Outing: Black River, VT

Instead of visiting my usual haunts, I decided to mix things up this past weekend and try new water. After some last minute planning, I decided to fish the Black River in Vermont, due to a recommendation of a good friend. Owing to its reputation as a trophy trout fishery, I fully expected to share water.

So, I awoke on Saturday morning on four hours of sleep with a plan in mind: arrive early, cover ground, and fish hard. Unfortunately, many people had the same idea. All pull-outs had cars and droves of anglers setting up. I picked the parking lot with the fewest cars. The fishermen I talked to were very nice and allowed me to work around them. Some of them were leaving as I set up, reporting little to no action.

My day started off much the same. I fished a number of prime runs and pockets without anything to show. I rotated flies, added weight, and switched between indicator and tightline techniques. Eventually, I surmised that pressured fish often hide in “B” water and stay near the far bank. My first cast to the front of a giant boulder yielded a vicious strike, some head-shakes, and a peeling run. After applying copious side pressure and testing the limits of my tippet, I landed a gorgeous brown. My first Vermont fish on a fly.

I landed two more trout before calling it early to fish with a close friend back in New Hampshire. Overall, there was no magic fly; I caught each fish on a different pattern. On this day, time, persistence, and a smidge of risky wading won. But, as fly-fishers, we all pay our dues one way or another. I will be back.


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6 thoughts on “Outing: Black River, VT

  1. Tough river to wade. Went 13 for 16 over the Memorial Day weekend. Mops. Bead head Soft Hackle Ptails and bread and butter nymphs were the charm. The area above the bridge is a prime target I’ll cover next

    1. Good on you John! This river is a tough egg to crack, but I found that it can reward the persistent angler. I also found no magic fly in my short trip

  2. Well done, Ashu. I give you a lot of credit fishing amongst an area where all pull outs are crowded. If I saw that I would have to move on. Along those lines, I only fish the Farmington when I take a day off from work during the week. During weekends that river is too crowded for my liking.

    1. Thanks Sam. I agree about your assessment of the Farmy. I fished on Hendrickson weekend last year and the place was a zoo! The key was to walk further and when possible, wade further. I read some of your comments on Ken’s blog, way to go with your recent catches!

      1. Thanks, Ashu, The Ware River provided good action for a few outings. Getting pretty warm now though in the downstream section I fished, not far from where it joins the Swift. I will not fish that area again until fall. Hopefully the trout that are in there will find some cold water some place, perhaps in the cold flowing Swift downstream.

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