It could be worse. I’m referring to today’s opener for trout fishing. While stream levels are still high, at least the approaching high pressure system has warmed our temperatures. Opening day anglers farther to our southeast, such as the fabled Catskill streams, are facing stream levels at or above flood stage, so the warmer temperatures are pretty much a moot point for them.
The recent rains of earlier this week kept most small to medium size streams at seasonably high levels but unfortunately kept the bigger flows such as the Otselic and upper Chenango and Unadilla River branches a bit too high for good fishing opportunities. Anglers who choose to fish the smaller streams and brooks should fare far better than those trying to deal with the high water and fast currents of the bigger flows. An inspection of some of our local trout streams’ flow levels yesterday verified that many are high with strong currents. Just how much they’ll drop by today is questionable, but I doubt the larger ones will shrink significantly to offer decent opening day fishing opportunities.
Of course another negative facing winter-weary anglers is the effects of the heavy rains earlier this week, which washed abundant food into streams and was gobbled up by trout. What with full bellies and lethargic systems due to the cold water temperatures, the well-fed trout will be less likely to be seeking more to eat when anglers’ baits and lures pass in front of them.