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> > Fly fishing in November in Very northern NY

KeithZNovember 10th, 2015, 10:12 am
Posts: 2
I just found out that two streams near me (Northern Adirondacks) are open to trout fishing until Nov. 30. Just returning to fly fishing after many years off, I was wondering what it might be best to use? Are temps in the 40s and low 50s daytime, and freezing at night lately. Native brookies and browns on a small stream and brookies and stocked browns on a small river. Any ideas what to start with? I'm guessing water temps to be around 50. And yes, I will release! Never fished at this time of year before... Thanks!
WbranchNovember 10th, 2015, 11:41 am
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733
Both the browns and brookies are typically doing the mating thing at this time. If the streams are small and vulnerable you might want to consider not fishing at all until after the mating ritual are over.

Other than that I would use small streamers that represent forage minnows that are present in those waters and various nymphs like Hares Ear, Pheasant tail, Prince, flies that represent all sorts of underwater aquatic life.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
MickNelNovember 11th, 2015, 2:35 pm

Posts: 1
I actually had a very similar question, I too am up in northern NY and was planning on meandering over to the west branch of the Ausable river this weekend. Theres a 2 mile stretch thats open year round, But I'm sort of new to fly fishing and wanted to know if its frowned upon to fish during the off season. Or if there are any precautions we should take since its the time of year for browns and brookies to spawn? any relevant info would be helpful, thanks!
KeithZNovember 11th, 2015, 6:03 pm
Posts: 2
I think I'll stay off the small stream, but may fish the river. Thanks for the advice!
WbranchNovember 14th, 2015, 11:50 am
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733
Hello Micknel.

Or if there are any precautions we should take since its the time of year for browns and brookies to spawn?

Yes, stay off of the redds. Redds are the somewhat circular depressions in the stream bottom where a mating pair makes a nest (or maybe it is just the male that makes the redd) Obviously if you were to see a pair of mating trout in, or near, a redd it would be imprudent, imo, to target them. Saying that there are guys who do target salmon and steelhead on the redds because the males are aggressive and often will viciously attack an intruder into the redd.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
OldredbarnNovember 14th, 2015, 6:41 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2608
But I'm sort of new to fly fishing and wanted to know if its frowned upon to fish during the off season.


Matt gives very sound advice above...

IMHO, we here in Michigan, with the newer regs here, where some streams never really shut down, are stressing good, quality, wild trout. We never give them a break. How many times in a season can a fish be caught and released and not suffer a diminution in energy? If we love wild trout we need to give them a rest and let them alone to reproduce.

The old guard would think it "bad-form" to harass spawning fish. It's a simple mathematical equation...You want top-notch fish in the future, leave them be. Otherwise we are back to chasing the hatchery wagon over stupid pellet eaters.

I know I have tried to re-produce when tired myself, hell you got to give it a shot, right? But I'm much better at it after a nice nap, a good diner, etc...:)


"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
PaulRobertsNovember 16th, 2015, 12:40 pm

Posts: 1776
I wouldn't agree with a blanket statement to simply stay off the stream because they are spawning. VERY heavily fished waters can and do lose production from anglers wading on gravel bars and tailouts where trout spawn and wading/crossing is easiest. However, even in impacted waters it doesn't take many successful redds to fill the stream with baby trout (albeit at a potential loss of genetic diversity). As much or more mortality tends to occur after emergence (in spring), which is often at the whim of stream conditions and food availability.

But... in probably the majority of trout streams in the country, there just aren't enough boots to impact production appreciably.

One can be sensible about where to wade, and the specific areas to fish. Not all fish are spawning at the same time, and it may be that not all fish spawn every year.

I love to be onstream during the spawn -to watch, if anything. But I don't mind disturbing a few spawners either, esp in brookie streams where there are brookies spawning in every tailout for as far as the eye can see and the feet can trod.

All that said, the point may be moot considering the likely case that in northern NY the spawn (brookie at least) is over and you are sliding fast into winter. Wade thoughtfuly -don't crush all the gravelly tailouts (there's eggs in there)- and enjoy the last of the season.

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