Two weekends ago I had the pleasure of guiding Max, a cool down to earth dude from the Boston area on the Westfield River. We started our trip early and headed out to the EB. The water level was pretty low for this time of year but the fish didn’t care. We landed quite a few brookies and a respectable brown within the first hour. This was one of my first times guiding on the EB and it was a good one. Lots of brookies, big brookies. Some hitting the 12 inch mark. These native fish are the reason the EB is so appealing. It was such a joy to share the river with someone who had never seen it before. Watching the expression on Max’s face as the beauty of the river unfolded was priceless. Good times for sure.
For more information on my guided wade trips check out my Guiding Page!
The East Branch on the Westfield River is so on right now. Actually, everywhere in Western Massachusetts is on right now. The rivers are teaming with trout and dry fly season is starting early this year. Over The past two weekends I fished the EB twice and caught a lot of fish. Mostly brook trout with the occasional brown and some rainbows thrown in the mix. The holy trinity. The brookies darted for olive wooly buggers and any fat fly thrown at them for that matter. These little guys put up quite the fight and had some serious acrobatics. The EB has always been one of my favorite rivers to fly fish due to the fact that you have to hike in to find the good spots. The river really makes you work for its secrets and I really dig that. There are a lot of fisherman that fish the EB so it does get a lot of pressure but keep walking and you’ll find some gems.
Fishing has always been about travel and seeing the unseen. Hiking into the wild and being apart of what is right in front of you. Its easy to do that on the Westfield The EB is wild and beautiful. A place to slow down and walk softly.
It has been one hot, dry introduction to spring. The place to fish for me in these early spring hot spells is the Deerfield River. It stays cool on those high 80 degree days and holds some beautiful trout. The EB of the Westfield is another river that is out of this world right now, but more on that later…
I want to talk about the amazing brown trout that have been so prodominent this spring on the Deerfield. So many browns! This past outing I hiked down into one of my favorite gorges and caught some serious fish. A 19″ brown on the second cast, yes please. Oh, and another seven after that ranging from 14 to 16 inches. What!?! These fish are aggressive and want big fat flies. Not some little nymph that you dead drift down the rapids. Don’t get me wrong, there’s a time and a place for nymphing but its not now. These are fast fighting beautiful fish that deserve to be admired and then safely released back home.
Gold bead headed buggers, huge orange stimulators, bright white streamers with reflective tinsile, big flies for big water. Now get out there and have an adventure.
One of my favorite places to fish in Western Massachusetts is a little tributary off of the Deerfield River. This unnamed location serves as a place to catch trout and forage for wild ramps that grow along the river side. Win Win. Spring is the time of year when the rivers seams to be in a constant state of growth and harmony. These rivers contain ever-growing life, from the plants, to the fish, to the insects, and the rising water from the spring rains continues to flow and feed this cycle right back to the begining. We live in a time of creation this season. It feels damn good to be apart of it.
Two weeks ago I headed out to the catch and release section of the Deerfield River below fife brook. The stretch at fife brook isn’t really my cup of tea and seamed to be crowed with other fisherman anyway. It is a pretty place to fish but there it is little room to backcast, is used as a boat launch by many and the fish seem to be spooky due to that. So, I headed downstream to a section where I had a lot of luck the spring before. I hooked up with some gorgeous browns and a rainbow or two. Great so far! Hiking farther down I casted into a pool and immediately a brown took my streamer. Upon further inspection I noticed a strange pink thing attached to its fin and thought at first glance it was a pink San Juan worm some other fisherman had fowled on the poor fishes back.
It was in-fact a Tag that read, “TAGS N TROUT 2015.” What the hell is this? I cut the tag and sent the fish on his way. Then I caught another fish with the same tag but different number. As with anything in question, I consulted the Gods and google said this :
“A number of trout are tagged and stocked into selected trout-stocked waters in Massachusetts. The tagged trout are sponsored by a local sportsmen’s club, business, or other entity. Any angler who catches a trout with a colored tag will receive a prize from the sponsor. Tags are a different color each year; only tags from the current year will receive a prize. The program ends on October 15 each year.”
So its an awards program. Weird and somewhat cool. I don’t really like the fact that stockies are getting plastic tags put in their backs. I still don’t know what I won. I have to contact MassWildlife and check it out. Anyway, it was one beautifully strange outing.