Well it has felt like Spring the past few weeks but we got a hard reminder this weekend that Winter isn't over. Rain, snow, and high wind greeted us yesterday at Escatawba Farms for a fly fishing school with Tale Tellers fly shop. The ten anglers that signed up braved the cold and the wind to learn how to nymph, streamer, and dry fly fish for trout along with learning where trout like to hold in a river or stream. Although the air temps went from 60 to 20 degrees in a 12 hour period the fish still cooperated for the us.
I finished up guiding musky this week until Fall arrives(I hope it takes its time). I always stop about now just before the musky start their spawn on the James River. The best way to have more fish for the future is to let them do their thing in peace! It was a very hard year guiding for musky, honestly the only thing I can come up with is just more pressure from anglers fishing for them. Still plenty of fish but they just don't wanna move unless their really hungry and if they do move you have to be ready. A lot of down time staring into the water stripping your fly back to the boat, so hard to keep the mojo going when its tough. Looking forward to the break and going after fish that eat way more often!
Now that Spring is close and temps warming brings a lot of fish out of their Winter funk. Trout fishing gets much better with more bug hatches and warmer water temps speeding up that metabolism. Pre spawn smallmouth bass fishing has heated up. Smallmouth bass have been sitting on the bottom getting fat from doing nothing all Winter long except eating crayfish. Now with warming water temps they will become more active and chase down baitfish as well as their favorite crayfish. This is a great time to catch a heavy in weight smallmouth bass!
Will not be long now the striped bass will start their journey up river to spawn. April is the month to get on the action here on the Staunton River. These fish migrate every year out of Buggs Island Lake to spawn near the town of Brookneal. I do have a few prime dates left for this run. If you have been stuck inside and ready to fish lets make that happen this Spring!