The Gunpowder is flowing at 164 CFS, is 41 degrees and clear. A glimpse of winter weather late tonight in the form of sleet, snow and ice will likely make it tough going on the trails till tomorrow around mid-morning. With cold weather just starting in late January, anglers have plenty of winter fly fishing on the way. With black flies, midges and stoneflies commonly hatching from January through late February we are close to fishing dries again. Nymphing with small, heavy stonefly patterns in very shallow stretches of the river has been most effective in the catch and release area. A good strategy that will keep one warm on cold, blustery days is to hike the trails with a slightly heavier rod fitted with a short sink-tip line and a trace of 4x flourocarbon and a conehead bugger. Watch your step and fish the riffles and log jams outside of the catch and release area. These waters are typically a little warmer, (up to 5 degrees) than the waters immediately downstream of the Dam when it is spilling over.
The shop will be closed Tuesday the 10th through Friday the 13th of this week.
The shop will be open Saturday the 14th, Sunday the 15th and Monday the 16th from 10 AM till 4 PM.
The shop will be closed on Tuesday the 17th of next week.
The shop will be open Wednesday the 18th from 10 AM till 4 PM and will resume normal hours on the 19th.
The Gunpowder is flowing at 155 Cfs and is 42.5 to 45F throughout the catch and release section. Spillover since mid-September has dramatically changed how anglers are approaching the river. Anglers adjusting to flows above 185 Cfs have been forced to bring along a wading staff use longer leaders in the 10 to 12 ft range and use heavier flies, such as Copper Johns to get to the bottom. Blue winged olives and cream midges are accounting for the majority of the dries present along the river. Little black stoneflies are just starting to show up on warm afternoons so be sure to pick up a few quill winged stoneflies from the muffin tins the next time you’re up visiting the shop.
Thanks to Alex for the stream report and photos he put together during his winter break:
I spent a few afternoons on the Gunpowder throughout the past week. The water has been fluctuating around 200 cfs with rain and spillover. However, the spillover has led to colder than normal temperatures for this time of the year, as the water is in the upper 40s. I have mostly fished from Masemore Road upstream towards the Dam. On warmer days, black midges in the # 20-24 range have been coming off. Deep nymphing has been my approach to the higher flows. San juan worms, small hairs ears, and zebra midges have picked up a few fish on long 6x leaders. Make sure you carry split shot with you. This time of the year, you want to be ticking the bottom as the fish won’t move too much for a meal. I have also picked up a few fish on white and vanilla streamers. Stripping them in the back-eddies or swinging them through riffles has worked for me.
Last week I delivered eyed Kamloops Strain Rainbow eggs as part of Trout Unlimited’s TIC program to Bel Air High School. About 160 students will be exposed to the TIC program and the students will rear the fry, learn about basic water quality needs and release the fingerlings in the spring in regulated trout waters in the State of Maryland. The wall art adorning the halls was quite inspiring! Once the fertilized eggs hit 54 F, (approximately the same temperature as the receiving waters) they are ready to go into the brooding baskets in the TIC tanks and should hatch out in just a few days.