This weekend's hot spell following the cold front that just moved through the region this week should trigger some exceptional smallmouth action on the local rivers. Flocks of seagulls could be seen yesterday evening gorging themselves on what was a massive mayfly hatch. For those of you that have your favorite spots on the Mississippi River, this weekend could be one of the season's best, and don't forget to bring along some large dry flies (#8 Stimulators, etc.)
Water levels are exceptional for this time of year. Catches counts are down most likely due to the now resident cormorants. That being said, the the ones caught tend to be in the 13"+ range. A 5wt is recommended, as the larger fish will quickly take you into the rocks and cut your leader unless you have the backbone to horse them around. If you really feel ambitious, you can try for the muskie that like to sun in the shallows along the edges of the river. On the most recent outing, the right bank water offered the best holding water for SM, especially below the Heron Rd. bridge.
The gang that showed up for this week's Evening Fishing on the Ottawa River (Britannia Filtration Plant), enjoyed a great evening on the water. Water levels on the inside channel are close to ideal, with only a couple sections requiring additional care while wading. SM in the 8-12" range were plentiful amongst all of the anglers. Swinging weighted buggers/streamers in 2.5-3' of water proved most effective, with many fish taken on the dangle. Water levels on the main channel are still too high safely wade.
The water levels on the Rideau @ Long Island are still running at least 4" higher than normal for this time of year, but it is still fishable, especially on the lower flats. Catch numbers were moderate with most in the 10" range, though a couple larger fish were caught and two in the 3-4lb range were seen cruising.
For those that didn't make it out to Thursday's Evening Fishing you missed a great evening on the water. Current water conditions are near perfect for the Bate Island area, with the south channel flats being productive as usual. Around 7pm the daily emergence of large spotted sedges (caddis flies) made for some enjoyable topwater action, with bass rising everywhere to take in the feast. While the sizes were relatively modest, the constant action more than makes up for it.
For those that have been waiting the 2015 edition of the popular Evening Fishing Outings kicks off this week. For those that are new to fly fishing or the NCR, the outings provide a great way to discover angling opportunities within the city, meet other anglers, pick up advice, tips, etc.
For full details check out the Evening Fishing section of the OFS Forum.
Well the annual raising of the water in the Rideau Canal got under way over the weekend. Dow's Lake should be full by now, though past experience suggests it's best to give it about two weeks for all of the dead plant material (leave, etc.) to settle out and the bait fish and bugs to kick into gear. The Victoria Day weekend would probably be a good weekend to hit the backwater areas in the Arboretum for panfish and crappie.
In conjunction with the IF4 showing, the OFS is pleased to announce that author, teacher, and accomplished competition fly angler, George Daniel, will give a seminar entitled "Nymphing 2.0". The seminar will provide an in-depth look at Daniel's incredibly effective nymphing technique, developed over years of study and successful competition angling.
For complete details please see the event entry in the calendar.
The 2015 edition of our popular Winter Casting sessions starts up January 13th. This year we will have six (6) sessions spread out from January into April and have been added to the event calendar. The cost will be $6/session or $25 for all of the sessions. These sessions are open to both OFS Members and non-members.