Yesterday I caught this lunker Bass post spawn on my parent’s farm pond using a Woolly Bugger. It was the fight of a lifetime considering I caught it on a 4WT 8’6″ L.L. Bean fiberglass kit rod. Good fun and after a long and action filled fight, she was reeled in and released safely.
New Jersey Trout season is moving into its second full week and third weekend. The weather remains seasonably cool and rainy, as is expected in early April. This year is in sharp contrast to last year where the Trout suffered through low water and high temperature conditions. The waters have been warming up during the mid week and cooling of during late week heavy rainstorms.
The verbal reports are enthusiastically saying that Bass are starting to bite. I was able to land a small guy on a Wooly Bugger in the pond! Dave and Mark both reported significant sub-surface Bass activity in their favorite ponds. If it rains on Friday we will be out Bass fishing the lakes until the rivers clear up and the flow subsides.
I normally hit the Pequest up once or twice a year, especially the TCA, you have a good chance at hooking into a hog here. On Saturday morning, I ran the Belvedere Fox Trot to benefit Parkinson’s disease, afterwards it dawned on meto fish here. There are miles of public access right through the center of town and we have permission on some of the private water too.
Though the scenery was beautiful, the water was murky. Fishing was not happening for us, that being said, Mark had a swing and a miss on the Rapala. We marched all the way down to the Delaware and fished the mouth, still no activity. Four hours of pounding water with streamers and no fish, it was time to stop at George’s for a drink. George’s sits in an old brick building, hanging partially over the Pequest. Inside is a bar structure that dates back 150 years, road signs on the wall for State Route 69, since rename Route 31 to prevent sign theft. This bar is part of authentic Warren County and you should stop here, that’s the MKFF seal of approval.
After the difficult day we had on Saturday it is always nice to return to your home waters. Despite the sunny day, the river temperature were holding in the high 40s, barely warm enough to encourage active feeding. Not to be deterred, I jumped in to some shallow slow water, which I expected to be warmer, tied on a Mickey Finn and quickly pulled up two Brook Trout.
Mark and Dave pulled up about an hour later, we branched out in search of new territory. The Paulinskill will hold fish year round and stocked Trout migrate up and down the river some distance. It is important to check bends in the river far away from stocking locations.
Until next weekend…check out our Paulinskill River Fly Fishing Kits, $23.37 plus tax and shipping for 16 flies and a split foam case. Everything you need to Fly Fish the Paulinskill River and we include a printed version of our hatch chart along with tips and tricks.
Two weekends ago, the MKFF crew saddled up in the old FJ riding up to Orvis Sandanona Grounds in Millbrook, NY. The Sandanona Shooting Grounds is the oldest permitted shotgun range in the United States; it was built during the presidency of Thomas Jefferson. We like to keep our readers apprised of trade shows and other industry developments; the 6th annual Orvis Game Fair and Country Sporting Weekend presented an excellent opportunity to explore the fishing and wing shooting community in more depth.
Wing Shooting Training
Orvis hosts a world renowned wing shooting school at their flagship store in Manchester, Vermont and the Sandanona Grounds. Visitors were able to experience an abbreviated version of a lesson. There were two stations with instructors; they assisted students with shooting form and tactics.
Generally, when test driving a brand new Land Rover, you are not expecting a very advanced or technical course. I figured, we would go over a few bumps and roll over a log or two. The MKFF crew was pleasantly surprised, the off road course and training was borderline “expert level.” There are several pictures in the gallery for you to browse through, I’m pretty sure we had multiple wheels of the ground in a few places on the course.
An Orvis event would not be complete without Fly Fishing. Complimentary casting lessons were available for the revelers. Further, check out the Striped Bass one of the exhibitors had preserved caught off of Chelsea Pier.
The event was geared towards the upscale shooting and hunting community; this segment representing the Sandanona Ground’s target market. Several Orvis affiliated Fly Fishing Lodges were represented with their guide staff. We met up with and immediately took a liking to the Glendorn Lodge in Pennsylvania. Mark and I were promised that they could hook us into a Walleye on the Fly this spring! We may have to take them up on their offer in the spring.