Posted on July 28 2023
Drove up to Deposit about 12:30. On the way I saw a red fox standing in the middle of rte.97 in Hancock just past the fire station. Had to put the brakes on but he finally trotted off into the mowed field. The roads from Lordville to Hale Eddy were dry. They were wet by the time I reached the west bound rest area and in Deposit there was evidence of a good rain. Drove down to the Men's Club along the fog shrouded river and stopped at the Lee Conklin plaque to look out at the river. It was running clear and there were some sulfurs hatching. Drove back up to the pasture pool (Red Barn) and there was but one car parked with two wade anglers and one drift boat fishing (the drift boat wasn't fishing but you know what I mean). The water was clear. Drove back to the Troutfitter and Dave asked about the water which I said looked good. Walked out on the bridge and almost half of the river was coffee with two creams from Butler Brook. Went back to the Troutfitter to tell Dave and one of my old river friends Mike was there telling Dave that Oquaga was gushing mud. We chatted for a bit and then I turned tail and drove back to Lordville where I hunkered down for the rest of the afternoon.
The fishing - I have all of the USGS real time water gages on my PC (hi-tech guy that I am) and at 6:30 I scanned them searching for a place to fish. To my dismay, both tailwaters were blown out as was the Beaverkill. The last flow I clicked on was Lordville and it had just started to turn up a smidgeon (proud to say I got smidgeon on the first try). I don't fish Lordville this time of year (it hit 70.5 today ) as it is almost always too warm but the gage tells me where I can fish. Headed up the PA side and went as far upstream as I dared balancing high muddy water coming down against warm water downstream. Water was a cool 63.5 but the knotweed floating by said the water was rising. The sky was blue and the sun was out but I put my raincoat on. Ended up taking the raincoat off (it was hot) and tucking it into my vest. Was riverside by 7:00, which I thought was far too early. Sat down on the bank for about three minutes before the first fish rose. Got up, started casting and was into one rainbow after another for a good hour and a half. Never had a speck of algae on the hook, leader or fish and all but one of them stayed stuck until they were netted (the escapee was a little guy).
Tomorrow is iffy at best. BR for sure will be too high and muddy to fish. So too will be the UEB. Bk will probably be both to high, warm and muddy. The only possibility is the WB above Oquaga, but don't you dare drive here thinking it will be low and clear. If you are already here, check it out. If you are thinking of coming, wait a day. Tomorrow is going to be hot. Things will cool off after that and hopefully dry out a bit.