Shenandoah Valley Virginia Fly Fishing Report and News From Mossy Creek Fly Shop.
A snapshot of our spring and summer season. This USGS gauge on the South Fork of the Shenandoah shows ‘average flow’ represented by the orange triangles. The spikes represent the big rain events we have been receiving and keeping us off the water for a bulk of the year.
The James and Shenandoah Rivers
Boats went out Monday, August 20th and did well despite rising water all day. Weather Tuesday will lay out the fishing conditions for the remainder of the week. Wednesday through Monday look sunny and nice for a change. We will believe it when we see it but we are preparing to finish the season strong if mother nature allows. Cicadas are thick this year and will begin dying off soon. The evening hex hatch will begin soon and once water clears up we anticipate the bug fishing will be great. Our favorite patterns include boogle bugs, todds wiggle minnows, swimming frogs, and diving minnows. Murdich minnows and kreelex are great patterns in dirty water. Updates will be provided again once the river clears up and we are back to floating daily.
Our guides are modifying schedules to allow for more open dates to accommodate anglers through September. If you are looking for a float trips, availability is very limited, but we have opened up some days.
We were relieved to finally get on the water and float the Shenandoah for smallmouth bass.
Mountain Brook Trout Streams
Dry River continues to flow strong and fish great.
Reports of large fish continue to roll in from the mountain streams. Dry River, Skidmore Fork, Ramsey’s Draft, North River, Paine Run, Big Run, Jeremey’s Run along with other Shenandoah National Park streams have been fishing well. Beetles, ants, and little yellow stones have been available to our local brook trout. Parachute ants, various beetles, mini hot garcia’s, stimulators, headlight sally’s, and other size 12-16 attractor dry flies and nymphs will work right now. Our brookies are getting big and fat this summer with such good water flows. Try some size 6-10 streamers as well during periods of high water as some of the largest brook trout are being taken swinging or stripping baitfish patterns. Enjoy the quality water flows. It is looking like we should have quality water into the fall.
Get Geared Up
Terrestrial season is still here! We are hoping we see some clear water so we can enjoy the topwater bite for the next few months.
Hoppers are becoming more prevalent streamside, tricos clouds are visible most warm mornings, and Japanese beetles continue to cover the streamside vegetation. August is usually the pinnacle of our terrestrial season but heavy localized rain continues to keep water levels high and streams running off color. Streamer fishing has been good and kept us busy this summer but we are hopeful we can take advantage of the remaining days of August and September for good dry fly action. Beetle fishing was limited this year but on clear water days the fishing was good. Steve’s Japanese Beetle, Fat Head Beetles, big Stimulators, and Chubby Chernobyls are all great patterns right now. Hang a dropper off the back of a chubby as well especially if water flows are higher than normal.
Managed Trout Water
Releasing a good sized rainbow trout.
VDGIF begins stocking streams again on October 1. It is looking like there will be plenty of water in our local streams for good fishing. Now is a great time to gear up and load boxes for the upcoming season.