Here are the current USGS Water Level data for some of our favorite rivers and some notes on the fishery. Pop into the shop for advice on the latest hot flies, spots and tactics.
Assabet River at Maynard, MA
Stocked with brown trout in the Spring and Fall, our local stream provides reliable action close to home. We will stock the Assabet again this Spring and fishing will stay productive until the water temperature starts to rise. San Juans, Eggs, Black/Olive Woolly Buggers, small pheasant tails, Caddis and midges are the flies of choice.
Ideal flow (cfs): 80–120.
Current hatches: Midges, Caddis.
Recommended flies: Woolly Buggers #4, San Juan Worms, Eggs, 18 quasimodo pheasant tails, X caddis, caddis pupa, and midges.
- Flow: 417 ft³/s
- Water Level: 3.32 ft
Swift River at Ware, MA
This crystal clear tailwater fishery may be the most consistent river in the state. As the most productive stretch of this river originates from the base of the Windsor Dam at the Quabbin Reservoir, the water stays cold even throughout the summer months when other rivers are too warm to fish. Stocked heavily throughout the year, there are always trout in the river but they can get very choosy, so tiny (#22–#26) flies may be needed! The Swift (below Rt. 9) has switched over to “catch ‘n’ keep” on 1/1/16.
Current hatches: Midges BWO’s.
Recommended flies: Griffiths Gnats, BWO’s, small olive and black beadhead woolly buggers (olive has been the better color), Caddis, San Juan worms (red or pink), egg patterns, scuds, zebra midges 22-26.
Ideal flow (cfs): 45–90.
- Flow: 555 ft³/s
- Water Level: 4.99 ft
Millers River at Erving, MA
This picturesque river has many personalities depending on where you access it; from fast flowing pocket water to long slow glides, the Millers has something for everybody. Brown trout abound in this freestone but you are just as likely to hook into a rainbow, brook trout, or smallmouth bass depending on where you are and what time of year you are on the river. Wading can be difficult in many stretches and downright dangerous in others. As the spring approaches watch out for high flows. Nymph deep and slow.
Current Hatches: Caddis, BWO’s.
Recommended flies: Woolly Buggers, large Stone flies, BWOs, winter caddis, eggs, San Juan Worms, and midges.
- Flow: 798 ft³/s
- Water Level: 3.29 ft
You’d be hard pressed to find a more beautiful trout stream this side of the Mississippi. Pocket water, runs, riffles, deeper holes… you name it, the Westfield has it. The remote nature of this river adds to its charm and with less fishing pressure comes the prospect of spectacular fishing. The hatches can be prolific but the trout are also educated. This is one of those off-the-beaten-path gems that is just far enough out of the way to keep the crowds at bay but those so inclined to make the effort might just end up having their best fishing day of the year. Fooling these trout takes a good eye for holding water and attention to detail in your fly selection.
Current hatches: BWO, Caddis.
Recommended flies:Prince Nymph (12-16), Small Pheasant Tails (18 – 22), Hare’s Ears (12 – 16), Copper Johns (12-16), Stimulator, Elk Hair Caddis, Crakleback (14-16), Bloody Albert, Sulfurs, Woolly buggers and other streamers.
- Flow: 196 ft³/s
- Water Level: 4.17 ft
Loaded with fish from top to bottom (some of them enormous!), this river is the favorite of many a local angler. Great hatches and easy access make this a no brainer. Knowing where to be and when is the key to success here though. It’s just as easy to get shutout on the Farmington as it is to land 30 fish if you don’t know the river, so hooking up with a guide to show you the ropes is almost a must. Remember to throw streamers at structure and in the tailouts of deep pools for the beautiful Browns in this river!
Current hatches: , Midges, Caddis, Winter Caddis, Black Stoneflies.
Recommended flies: Hendricksons, Black Stoneflies, Prince Nymph (10-18), BWOs (16-20), Winter Caddis (16-20), Midges, Streamers (Kreelex streamers are my favorite).
- Flow: 456 ft³/s
- Water Level: 4.65 ft
Squannacook & Nissittissitt Rivers
We group these two great rivers in together because of their close proximity and shared personalities. Both rivers are on the smaller side and well shaded in most spots. Fishing on these two gems brings you back to what trout fishing was like 100 years ago. Snaking through wooded areas with plenty of cover and even more food sources, these rivers don’t give up their quarry easily. Likely holding spots may be loaded with aggressive trout one day and devoid of fish the next. Having been stocked these rivers will fish great through the fall.
Ideal flow (cfs): 50.
Recommended flies: Woolly Buggers, prince nymphs, pheasant tail nymphs, san juan worms, Caddis, and BWOs.
- Flow: 133 ft³/s
- Water Level: 2.76 ft
Salmon River at Pineville, NY
Steelhead run this famous river November through April, with nymph and indicator being the most productive method; swinging streamers with a Spey rod can be good at times. It can be very crowded at times – if it is seclusion you’re after, the Salmon is not for you.
Ideal flow (cfs): 1000.
Current hatches: N/A.
Recommended flies: Egg patterns, large streamers, woolly buggers.
- Flow: 1090 ft³/s
- Water Level: 6.70 ft
Sandy Creek, NY
Fishes best between December and March; wading can be treacherous at high flows; nymph and indicator fishing is the method of choice, with egg patterns working best.
Ideal flow (cfs): 300–600.
Current hatches: N/A.
Recommended flies: #10 Glo-Bugs.
- Flow: 383 ft³/s
- Water Level: 2.72 ft