Opening day extravaganza!

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catskilljohn
Posts: 4312
Joined: Fri Apr 24, 2009 7:03 am
Location: Yardley,PA- Jeffersonville,NY

Opening day extravaganza!

Post by catskilljohn »

What a weekend!

Saturday morning, 30*, clear skies, gusts of wind to 20mph...a textbook April morning in Sullivan County. Determined to christen the new cane, I rose at 6:00, loaded up and headed down to a public spot not far from the house. I was thinking, yea, its cold...but how hard could it be to sting a few before heading over to the museum? I parked, strung up and walked downstream 1/2 mile to work my way back up. With the wind kicking up and the sun still behind the mountain, I started thinking maybe a midge on a dropper under a #14 hares ear could cover a little more water column while I move back up. Drift after drift, touching bottom a couple times, I am noticing the green tint to the water and it occured to me I didn't check the water temp yet. 39*...yikes. Losing faith, I start looking at the bottom in a shallow riffle, and I see loads of cased caddis. Well, at least there are bugs in the water, cause there sure aren't any trout :lol: I lift a rock and a 2" dace moves a few inches, stops and appears to be frozen and I think if a dace cant move more than a few inches, I bet a trout wont either. Its going to be a long time before I bounce this rig directly into a trouts nose, so I reel in and head back to the car. The sun is breaking through the trees, and a ray of sun hits my face...I smile and say to myself this is it, opening day, at least it is to us long distance travelers!
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Over to the CFFCM, I was one of the first ones there. Grabbed my tying stuff, walked over to the gift shop and hung out till they opened the doors. In 1/2 hour you couldn't even park in the lot. Anglers started filling up the grassy area, and some headed upstream to the anglers parking area to get a good spot for the First Cast ceremony. Jack, Dan, Rick, Bud, Kurt, Johnny Hardware, Ronbo, Tim, Turk...all SGM members and all in attendance, we laughed and watched the place really get packed. It is such a treat to get together with all the boys streamside and catch up after a long and still lingering winter.
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Speeches were made, celebrities accounted for and after a few false casts the official, unofficial season starts. Back to the museum for Agnes's soup and cake, more catching up and I started my tying shift. Alot of the guys went to Canazon's casting event at the LM school, I heard there were some really nice Paynes there as well as the newest winter rods that were built, and that it was well attended.

There was a snooty-falooty lunch being served in the new building at the museum, somehow I got asked to attend [a grossly negligent mistake by someone no doubt :lol: ] and I got my first official tour of the beautiful, roomy and well thought out addition to the Ed building. The shop area is huge, well lit with big windows and power outlets everywhere, plus you can access the old building from there. The upstairs is equally beautiful, with a bathroom and storage space for tables and chairs, it also is open to the old section. What a project, and what a terrific place it will be!

By the time I was done at the museum, I didn't have too much time to fool around with the Two-headed trout dinner starting at around 6:00, so I made a quick stop on the Willow to try a few casts just in case the warmer air coaxed some bugs into hatching. I bumped into Bob Herson, we talked for a few minutes, trading our thoughts on cold water fishing and I headed upstream to cast and drift, cast and drift without ever feeling the bump of a fish. It sure is nice to be back on the water though, fish or not, I really missed this place!
You can really see the snowmelt green water in the photo here...
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The dinner was a packed house. Foxy Joe, Johnny Hardware, Jimmy, Dan, Ronbo and I were on the end of one of the long tables, and as guys were added to the list, so were smaller tables. Dan from the Riverside and a couple of his buddies sat with us after they added a small table to ours and we had a really good time talking about all the worlds problems and how to solve them, with Hardware Johnny, as usual, having the best solutions ;) .

This morning I had some work to do at the house, and on the way home I stopped in town for a Sunoco C-store lunch and pepsi. As I always do, I walked down to the bridge over the stream. They have a really nice lighted bridge closed to car traffic, but convienent to fishermen looking for bugs that are attracted to nightime illumination. Sure enough, there were smallish stoneflies all over the railings, sunning themselves before their abbreviated lifespans come to a close.
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I peered down into the water, stared for a minute or 2 and before my eyes a trout appeared. As my eyes adjusted to the speed of the water, the rippling from the wind and the light, I counted over 15 fish in this area. There are trout in the streams, and in 2 weeks I will be looking for them again! CJ
"Gentlemen,remove your hats,this is it"
"This is where the trout was invented?"
"Oh he existed in a crude,primitive form in Waltons England"
"But this is where they painted spots on him and taught him to swim"

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quadfish
Posts: 496
Joined: Tue Apr 13, 2010 7:25 pm
Location: Milford, PA

Re: Opening day extravaganza!

Post by quadfish »

It certainly was great getting back on the water again, but zippo in the fish department for me too, buddy.

I echo your sentiment, "opening Saturday" for us working stiffs is great for getting back out to the Catskills, you just don't always get into the fish right away.

Had a blast hanging out with all the guys, Turk, Bud, Ronbo, Dan, Mike, plus all the guys you already mentioned. Plus, the stories coming from the elder statesmen who stopped by, man oh man, those guys have got a million of 'em!! :lol: :lol:

Great pictures very nicely written description too Johnny, but there is always something missing with your pictures, you!!


gotcha:
First Cast 2013 012.jpg
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Looking forward to a great season!!!
As always, Rick :D
"A man who would fool a fish with a feather would probably go to a brothel without carryng any money." Charles Dannen

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luzerne
Posts: 141
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2009 6:42 pm

Re: Opening day extravaganza!

Post by luzerne »

Glad you enjoyed it and thanks for your help CJ. It was a very nice day and was good to see the gang out of the house. You stood up to Ralph's comments on how to improve your tying very well. The hooty flaunty thing was actually a small fund raiser to help pay the heating bill as you recall we lost that opportunity when Fly Fest went away this year.
You should have fished under that bridge.
"Fly fishermen are born honest, but they get over it." - Ed Zern

catskilljohn
Posts: 4312
Joined: Fri Apr 24, 2009 7:03 am
Location: Yardley,PA- Jeffersonville,NY

Re: Opening day extravaganza!

Post by catskilljohn »

luzerne wrote: The hooty flaunty thing was actually a small fund raiser to help pay the heating bill as you recall we lost that opportunity when Fly Fest went away this year.
I didn't mean that in a bad way, just that bums like me dont usually get asked to social gatherings. I really enjoyed it and it was alot of fun sitting across from Ted and Joan. You guys are doing a really fine job over there Jack. CJ
"Gentlemen,remove your hats,this is it"
"This is where the trout was invented?"
"Oh he existed in a crude,primitive form in Waltons England"
"But this is where they painted spots on him and taught him to swim"

wiFlyFisher
Posts: 812
Joined: Tue Feb 02, 2010 11:15 pm
Location: Wisconsin
Contact:

Re: Opening day extravaganza!

Post by wiFlyFisher »

CJ, thanks for posting the update and photos.

I wonder if your stonefly is the same "Early Brown Stonefly" I run into this time of year?

Image

BTW, i had ice on my guides the first morning, water temp. 38 degrees, air about the same, but snow all along the shore.

catskilljohn
Posts: 4312
Joined: Fri Apr 24, 2009 7:03 am
Location: Yardley,PA- Jeffersonville,NY

Re: Opening day extravaganza!

Post by catskilljohn »

wiFlyFisher wrote: I wonder if your stonefly is the same "Early Brown Stonefly" I run into this time of year?
Well, I had a nickle on the railing for scale but the dog-gone thing wouldn't stop running :lol: There were various sized ones among this one, all were very frisky but the biggest one was smaller than the nickle by a little bit, I would say the length of a #12- 94840 total. The smaller ones were like an #18 hook. CJ
"Gentlemen,remove your hats,this is it"
"This is where the trout was invented?"
"Oh he existed in a crude,primitive form in Waltons England"
"But this is where they painted spots on him and taught him to swim"

wiFlyFisher
Posts: 812
Joined: Tue Feb 02, 2010 11:15 pm
Location: Wisconsin
Contact:

Re: Opening day extravaganza!

Post by wiFlyFisher »

catskilljohn wrote:
wiFlyFisher wrote: I wonder if your stonefly is the same "Early Brown Stonefly" I run into this time of year?
Well, I had a nickle on the railing for scale but the dog-gone thing wouldn't stop running :lol: There were various sized ones among this one, all were very frisky but the biggest one was smaller than the nickle by a little bit, I would say the length of a #12- 94840 total. The smaller ones were like an #18 hook. CJ
A minute and a half in the freezer slows them down. :lol:

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Bud
Posts: 251
Joined: Sun Apr 26, 2009 3:59 pm
Location: Bronxville, NY

Re: Opening day extravaganza!

Post by Bud »

I was trying out a new camera and took this photo of two cool dudes on a cold morning.
Two Dudes.jpg
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There was a lot of standing around.
Loitering.jpg
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In addition to Sally Jesse Raphael (!), the celebrity casters included angling royalty and some guy named Trump.
Wulff and Trumo.jpg
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At the Livingston Manor High School gym, casting discussions were the rule of the day.
Instruction.jpg
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Mike Canazon and Bob Taylor: Boo Boys indeed.
Boo Boys.jpg
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Later in the day, I got wet by falling down the bank at Wagon Tracks and landing on my back in the Beaverkill. If anybody hooks a Catskill Fly Tyers Guild logo cap downstream from there, it's probably mine.

In short, as my hometown paper used to put it in its "Goings On" column, a good time was had by all.

--Bud
Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. And inside of a dog, it's too dark to read.
-- Marx (Groucho)

Bamboo&Brookies
Posts: 737
Joined: Fri May 08, 2009 4:44 pm

Re: Opening day extravaganza!

Post by Bamboo&Brookies »

Great report, CJ.

Man that water's still a little on the chilly side. :lol: :( :lol: :o :o

Some warmer days are in forecast so next time you're up there fish should be more active and receptive to your offerings.

Rob
Give a man a fly rod, a shotgun and a bird dog and he'll never be worth a d*mn.
-Old New England saying

Beaverkill
Posts: 92
Joined: Wed May 20, 2009 10:08 pm
Location: Califon, NJ

Re: Opening day extravaganza!

Post by Beaverkill »

It was a fun weekend to spend time with friends and fellow fly fishermen. Great to see everyone all excited about this season..I wish the fishing was better... I fished the East Branch for a few hours on Saturday, lost 1 fish and caught King Chubby (which made me excited for about 30 seconds until I figured it wasnt a big brown)... We had a blast at the dinner, basically had a full table (we might have been a little loud).. I even spent some time talking with Foxy's mother (I will post the pic of him in his bunny pajamas when she sends it to me)..
after stuffing myself at the pancake breakfast, I hit the Neversink.. The river was low for early season and there was alot of algea in the water which made nymphing difficult..I grew tired of cleaning my nymphs off and hit the Lower D, alot of stones on the water but no risers or even noticeable feeding...
We have been spoiled the last couple seasons and now have a more typical early season... One thing that is concerning is how low the rivers are for this time of year.. I hope we get spring rains or we will be in trouble come summer..

Looking forward to seeing everyone again... Hopefully sooner than later! See ya on the water! Dan
Dan Ansbach

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