Here it is almost the end of May and I am just doing the May blog. Its been absolutely crazy busy and I am loving it. Guide trips have been going pretty good with Wet Fly Waterguides and Sky Blue Outfitters. Of coarse mother nature hasn't been treating us very well this spring. The waters we've been fishing have been up and down since the end of April. Just when you think there going to stay at a normal flow for awhile a storm moves in and blows them out. This has been happening the whole month. Luckily we've only lost three trips to the weather so far.
All of our guide trips we've done up to this point have been great. Rick, Taylor and myself have managed to get our anglers into fish even with the terrible water conditions. The hatches on all of the waters that we've fishing are in full swing. We've been fishing Sulphurs, march browns, light cahills, gray fox, tan caddis's. So moving into June I am thinking we'll have good flows for pretty much of the whole month. We'll be crossing our fingers. Here's some photos for the month.
The month of June has rolled in the same way May started, RAIN and more RAIN. Mother nature will just not give us a break. I guided every day the first week of June and we had to search for decent water to fish and the second week is looking pretty close to the first week. Being the prime time of the season to fish, it has definitely has been a challenging one. On one trip we left Central PA and drove 2 hours north into Potter county to fish a good flow and clear water. When we did get on the water the fishing was pretty good.
There are lots of flies on the water, but noticed not a lot of rising fish. Not that it matters a whole lot to myself and the anglers I am guiding because we're presenting wet flies underneath the surface. We're seeing sulphur's, green drakes, slate drakes, caddis's and light cahill's and that was just on Kettle Creek. In Central PA it has pretty much been the same flies, that's when the waters are not blowed out. As of right now Kettle Creek was starting to drop, but the fishing is good. They definitely could use a little rain in the valley, but not to much just a little. The streams in Central PA Spring, Little J, Penn's and Bald Eagle, well it will be days before you'll be able to set foot on those waters. At this point I am thinking we're going to have great trout fishing in July. Here's some pic's of our days out.
Waters have finally started dropping down to fishable level after the rains we had for the past two weeks. That's for our streams just in Central Pennsylvania. Up in the northern part of the state that's a different story. The waters on Kettle, Pine and the First Fork are starting to drop quickly and warming up. At this point there right on the edge of being to warm to fish for trout. Early mornings and evenings are the time to fish them now. Hatches up north are starting to come to an end, but still seeing a decent number of slate drakes which seems to be the dominate fly on the waters up there. I wish I could report something about the central streams. Its been two weeks since we last fished them and they've been high since then. But now there reaching a good level we'll be back on this week.
Well, mother nature got me again and flooded us out the day before a guide trip. I just can't seem to win with the weather. Looks like we'll try to shoot for next week, I am sure it'll rain again. The waters up north are now getting low and warm and it'll be time to rest those streams. Maybe check out the tributaries and chase some brook trout, but its definitely time to get the boat and bass gear ready for on the lakes.
As the spring trout fishing is coming to an end. Its time to give the trout a little break until the fall. Its now time to chase some bass and pike on some of the lakes that we want to get some experience on for the future. Speaking of the future Wet Fly Waterguides is looking to expand its guide service to running guide trips for bass and pike on some of Western, Central and Northcentral Pennsylvania's lakes.
In 2017 we purchased a fourteen foot poling skiff from Salt Marsh Skiffs in Fort Pierce Florida. Doing some research for a couple of months on the perfect fly fishing boat, the Salt Marsh Skiff seemed to be the perfect boat for what I had in mind for fly fishing. I received the boat here in Pennsylvania in late September 2017 and was able to get her out on the water three times before it got cold and had to put it away for the winter.
On Sunday June 24th we launched her for the first trip of 2018 on Yellow Creek State Park in Indiana County. Of coarse with all the rain we have been having throughout the state and waters being high, Yellow Creek lake was no exception of having clean water. So my young angler friend Jake and I made the trip any way to fish and test her out for fly fishing off her front deck. The fishing was pretty tough with the water conditions being so cloudy or should I say muddy. The trip wasn't a total bust. It got me some practice on unloading the boat off the trailer and loading her back on the trailer and setting Jake up into position on the lake to make some good casts. Jake did land his first pike on a fly and it was a first for the boat too.
My son John and I spent the last weekend of June in Potter County on the Bush dam on kettle creek chasing largemouths. We fished Saturday morning and evening and Sunday morning. Weather was, well lets put it this way it didn't rain. Saturday morning was great out on the water, but when that sun burnt the fog off it was smoken hot. The temperature hit a high of 98 degrees by eleven o clock. We managed to hit some fish first thing in the lily pads on clouser floating minnows and gurglers. Saturday evening was the same results with the same flies. Sunday morning was nice again until the fog came off the mountains. We did get a chance to moved around the lake to some new areas that we've been looking at and landed a few bass. The bass that we landed weren't giants but they fought like they were. All an all it was a good trip and we got to learn a little bit on a new lake.
On July 7,8,9, it was back out on the lakes. On Saturday my young protégé fly angler Jake and I headed out to explore Canoe Creek Lake in Blair County. Arrived at the lake around 6:30pm and got the boat in the water in about ten minutes, getting a little better at launching her. Got a real good chance to check all the areas out on the lake. Lots of good grassy areas for some top water action and that's what we mainly fished with. Jake again was the hero and I was the zero.
Sunday my son John and I headed out mid afternoon to Black Moshannon State Park to try out the lake at the park. The lake looked absolutely great, lots and lots of lilly pads. I don't think we ever seen a lake with that much cover. Launch area was good and we got the boat in the water pretty easily. Motored around the lake for a little to get somewhat of an idea where the open areas were then we got started. Fished down one side for a good ways then moved over and fished up the other side and back to the boat launch. We did not move a single fish in all that time. It probably would have fished pretty well if there weren't so many kayakers on the water, there were quite a few. It looks like this lake will have to be fished early in the morning and possibly on a week day. We'll definitely have to make a trip back when there's less people on the water.
On Monday John and I was back out on the lake. This trip we headed down to the Yellow Creek State Park lake. Fished late afternoon till dusk. Water was perfect, just like glass. Lunched at the north shore launch and made our way over to the far side of the lake in the shade. Landed a few largemouths on top water flies and I hit a nice pike on a sub surface fly and of coarse I lost it right at the side of the boat.
On Thursday July 13th. Jake and I was back on Yellow Creek for a late afternoon fish and fished till dusk. Again fished the far side of the lake were there was very little sun. Definitely getting an idea of where the shady areas are at least on the far end of the lake. We haven't ventured up to the top end of the lake where the stream comes in just yet. I did notice where all the lilly pads are seems to get sun pretty much all day. Looks like that area would be the first place you would want to fish first thing in the morning. Again there was hardly any wind and the lake was real calm. We fished the edges and the drop-offs and hooked up on about a dozen largemouths. Clouser floating minnows and gurglers were the flies that produced.
SOME GREAT NEWS. I am proud to announce that Dave Rothrock and Brian Shumaker will be joining the guide staff of Sky Blue Outfitters. Both of these gentlemen are first class anglers and well known Pennsylvania fly fishermen. They will be bringing a wealth of knowledge to Sky Blue Outfitters. Dave Rothrock is a certified casting instructor, fly tyer, author, speaker and one of the best nymph fishermen I know. Brian Shumaker is one of the top fly fishing guides on the Susquehanna River and Juniata River targeting smallmouth bass. Brian brings 25 years of experience fishing those rivers. Rick,Taylor and I are glad to have Dave and Brian on board Sky Blues guiding staff. You will definitely be seeing some new package guide trips and educational programs in the 2019 season. I look forward to working and fishing with both of them in the future. For more information check out Sky Blue Outfitters website (www.skyblueoutfitters.com).