I stopped by last Sunday for a beginner’s class from Bill Wolf, and just wanted to thank you all for your hospitality and a great time on the river. Bill was great and has a real gift for being encouraging and easing you into things. Talking to the guys at the shop was like hanging out with old friends — nice and easy. Their enthusiasm and knowledge is infectious, even for someone who knows nothing about fly fishing. Clearly everyone at the shop has fish and bugs on the brain, and I mean that in the best possible way.
I’m sure I’ll be by again (I was the guy from Arlington, VA). Heck, I can already feel the $$$ trying to squirm their way out of my pocket. :-)
The Sulphur Mayfly hatch is providing excellent dry fly fishing on the Gunpowder during the early afternoon through nightfall. The water temps are fluctuating between 60-66 from Falls Rd to Glencoe Rd, but are steadily dropping as spillover slows. Sulphurs are coming off consistently in many areas through mid to late afternoon. The shop’s wide variety of Sulphur dry fly patterns have proven effective for numerous customers who connected with the Gunpowder’s wild browns over the past three weeks. Sulphur dries fished through riffles are working during the midday, but skating or twitching them is the key.
Small Caddis dries fished blind will get strikes in the morning or midday, in the faster water. The best time for dry fly fishing is AFTER 4 PM, but most intense after 8 PM for rising trout during the Sulphur spinnerfall. Smaller duns, size 18, are emerging as the spinners drop, so consider a small dun if the browns are rising, but refusing spinner patterns. Lime and Yellow Sallies are also hatching toward dark, due to warmer water temps, and the stoneflies were heaviest downstream of Bunker Hill Rd through the lower C & R. Although not dry fly fishing, but certainly easier, swinging flies or nymphing is a great way to get into a lot of trout midday or during the evening hatch. Browns are eating all varieties of nymphs. Stop in the shop for latest up-to-date info on patterns, techniques and locations as BWA guides are on the water daily.
Anglers fishing during the peak of the Sulphur hatch should expect to see other anglers, but as a general rule fishing within the same riffle, pool or roughly 100 feet is too close and where possible give a wider berth. When an angler is fishing a pool, other anglers moving up or down, should get out and step around them on the trail, not wade past on the opposite/near side, or fish down the middle, (that’s not helping anybody catch fish.) There are miles of river, thousands of trout and good hatches at any access point on the Gunpowder right now. Give your fellow anglers some room, or wait until they move on, before moving into a spot nearby.
The latest video post includes some footage of hatching Sulphurs, an unusual meeting of a Sulphur and lime Stonefly, and my first Gunpowder Brookie for 09′. I managed 11 last year on the Gunpowder, so I have some catching up to do.
Please join us for a flyfishing school. On Sunday, June 28, Backwater Angler Guide Bill Wolf will be teaching a fly fishing school that is ideal for beginners. If you’re planning on flyfishing Maryland, or anywhere else for that matter, this course is a great introduction to the sport. The school covers knots, casting, gear, fly selection and an hour of on-stream instruction. Schools are held in a meadow overlooking the Gunpowder river by a Maryland state licensed and insured fishing guide. Class is held from 11:00 AM till 2:00 PM. Cost is $100 per person and includes the use of gear. A Maryland Non-tidal fishing license and trout stamp is required and may be purchased prior to the class with check or cash at the shop. Class size is limited to 4 and pre-payment is required. Please give us a call at 410-357-9557 or drop us a line at email@example.com to register.
Please join us for a flyfishing school. On Saturday, June 13, Backwater Angler Guide Bill Wolf will be teaching a fly fishing school that is ideal for beginners. If you’re planning on flyfishing Maryland, or anywhere else for that matter, this course is a great introduction to the sport. The school covers knots, casting, gear, fly selection and an hour of on-stream instruction. Schools are held in a meadow overlooking the Gunpowder river by a Maryland state licensed and insured fishing guide. Class is held from 11:00 AM till 2:00 PM. Cost is $100 per person and includes the use of gear. A Maryland Non-tidal fishing license and trout stamp is required and may be purchased prior to the class with check or cash at the shop. Class size is limited to 4 and pre-payment is required. Please give us a call at 410-357-9557 or drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org to register.
The Gunpowder river is flowing at 70 CFs, is 62-67 F throughout the catch and release section and is clear. Those waiting to fish Sulphurs in June may well be disappointed as we’ve had sulphurs for over three weeks now along the Gunpowder river. Small cream midges in the #20 range and caddis sized #16 to 18 are also accounting for more than a few fish. We just received some button parachute emergers and quill bodied spinners that the fish are clobbering! Want to trick wild fish? Check the muffin tins and be sure to pick up some 7x while you’re at it…
Thanks to Adam for the following stream report.
Thanks for hooking me up with the tippet last night and for the nice little spinner fly; it certainly saw some wear and tear from the jaws of a few feisty brown trout at dusk. I headed to the section above Falls road and didn’t wet my line until almost 7:00. While hiking up toward the dam, I saw Jason and a fellow angler having a pre-hatch snack. We chatted for a minute, and then I made my way upstream. The action was hot! I started off with a size 14 tannish, yellow parachute sulphur and a size 16 emerger pattern as a dropper. The bug activity was impressive. I saw a couple different sizes of sulphurs, in addition to some of the regular smaller bugs. Also, the combination of subtle rises and water clearing leaps, made it hard to know which patterns to stick with. I ended up changing flies a few times but the darker, size 16 parachute and the size 16 orange spinner patterns took the most fish, even more than the emerger. I caught my last trout at 8:43 before I made the hike up the hill to my car at dark. Awesome night!
For a historical review of fishing this time of year check out these related posts:
Thanks to Aaron for the following stream report and review of the Cloudveil 8x grippy boots.
Shoes worked great and were super comfy. I put them through hiking, mud, gravel, boulders, flat water and fast water. Definitely worth the switch from the Chotas. Had a great afternoon and evening of fishing. Saw only one or two other anglers and did well. I had a few fish right off the bat on a size 18 Olive X Caddis above and before the riffle past the bridge abutments. Switched to a HEAVILY hackled split tailed dun and worked the riffle, picking up several NICE browns. I didn’t have a tape with me but the went from the butt of the rod to the LT on my Winston 8’3″ 4 wt. Worked around the next bend and landed a few more in that same class all in the fast water and the seams. As darkness fell I switched to the #16 Sulphur parachute and just waited, looking for snouts. I had a banner evening to say the least! See you in a week.
Thanks to Seth for the gear review of the Scott 10ft 4wt 4pc S4 and Bauer M2SL. He also sent in this picture of a wild Gunpowder river brown trout along with a stream report.
Great mid-day action on the Gunpowder. Caught five decent Browns, all on a dry fly (Sulpher). They weren’t just sipping either – they were hammering the fly! The new Scott S4 cast like a hot knife through butter and the Bauer M2SL reel had the smoothest action of any reel I’ve ever owned. Thanks again to Jason and Backwater Angler for pairing me up with the greatest rod/reel combo I have ever owned. I will cherish this rod for my whole life!
The Gunpowder river is flowing at 84 Cfs , is clear and 60 F. Sulphurs sized #14-16 and Caddis in the #16-18 range have been the ticket. Small soft hackles, cripples and emergers are working in the flat water while more traditional duns and spinners are tricking fish in the riffles. Cloud cover and passing thundershowers are a joy to behold. Long leaders in the 10 to 12 foot range ending in 6x and 7x will help your cause. If you’re starting early, try small pheasant tails and unweighted sulphur nymphs in the pocket water. With the water warming up, zonkers cast upstream along log jams may yield larger fish. It has been a little on the cool side for concentrated spinner falls in the evening but we have a few warm nights ahead of us and plenty of Sulphurs in our future.
Thanks to Jeff for the kind words and report.
Sorry to have missed you on Sunday but you certainly deserve a day off occasionally. Brought in my new Winston BIIt to finish outfitting it with that handsome Bauer reel and get it spooled up so I could christen it in the favored waters of the Upper Gunpowder. Jason and Max, as always, were very helpful. Decided to spool the reel up with the Rio Gold which was accomplished in short order. Of course, also spied a couple tying items that met “the need” and added them to the cart, so to speak. With that, I was on my way and headed over to Masemore for an evening of delightful fishing. Several cars and a handful of folks working the river were expected (and present) but not enough preclude me from donning my waders and giving it a whirl. Light tan sulfurs were seen with some regularity and top action was good upstream. Christened the new rod with a beautiful brown on a sulfur pattern I tied the night before, (some satisfaction in that). Caught fish – missed more. Emergers were clearly the preferred ticket but got some solid smacks on top as well. A fine evening on the water all in all. The Winston BIIt performed flawlessly and the reel & line were a treat to enjoy. Looking forward to many more outings with this gear. One can readily appreciate the differences that quality equipment makes.
Appreciate all of your continued assistance and guidance.
We just received another beautiful Sweetgrass rod from Glenn Brackett and the Boo boys. It is a 7ft 3wt 3pc, 2 tip, pentagonal rod that is trimmed in burgundy silks with black tipping. The rod has a cigar grip and it is fitted with a nickel silver slide band. It is wonderfully supple and lively and is begging to be fished in your favorite brook trout stream. The rod is being offered at $2, 500 and won’t be around these parts long-unless of course one buys it to skate a few caddis prior to fishing out the Sulphur spinner fall on the Gunpowder river.Please give us a call at 410-357-9557 or drop us a line at email@example.com to inquire.
Please join us for a warm water fly fishing school. On Sunday, May 17, Backwater Angler Guide Stacey Smith will be teaching a fly fishing school that is ideal for folks interested in warm water fly fishing. If you’re planning on flyfishing Maryland’s reservoirs, lakes and ponds, make time to take this course.
It is a great introduction to the sport. The school covers casting, gear and fly selection and an overview of Loch Raven and Prettyboy reservoirs. Schools are held at Backwater Angler by a Maryland state licensed and insured fishing guide. Class is held from 11:00 AM till 2:00 PM. Cost is $100 per person and includes the use of gear. A Maryland Non-tidal fishing license and trout stamp is required and may be purchased prior to the class with check or cash at the shop. Class size is limited to 4 and pre-registration is required. Please give us a call at 410-357-9557 or drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org to pre-register.