Out before the first day...
I don't know about you but I stay as far away from the streams as possible on and shortly after the first day of trout season in PA. Over the years, I have gone out on the first day only to be surrounded by some very rude and insensitive people.
So on Friday, the day before the first day of trout season, I took the day off work and headed down to the DHALO section of the Little J in Bellwood for a gorgeous morning of fly fishing.
The water was still quite chilly at 49° but it was certain to break the 50° barrier on this fine day with temps predicted in the 70's and all sunshine. There were reports that the grannoms were starting to come off down stream so I knew I should be in for a great morning of fishing. The trout didn't disappoint me. I started working the lower end of the DHALO section and within minutes began to see a little surface activity. I put on a BH Pheasant Tail nymph with a mini white sucker spawn dropper (with bright orange thread around the shank) and that was the ticket. I was soon fighting a beautiful 18-20" rainbow but unfortunately he outwitted me and within about 15 seconds he unexpectedly made a run at me, surfaced and spat the fly right back at me. I stocked him for another 15 minutes but to no avail.
So, I headed upstream to let this section rest awhile and found a nice pool about 3' deep just down from a beautiful set of ripples up against the bank of the stream. I kept the PT on but traded the SS for a BH Hares Ear nymph and for the next hour pulled out a number of brownies and bows until my fingers (and feet) were numb.
With it being such a nice day and these days being few and far between in the spring in PA, I decided it couldn't get any better so I called it quits and headed home to do some yard work.
Life is good on these days...