It looks like the autumn of 2018 is going to be remembered as a high-water event in the Upper Delaware region. Our local rivers continue to run at much higher flow rates than what we are used to seeing in October.
Ramblings of a River Guide
The fishing options around the Upper Delaware Region are improving. Over the last few days, our guides have been able to head out with guests and fish streamers, dry flies and nymphs. Based on the current week’s weather forecast, this trend should continue.
During the summer months, everything about the river environment happens at a much slower pace. Every year by our current date the insect hatches and the trout’s behavior fall into a very predictable daily routine. In stark contrast to the slower trout fishing, it is prime time for pursuing smallmouth bass with the fly.
Summer is here, and the big insect hatches of spring are just about over. For us fly fishermen, summer fishing is a much more laid-back time to fish. The choices for trout fishing are far more limited than during the cooler months, and the insect hatches are much less diverse.
For fly fishermen who chase trout in the Upper Delaware River system, the first week of June has always been referred to as “Bug Week.” In most years, this week will offer the season’s most diverse selection of different active insect species.
For us fly fishermen a sure sign of spring is Hendrickson duns floating down our favorite trout streams.
The 2018 trout season is now open in New York State (Pennsylvania will have to wait a bit longer, until April 14). As is normally the case, our local rivers are running a bit high and very cold. These conditions should continue for a while since there is rain in the forecast and some snow still melting off.
The recent polar vortex had its grip on the Upper Delaware River and the entire region. Most of our rivers are now iced in, and fly fishing is out of the question without distant travel. It will be a long time before we wade again and scan the Delaware’s pools for rising trout.
This year’s transition from summer to winter has been stalling out for over a month now. Thus far, we have had very few nights below freezing and daytime temperatures have been very warm. This type of weather has been great to be out on the water, but the unseasonable warmth has kept the cool-weather, blue-winged olive hatches behind schedule.
This is one of my favorite months to fly fish the Delaware River and its branches. The mountains are lit up with color, and it is very pleasant time to spend a day in the outdoors. The autumn is also a time when many outdoorsmen are torn among multiple activities, so our rivers have little pressure.