Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Stonefly time...small and sparse!

A few small winter stoneflies were skittering on the surface of the Natchaug River recently. After seeing a subtle rise to a stone, a soft hackle floated on top took a nice brown trout holdover.  A lot of walking, wading and observing to find a rising trout this time of year BUT it happens when stoneflies are around.

A few days later on a cold windy day on the Farmington, trout were again rising ever-so-subtly to small stones when the wind settled down a bit.  Not a lot of rises, and again a lot of patience and observation to spot the dimpled soft take.

A size 16 or 18 soft hackle, gray body will match the dark bodied early "snow flies" as some call them.  On the Farmington they were smaller, even to a 20 or 22 and greenish/yellowish.  Nymphs of course will work if you want to drag bottom.  Great time of year to walk and explore with the water gin-clear and low.  No snow pack and lack of frost could spell trouble.  Let's hope for a rainy April/May to refresh our eastern CT freestones.  Even the tailwater Farmington is low for this time of year, more like midsummer flows and levels.  The Natchaug closes 2/29 until opening day.  Meantime pick a warm day and try the Yantic, Merrick Brook, Willimantic or Moosup, all year 'round streams and look for the small stoneflies!
Drag free!


  1. Nice pic of the stone fly. With the warm weather they have been coming off on my end of the state as well.

  2. who thought we would be hoping for rain after this past year, but you are correct sir. We need it.

    Thanks for sharing.
    Passinthru Outdoors Blog - Sharing the Passion

  3. I think we chatted on the river last week.
    Paul from Bristol

    1. Paul please email me at
      I want to ask you something.