Friday, May 12, 2017

Spring Fly Fishing at its Finest!

Ethan with a fine Black creek smallmouth that ate a large rabbit strip streamer.

Black creek pike taken on a big streamer.
Staying home with my youngest son today because he isn’t feeling well, has provided me some much needed time to rest up and maybe catch up on a few things….such as writing a long overdue blog post about our spring fly fishing adventures.

Small drop back brown taken on a brown woolly bugger.
With the amount of rain we have received this spring, it’s no wonder that fishing time has been tough to find. In fact high water and flooding have been a constant headline for a good month or so, leaving many anglers sidelined waiting for little weather windows of opportunity to try and get out on the water.
Ethan's big smallie
Jonathan with a small tributary smallie
Ethan swinging the back end of a pool
Another big smallie for Ethan
Smallmouth release
Jonathan with a huge lake run smalllie

We here at the Bradfield household have been blessed to not only find the time to get out, but also experience some pretty darn good fishing to boot!

We have enjoyed some of Black creek’s finest, a few excursions to a local tributary in search of some drop back fun and a trip to the local pond in between.

Pike and bass at Black creek, bass and panfish at the pond, and large lake run smallmouth and a couple of small lake run trout from a WNY Lake Ontario tributary all found the bottom of the net.

Each of the spots we fished, save the pond, we have had to work in high stained water to find fish. These conditions are usually reserved for early spring as the snow pack melts away in late February early March and then with spring rain in late March, early April – Leaving the middle of April as the drop period, hopefully lasting into late April early May if we are lucky. But as it is with each new year, conditions can vary, and this year was certainly an exception. We are still dealing with high stained water into the middle part of May!

The boys doubled up on large lake run smallies
We have had great success catching fish on streamers. Both large weighted rabbit strip streamers in the 3.5-4” inch range that resemble the many baitfish that inhabit the streams we fish and dark and more natural colored woolly buggers in black, brown and olive. Dead drifting buggers under and indicator did take some fish, but the majority of the fish we put in the net have come by fishing these flies on the swing or actively fishing them of the bottom. Even the pond fish we caught were fooled by small olive woolly buggers fished just under the surface.
Still a few trout around in the WNY tributaries

As we start to dry out and water levels drop, the fishing will change yet again. We will start to target trout on our inland streams with dry flies, the carp will start to show up in Black creek in larger numbers and our warm water fisheries will start to set up for summer. 

Jonathan with a short nosed red finned sucker
Hopefully our schedule will continue to align with that of Mother Nature and we can find plenty of opportunities to get out together and fish this year. It’s been a great start so far.

Enjoy the photos and we'll see you on the stream!

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