It was Sunday, July 24, 1972, hot and sunny at my home in the foothills of the Catskills. I was attending to chores when the phone rang. Ed Van Put was on the line.
Why it matters
The Delaware River is home to one of the largest American shad sea-to-river spawning rituals. These fish are considered anadromous; this means they live primarily in salt water and spawn in fresh water.
So, you always thought, “Fly fishing looks like fun. I’d like to try it, but it sounds like it’s too hard,” or “Fly fishing sounds great, but I can’t afford it.” We are here to tell you that these are fly fishing myths.
Myth number one: Fly fishing is hard to do.
Fishermen frequently need to find food at times when many places aren’t open. Whether you’re looking to be out for the dawn hatch, want to take a lunch out on the river or are coming off the river after dark, this list will help you stay well fed on your fishing days. Venues are listed in order from the tailwaters southward.
Angling etiquette is simply polite behavior among the fishermen and others you encounter on the river—boaters, swimmers, tubers, etc., and importantly with property owners.
With most of our fishing on rivers and streams being catch-and-release, it is nice to come home with something to show for your efforts, some documentation of your successes. The current applicable fishing slogan is “CPR”: catch, photograph and release. So, here are a few tips about fishing photography while out on the river.
Having spent the last 25 years living on, fishing, guiding, researching and advocating for the protection of the trout fishery on the Upper Delaware River, it is time to reflect a bit on where we are and what remains to be accomplished. I hope my observations and questions will provoke additional thinking and perhaps some future actions.
Smallmouth bass, also called the “bronzeback,” “brown bass” or “smallie” are among the feistiest and most acrobatic of all the freshwater game fish, and lucky for us are the most prolific fish in the Upper Delaware River. Warm-water fish, smallies mostly populate the waters from Callicoon downstream.
What is it that gets people so excited about fly fishing? Why would anyone want to stand in the river waving a big stick? Well, it’s challenging, rewarding and fun—and how many other activities get you outside enjoying nature up close and personal plus discovering the secret life of beautiful fish and the insects they feed on?