Well the groundhog says we can expect 6 more weeks of winter. Going by todays weather in the 60's I would say the groundhog is wrong. This weather has alot of us ready to get out and try different streams even if it's just to get out and enjoy some fresh air.
Stocked Trout Streams -- Watch for the trout in the delayed harvest and stocked trout streams feeding on aquatic midges at dusk in the slow wide tails of the pools. If you see dimple rise forms, they are feeding on adult flies. Drift a Mr. Rapidan Midge Dry size 18 on 7X to these trout. If you see splashy riseforms, they are taking the emergers just below the surface. Fish to these trout with a Mr. Rapidan Olive Soft Hackle Nymph size 16 on a two-foot dropper below the dry.
All of the local stocked trout streams are clear and fishable. To see the latest streams stocked, visit the VA DWR website.
Mountain Trout Streams -- Typically I don't go to the native brook trout streams in the mountains until March but this year because of the warmer days, I have been changing my habits. I don't expect to get much action on dry flies so I am concentrating mostly on nymph fishing. In fact I am working on a podcast that will go over the early season nymph fishing, so be on the lookout for that. A Bead Head Squirrel Nymph, Bead Head Hare's Ear Nymph or Copper John Nymph in size 14 and 16 have been producing a few brookies over the last week. Last year we added the Perdigon Nymph and they have proven to sink faster and do well in the faster current or deeper pools.
Saturday February 11 at 10a.m. I will be conducting a classroom discussion on the trout streams in the Shenandoah National Park. If you are interested in learning more about these streams, then join us. Space is limited, so pre-registration is required.
Our Spring 2023 On The Stream Trout Schools are filling up. In this is on your bucket list then check your schedule and get signed up today. We are offering some in the Shenandoah National Park and some in the George Washington National Forest.
My book, Trout Fishing in the Shenandoah National Park is a great way to learn more about the Park including information on the hatches and stream access.