The Gunpowder River is clear, flowing at 60 CFs and is just over 33 F. While we have not many folks braving the cold weather, a few folks from out west who thought the weather was “good enough” gave the Bunkerhill, Masemore and York Road stretches an honest try this week. Reports coming back pointed to the effectiveness of zebra midges in the #20-24 range behind rubber legged stoneflies. If you’re dead set on giving the Gunpowder a try, make sure you have an extra set of gloves in your vest or pack and bring along a wading staff to test the edge ice. New snow along the River has improved the footing on the trails this week. With more snow in the forecast and rain on the way, these images from Falls road this morning simply won’t last as the snow and ice lets go upstream along the ridges. This week most of our store traffic as been comprised of folks picking up last minute items before boarding planes to warmer fly fishing destinations like Argentina, the Bahamas, Belize, Chile and New Zealand. We’ve also had a fair share of people picking up Maryland fishing licenses for 2015. If you’re ready for one please bring along your DNRid, last year’s license or a driver’s license and check or cash for payment.
The Gunpowder River is clear, flowing at 70 Cfs and is 38.5 F. Thanks to Emma Reider for this great mid-winter shot of Josh in a pair of Simms Guide boots along the Gunpowder River. We’ve heard a few reports of stoneflies buzzing around in the meadow stretches of the lower catch and release section of the River. Not many fish are taking dries but the River is at a perfect level for high-stick nymphing. If you’re dead set on fishing dries, look for a few BWO’s at Masemore Rd. Little black flies or snow flies start to come off this time of year in the upper catch and release section. As long as the trails are clear of ice fishing upstream of the Boulder Pools above Falls Rd is a good bet. Give them a go with a #22 Griffith’s Gnat or Mike Bachkosky’s snow fly pattern.
Thanks to Stefan for the stream report:
Slow down everything. With water temps in the mid-30′s the fish aren’t going to be very active. With this in mind try to cover slower water with small Hare’s Ears nymphs and midges. Gunpowder trout see a lot of very realistic patterns so don’t be afraid to tie something wacky on. Remember that just because it is cold doesn’t mean that you can’t catch fish.
The Gunpowder River is clear, flowing at 68 Cfs and 38.8 degrees F. Midges and stonefly nymphs are a good bet. The trails are icy so it’s better to access the River carefully at Masemore or York Rd access points and stay in the River. Windy days have been better spent tying flies or organizing boxes for the spring. Thanks to Emma Reider for the great shots taken along the Gunpowder River and to Josh for the stream report:
After the snow storm came through this past week temperatures have been intimidating. Dressing in the correct clothing this time of year can make or break your time on the water. I have been wearing a Capilene 3 top from Patagonia as a base layer then adding a fleece or shell over it. Wearing a warm hat and gloves is also key. The Simms wool fingerless gloves are easy to fish with but keep one very warm. With such cold temperatures, fishing has been tough. Nymphing with a small stonefly or midge imitation will be your best chance for the next few weeks until we start to see the Black fly hatches in the upper River. After that, the stoneflies will pick up towards the end of the month.
The Gunpowder River is flowing at 123 CFs, is slightly off color and 42.5 F. If you have a rain jacket you can rely on it might be time to make a splash play of your own to ring in the New Year. When the River levels move up opportunistic browns can often be tricked with a sink-tip/streamer combination. An 11″ Brookie was caught just outside of the catch and release area last week on a cone head, squirrel-tail something. Small nymphs like Zebras and black flies behind fished behind larger, heavier stoneflies are also worth a shot. We fielded more comments and questions about the rainbows in the upper section last year than in any other previous year. If you’ve seen, heard or wondered about these fish drop us a line and we’ll put together a quick summary of comments for the fisheries folks to review. With a clipper coming through as early as Monday night today might be a great opportunity to get out and fly fish the Gunpowder before we experience some real winter weather.
The Gunpowder River is clear and flowing at 77 CFs. Water temperatures in the catch and release section dropped today from 43.5 to 42 degrees F. Small traditional feather-winged and buck-tail streamers have been moving a few fish from Masemore through Bunkerhill. These patterns work best when paired with a sinking leader and a short trace of tippet in the 5x or 6x range. Nymphing has been tough in the fast water. Zebra midges behind a red butt or small rubber legged stonefly have been working in slower moving water along the banks. The big boulder pools are still holding a few large fish but these areas often look better than they fish this time of year. A Griffiths Gnat in the #16 range or tiny Blue Winged Olive no larger than a #22 fished blind in the flat water is a good bet.
Please note: The shop will be closed on December 31st and January 1st and will reopen on Friday, the 2nd at 10:00 AM.
If you need a license over the next few days please visit COMPASS to obtain a license online. You’ll need a non-tidal (freshwater) license and a trout stamp to fish the Gunpowder.
The Gunpowder River is flowing at 77 CFs, is gin clear and 44 F. The River is in good shape. The trails are greasy so plan on bringing along a wading staff. Now is the time to put in studs in your wading shoes. With highs forecast in the low 60′s by the end of the week, plan on seeing a few stoneflies in the #14-16 range and olives in the #20-22 range along the River. Rabbit strip streamers and zonkers are an effective way to cover larger stretches of water.
Thanks to Josh for the stream report and photos.
Fishing small midge patterns behind a pheasant tail or hare’s ear has been the most productive way to fish a double nymph rig. Dead drifting smaller streamers through deep holes is also a good bet. The river water is cold and the slower tailouts have been holding more fish than the riffles.
Please Note: The shop will be closed on the 24th and 25th and will reopen on the 26th at 10 AM.
The Gunpowder River is a little off color and is flowing at 90 CFs and is 48 F. Wild trout have been taking nymphs in the #18-22 range in the flat water. Large streamers fished in and around the bend pools and log jams are a safe bet. The boulder pools have been tough to fish (read slippery) during frosty mornings so be careful out there! A few early brown stoneflies were reported today so if you have any dark caddis in your box give them a try. If you need some flies, advice or just need to get away from those pesky relatives, please consider finding us on the Shop Small® Map and joining us for Small Business Saturday. First you need to register your AMEX at www.shopsmall.com . It’s an easy form-just fill out your Name, Card # and email. When you use your card and spend $10 or more Saturday, November 29 at Backwater Angler and you’ll receive a $10 statement credit. If you find two other small business also taking part in this offer and spend another $10 at each location you will receive up to $30 total in statement credits within 90 days.Why shop locally rather than online? Simply put your money goes further when you shop local independently owned shops such as Backwater Angler. “Multiple studies from civiceconomics.com show locally-owned independent retailers return more than three times as much money per dollar of sales to the local economy than chain competitors and buying remotely on the web creates almost no local benefit–just a few minutes’ work for a delivery person that likely won’t be able to help you with directions to the River or tell you what flies are working. For the past 13 years your patronage has helped Backwater Angler support five staff members, five guides and the local community including donations to the Boy and Girl Scouts, Potomac Patuxent, National Capital Maryland and Mid Atlantic Council of Trout Unlimited, Gunpowder RIVERKEEPER, Coastal Conservation Association, WATERKEEPERS Chesapeake, Maryland Horse Breeders Association, Ducks Unlimited, Center Stage, Hereford Food Bank, Hereford Robotics Club and the Hereford Fall Fest benefiting the Hereford Volunteer Fire Department. Thanks for your support-We hope to see or hear from you tomorrow.
The Gunpowder River is clear, flowing at 50 Cfs and 48.5 degrees F. I find it hard to believe that by Monday folks are talking about a 69 F day leading up to Thanksgiving! Thanks to Stephen Knott for another nice shot-this time of a stocky caught on a big streamer. This fish likely held over during an early stocking, moved up from the lower River and is now taking on some beautiful colors. Stop in this weekend and spend some time picking up stonefly nymphs and dries out of the muffin tins. It’s not too early to swing some soft hackles stonefly and nymph patterns in the shallows. With the wind lessening this weekend, plan on seeing a few tiny BWO’s in the flats between York Rd and Falls Rd. We just received some lovely Blue Winged Olives sized down to a #26 but a parachute in a size #18-20 should work fine. We’re faced with relatively low water this time of year-that said streamers are always a good bet. To slow roll sculpin patterns effectively-Be sure to add just two or three feet of 4x to an Airflo sinking polyleader to get the big flies down fast and twitch them abruptly while they sink down into the boulder pools.
Please note: The shop will be closed this Wednesday and Thursday for the Thanksgiving Holiday.
The Gunpowder River is low, flowing at 40 Cfs and is 55 F. Thanks to Stephen Knott for sending in this shot of a beautiful Brown tricked on election day. Tricos, #18 Blue Winged Olive soft hackles and tiny Caddis in the #20 range are still part of the mix. Fly Fishing in low water can be challenging-especially when approaching spooky fish in the flats. With leaves on the trails and frost on the way now is the time to put studs in your wading shoes. Focus on riffles, runs and plan on approaching fish from the banks and covering the log jams and pools with unweighted streamers. Be sure to bring along a camera to capture the last of the fall colors before the polar vortex arrives.
Please note: The shop will be open on Veterans Day from 10 till 5. If you are a veteran, please accept our heartfelt thanks and profound appreciation for your service.