10-3-2020-Valley Angler-Fall Foliage

The fall foliage adds a special beauty to all of New Hampshire right now — especially the ponds. (BILL THOMPSON PHOTO)

Sad to say, with a little over a week left, another trout season is about to end. The lack of water in our local streams has limited my outings to the local trout ponds. Even the ponds are showing the effects of a dry summer. It is now possible to walk all the way around my favorite pond without getting wet.

The fishing has been a little slow, however with some patience and a sinking line I have managed a few trout, mixed in with a few bass. Over the last few evenings, I have seen few, if any insects hatching.

My fly selection has been limited to small streamers and nymphs. I have caught a few larger bass on the streamers where as the trout seem to prefer small nymphs on a slow retrieve.

A size 16 Bead Head Prince has been the best producer. The old timers, back in the day when everybody smoked, used to say: “Cast your fly out and let it sink, then light up a cigarette. When you have finished your smoke, begin your retrieve.” I don’t recommend taking up smoking, but the advice is sound. With the fly close to the bottom and a slow steady retrieve you will catch trout.

Those old timers are all gone now, but I can remember watching them practicing what they preached, and they caught trout. If you are old enough, you remember that all the old cigarette ads showed men smoking and fly fishing. Having a pipe was considered an essential part of every fly fishers kit.

Aside from the health risk, there were other hazards that went along with smoking a pipe. I remember one old fellow whose waders were always sprinkled with burn holes across the front, as a result of stoking his pipe.

If the fishing is slow take some to time to enjoy your surroundings. The fall foliage adds a special beauty to all of New Hampshire right now — especially the ponds.

The late afternoons are my favorite time to take break from casting and just set back and enjoy natures beauty. The last couple of evenings have been lovely. When the sun starts to fade you may start to see a few more rises and it is time to get back to work.

The next hour can be the best part of the day. When the sun disappears behind the hills so will the action and the pond will go dead. The warmth of the day will have dissipated as well and you will know it is time to head home and maybe enjoy a good scotch.

See you on the river.

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