A New Year’s Eve at the Swift River



I arrived back in town two days ago from a Christmas trip. A long 17-hr. trip. With the forecast no longer predicting freezing rain, I rallied today and headed to the Swift.

Since “catch and keep” below Route 9 goes back into force tomorrow on January 1, I headed to the hatchery area.  Say farewell to those fish that will end up in someone’s freezer.
I arrived at dawn and was the fifth car in the dirt lot.  Quite a few people arrived around 12 noon, and I wrapped it up by 1 pm. Water was about 44 °F (trout tend to get sluggish below 40 °F). So, I was hoping for some fish activity, but was surprised to land about six brookies and 15 or so rainbows.I spent a few hours throwing some dries, landing nothing. So, I switched tactics. Nymphing was very productive, and I used some flies that are among the first I’ve ever tied. The ugly ones. Some of the recent and very nice-looking flies…received no takes. Go figure.

An experimental fly made from yarn was, by far, the #1 fly today. I wrote about it here. I call it the “Wiggly Woo.”

It felt great to be outside and on the water. It has been a very fun 16 months of learning how to really fly fish (previously, I fished only once or twice a year). I’m grateful for the many, many people who have given me great pointers and perspectives.
Hope everyone has a safe and fun New Year’s Eve.

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9 thoughts on “A New Year’s Eve at the Swift River

  1. Congrats on the great day! I gave it a go for a few hours, but struck out using nymphs and soft hackles. I did have a couple of hits on the top water fly above the bead head nymph, but did not hook up. Still nice to be out though.

    1. Thanks! I'm hoping one day DFW will follow Connecticut's footsteps: 1/2 of the trout at the Farmington are wild or holdovers, for example. The rainbows stocked by DFW are sterile, I hear.

    2. Someone recently asked if the stocked trout(rainbows too) were sterile on the MDFW facebook page and they said that all stockers except tiger trout can reproduce. I also thought that the rainbows were sterile but i guess not.

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