Hook, Line and Sinker: July 3, 2012

The first “official” weekend of summer dawned with beautiful sunny skies, temperatures in the 70s to low 80s with just enough of a breeze, the kind of weather you wish could be bottled up and taken out from time to time!

As of Monday evening, the Beaverkill at Cooks Falls was flowing at 262 cubic feet per second (cfs.) This is just above the average flow of 210 cfs over 98 years of record keeping. The highest flow recorded on June 25 was 2,810 in 2011; the lowest recorded flow was back in 1991 when just 69 cubic feet of water trickled past the gauging station.

The East Branch of the Delaware River at Fishs Eddy was recorded at 434 cfs, which is just below the 57-year average flow of 467 cfs. The highest flow recorded on June 25 was 6,620 cfs in 1972; the lowest was 148 back in 1964.

Landed a nice rainbow
During a phone call to Dave Budin of Del Sports in Margaretville, I was pleased to be able to speak with John Hoeko of Fleischmanns. I haven’t spoken with him in quite some time. John reported that he had a good outing recently while fishing the Bushkill during which he caught a 12-inch rainbow trout! In addition, he witnessed several small rainbow fry in the feeder stream near his town. It’s interesting to see how rainbows are infiltrating our streams.

Dave concurred with John’s findings and said that he was amazed that while fishing the East Branch near the Bushkill, he’s found that one out of every five trout he’s been catching is a rainbow! Dave figured these fish may have come from the rainbow trout stocked by the Tuscarora Club, that may have gone into the reservoir, as Dave remembers that on occasion, a fisherman will catch a rainbow while fishing in the upper part of reservoir. In addition, Dave reported, since the Lake Switzerland dam on the Bushkill was breached about six years ago, it opened up at least 10 miles of spawning area that the rainbows have used. Prior to this the dam prevented any fish from migrating up to spawn. And now, in the vicinity of Fleischmanns, small rainbows have been seen.

Hatches have also been surprisingly good this year on the East Branch and its tributaries, probably due to the mild winter. And as on the Beaverkill, Dave saw good hatches of Hendricksons in March, “everything was early.” He reports that Del Sports has been selling a lot of Light Cahills, Sulphurs and other lighter-colored flies. He’s been fishing the “East Branch Special” with good success, especially when fished wet as a subsurface or emerger fly and described catching rainbows in the 15- and 16-inch size range that, when hooked, will take almost 90 feet of line on their run, providing for great fun fishing.

He also said that surprisingly, as bad as the flood from Hurricane Irene was this past August, the river seemed to have created some really deep pools, and given more than it had taken away. He believes that the unlike the Esopus, fishing on the East Branch may have even improved, and fortunately, the fish are still there!

Earlier this spring Dave’s Mom, Ann, celebrated a very special birthday. On March 13 she turned 90 years of age. When you see her, please congratulate her on reaching this milestone!