It’s always good to shake off the skunk of winter and get into some fish. Or at least one fish. And the convenience of local streams can’t be beat, especially if time is your most valuable commodity.
While the chill of winter typically doesn’t keep me from getting out, career and personal responsibilities left little time so far to fish or explore new water. Trips are planned for the coming months, but I haven’t been able to get the planets to align long enough to load up the gear and find the first fish of the New Year – until today.
When you win the Connecticut weather lottery in February and get a sixty-degree day, make the most of it. Even if for a couple of hours, it’s still a great chance to get out.
The state started its stocking program early, yet I wanted to try my hand at some wild trout. I’d prefer to spend more time in the water than on the road.
The nearby small streams are often be rewarding, but equally as cold as the water that runs through them. I’ve had great days bending a 3 wt. catching eager brookies and browns on dries, and an equal number dredging the water thoroughly and walking off fishless. The water was low and clear, but I was determined to make the best of it.
Today I wandered a local small stream for an afternoon. Started trying out traditional nymph patterns, then a dry dropper rig, finally landing on a streamer pattern. A simple design of my own, it is described below.
As the stream became narrow and the brush thicker, I found a few small pockets deep enough to hold trout and enough flow to keep them fed. This guy was tucked deep in one such small run. He made no secret that he wanted the streamer. It felt like a hit and run, but he was in my net a few moments later.
The pattern that I tied and used is a size 10 woolly bugger variant. Peacock body, brown hackle & tail, copper bead and and gold wire. Simple, yet it seems to work on both trout and bass.
As the temps rise and opportunities increase, don’t overlook those nearby small blue lines. Who knows, you might be closer to your next fish than you think. Enjoy!