Try some ‘shifty’ angling this summer

Take most any summer early morning or evening on the Chenango, Otselic or Unadilla rivers, or the larger streams such as the Butternut, Wharton, lower Canasawacta and Genegantslet creeks, and the odds of catching fish are much better than some might think. The better action is primarily the result of the sun not yet boring almost straight down into the normally summer-shrunken waters, a period when fish scurry to find shade and security, and are less interested in feeding.

The species of fish available and caught will vary according to the water being fished, but the best part is that at least some fish will be caught, which is something that becomes much harder to do during the middle hours of the day. Whether it’s a trout, bass, walleye, pike, rock bass or maybe a big fallfish or shiner, the fun is in the catching, regardless of what angling method is used.

My favorite method for this time of the year is fly fishing, especially when angling in one the rivers or largest flow sections of the bigger streams. There’s no need to be a proficient fly caster or experienced matcher of any insect hatches either. The main thing is getting your offering where the fish will be expecting food to appear, and that often means along deeper bank edges where lush vegetation overhangs the water. Insects and caterpillars often drop into the water, and hungry fish of several species will be lying in wait for that to happen. The key is stealth and placing your fly, or whatever small lure you choose, accurately where the real food item might fall into the water.

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