Opening day and Delaware flows
By CLEM FULLERTON
Once again, I have missed the opening day of trout season. Shed no tears for me, as I was quite happy to be enjoying the balmy breezes of Texas. As a young man, fly fishing on the opening day of trout season was an opportunity not to be missed. Now, I have to wonder whatever possessed me to endure such a masochistic ritual.
After an hour or so of wading in the waters of a frigid stream, my feet were as numb as concrete blocks. My fingers had become so stiff from cold they could barely tie the simplest knots. Nor had my futile efforts produced any evidence that there were any trout in the stream. Those who gather on the banks of the Beaverkill to make their obligatory first casts for the television cameras are to be lauded. If opening-day weather in the Catskills resembles the norm, they will not tarry long. Those with any brains will have quickly headed for the Catskill Fly Fishing Center to enjoy a hot bowl of Agnes Van Puts homemade soup. Now, that part of opening day I do regret missing. I wish you well, opening-day anglers, but I will delay my first casts of the season till the end of April. By then, both the air and stream temperatures should be a bit warmer. The nymphs of the Hendrickson mayflies will be doing their odd little up and down dance in the steam flow, which indicates they are about to hatch. Only then will I rise from my bed and take myself to the river, in hopes of deceiving a feeding trout. It is better to bide ones time till the stars in the heavens are in their proper alignment. I truly hope that you heroic, opening-day anglers enjoyed yourselves, but I tend to doubt it.
My friend, Peter J. Kolesar, called the other day bringing good news regarding possible new Delaware River flows. Over the winter, he and Jim Serio had continued working on their computer modeling for Delaware River flows. Their efforts could have impacts on two major areas. One is the Dwarf Wedge Mussel, which is an endangered species. Studies have shown that these little critters need cold water in order to continue to survive. The second is the desire to lessen the possibility of more severe flooding in the Delaware drainage. Their most recent work indicates that a release from Cannonsville Reservoir of 450cfs can be made without creating any problems for the entities involved. Such a release would be very beneficial for the trout fishery all the way down to Lordville, and on certain days all the way to Hankins. Now, these two tireless workers for better flows on the Delaware will have to sell the ideas that drive their latest modeling to the powers that can make changes to Delaware flows. I wish you the best of luck, gentlemen.
If you are interested in learning where the trout fishing has been best and what style of flies are producing, pencil in the following date and time. The Upper Delaware Chapter of Trout Unlimited will be holding its first meeting of the year at the Long Eddy firehouse on April 25, at 9:00 a.m. Drop in for a morning cup of coffee, cake and cookies, which will be served both before and after the meeting. Bring a buck and you could go home with one of the nifty dollar raffle prizes that are a feature of every meeting. Its rumored that pretty little lady from Texas and her elderly cowboy companion will show up for that meeting. Yall come.