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FreepowAugust 27th, 2007, 10:56 pm
menomonie, WI

Posts: 83
Hey all, I had a question...after a hard rain, when the river washes out, is the fishing traditionally better or worse? I believe it is worse but just wanted to double check. Thanks.
"I fish...because I suspect that men are going along this way for the last time, and I for one don't want to waste the trip..."
TaxonAugust 28th, 2007, 2:21 am
Site Editor
Plano, TX

Posts: 1301
Freepow-

When heavy rain causes a river to get muddy and/or overflow it banks, fly fishing generally becomes unproductive until the water has receded to normal levels, and has cleared to a reasonable degree.

I doubt the fish quit feeding. It's just that visibility is so poor, that getting an artificial close enough to a fish for it to be noticed, is pretty unlikely. I suppose there may be some exception to this, but an exception does not the rule make.
Roger Rohrbeck
www.FlyfishingEntomology.com
JADAugust 28th, 2007, 3:49 am
Alexandria Pa

Posts: 362


Hello Roger
I respectably disagree with you. I have had some of my most productive outings on the water, when as you described. I use larger tackle and fish closer to the banks (Zonker & Buggers)I have just had such a week in Central Pa.With the high water in Pa this last week my friend and I hooked six fish over 20 inches and had so many passes that he looked wide eyed at me and said I have seen more fish over twenty inches today than Ive' seen in two years. ( He's head guide for a local shop)

Tight Lines

JaD

They fasten red (crimson red) wool around a hook, and fix onto the wool two feathers which grow under a cocks wattles, and which in colour are like wax.
Radcliffe's Fishing from the Earliest Times,
SofthackleAugust 28th, 2007, 7:15 am
Site Editor
Wellsville, NY

Posts: 540
I would have to agree, somewhat, with JAD. Fishing after a rain can be very productive if, as JAD has pointed out, you change your tactics. This type of fishing is not as easy to do, but it can be done. Weighted flies of larger size and darker in color fished along the banks do work well, but CAUTION IS IMPORTANT. Water in spate condition is often dangerous, and we have a tendancy to underestimate the strength of moving water. Depending upon the size of the water I'm fishing, I would probably not wade very much. Use your head and be safe.

Mark
"I have the highest respect for the skilled wet-fly fisherman, as he has mastered an art of very great difficulty." Edward R. Hewitt

Flymphs, Soft-hackles and Spiders: http://www.troutnut.com/libstudio/FS&S/index.html
DavezAugust 28th, 2007, 1:12 pm
Pennsylvania

Posts: 59
hold on a second... there are many levels of "muddy"

and types of rivers or streams....there was mention of central pa....take spring creek... fishes fantastic after a heavy rain with streamers. it gets brown, but moves alot of water fast and fishes well with color.

take Penns.. no way. it ges so much mud, fishing is very unproductive. when its on the drop and starting to clear it is awesome. its hard to time that point too.

I can't agree or disagree without knowing what creek/river/stream we are talking about. some just absolutely blow out, while others get a magic level of turbidity that turns fishin on.

I will say....I have caught the fish of my life in freshwater under higher than normal and more color than normal flows. fish tend to spook less, and you use heavier than normal tippet which makes the landing ratio better.

for those who steelhead fish the great lakes, fishing while the creeks are on the drop and still dirty can make for the best fishing of the season..if you like that sort of fishing.
GeneAugust 28th, 2007, 8:51 pm
Posts: 107Gentlemen:

The question of what rain does to a river or stream depends on many things and include: 1) what condition was the stream in prior to the rain? Was is it low? Was it high? What temperature was the stream prior to the rain? 2) Was it a cold rain or warm rain? Was the rain accompanied by great drop in barometric pressure? 3) What time did the rain occur? 4)Was it a light rain or dark rain (this means did the sky get really dark and the lighting conditions change drastically or was it just a rain where the color of the sky changed only a little bit)?

When I was young growing up in Western Pennsylvania we fished a lot to say the least. Fishing in the rain and after the rain taught me a lot about trout fishing that to this day now makes sense scientifically.

First, rain can actually raise the oxygen level in a stream by mixing and pounding the water. This usually causes the fish to feed in my estimation. Second, a cold rain can lower the stream temperature by a few degrees very quickly. This is sometimes a combination of the air temperature dropping and the colder water. If the stream is "warm" this also usually causes the fish to become active.

In Western PA. I learned very well what rain did to a stream I fished in Mercer County called Neshannock Creek. In the summer we would fish this creek as soon as it began to rain. The stream would muddy and all of sudden we were able to catch nice hold over brown trout in the 12 -14 inch class with an occasional 17 incher. In the summer seldom did we see or catch this many fish and almost never browns. Yet, we fished the exact same places in clear water and could never find these fish. It was always like magic. That's when I learned how even hatchery brown trout that holdover don't come out much during the day unless that environment changes and they feel safe.

Today I spent 6 hours on Big Spring Creek watching PA Fish and Boat Electroshock survey. Big Spring Creek is the best kept secret in the fly fishing world. I video taped much of it and it would change most anglers minds on how much they think about trout fishing. In water that is clear as gin and in places you pass by would expose you to believing that perhaps you know nothing about the habits of trout. In a section where a small patch of water cress and other plants formed a small triangle of about 4 by 5 feet, over 75 trout emerged with two browns going over 23 inches and rainbows in the same range when the probes were put under the vegetation.

This occurred over and over again. In water that you thought barren were so many fish that you had to be there to believe it. IN a 150 meter stretch which forms the head waters of the stream you would swear that there might only be 20 or thirty fish in the entire stretch. These are the ones you can see. There are so many wild brook trout in this stretch that it is probably has the largest population of wild brook trout per hectare in the world!!!! Not to mention 3 browns that seem to come out of nowhere that ranged from 18 to 23 inches in length. Yet most anglers who fish think there are hardly any fish there.

It's good thing I have a tape of this because you just wouldn't believe it. So if you know of stream that might hold some fish or large fish grab your fly rod when it rains and there after because you have a good chance of see fishing that you will never see otherwise!

tight lines and big trout
gene
www.flyfisher.com
SofthackleAugust 29th, 2007, 6:18 am
Site Editor
Wellsville, NY

Posts: 540
To paraphrase the late Sparse Gray Hackle-- The Trout Do Not Rise In Woodlawn Cemetery--SO, Fish When You Can!

Mark
"I have the highest respect for the skilled wet-fly fisherman, as he has mastered an art of very great difficulty." Edward R. Hewitt

Flymphs, Soft-hackles and Spiders: http://www.troutnut.com/libstudio/FS&S/index.html
JADAugust 29th, 2007, 6:29 pm
Alexandria Pa

Posts: 362




To paraphrase the late Sparse Gray Hackle-- The Trout Do Not Rise In Woodlawn Cemetery--SO, Fish When You Can!

O I like that, Mark



Caddisman1

JaD

They fasten red (crimson red) wool around a hook, and fix onto the wool two feathers which grow under a cocks wattles, and which in colour are like wax.
Radcliffe's Fishing from the Earliest Times,
SmallstreamAugust 29th, 2007, 7:13 pm
State College, PA

Posts: 103
Gene,
That is awesome, is there anyway you could put this tape on utube or something, that would be sweet to see, ive always wanted to see electroshocking.
GeneAugust 29th, 2007, 10:29 pm
Posts: 107State College:

What I will do is post some of them on my websites in wmv files; I also put a few of them on youtube but unfortunately they will changed them to flash format and this format has too slow a frame rate for water type stuff that's why most of the fishing videos look so bad on youtube ( for some reason people and porn look okay..that's why they make money on it on the web).

The wmv format (can be played on windows media player) is compressed but usually the frame rate is good enough to show decent detail. You can see what I mean on one of my sites www.limestoner.com on the monster trout video and compare it to the same video I put on youtube. The video on youtube is terrible. As soon as I get done editing some stuff I'll let you know when I post it.

tight lines and jumping trout

gene
www.flyfisher.com
FreepowAugust 29th, 2007, 11:06 pm
menomonie, WI

Posts: 83
That rainbow video was nice. You should post more videos of a similar fashion...they are peaceful and would be nice to watch during the off-season.

The river was muddy again today after a hard rain from about 36 hours ago. It is very brown and the water level has risen between 8" and a foot. We fished all afternoon with hoppers and never saw a single surface breach. Kind of disappointing to get skunked but I got an opportunity to work on my casting some more. I tried to fish the banks and my aim was working quite well this afternoon. Unfortunately the fish must have been eating off of the bottom. I will learn nymphing for sure early next year. (I am quite new at this remember...). Does anyone have any idea how long a river usually takes to wash itself back to clean? I am guessing a day or two and I am sure it depends on the size of the river and the amount of water it is moving...but is there a general rule of thumb or anything for a river's clean-up time after hard rain?
"I fish...because I suspect that men are going along this way for the last time, and I for one don't want to waste the trip..."
MartinlfAugust 30th, 2007, 11:44 am
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 2966
Freepow, next time, if nothing is rising, put on a big black wooly bugger on 1X and work the banks, trying to move the streamer slowly--and hang on.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
JOHNWAugust 31st, 2007, 2:58 pm
Chambersburg, PA

Posts: 452
Freepow,
I'll go one better than Martin and reccomend a black shenks sculpin in #4 4xl. Toss it into the slack water along debris tight to the bank and just keep the line tight by leading the fly donwstream. DO NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCE strip the fly until it has washed downstream. Oh and better make the tippet no lighter than say 0x or 1x. On bigger waters this will work around mid current/channel obstructions as well.

As for time to clear that is highly variable depending on the drainage. For example a two inch deluge of rain on my home stream translates to about 2 hrs of murky water near the headwaters and possibly as many as 10 hrs further down. That same amount of rain on another stream could take a week to recover. Although I'd try to be there when the water starts to rise. The flush of oxygen can make the trout just plain stupid.
JW
"old habits are hard to kill once you have gray in your beard" -Old Red Barn
WiflyfisherSeptember 1st, 2007, 8:12 am
Wisconsin

Posts: 612
The wmv format (can be played on windows media player) is compressed but usually the frame rate is good enough to show decent detail. You can see what I mean on one of my sites www.limestoner.com on the monster trout video and compare it to the same video I put on youtube. The video on youtube is terrible. As soon as I get done editing some stuff I'll let you know when I post it.


Interesting... I am working on adding video product reviews for a couple of clients and which format is best for the videos has been a real issue. The Flash videos are pretty universal for browsing users but like you mention you do loose some quality, unless the video is a real high quality to begin with. Finding the best movie/video editor that also handles compression well is another challenge. Gene, I will let you know what we end up doing.
John S.
https://WiFlyFisher.com

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