River Report 6/8/20

We are open to the public again!

Phase two has started in Massachusetts as of this morning and we are allowed to once again have customers in the shop with precautions including wearing face masks and maintaining social distancing. So please stop in and say hi. We are open from noon to 5, Tuesday through Sunday. I am often here at other hours so call us at 413-397-3665 if you need something at times outside of our posted hours. Also, we are still more than happy to do curbside service if you prefer. Just give us a call or email brian@deerfieldflyshop.com.

The Deerfield River continues to fish well, with consistent dry fly action in the mornings and evenings. Caddis in tan and olive in a size 14 still abound, and we are seeing more and more Yellow Sallies in 12 to 16. Some bigger stones are also around. Sulphurs in 14 and 16 and Light Cahills in 12 and 14 are the most abundant evening hatches and have been providing great surface activity into dark. Spinners have become more important so make sure you have a good collection of rusty spinners from 12 to 18 and some lighter colored spinners in 14 and 16. We have a good selection in stock right now including some shop tied spinners specifically for the sulphurs that have been successfully field tested all week long! March Browns are still around as well as BWOs on cloudy cooler days.

Sulphur spinners are here and becoming an important part of the diet of Deerfield River trout. Stop by the shop to stock up on them!

Flows remain on the lower side in the Deerfield, making for ideal wading conditions but with the bright sun and heat, sometimes midday has been tough. We could use some rain and it looks like we may get some this week. Look for cloudy days and the edges of the day for the best fishing.

Water temps in the lower river are hitting the high 60s so keep an eye on that when targeting trout, but game on for smallmouth bass. Weighted, jig style streamers will help you find some smallies. Shad are still around but that run is starting to wane. In area ponds, the largemouth feed is on pretty good, including an improving surface bite in the evenings.

In the upper river, water temperatures are still great for trout. When the trout are not rising, nymphs continue to work, especially pheasant tails in sizes 12-14, hare’s ears in the same sizes, bigger stoneflies like Pat’s Rubber Legs and Buggy Stones, and caddis larvae and pupae in size 14, both in olive and tan. Working some smaller size 16 nymphs that imitate sulfurs (smaller copper johns and pheasant tails will work) is a good idea. At low water, smaller streamers like wolly buggers and small sculpins will work. In the bigger water during the release you can try throwing bigger streamers including articulated ones like Headbangers and D and Ds, especially in the early mornings and late evenings.

The trout are used to looking up for a meal now so prospecting with attractors and terrestrials is a good idea, even more so when a nymph is dropped off the back. My go to rig for this on area rivers, from mid-May to October, is a big humpy in 10 or 12 with a size 12 pheasant tail dropped off the bend of the hook. Royal Wulffs, Stimulators, big caddis–basically any bushy dry fly will work and for terrestrials ants and beetles are always a good bet along with smaller Chubby Chernobyls.

Wild brown trout can be found throughout the Deerfield, but especially in the upper section above Charlemont. For the past three years Mass F and W has been clipping the adipose fin of stocked brown trout above the Route 2 bridge west of the town of Charlemont by the campground. So if you find a brown above here with an adipose fin intact, it is very likely stream bred and wild. Please take extra care when handling and releasing these fish.

The Millers River is getting lower and warmer. I would recommend only fishing here in the early mornings and late evenings or on cloudy, colder days. That said, the fishing can still be good with caddis, sulphurs and cahills still hatching strong. The smallmouth fishing, particularly on the lower part of the river, is fantastic this time of year and throughout the summer.

The Westfield continues to fish well and is at decent water levels and holding in there temperature wise. Again, avoid fishing the middle of hot sunny days. The same nymphs as above will produce as will smaller streamers. And of course be on the lookout for caddis and mayfly hatches.

Guided trips and lessons available. Call us at 413-397-3665 or email brian@deerfieldflyshop.com.

Dries: Midges, tan and olive Caddis 14-16, BWO 16-20, Light Cahill 12-14, March Brown 12-14, Sulphurs 14-16, Humpies 10-12, Royal Wulffs 10-12, Stimulators 10-16, Yellow sallies 14-16, beetles, and ants.

Nymphs: Pat’s Rubber Legs,  Golden or Black Terminator Stone 8-12, hares’ ears 12-18, Pheasant Tail Nymphs 12-18, Frenchies 12-16, Tan/Olive Mops, Natural/Olive Caddis Puppa/Larvae 12-16, Red/Copper Johns 12-16, Sexy Walt 12-16. 

Streamers:  Woolly Buggers Olive/Black 6-10, White/Olive Sculpzilla 8,Bank Robber 2, Mini Headbangers, Complex Twist Bugger, Heisenberg Baby Bow/Cowboy/White 6, Sculpin Bunny, Black/Brown Rubber Bugger 4, Olive and Gold/White Mini Drunk & Disorderly.

Water Flows for Fife Brook Dam can be found here

Water release schedule for the next day is posted after 5pm. Check again before you head to the river. Minimum Flow 130 CFS (Cubic Feet/Second). Ideal for wading and Dry Fly Action. Normal Release 800-1,000 CFS

For Miller’s River in Erving here

For Miller’s River Bear’s Den area here

For East Branch of the Westfield here

Deerfield River Fishing Report