Flows were up when I today went to the Farmington. As that river has been in drought conditions the past few years, I don’t think I’ve ever fished it when it was high. Today, the combined flow was 570 cfs. The water was a decent 42 °F. It took a while to locate the fish.
And, it was a great change of pace from the very low flows of the past. The reservoir that feeds into the Farmington, miraculously, is now full. So, the flows are up a bit to lower the reservoir’s water levels. The currents are fast. Thankfully, I didn’t fall in, but nearly did so a few times. I’m an aggressive wader.
I stayed mostly in the permanent TMA zone, which hasn’t been stocked. I broke the tip of my 3-wt. Euro rod, and it is away for repairs. So, brought my 2-wt. Euro instead. I definitely felt under-gunned, as I’ll explain.
Action was predictably non-existent at dawn, but picked up around 10 am. I think I’m a little rusty, as I went 3-for-7. That’s not a bad average for me, but, I always think about the ones that got away. One blood knot failed after a good-sized brown surged, a fish popped off just as I was about to net it amidst very fast current, and, for some reason that only the trout know, two hook sets didn’t stick.
Still, I was grateful to land three fish, two of which fought spectacularly. One was a 15″ brown with perfect fins, and so, I think it’s wild. Side pressure was the key to avoid having the fast current sweep the fish down-river. I would have taken better pictures of the brown, but, it literally jumped out of the net.
The other was a 15″ rainbow, and, it was incredibly fat. I was miles away from the newly-stocked areas, and so, I am guessing this is a holdover. It fought like crazy. It surged over and over, and the 2-wt. really took a beating.
After a while, I got tired of chasing the fish down-river, and I didn’t want to slip and fall. So, I pinched the line to keep the fish from taking off and just clamped down on it with a lot of side pressure. There was that brief “oh no” period when everything seemed to freeze. The fish in the fast current, and I near the bank, hoping the fish would relent. A nose-to-nose stand off. Thankfully, the knots and 5x fluorocarbon tippet held. Eventually, the fish faltered and I pulled it in.
Best flies of the day were stoneflies: Devin’s Biot Stone and the Euro Golden Stone.
I hit the road at 1 pm, grateful to be outside and to have a family that understands that I at times really, really need to fish.
Happy Easter, everyone!