weekend, and you can view the article on the Frederick News Post website.