With the season now in full swing, I decided to check out some of the Croton streams I've been missing during the cold months .The West Branch is one of my favorites in our watershed, just like most people here who own a fly rod or two. There are a couple spots in particular that are just textbook trout lies and have produced some very large fish in the past. This was not one of those days. I went with a friend and things were pretty slow, possibly due to the unexpectedly cold weather. Or maybe the renewed pressure after a winter break from anglers. After a couple fishless hours (for me anyway, he caught one) we decided to pack it up and go fish the Amawalk.
That turned out to be a great decision. The fishing wasn't much better really, but the stream itself is just a beautiful place to be. I had almost forgotten what a special place this is. It's a classic small stream- lots of overhead obstacles and areas of tight pocket water that make nymphing challenging. Such a difference from the well worn spots I've been fishing for the past few months. The whole stream just feels alive- and it won't be long before it really is teaming with plants and insects. And well hidden brown trout. I only caught one of these guys that day- but it was a beautiful little fish. A wild one for sure with buttery yellow coloring, white edged fins, and bright red spots. It jumped a few times while I fought it, in a way that made me wonder if it had ever been hooked before. Though I'd be surprised if it hadn't been, the Amawalk is no secret and for good reason.