VT River Report, April 24th 2017

VT River Report 4/24/2017

This is a great time of the year to be fishing in VT! Some folks are targeting Trout, Steelhead and LL Salmon.  Others Bass and Pike are taking up there free time. Below are some April catches by Stream and Brook guides Steve, Andy and Sutton. We have plenty of openings if you want to get out. May is probably one of our favorite times to get clients on fish! BC

2017 Andy BNT 2017 Andy 2017 Docus 2017 Sutton






VT River Report: April 19th,  2017        


                         brown winooski shed


Since the OCC, fishing has been improving.  While the recent rains has allowed many migratory fish to move into Champlain tribs, the watersheds that are directly affected by snowmelt and runoff are still quite high and barely fishable.  There are many streams that have tremendous holdover species throughout  the state.

bugs      The temperature of the water and the clarity is an unwelcome adversary.  With more rain expected into the weekend, it is certain to be an exciting time to be out on any Vermont River.  Depending on how much your area i set to receive, a little discoloration would be phenomenal.  The smaller tribs are still thick enough to welcome streamer play.  The key has been to get extra deep in those tail outs and playing the edges in rivers with high water.  One day I will tie some solid flies…


    The local ponds are also starting to show signs of life.   Late in the afternoon is the key to getting into some wary winter fish.  All the fish are looking into getting that lost winter weight back on.  The Winooski West of Middlesex will still be blown with snowmelt runoff.  However, there are still quite a few places to get into fish.  Watch for the deep sand along the banks… Almost lost a wading boot to the depths…   See you out there.


Winooski Tributaries and Central Vermont Rivers.

Current Water levels : 

~ 1960 CFS and 5.89  ft. Winooski River.  Dark Stained water @ ~ 30..40 Degrees F.

~ 483 CFS and 3.60ft.  Mad River.  Clear Water @ ~ 37 degrees F.

~312 CFS 8.16  ft.  Little River @ ~  degrees F.

~230 CFS 1.75 ft.  Dog River.  Clear Water @ ~ 40 degrees F.

Humidity 40% Wind Speed Calm

Barometer 30.38 in (1031.1 mb)

Dewpoint 11°F (-12°C)

Visibility 10.00 mi

Last update 18 Apr  4:30 pm EST

Local Temperature

Light Rain



VT River Report, April 4th 2017
Trout season in Vermont opens on Saturday! This is a much anticipated day for many anglers all across the Green Mountain State! Its a symbol of Spring and having the freedom to fish anywhere you would like. Vermont does has have several rivers you can fish year round but once trout season starts almost all streams, rivers , lakes and ponds are fair game. Some Lake Champlain tribs do have closed water for Walleye spawning so still check regulations.
Looking at the weather the rivers maybe be pretty swollen for the opening weekend. From today through Friday we may get two inches of rain! Along with snow melt this will cause the rivers to be full bank and probably have poor clarity. Swinging bright streamers, colorful nymphs and various worm pattens will hopefully put a few trout in the net.
A bunch of our guides always fish the Otter Creek Classic. An opening day tourney put on by our friends at the Middlebury Mountaineer. Long time Stream and Brook guide Sutton Doria won the Pro division last year! This is the 9th annual OCC and it raises money for the New Haven River Anglers. Along with the Fly Fishing Film Tour on Friday night it has become a fun weekend!
If you get out this weekend be safe and let us know how you do! (BC)
 VT River Report: April 4rd  2017

    IMG_20170402_152839   Here comes the rains……  Five straight days with some kind of precip…   We have gone back into the winter over the last few weeks.  It has been quite the Winter wonderland never ending Roller coaster.  One week we are thinking spring is here, immediately followed by , first a couple feet of snow, then almost another  foot and a half  last week.  

    The rivers in this area have been running pretty high because of  all the snow, not to mention, the banks are still quite covered with snow.  I tried to get down to some open stretches of river and was turned around by the merciless mud back roads that we all love to travel so much.  Do not venture unless you have good clearance and preferably 4WD or an AWD vehicle.  You do not need much speed to end up sideways on a mud slick back road in a FWD vehicle.

    Because I have not been able to get to any waters, it has been head down at the vise to get ready for the opening day of most of the rivers here in the state for trout and many other species.  Our opening weekend falls on April 8th.. 10 this year, and is always met with the Otter Creek Classic over in Middlebury!.  The Classic pulls some of the best anglers from all over New England to battle it out for bragging rights as the best angler for the rest of the next fishing season!  Talk about some tough company.  Many thanks to Steve Atocha, the Mountaineers Jesse H., NHRAA, and everyone who help to make this event possible.  We will be posting pictures of the event and the victors as well!  If the rivers are not completely blown………IMG_20170328_174836




If you do manage to get out this week, take some of your favorite early season patterns in contrasting colors to see what the fish are keying on.  We are going to have to get things down pretty deep this time of year, with the water still pretty frigid. All the smaller streams are starting to rise daily from the snow melt.  Once the rivers get more murky, the addition of some flash and brightness will be welcome……   As always, I hope to see you out there.

                                                                                                                                          ~~~ RJ

Winooski Tributaries and Central Vermont Rivers.

Current Water levels :

Winooski River  Near Montpelier VT ~ 1010  CFS  and 5.00 ft..  Clear to dark green  water @ ~ 0.20 Degrees F.

Mad River. ~ 331 CFS and 3.34ft. Clear Water to dark green  @ ~ 20 degrees F.

Little River ~ 37.1  CFS  5.63 ft.  @  ~ 21 degrees F.

Dog River ~ 160  CFS 1.53 ft.  Dog River.  Clear Water @  ~ 20 degrees F.

Central Vermont Regional Weather

Humidity 73%
Wind Speed Calm
Barometer 30.13 in (1021.6 mb)
Dewpoint 26°F (-3°C)
Visibility 10.00 mi

Last update 3rd  April  9:11 pm EST



2016-sept-brownWhich will come first, Spring or the opener of trout season? If you look at the long range forecast, it looks like trout season will come first. The weather forecast for that weekend is pretty much what we are experiencing this weekend.

Fishing hasn’t been that good of late and accessing the open river water that exists is sketchy. We still have plenty of Stella blanketing our backs. Reports from lake Ontario tribs are not good either. Ice fishing for pan fish is picking up. Water temps are in the mid 30’s, flows and clarity are good. These condition should remain the same for the upcoming week as we will continue to have below avg. air temps.

2017 sulphurs

2017 princeFly Tying season continues on. The Castaway fly tying club http://www.castawayflies.com/category/fly-tying-club/will be getting in a make up night, from Stella, this coming Wednesday.  We’ll also meet at our regular time the folling Wednesday April 5th. I have been checking a bunch of flies off my list as I sit around watching NCAA men championship. I always have 2 flies going. One at the office and one at home. The I’m finishing up are the Prince and the SS Sulphur.


Don’t forget about the discount we are having for our men and women in the military. It ends March 31st. Also the 2017 Make The Cut Home brew competition is down to 2.http://www.makethecut.beer/ I have a friend who is a finalist. Check out the blog for details on both. (BZ)


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Fishing Report : March 13th 2017. Sugaring and Steelhead time of the year!



The Otter Creek in Middlebury is still cold (35 degrees) and off color. However a week ago it was raging and at 3,000 CFS! It’s slowly dropping and currently at 1,900 CFS which is a much better fishing level but still double the normal March flow. The good news is the high water broke up all the ice! As it drops fish under all the water falls for big Trout. They should be putting on the food bag and dredging various nymphs and streamers could put a nice one in the net. Remember it’s catch and release still until trout season opens on the second Saturday in April. Make sure you have the 2017 VT fishing license if you have not been fishing yet this year!
The Lake Champlain tributaries are worth hitting this time of year if you like the challenge of chasing Steelhead. I tend to use the same exact flies I use for Winter Trout. Golden Stones, Copper Johns, Hares Ears, Batman Prince, various Worm imitations, Wolly Buggers, Muddlers & Zonkers. Some folks have luck with Egg patterns. They are not like Lake Ontario size but average 17″-22″ and some much bigger are caught this time of year. Lots of folks use a 5wt or 6wt because you do also end up catching smaller Trout while out and about. If it’s really high I will sometimes use an 8wt.
We are expecting a large snowstorm this week and lots of cold days. Most nights temperatures in the teens. Not the best conditions for fly fishing or sugaring but get outside and have fun. Our family has made about 20 gallons of syrup so far. Steelheading and making Maple Syrup a sure sign of Spring and one of my favorite times of year!
We do have guides available this time of year if you want to get out.
March is Military Appreciation Month at Stream and Brook Fly Fishing Guide Service. With the safe return of ALL Vermont National Guards and the Green Mountain Boys from their recent overseas mission, Stream and Brook would like to show our appreciation and say thanks to all service personnel. During the month of March, we are offering $25 off per person to all the men and women who are active or veterans of the United States Military and their families when they book a trip for the 2017 fishing season. Give us a call or email Brian Zinger Phone: 802-989-0398 Email: brian.zinger@gmail.com or Brian Cadoret Phone: 802-989-3510 Email: brian.cadoret@gmail.com.
Let us help plan a fun and relaxing day of fishing, in some of the most beautiful places that you help protect. streamandbrook.com #america



VT River Report: March 6th 2017

Winooski Tributaries and Central Vermont Rivers.

Current Water levels : ~ 931 CFS and 4.90 ft. Winooski River.  Dark Stained water @ ~ 0..10 Degrees F.

~331 CFS and 3.34ft.  Mad River.  Clear Water @ ~ 0 degrees F.

~336 CFS 7.13 ft.  Little River @ ~ 11 degrees F.

~230 CFS 1.75 ft.  Dog River.  Clear Water @ ~ 0 degrees F.

Humidity40%Wind SpeedCalm

Barometer 30.38 in (1031.1 mb)

Dewpoint 11°F (-12°C)

Visibility 10.00 mi

Last update 6 Mar 5:51 pm EST

This time of year anglers are getting itchy to fish.  If you are lucky there are fly tying classes in your area and all sorts of events taking place to get everyone amped up for the season.   In central Vermont, the Mad Dog Trout Unlimited chapter has just one more meeting before the big raffle and dinner up in Stowe.  A few weeks after, most anglers will go over and  participate in the Otter Creek Classic.  With more movies, shows and symposiums, it’s tough not fires up.  Those fortunate enough, can find tail waters that remain a consistent temperature throughout the year, have significant still water ponds for ice fishing, or just plain reside in climates warm enough to fish year round.  People in Vermont fish year round.  Where we currently reside, ice is a major factor.  On the other side of the range, fishing seems to start much earlier!

I must admit it bitter sweet to be able to drive by some body of water daily, drifting off to some time in the near future when we will again become one with the waters that continue to entrance us year after year.  Here, we have pictures of  streams in the upper Winooski Drainage.


2017 winter
 This is another screwy winter we are having. Last year was worse, but is was consistently warm with no snow. This winter is like being on a see saw. Last week we had cold and snow to the tune of 2+ feet in many locations of northern Vermont. As soon as the last flake hit the ground it started to warm up and has been feeling like spring with several days being sunny and temps in the low 50’s. Last week most of the rivers were iced up significantly and ice fishing was hot. This week, rivers have opened back up and ice fishing is still hot. Look for the ice fishing to start getting a little sketchy as we have 60 degree temps and rain in the forecast over the next few days. Freezing temps don’t look to return until the 1st full week of March. I told you, It’s screwy.
fairfield smallie release
fairfield smallieI was fortunate to take be able to hit some open and popular sections of the Otter with Brian Cadoret. It was 51 degrees and we did not have the place to ourselves. We ran into some other friends taking advantage of the nice day and the open water. A few days later I got out with my ice fishing buddies that told me we were going to a top secret location for smallies and walleye. It didn’t take long to find out how thick with impressive size smallies. I can’t wait to get after these bad boys with with a fly rod. We stayed until after dark to target eyes, but no luck on them. I did a little jigging for a perch diner. They turned out to be off the feed as well, but I did manage to get a few on a bead head green crystal woolly, which out produced all other methods.  (BZ)
ice fishing woolly
The only fishing that seems to be going on right now is on the hard water.  Yep, winter has returned to Vermont and the snow and ice have been piling up. While there is still open water in certain sections of rivers, the single digit air temps we’ve been getting have made the bank and entry into the water very difficult.  Mid to southern sections of the state just got hit with a coastal storm, and now the whole state is going to get hit with yet another starting Sunday and ending Monday evening with 8-16 inches forecast.
The river fishing may be shutdown for now, but there is plenty of good ice fishing going on. I have to say, I am surprised how many folks, who fish flies most of the year, don’t use flies while jigging under the ice. I almost always have a fly in a dropper system when jigging for perch/panfish. Mini woolly buggers tied in various color combos can be just as productive as a bibbit.    Give them a try. (BZ)
Valentine Day is just a few days away!
wp couple1We’ve seen what a great activity fly fishing is for couples.  Try something new together. We have instructors that make learning fun and easy. We have guides that can take the two of you to some remote places where you can have the water and your surroundings all to yourself.   We have gift certificates to learn how, as well as full and half day guided trips for the 2017 season. Don’t delay, we can email an e-cert last minute.
mid january 2017
      I had a chance to get out to scout and actually fish this past Saturday with a couple other fellas itching to throw some line. Seems this  cool January thaw has just been warm enough to open plenty of the year round fishing stretches. While there wasn’t much catching going on, we had a pleasant day to fish with air temp at 40, and no wind.   We had the river to ourselves and fished the usual stable holes, known to winter trout.  The water was clear and 34 degrees, with a couple tiny black stone nymphs #16 crawling around on what is left of the snow on the banks. This time of year is mostly a nymph/streamer approach. Between the 4 of us, many different methods, techniques and flies were used, with no reward. It’s a great challenge to fish for trout in January.  Their activity is at it’s slowest it will be during the year, so there need for food decreases and their movement to get food is minimum.  Rivers should remain open for the remainder of January. We are expected to get a decent amount of precip during the rest of this week, most will be in the form of wet snow as temps will be hovering around the freezing point.
March Brown      So it’s back to tying flies to get ready for when the fishing is much better. Last Wednesday at the Castaway Fly Club get together I tied up a bunch of March Brown nymphs. This pattern is much like a Hare’s Ear only with a few variations in color and material. John Synnott was getting ready for the Ditch Pickle by trying to tie a store bought fly that we did really well with in last years tourney.  If you want to see whats going on the vise at the Castaway Fly Club tying evenings or want to twist up some flies with us, check out  http://www.castawayflies.com/category/fly-tying-club/. BZ
     Last week to get in on this great deal from Stream and Brook Fly Fishing.  Don’t worry if Santa didn’t get you that gift certificate for a casting lesson, half day or full day guided trip for the 2017 season. We’ll be your Santa! During the month of January book a trip for anytime during the 2017 season for one of our services and take $25 off per person.  An example is a half day guided trout fishing trip for 2 would be $250. That’s a throw back price of 10 years. So gather up your Christmas money and tell your friends! Last day to get in on this deal will be January 31st.
1/4/2017 -River Report
Many rivers are open to catch and release Trout fishing all Winter. Check the VT Fish & Game book for a complete list and make sure you get a 2017 VT fishing license!
Just because it’s legal to fish doesn’t mean it will be fishable. In the Winter most river freeze pretty fast and you have to fish the bigger rivers directly below a waterfall or dam to find open water.img_19431 img_18981 img_18971
Yesterday I got out for a few hours and it was great. The Otter has several big waterfalls with plenty of open water. It was low and clear. I did end up catching one nice Rainbow Trout. It inhaled my bottom fly a Hares Ear Nymph. Tied by Brian Zinger of Stream and Brook and castawayflies.com. I had on a Thingamabobber. A Black Cone headed Bugger. A heavy Prince then the Hares Ear. I focused on deeper pools and runs. It was a no doubt take when my strike indicator went under.
Last night we got rain and had snow melt. This morning the Otter looked a bit swollen and the clarity was not as good. This will help get some more open water and brake up additional ice. Good luck if you get out and be safe! (BC)
Happy New Year!
With the coming of the new year you’ll need to have your 2017 Vermont fishing license. It also brings varying conditions on both the moving water and hard water. On my travels over the past week, I saw some rivers frozen over and others that where open but look treacherous at the rivers edge.   I also saw many people on the ice, in some bays and small lakes. Fishing in the winter is a challenge on many levels no matter how you go at it.  Things can get ugly fast with a change in weather, or a slip on ice into the water. Make a new years resolution to be safer around the water.(BZ)
Rivers have been in great shape. The TLC (temperature, level and clarity) has been average for most open water in the early part  December. Fishing has been pretty darn good as well. If your not getting recent updates on this page check out our facebook page. Many times you’ll see things there before they make it to our river report on the web site.  Brian Cadoret has a few recent post on there.
If we keep getting day like today, and what is predicted for tomorrow, the TLC will be changing quickly. Air temps today stayed in the teens with WC values in the negative single digits. Tonight and tomorrow are supposed to be worse. Accessing your favorite winter fishing holes  could get a little treacherous. Not only is it tough walking in , but many stretches will be covered in ice and the the fish will be at their lowest activity level of the year.   This bitter cold won’t last long as there is a chance of rain on Sunday and I’ve heard some talk of a big warm up between Christmas and New Years.
Recently we have sent out several e-certs for Christmas gifts. One , for novice level casting lessons. A wife bought her husband a two day fly fishing school that they will both be attending, and a few 1/2 day guided trips. It’s easy to get a Stream and brook gift certificate. For $100 now you can give a loved one something to look forward to doing in the spring. We’ll send you an the ecert that you can put any text you wish, print it out , put a bow on it, slip it into a stocking and your done.
VT River Report: November 28th, 2016
For late November the fishing has been pretty good. We have some rain in the forecast for the next few days which could be great if your looking for Lake Run fish like Steelhead or LL Salmon! Any of Lake Champlain tributaries can have big fish looking for spawning habitat this time of year depending on the water level.
A few days ago I got a nice surprise while nymphing for Browns and Rainbows on the Otter Creek in the Middlebury area. A wild Brook Trout grab my bottom fly a Golden Stone. In the last 10 years or so I can only think of catching 4 or 5 that far down river. All have been late Fall or mid Winter.
This weekend I finally popped my cherry and got my first Lake Trout on a fly. Ended up catching 4 on Sunday. Zach G. caught 5 and 2 the day before!  It seems like they are all in the usual spots along Lake Champlain points, rocky areas and bays. We had luck using 8wts. with sinking line. 7′ leaders at around 13-15 pound test. Clousers were by far the most productive flies. Hot colors were all White, Chartreuse/Green White , Green/Purple and Pink/White. Long cast with the heavy flies into deep water and long slow retrieves back to your feet were enough to connect every once and a while. When they take your fly it’s like a freight train. It’s no doubt when they crush a fly! All the Lake Trout were from 24″ to 31″ and put up a pretty decent fight.lake-trout-zg
Stream and Brook fly fishing guides have gift certificates for all of our services, and they are the perfect gift to give to your favorite fly fisher person. They are also something you should put on your own Santa’s list.  Over the years, the people who have cashed in on the gift certificate they received, mention that it was best gift they received or most thoughtful.
Happy Thanksgiving everyone. We hope you all enjoy this time with family and friends, and that we spend some of the time thinking about the thing we should be thankful for.
Don’t forget,  the very people you’re breaking bread with and giving thanks with this weekend , are the very people you’ll have to be gifting or receiving gifts from in another month.  Stream and Brook fly fishing guides have gift certificates for all of our services, and they are the perfect gift to give to your favorite fly fisher person. They are also something you should put on your own Santa’s list.  Over the years, the people who have cashed in on the gift certificate they received, mention that it was best gift they received or most thoughtful.
Well everyone must be hunting. We haven’t had any clients and I haven’t received any river reports from the guides. If your still getting out you should wear something bright to let hunters know you’re not a deer as you cross the water. Also, you’ve probably had the river to yourself and decent fishing.  Until the recent cold and snow we’ve had great weather, flows and water temp for fishing in November. We had great weather all last winter as well, but the strategies and methods for catching winter trout are basically the same. Streamers, nymphs and egg patterns fish slow and natural. The size of the fly doesn’t matter much, it’s the slow and natural part that is important. Dead drifts right to their nose are best.
Updated by Brian Zinger
VT River Report: November 18th, 2016
With snow in the forecast it’s going to start feeling more like Winter! The fishing has been great with mild daytime temps. The rivers that are still legally open are low, clear and in the 40’s. Even had a client land a nice Brown on a dry fly a few days ago (Tuesday). It ignored the Copper John dropper and hit the Ausable Wulff! november2016-dry-fly-troutYes dry flies in November. Had one slash at a Hopper the same day.
On Sunday a client landed his first two Trout ever. Both hit the same Black Wolly Bugger. november2016-wolly-bugger
We guide and fish year round. A Stream and Brook gift certificate makes an excellent Christmas present or for any other occasion!
Look for another report soon on Pike, Lake Trout, Steelhead & LL  Salmon. November and early December is a great time to be fly fishing in VT.   (BC)
Happy Halloween! River Report 10/31/2016
The 2016 Vt Trout Season closes today. Hope you got out over the weekend and hit a few of your favorite spots. I have been busy trying some of my favorite Otter Creek tribs. The water has been swift but clear and right around 42 degrees. I was actually hoping the recent rains would have made it a tad muddy as I like to fish huge streamers in those conditions this time of year. Because the clarity has been great I have been fishing medium sized streamers and having decent luck. The other day I landed a solid Brown on a articulated Rich Strolis streamer.
Yesterday I was fishing a Hopper dropper dropper combo and even had a nice Brown come up and grab the Hopper. I was using a Golden Stone and a ISO Nymph as the two dropper flies. I did land a very colorful Brown on the ISO Nymph in fast water. I had to fight it downriver several pools before I could get it in the net! I had been at a Halloween party the night before so I decided to stay in costume and catch a few in a Top Had and a Bones shirt tucked into my waders! Both Nymphs were tied by Brian Zinger- castawayflies.com
This time of year don’t forget about the Pike. They are a bit sluggish but still eating like crazy and I caught a few last week including a 35 incher! It hit a Vermont Fly Guys Green Beast!
Even though the VT Trout season closes today we fish and even guide year round. All of Lake Champlain tribs are open and this is a key time of the year to target Steelhead, LL Salmon and even Lake Trout. Hit us up for a trip soon. November is probably my favorite month to be out fishing! -BC
fall-brown-streamerfall-2016-pike fall-brown-iso-nymph fall-brown-on-a-hopper
We finally received some significant rain. Looks like the Winooski and points north got the most.  They  also tallied some hefty snow accumulation as the system passed. The top of Mount Mansfield got 10 inches of snow. I received 2.4 inches rain and 2 inches of snow here in Westford. While rivers are high right now, they are not to dirty, and are dropping nicely. We have continue to have a chance of rain/snow most of the next 7 days, but nothing that should very heavy. Before the rain, most river temps were in the low 50’s. Those temps will probably drop to the high 40’s by next weekend.
2016-clyde-salmonThis past weekend I attended and event put on by Tim Hayes and Ben Brunt of Rippledwaters.com. They invited a couple guides from S&B and members of Team Why Knot (whyknotfishing.com) to Camp Ceder in the NE Kingdom for some LL Salmon fishing and to discuss The Rippledwaters products as they move from beta testing to a public release coming soon.  The LL Salmon fishing catching was tough, but everybody caught fish with many rainbows and browns in the mix. Patrick Barone of Early Rise Outfitters in western Mass. was the big fish catcher. He caught two nice salmon on flies and technique that none of us were using. I think we all learned a little bit from each other which makes outings like this great.
The close of the regular season for trout is next Monday the 31st. For people coming to Vermont and want a to fish with a guide, we still have plenty of trout water that remains open year round to C&R with artificial lures. November is a great month to fish, especially if your looking for some LL salmon and steelhead.  For C&R folks and non hunters you’ll have the river to yourself.  With the weather we’ve been having over the past winters. we could have decent fishing opportunities until they turn great again next May.
Updated by :Brian Zinger
VT River Report: October 21st, 2016
The rivers are low and we have rain on the way! By Sunday parts of VT could see from an 1 inch to 3 inches! This will certainly shake things up and will have the big Spawning Browns, Steelhead and Brown Trout on the move. In the Fall we have the best luck with big fish during or right after a big storm.
Our guides have been busy and check out this beautiful LL Salmon caught the other day by a client. He ended up caching two and is going out again with Tim H. next week because he had so much fun. Book a trip for LL Salmon soon and we will do our best get you on some of these hard fighting fish. The males have an incredible hook jaw and they jump multiple times during the battle. Lake Champlain tribs are open all Winter and we catch them until the rivers freeze.
I have been having fun throwing the Hopper Dropper to Rainbows and Browns in smaller Otter Creek tribs. My go to dropper has been a mini Copper John or a good sized Prince Nymph.copper-john-brownbig-streamer-big-browns Check out the nice Brown I landed last Sunday on the Copper dropper. I had just landed a small Bow in the same pool when this one inhaled the nymph.
For big Browns I like to use sinking line and a 6wt or even a 8wt with huge streamers. You may catch the fish of a lifetime doing this so I use 10 to 14 pound test tippet and carry a big net. You may not find a big fish every time out but when you connect with a Trout over two feet its always a thrill!
Enjoy the weekend and lets hope the rain is just right and fills up the rivers but doesn’t  cause flooding! -BC
Going fishing means many thing to different people. For me it’s a chance to get away mentally and connect with nature in so many ways.  Getting out over the last week has meant a different connection with the changing of the leaves. People say Vermont is one of the most beautiful places in the fall. People come from everywhere just to see the country side lite up by the most incredible color combinations.  You would think someone who lives in Vermont would be accustomed to it, however I found myself taking pictures of the scenery instead of fishing or taking pics of any fish that were caught.
Unfortunately as quickly as Autumn colors come is as quick as they go. Then we can get back to fishing in these low water conditions that we have gotten accustomed to.  We are looking at our first real threat of some rain this week, particularly Thursday night into Friday. This could be what the rain that opens up the flood gates for spawning fish, that have been stacked up at the mouth of tributaries, to finally make their run. Some of the really small brooks that browns and brookies spawn in are barely accessible for them. We’ve been needing it for this whole season, but we could use a soaking rain right now for sure.
Fishing has been decent. Some of the Lake Champlain spawners have been pushing their way up its tributaries and fishermen have been having decent success. There has also been good trout fishing farther inland, particularity on dreary days like we are foretasted to have over the next several.
Updated by :Brian Zinger
River report: October 11th 2016
If you are getting out, there are still plenty of aquatic insect activity. The most important to fish right now are the Blue Wing Olives. Trout have been fooled by imitations of all phases. Get out your magnifiers because they are hatching in micro sizes. Pheasant tails, Looped wing emergers and Parachutes in size 20 -22. Thankfully, fish are also taking larger nymphs and streamers as well.  In particular, 3RL streamers in White and Grey, Olive woolly buggers, and The Double D.
This is a quick update. I’m packing up and heading to NH. Fishing for Stripers in the am with William Schmitt of Project Healing Waters! Then tomorrow night I’m the guest speaker for the Great Bay TU Club in Portsmouth, NH.
Tight lines and big fish! BC
Another sign of fall

Another sign of fall

This weekend will be the 1st weekend in October and it’s finally starting to feel like it. We have a string of average weather forecast and the 1st pic of a LL salmon landed in a Lake Champlain tributary, It’s also the 1st weekend of archery season so there will be fewer people on the river for the remainder of the season. Those are good signs, but the spawning season is here again and we need more rain to allow fish better access to the spawning grounds.  Their limit in access, gives fly fishers more access. Obviously our guides are out there scouting and are ready to provide a fun day chasing Landlocks, Steelhead, Browns and the occasional Lake trout  on Lake Champlain tribs as well as the Clyde river and other tributaries where the best chances are occurring.

BWO Para #18

BWO Para #18

Hatches have been BWO’s, especially under cloudy, rainy conditions. Yellow Quills around dusk and the occassional caddis.  Flies to have are BWO patterns in all phases: Parachute, looped wing emergers and pheasant tails in very small sizes 18- 24. Get your sulpher patterns out for covering the Yellow Quills. An SS Sulphur covers both dry and emerger. Other flies to have are; Lamoille River Muskrat, 88, Olive and Black woolly bugger, White woolly bugger or any white streamer such as a zonker or 3 River lodge streamer.

Updated by Brian Zinger

September is finally starting to feel like September. The more seasonal air temps have translated to more seasonal water temps. We still need rain. I received .3 inches of rain over night,  and there is still a small chance of rain until about noon on Monday. After that the forecast is not good for any more precip. There is another shot at an 80 degree day on Tuesday, but river temps should remain below 70 for the rest of the season.

2016-sept-beth-and-helenI had the pleasure of conducting a half day introduction to fly fishing to a very good family friend, and a good friend of hers. Both ladies were enthusiastic and fun to be with. After a brief talk about why people fish with flies and some of the gear we use, we proceeded to casting. Casting is the most important part of fly fishing . The better you can cast and manage your line the more fish you will have a chance to catch. For beginners, it starts out being a little nerve racking. There are fundamental arm motions that need to be achieved in order to get the rod to form a tight loop, which will propel your fly over the water. These motions are not difficult, they just need to be understood and then practiced. In about 40 minutes of casting on the lawn these ladies where doing the basic pick up and lay down and false casting well enough to go fishing. They donned their waders and headed into the water. They  had no problem adjusting to casting on the water. After a couple of fly and location changes they where finally able to catch a smallmouth and rock bass.  On the way back home both ladies commented on how they drive by the place we went fishing but never realized how beautiful it was to actually be a part of it. Just feeling the coolness of the water while stay dry in waders, or observing the aquatic insects on the river rocks.  They spoke of making fly fishing a part of there life long activities. I hope they will.

2016-friendly-derby-brownI also got out at the crack of dawn yesterday with a couple guides and friends to do some scouting for some guided trips coming up this week.  This time of year, unless there is a BWO hatch coming of, the morning is typically tough for catching trout. It was more important to observe the river conditions than to have a great morning of fishing. We finished up the morning at the Blackback Pub in Waterbury to discuss our morning over a couple very refreshing brews and an excellent lunch.  Most reported a tough morning of catching. No hatch, but plenty of BWO, Gold stones and Iso nymphs on the river rocks. Air temp started at 56 and was 70 by noon. Water temp started and ended at 64. Levels are low and water is clear. The fish that were caught came to nymphs and streamers in the deepest sections of the river. I saw a Bald Eagle and an Osprey that seemed to be having a tough morning fishing as well.


Brian Zinger



Friday through Sunday looks like strong chances of thunderstorms across VT. Storms have been spotty at best so it may pour in Rutland but not a drop in Brandon. Any rain we get will be great for the VT rivers and even lakes! Everything is very low and warm. Recently we have been taking clients out for Brook Trout in Otter Creek tribs way up in the mountains where the water is a bit cooler. On Monday we found one stream that was 62 degrees and the Brookies were looking up. We caught them on Hoppers, the White & Ausable Wulff. BKT on HopperBNT at OwensKevin castingIt was a fun trip and a fathers day gift from Kevin’s wife Jody! At dark we hit a friends stocked pond and they landed a beast of a Brown Trout!

Also Otter Creek Floats are great this time of year. Lots of Pike and Smallmouth Bass eager to smash flies. Got Chris and Mike out on Sunday. Not tons of action but the fish we caught hit hard and bent the fly rods more than your average Trout.

Looking ahead we are doing a rain dance and hope for some cooler nights to bring river temps down! Book a Pike , Bass or Brook Trout trip and let us show you a great time! Our trips amke great presents and we also have a fresh batch of Stream and Brook t shirts in many colors. We are selling them for $15.



We had a big rainstorm the night before and a cool evening so the water temps all over central VT dropped. The Upper Middlebury was 57 that morning! The Otter was 64.

After catching and releasing many Brook Trout we headed down river in search of bigger Rainbows and Browns. The Hopper dropper was fishing great. They caught a few nice Bows using that set up and one 18 plus inch Brown crashed the Hopper and got off quickly. It was pretty exciting to watch.

Good luck and with daytime temps in the 80’s all week bring a thermometer with you while fishing. If it’s 70 or more go higher p river to find cooler temps or chase Bass, Pike or Bowfin.


We have some openings if you want to book a guided trip. (BC)

Many Hatching insects these day. Most importantly is the March Brown and small

emerging dragon fly

emerging dragon fly

sulphurs Dorothea. I found a crazy scene one morning with hatching Dragon flies everywhere. I don’t find land hatching aquadic insects actually doing it very often. These guys were everywhere. Green bodies caddis are starting to pop as well, but only pupa imitation have been producing.

Don’t forget, Fathers day is just around the corner. If you have a father, hire a guide for him. He’ll never forget that gift. If you are a father start working your family now to hire a guide for you. It will be the best gift you ever received.


For Smallmouths fish at dusk with top water flies like Gurglers, small poppers and foam Grasshoppers. Its a pleasant way to end the day with the sun going down and usually the air temps relaxes a bit as well. Who doesn’t like having a few Bass explode on the surface and crush your fly?

The current flow of the Otter is 545 cfs with great clarity. The water temp is in the mid 60’s. Expect it to keep dropping and it will probably be closer to 450 cfs by the weekend. Should be very sunny for the next few days but some rain in the forecast on Friday and Sunday.

Water Temps have been 45-55 depending on which river and what time of the day.

dd bnt 2

Good luck! From Dave Durovich





River Report : April 16th, 2016

2016 guide meetingWe held our Stream and Brook guide BBQ last Sunday in New Haven. We had a great time reacquainting, breaking bread and sharing some of last falls harvest.  There were lots of stories and laughs to go with them. There was also a very short segment on business for 2016 fishing season as well as some gear exchange  , then it was of to go fishing. River temps that day were 48 on the otter and 49 0n the winooski. Levels were up but fishable.

Rivers are in tip top shape right now. There has been some reports of Hendricksons hatching, Some of the designated trophy trout sections have already been stocked, and big river temps are 50+.  All of these things don’t occur usually until the 1st or 2nd week of May.  So things are happening ahead of schedule, due to the mild winter and extremely tranquil last week.

I’m headed to Lake Ontario for the weekend. This is 2 weeks later than usual for our annual ice out football shaped brown trout trip, that just means some changes in strategies and maybe a few spring kings in the mix.  I”ll let you know how we make out.




River Report : April 16 th, 2016


DSC02570     We are extremely excited about the official start of the fishing season here in VT.  The fish that hold over here should command some sort of respect.  In those frigid sub freezing nights of February, they find those deep dark spots and systemically emerge when that slight spring warm penetrates the first layers of water.

DSC02493     With little snow fall, the rivers are dropping and clearing rapidly.  I have been seeing a few bugs coming off on a some of the drainages.  Not enough to make a big difference for me.  I will be tying the smaller stuff for the future and looking to the slightly larger for connections.  I like getting on the water after the sun has noticeably warmed the atmosphere.

Each day, trying something new and adjusting based  on the waters.  We happen to be pretty fortunate with the number of species that are readily available here in VT.  We need to take care of these gifts.



River Report : April 05th, 2016

Looking ahead its going to be a cold weekend as the 2016 Trout Season starts! In the 20’s with possible snow for Saturday! A bunch of Stream and Brook guides will be fishing in the 8th annual Otter Creek Classic hosted by our friends at the Middlebury Mountaineer! The OCC is an catch and release tourney that raises money for the New Haven River Anglers. I hear there are a few tickets left for the Fly Fishing Film Tour on Friday night in Middlebury. If Interested call or stop by the Mountaineer.

Recent rained swelled the Otter but it has been dropping fast. All of it’s tribs look ideal for this weekend but we are predicted to get up to 3/4 of an inch of rain of Friday. This along with below freezing temps could make opening day tricky!

Hot flies in the past have been the Golden Stone, Green Caddis, PT Nymph, San Juan Worm, various Wolly Buggers, Muddy Buddies, and other Sculpin patterns. In high cold water fish different combos of flies till you happen to get them in front of hungry fish. I prefer to use a big streamer and drop off a nymph. Some folks use a heavy nymph and drop a worm pattern and dredge the deeper pools. Whatever you fish make sure you fish them with confidence! It only takes one nice fish in the net to warm you up and keep you going for a few more hours!

Lake Champlain tribs have been producing some very nice Steelhead! Both in VT and NY. Various Leech Patterns, Eggs, small streamers and Black Stones should be in your box if your searching for some Chrome. My buddy Ralph has been doing very well with some of the flies listed above and the pic is of him releasing one recently.

I have been chasing Pike without much luck till today! Pictured below is my first one this season. It smacked a 6″ fly tied by Pat Cohen of rusuperfly.com. The fly is called the Slop Mop and this one was in Rainbow Trout. I had a client out for Pike on Sunday and he had a few hits but none landed. Ethan who is 13 was from Jackson Hole so he has awesome Trout fishing back home but wanted to try for something new. Towards the end of our trip his fly got snagged right at our feet. As he was doing some line slaps to free it up a big old Pike came in and tried attacking it! It didn’t get the hook and swam away but it was pretty exciting! As the bait fish are still very small and the water temps are still cold try small flies and bring them in very slow. Small meaning in the 4-8″ range not the beastly 8-15″ inch flies I wish be chucking mid summer.


Good luck and stay warm! -BC

Steelhead Ralph April 2016


Pike April 5th 2016

Pike April 5th 2016












River Report : April 04th, 2016

Mad River 2016

Mad River 2016

This report will represent some of central Vermont, where we are fortunate to have many fishable waters.  Living in Moretown, we are fortunate to have the Mad River passing through our town, bordering Route 100b heading north.  The name of the river indicating the direction in which the river has  chosen to travel.  What an amazing stretch of water that has its start approximately around Warren village with some of the smaller brooks being fed there.



Some times, you can find a road that travels and parallels a river.  This is a chance I am always willing to take.  Heading south and then west, one can find brooks offering fly fishing for rainbow and brook trout.  In the unbearable summer months, one can find solice in the shade, brooks and ponds offered in the hills of central Vermont.  You may find an occasional angler, but at the right time of day it is remarkable.



These areas of the Mad will be stocked within the next few months offering many opportunities for early catch and release fishing.  Between the Winooski river in Middlesex and the headwaters of the Mad, such as Lincoln, Austin, Bradley around the village of  Warren, there exists a few farms and pastures offering substantial views that the Mad River Valley provides all year.





River Report : March 28th, 2016


I attended sunrise service yesterday, I took a couple pictures of my church. If you notice, nobody else is in attendance. The music,  made by a gentle  breeze and babbling riffles, and the choir  made up of gobbling turkeys and songs birds  was very lifting.  The only problem was no fish showed for breakfast.

easter 1I was on the Lamoille and it truly was a beautiful morning. The river and all of the tribs that I check were 39 degrees. The level was average, but the clarity had that early spring snow melt stain to it. If you notice in one on of the photos, there is a very dirty trickle flowing in to the main stem. This too was 39 degrees. I though fish may have migrated to the edge of the slick to ambush any eatables that may be washed in, however I didn’t move a fish.

We have some changes to the rivers this week as winter returns. Expect conditions to decline as we have .50 to .70 inches of rain forecast for today and 1 – 3 inches of snow for tomorrow.  It all start back up again with rain on thurs and fri. with chances of snow for the weekend.  Looks like another good week to get your gear ready for better days ahead.

Updated by: Brian Zinger



River Report : March 14th, 2016

Area river are running above average and off color due to last Wednesday’s inch of rain,  and a very warm weekend which put the melt on ice and snow in the foothill of the Green Mountains.  The Winooski and Lamoille particularly are in bad shape. To add to that, we have a week of rain/sleet forecast for everyday.  It could be worse. Everything is usually buttoned right up in ice and access is to the river is through 2 feet of snow. Not this year.  We just have to wait until things settle down.  Even in a normal winter there is always a period of time when the warm air, rain and snow melt will wreck the river conditions for a good stretch.

2016 1st steelThe steelhead are thankful for these high flows right now. We’ll be thankful in a few weeks when we can have a go at old chrome dome.  Some excellent patterns to have if you go chasing steel are: white woolly buggers, white zonkers, gold and black stone nymphs, Pheasant tails, copper johns, glo bugs and sucker spawn.  You might see a blue wing olive hatch while your out there, so if none of the former are working try a BWO emereger.

Opening day for the regular trout season is less than a month away.  The trout fishing has been good all winter, and conditions are better than they normally are for opening day.  Time to put the ski’s and boards away and take a look at my fly box.


Updated by : Brian Zinger




River Report : March 1st, 2016


River conditions vary around the state due to the 2+ inches of rain and wet snow we have received over the past 4 days, and  waking up to 52 degrees yesterday will continue melting any snow or ice still remaining.  Big rivers are still big and off color while small and mid size waters are in great shape. Water temps are ranging in the mid to upper 30’s.

putz brookie

putx brownJohn Synnott and I found some great water over in the Adirondacks Sunday morning on a small stream.   We arrive around 6:30am and found great water  level and clarity with a temp of 34. The air temp was 44 under cloudy skies. We had the stream all to ourselves and could access all of our favorite spots.  Unbelievable for Feb. 28th. The fishing was pretty good for me, not so good for John.  I landed all 3 species of trout, and had what I believe to be a steelhead, rip about 20 feet of line off before coming unbuttoned.  In the end it must have been the streamer that I was using that made the difference.  All but the bow, which took a #12 Gold stone nymph, took the Grey 3 River Lodge streamer. John didn’t have this particular pattern, but threw several other flies that have been productive on other occasions.  I only threw a couple of variations of the 3 river streamer and a gold stone.  Many times it’s little things that make a big difference. I could have easily been on the other side of the equation, if I would have fished the standard operating flies for this stream, but I have been loving the 3 River Lodge series of streamers I’ve been tying and no one can have any until after the 8th Annual Otter Creek Classic.

Some observations were BWO’s and the early tiny black stones hatching. I also found drainage from a field that was supplying 40 deg water with some kind of aquatic insect to the main stem. . It was just 20 yards down stream that I found the 16 inch brownie.

We have another screwy week of weather coming up, chance of everything. Days with highs in the 40’s as well as in the teens, chance of snow, sleet, freezing rain and sun all in the same day. Even the meteorologists don’t want to give a forecast because even they don’t like what they have had to report this winter.   Bottom line is that if you have been holding out to do the usual winter activities, it might be time to rethink what those activities will be, now and in the future.

Don’t forget to check out the hot stove fly tying at castawayflies.com, also if you haven’t done so, let your friends know to check this river report frequently and to friend us on facebook to get all the updates on year round fishing in Vermont.

Updated by : Brian Zinger


River Report 2/19/16

If you’ve been lucky enough to get out on the rivers over the past few months, you have been treated to the best winter fishing season I can remember. It’s been a little touch and go lately due to some bitter cold night.  However, like the rest of this screwy season , we rebound to well above average temperatures not allowing any significant ice formation. Many record highs and record high lows were recorded this season, so finding a comfortable day to get out has not been a problem.   Most February’s just getting to the river is a safety issue. Today, you can walk on leaves and grass to get to your favorite hole on the lower tribs to Lake Champlain.   The best, is that usually during the winter months it’s the most challenging time of the year.  Fish are cold blooded, so there metabolism slows thus needed to eat less.  This year many reports I have heard are of fish actively feeding. Unfortunately the rest of the story is that not many fish came to the net.

There is a hance of snow tonight, and showers tomorrow with a high in the low to mid 40’s. Very Windy! After that, not much for precip and temps will remain above average over the weekend. If you’re tired of less than perfect snow conditions, you may want to start getting your fishing gear ready for a little extended season fishing.  Maybe a great start to the regular season.

It still gets dark and cold early so hot stove fly tying is at at a fevered pace right now. I have been tying nothing but nymphs and streamers thus far.  Mostly to cover productive winter and early spring patterns. I need to change things up or I’m going to go crazy. I’m going to start thinking warmer thoughts at next weeks fly tying night.  I’m thinking caddis hatch, and the most important fly to have during one. The VT X-caddis.

Updated by Brian Zinger


Patrick from NYC with his new personal best Trout! 12/31/15 on the Otter. It hit a big White streamer!

RiverPatrick from NYC with his new personal best Trout! 12/31/15 on the Otter. It hit a big White

Stream and brook winetr 2016

River Report 2/5/16
Traditionaly February is the hardest month for fly anglers in the Northeast to constantly find and catch fish. All the lakes and rivers freeze over and it can be brutally cold out!
I got out today for a bit in the Middlebury area and found the Otter very high and it had poor clarity. Recent snowmelt and a bunch of rain yesterday has the Creek at 1,610 cfs and it was under 600 cfs just a few days ago. As I said it freezes over so this push of water will increase the areas we can fish as soon as it drops back under 1,000 as it blast ice out of certain areas. Even under waterfalls it was getting tough to find open water last week!
Because it was high and dirty I fished a two streamers setup and added a split shot. This is not the easiest rig to cast and I was using an 8wt and hoping to tangle with a big fish. When your fishing water like this focus on the soft spots that fish may hang out in looking for an easy meal.
I did not hook anything or even see a flash behind my flies but it was good to get out and try.  It was 44 degrees and the sun was out. I saw folks on road bikes and they gave me a nod as I was walking down the road all geared up for fly fishing. I hope to get out tomorrow so I hope to have some fish pics to share soon!
PS this high water may have de-iced some great sections of Lake Champlain’s tribs as well. Some great VT Steelhead action to be had whenever we get a thaw/ rainstorm this time of year.
River Report January 18th 2016 – Otter Creek
Best Technique:
Happy New Year! *Reminder* Get your 2016 VT fishing license!
The fishing has actually been great for this time of year! Had Brendan from Hartford, CT out yesterday. We got a small Brown Trout in the net around the Middlebury area and had a few more on. The fish seemed more keyed in on nymphs than streamers. If you flip over a few rocks you will see lots of bug life clinging to the bottom.
I like to run a two streamer set up through the deeper runs and holes first then a double nymph set up with an indicator. Most action yesterday was on the second time through spots with nymphs.
For streamers I like the first one to be big and colorful. Either White or Yellow. This lets me see it when I’m dredging deeper holes and the Otter does have some Trophy Browns and Rainbows swimming around in it. In the bend of the hook I tie on about 24″ of tippet and add a small Black or Rusty Bugger. Sometimes a cone head Muddle Minnow or even a Slump Buster. If your not getting deep enough add split shots above the first streamer This is not the pretties setup to cast but when your Winter fishing you almost always have the spots to yourself and its about getting down where the fish are.
My go to nymph set ups include a Golden Stone or Girdle Bug as the lead fly. Both heavily weighted and big! In the bend of the hook add 20″ of tippet and try a Prince Nymph, Green Copper John, Hares Ear, PT Nymph or the Zug Bug. In VT you can fish 3 flies so you can even add something real small as a third fly if you want, like an RS2. Remember adding more flies makes it that much more difficult to untangle especially with frozen hands. So keep it simple. I recommend gearing up and having your setup tied on before you leave the house so you step out of a warm car and start fishing right away.
Tip of the Week:
The VT Trout season is over but you can catch and release trout in most of the Otter Creek all Winter. From Mt Tabor all the way to Lake Champlain! As the Creek starts to freeze you will still be able to fish the fast water below the many waterfalls. My top 3 Winter spots on the Otter are the Center Falls in West Rutland, Downtown Middlebury and Twin Bridges. All of these are easy to get to and have great access to lots of different kinds of water. Meaning you can cast right up against the waterfall, hit the fast water or look for the slower deep pools and runs. Sometimes the fish will be stacked up in certain areas so take your time and fish it all.
7 Day Outlook:
The current flow of the Otter is 1,180cfs and dropping fats. The clarity is perfect! Rain on Sunday had the Creek pretty swollen just under 2,000cfs. Should be very cold Monday/Tuesday and Thursday maybe even single digits at night. Ice is forming along the edges of the fast water and on the long slow water above the falls. Wade safely and dress like your going skiing!


1/1/16 Brown from the Otter. Black Woolly Bugger

1/1/16 Brown from the Otter. Black Woolly Bugger

Morgan just before a huge Pike slammed his fly and gave him a trill. 13/30/15 Otter Creek.

Morgan just before a huge Pike slammed his fly and gave him a thrill. 12/30/15 Otter Creek.


River Report January 1st 2016 -Otter Creek

Best Techniques:
Happy New Year! *Reminder* Get your 2016 VT fishing license! The Trout fishing has actually been great for this time of year! Had a client stick a trophy Brown yesterday on a big White streamer. Patrick and 3 of his buddies were skiing at Killington for the week and wanted to try fishing while in VT. They had a blast and Patrick ended up getting his personal best trout ! An awesome way to end the last day of 2015!


I landed a pretty Brown today on a Black Wolly Bugger. Believe it or not but the lead fly was a big VFG streamer and a 17″+ Brown was following it. Just as I thought it was going to crush it a small Brown came out of nowhere and hit the small bugger I had dropped back!!

Focus on the fast water below waterfalls. Where ever currents meet and there is slower water near the shoreline we have been finding hungry trout. In high water they get pushed into all the nook and cranny’s along the shorelines. Most fish have been on streamers but a nymph set up with an indicator is a great way to search the water for finicky fish.
The Pike are still feeding! Had 15 year old Morgan from Manhattan and his dad out on the 30th. After playing a few trout I switched up to a Pike setup. A 9″ Perch ‪#‎pikenasty‬streamer disappeared at our feet when a super fat 32″-34″ Pike inhaled the fly very violently! Morgan survived two big runs out into the Creek before it came “Unbuttoned”. Disappointing that we didn’t land it but Morgan got a crazy eat and will be back in the Spring!


Tip of the Week:
The VT Trout season is over but you can catch and release trout in most of the Otter Creek all Winter. From Mt Tabor all the way to Lake Champlain! As the Creek starts to freeze you will still be able to fish the fast water below the many waterfalls. My top 3 Winter spots on the Otter are the Center Falls in West Rutland, Downtown Middlebury and Twin Bridges. All of these are easy to get to and have great access to lots of different kinds of water. Meaning you can cast right up against the waterfall, hit the fast water or look for the slower deep pools and runs. Sometimes the fish will be stacked up in certain areas so take your time and fish it all.

7 Day Outlook:
The current flow of the Otter is 1,510cfs and dropping. The clarity is perfect! Rain around Christmas time has had the Creek pretty swollen. Should be very cold Monday/Tuesday so ice will start forming along the edges. Wade safely and dress like your going skiing!

We fish and guide year round! Book a trip this Winter! streamandbrook.com

River Report: December 29th 2015
We are finally starting to get some winter weather. We have been getting snow/sleet and freezing rain state wide, which is good base precipitation for area skiing slopes which until this weather event were bare. The warm December and lack of snow on the mountain have created a phenomena that we haven’t seen as a guide service.  People who are in Vermont on ski vacations have been inquiring about getting out on the water for some fly fishing.    We’ve always been available to guide hearty individuals during the winter, but usually only get a handful of trips.  We’ve book 3 trips this week, and missed a party of 10 that just couldn’t be pulled together over Christmas on short notice.
Earlier in the month,  when the weather was really warm, fishing was pretty good. It’s still winter, the weather can change drastically, and we never make the claim that you can expect the same. It’s generally very challenging. Skilled anglers have a tough time with hook ups.  There is also the safety concerns. Just walking to a river that’s in perfect condition can be tough. There is also the cold that you have to contend with.
Brian Cadoret got out Sunday with an experienced angler.  They were well prepared and faced rain in the morning changing to blowing snow in the afternoon.    They only managed one hook up, but it was a good brown that put up a good fight only to come unbuttoned  as he was gaining line.  They fish a likely set up of a large streamer with a small baetis  pattern as a dropper. A Black woolly bugger was the fly that produced the take.
Black Woolly Bugger

Black Woolly Bugger

Updated By: Brian Zinger
River Report: December 18th 2015
If your a fishermen you couldn’t ask for a better December, if your a skier it could be worse.  Just like 2/3 of the country, Vermont has been unseasonably warm. Everyday this December the high has been above average, sometime by 30 degrees.
The mountains have been getting some measurable snow, but only a trace everywhere else. Mostly any water you fish (including Lake Champlain) has been fishing like is was October or mid April.  I have friends who fish the Champlain and they are trolling in areas that they would normally be thinking about dropping tip ups and hooking regularly on Lakers and big Walleye.  As for the rivers, they are in the best shape they’ve ever been in for this date.  Temps have been in the low to mid 40’s for the most part, levels and clarity are great.
Hot Winter combo

Hot Winter combo

I haven’t thrown any line in a while, due to the hunting season and getting ready for the holidays, but a fair amount of our guides and other friends have been taking advantage.  I have been getting good reports of trout actively feeding in there winter lies.  Most of the action has been on baetis nymphs patterns. Stands to reason, the temps of the river have been warm enough to keep them active.  Some good intimations are Copper Johns and Pheasant tails.  Traditionally tied patterns have been working best.  One variation that I’ve been loving for winter trout and steelhead is a copper john with a purple thorax.
The seven day out look it good. We’ll get a brief taste of winter this weekend and then back up to the low 50’s on Christmas day. There is a chance of precip every day from Christmas eve  until new years eve, some could be frozen and some not, as air temps will still be struggling to get down to avg.
Don’t forget, you can quickly end your holiday shopping for the fly fisher person in your life.  Just contact us for gift certificates for anyone from interested to expert.  1/2 and full day guided trips, 2 day fly fishing school, casting lessons, fly tying lessons.  For local anglers it is a great gift that will give them the opportunity to fish with a guide/ instructor to learn new water in the state, learn some new strategies and technics, or go after a species of fish that they don’t normally target.
There is still plenty of time to make your favorite fisher person the happiest person Christmas morning.  Purchase a gift certificate any time  between now and then and it will arrive on time.
Updated by Brian Zinger
River Report December 1st 2015 (Otter Creek)
Best Techniques:
 The Otter Creek can fish very well in December for Trout and or Pike! The key is being comfortable in the elements. As you know the weather in VT this time of year can be very cold and raw with a chance of snow at anytime. Dress for skiing/ snowboarding and then put on your waders. This means thick socks, base layers, fleece and a Winter hat. Sometimes I wear gloves and carry hand warmers in my pockets. Its hard to focus on fishing if your freezing! Simple knots or a quick fly change can be a challenge when your hands are numb!
More importantly be a little less daring this time of year. Fish closer to your vehicle and have extra dry clothes in your car. The other day I was Pike fishing on the way home from work. I was wearing jeans and sneakers as I only had a half hour to fish and planed on fishing from the bank. Well I hooked into a lunker Pike and had to chase it up and down the bank. At some point I slipped and slid down the steep clay bank right into the river. It took me a few tries to get out of the waist deep water and climb back up the bank. While this happened I kept tension on the fish and did land it. Got a quick photo and a good release. I did not take another cast I ran to the truck and found a pair of long johns behind the seat. I striped off my soaked muddy pants, sock and shoes and sped home barefooted to a warm shower.  If this had happened in fast water, deeper water or a long way from my truck I could have been in trouble as the air temp was only 34 degrees and the water temp was 41. Be safe !


My tips of the week:
The VT Trout season is over but you can catch and release trout in most of the Otter Creek all Winter. From Mt Tabor all the way to Lake Champlain! As the Creek starts to freeze you will still be able to fish the fast water below the many waterfalls. My top 3 Winter spots on the Otter are the Center Falls in West Rutland, Downtown Middlebury and Twin Bridges. All of these are easy to get to and have great access to lots of different kinds of water. Meaning you can cast right up against the waterfall, hit the fast water or look for the slower deep pools and runs. Sometimes the fish will be stacked up in certain areas so take your time and fish it all.
7 day outlook:
The current flow of the Otter is 400cfs. That may jump up as it rained today, its raining now and more is predicted tomorrow and Saturday. We have typical temps for this time of year with day time temps ranging from 20-44 degrees.
River report November 30th 2015
Fly fishing can be an enjoyable winter activity

Fly fishing can be an enjoyable winter activity

Fantastic winter scenery

Fantastic winter scenery

As we move into December river conditions are excellent. We haven’t received much rain during the month of November so levels and clarity are perfect. Water temps are mainly in the mid 40’s. Temperature is the key from now until the spring for both fish and angler. 50 degrees is a magic number.  Just a couple of degrees to the warmer can make a big difference to the activity of trout and there aquatic menu. Mid day will almost always be the warmest the water will be.  Target your fishing days to when warm fronts push air temps significantly above average.  This is the most challenging time of year, not only to catch fish but to be comfortable doing it. Because of this, if you book a 1/2 day guide from December to March we will take $25 off the trip fee. If you have been looking to extend your fly fishing season and want to learn; tactics, where to go, what flies are best and other strategies to to make your outing enjoyable, now is the time .
  Don’t forget, you can quickly end your holiday shopping for the fly fisherperson in your life.  Just contact us for gift certificates for anyone from interested to expert. Fly assortments starting at $20 make great stocking stuffers.
River Report November 20th 2015
So far the month of November has given us above average temps, adequate precipitation and many bluebird days.  The guys and girls who are still throwing line are being rewarded with some great fishing.

 November is also a time for giving thanks and to start thinking of gifts to get our loved one for the Holiday season. If you have a fly fisher or someone who has expressed interest in learning how too fly fish on your list. Stream and Brook Fly fishing has just what you need to make your loved ones feel the love.

We have gift certificates for half and full day guided trips, 2 day fly fishing school and casting lessons for the 2016 season. We have fly assortments that are made up of guided tied flies  that are the same ones are guides use. These make great stocking stuffers. We also have long and short sleeve tee shirts with the Stream and Brook logo on the back and “Save the worms” decal on the front.

In the past, the clients who have received these gifts have expressed to me how thoughtful the gift was, and that it was there favorite gift. They always mention who gave it to them as well.

If you want to make a lasting memory this year, Please contact us to ensure delivery before Christmas.

River Report November 17th 2015
It’s mid November and Stream and Brook guides and clients are still fishing and even catching some very nice fish! Some of us are hunting as well so all in all it’s a great time to be enjoying the outdoors in VT.

We are finding plump Rainbow Trout in the fast water under many of the Otter Creek waterfalls. From the Center Rutland Falls all the way down river to Twin Bridges in Weybridge. Prince Nymphs and the Red Copper John have been fooling fish. Brown Trout spawn in the Fall and they tend to stack up in the pools and deeper runs within sight of the same waterfalls. Try working a streamer or nymph rig through those areas.


Huge Otter Creek Pike

The Pike are still active and are smashing good size flies in the 6″-9″ range. All Black, Perch and Pink/White have been working. Only landed two Pike this November but one was 40″ and the other was 41.25″! The others I have been seeing chase my flies have been much smaller but this is a great time of year to be looking for the big ones. As always carry pliers, a big net and use a steel leader or bite wire when chasing toothy critters. I either use a 8wt with floating line or a 10wt with sinking depending on which fly I’m slinging.
Lake Champlain tribs (Lewis/ Winooski/ Lamoille) and the Grand Isle area are fishing great for Steelhead and LL Salmon. Depending on where your fishing and what time of day you could also tangle with Lake Trout. A few of our guides have been crushing them all month. I prefer to be fishing small Wolly Buggers in White, Olive, Purple or Black. Or Smelt patterns. Lots of folks are having luck with Egg Patterns and various Nymphs as well.
We don’t guide in NY but we fish the Salmon River and just were there last week. The river was low and clear. The fish seemed to be in the fast water and riffles in the upper sections and that’s where most of the fisherman/fisherwomen were as well. The San Juan Worm, Crystal Meth, Egg Patterns, Black Wolly Buggers, White streamers, Golden & Black Stoneflies, Green Caddis, Zug Bugs, Egg Sucking Leeches and Muddler Minnows were putting fish in the net. A bunch of us caught small Browns and a few tanks as well. Saw some nice Coho’s but didn’t land any.
The next few days looks like decent weather for fishing with a chance of rain on Thursday. Most day time temps will hover in the low 50,s with temps hitting in the high 30’s at night. Bundle up and get after them!
If you want to book a trip with one of guides we still are taking clients out. The rivers have very little fishing pressure right now and the fish are still eating to fatten up for the long Winter.
River Report November 3rd 2015 (Otter Creek)
Best Techniques:
Its November and most folks stop targeting Pike but they are still active and much thicker and heavier than in the Summer as they are putting on weight for the Winter. For Pike fish your flies a bit slower as the water temps are hovering in the low 50’s. I like to strip 3 times and count to 3 and repeat all the way back to my feet. Don’t just pull your fly out of the water and recast! Take an extra 30 seconds to a minute and swim your fly around before casting it out again. Pike are ambush predators and most of the time hang back and attack at the last second. Last Saturday this happened to me. After my third cast in a likely area I was slowly swimming my fly along the bank in 3″ of water. I was about to pull it out of the water I saw a wake coming from the deeper water…. BAM a very chunky mid 30″ Pike crushed it. Good luck, carry pliers, a big net, use steel leaders and a 8 to 10 wt to help you properly catch and release Pike.
My tips of the week:
Its November the VT Trout season is over but you can catch and release trout in most of the Otter Creek all Winter. Nymph under the many waterfalls with Prince Nymphs. Some folks have luck using two at a time one weighted and one unweighted. This time of year the big Browns are starting color up and put on the food bag. Many are brought to the net during the ISO Hatch and the Prince is a great imitator.
Fishing a big streamer with a Prince dropped off is a great bet as well. Yesterday I was fishing a big Muddy Buddy streamer with a Prince dropped off in the Middlebury area. I was hoping a for a big Brown on the 4″ streamer. I got a nice take in fast water and it bent my rod pretty good. I played it into slower water and realized a very nice Rainbow had eaten my dropper, the Prince Nymph. I never ended catching the big fish I was looking for but I didn’t get skunked either!
7 day outlook:
The current flow of the Otter is 627cfs. It will continue to drop and probably be under 500cfs by Thursday. We have a very nice week of weather in the forecast. Some daytime temps even approaching the mid 60’s. The only rain is maybe on Friday.
River Report : October 31st 2015
The Vt Trout season closes today on Halloween so hit your favorite last few spots while you can! This time of year keep it simple. Fish deep and slow in the cooler water. Have a few Wolly Buggers, Muddlers, Zonkers, Prince Nymphs, Golden Stones, Hares Ears and they will put Trout in the net.
We had a great season with clients and days fishing with friends! However November is one of my favorite months to be fishing. Check  vtfishandwildlife.com for a complete list of  waters that are catch and release fishing year around. We fish and guide year around as well all over state.
Right now through mid December we chase Rainbow Trout, Brown Trout, LL Salmon, Steelhead and Pike with pretty good success.  Yesterday I caught a nice Pike on a Vermont Fly Guys Pink/White Mini Malestrom Whistler. On Thursday I got a big Brown Trout while fishing White streamers in a Otter Creek trib. Tomorrow I hope to connect with some friends and a few LL Salmon.
Good luck on the water and be safe! (BC)
River Report :October 21st, 2015
Tight Line

Tight Line

Only 10 days left until the close of the regular trout season for 2015.  For those of you who love to fish trout, this doesn’t mean much as we still have a ton of trout water open year round.  A few years back VT Fish and Wildlife extended many of the Lake Champlain tributaries to year round fishing, much to the delight of the hearty soles who fish in the middle of a Vermont winter.
Corn Beetle

Corn Beetle

Right now river conditions are in excellent shape; close to average levels, clear, and temps are running from the high 40’s to the low 50’s.   We had some snow in the higher elevations last weekend, however that didn’t stop the bit.  All reports I received from guides were, good to great fishing for trout and salmon.  The main thing I got out of all reports is that you only needed two flies, a Prince and a Pheasant tail.  A few river reports ago,  I wrote about only needing a limited fly box until next spring, this is an example of what I was saying.  All Phases of BWO should be in your box during this time of year.  If you see rising fish, they are more than likely on BWO’s.  If you fish near corn fields that are being cut, you’ve probably seen the beetle in the picture. I call them corn beetles , but they are basically a lady bug.  If you’ve seen them, you can bet the fish have as well. HINT.
We have a sting of average weather coming our way,  with small amounts of precipitation from time to time over the next 10 days. So conditions should remain good.
 Update by: Brian Zinger
River Report 10/9/2015

Autumn Brown

Rivers are in great condition right now and should remain that way for the weekend and the next several days.  We are picking up anywhere fro .5 to 1 inch of rain across VT today which is just what the angler ordered to keep things fresh and provide plenty of opportunity for fall spawners  to keep on moving. Water temperatures have mostly been in the upper 50’s and low 60’s on the big and medium size rivers.
Columbus Day weekend is always peak foliage in VT.  This year we have the added bonus of it being sun drenched and warm, with air temps into the 70’s on Sunday and Monday.  I always like to target brown trout during this time of year to see them at peak size and spawning colors.  Browns are still voraciously feeding as they spawn. They can be caught on tiny flies like the size #18 lime green caddis pupa that the fish above was fooled by yesterday. They can also be caught on 2 – 5 inch long streamers, and as the season progresses, egg patterns are productive.

Leaf peepin' and fly fishin'


River Report 10/2/2015

With the Otter Creek up and off color the Big Browns will be making there annual trip up the tribs. This is a great time of the year to have shots at fish well over 24″! I like to use a 6-8wt with sinking line and at least 20 pound tippet. My go to streamers are the Muddy Buddy, Sculpins, big White Buggers and the Sex Dungeon. Some folks also use Crayfish, Frogs and big Leech Patterns.

When rivers like the Neshobe or Middlebury River are high in the Fall they are dumping lots of water into the Otter. This can cause surges of big Trout into those rivers and other tribs. Carry a big net and fish during rough weather for more of a chance to hook up with a true river monster.

Tips of the week for Otter Creek:

Nymph under the many waterfalls with Prince Nymphs. Some folks have luck using two at a time one weighted and one unweighted. This time of year the big Browns are starting color up and put on the food bag. Many are brought to the net during the ISO Hatch and the Prince is a great imitator.

Fishing a big streamer or even a foam Hopper with a Prince dropped off is a great bet as well.

7 day outlook:

The current flow of the Otter jumped up to 1,260cfs. The clarity is still off but clearing after we got nearly 3″ of rain on Tuesday/ Wednesday. Its been very cool at night and may be in the high 30’s the next few mornings! No rain in the next 5 days is predicted so the river will continue to drop and it should be some great fishing all week with afternoon temps in the mid 60’s and sunny!

River Report: September 30th, 2015
If you had a chance to get out fishing the last couple of day, you were lucky. The trout fishing has been pretty good lately and with the expected 3-4 inches of rain, it might be a while for things to settle down.  We really needed the rain, just wish it didn’t come all at once.  As I write I have received just shy of 3in since early yesterday morning.  Stream levels have been very low so we should absorb a lot.  The spawning fish will love the bump in levels and fishing for them should really pick up when levels are good again.
Hen release

Hen release

There are some fish that are not going to wait for levels to be just right for spawning. They’re going to forge on because the drive is so strong.  Just like with most species, the bucks are usually first. I headed up north with my friend Tim Hayes to scout for some LL salmon making that early move.  We hit it just right. Flows were good and plenty of 18 – 22 inch fish in the river.   Every stable pool held at least one fish.  As usual the morning was the best time , with a BWO hatch going on soon after light.  Tim did very well fishing an emerger during that time.  As the day moved on, a black stone fly  nymph was what they wanted, and by evening I did well slow stripping a White 3 River Lodge streamer.  The river we fished will draw a crowd of anglers and a run of fish after this rain.
Early LL salmon
If you haven’t been fishing for landlocked salmon in Vermont you really should give it a try.  If you have, but haven’t had much success or don’t like the crowds. It pays to get a guide. They can help you plan a trip that will be fun at the most beautiful time of the year.  You will learn flies, different methods and strategy’s that will last a life time.  We have guides that can give you the best opportunity to hook up in Lake Champlain tribs as well.    Tim is one of our guides to the North, so if you would like to get out with him give us a call.
Save the worms!
Updated by Brian Zinger
River Report: September 23rd, 2015
Wedding Party on the river

Wedding Party on the river

We have finally reached the part of the season when we don’t have to worry about the 70 degree mark. We are usually there by Sept 1st.  It has been very warm and very dry, which has made rivers very low. Fish don’t like high sun , low water conditions. They feel very vulnerable to predators, and become very spooky and difficult to approach.  We are not forecast to get any precipitation for a least the next seven days. That’s not good news for fish or fishermen.  The good news we’ll have cool water and beautiful weather to fish in.
Win bowOur guides have been having good days and not so good day. The trips in the afternoon and into evening have been most productive. I had a return client and friend make their September pilgrimage to Burlington from Elmira NY. We hit the Winooski from Duxbury to Joneville on an afternoon to dusk trip. We had a great time as always.  The catching started out slow at 2pm and picked up as the dusk settled on us.  Mark  caught fish using all methods, and all the flies I thought we might do well with. mark caught a nice brown a  haystack Isonychia , but the lamoille river muskrat took most of the fish in the last hour of light.
We had a rough day at work on the White River with a wedding party. The guys where great sports, but only 2 small trout were caught on a misty morning trip.  Brook trout fishing continues to to be great. Nick Mayer had a local man from Wallingford looking to learn some water in and around the Rutland area. They had close to 100 fish fish crash the surface using dry/dropper set ups. So we have been all over the state with varying results.
As me move closer to October, we need rain. Did I say that already… LL Salmon and Brown trout are getting anxious to spawn out of Lake Champlain and Lake Memphremagog. Higher water levels make the journey easier and the fish not as spooky while sneaking on them.  Also, think about limiting you fly selection. Tiny Blue wing olives size #22 -24 in all phases of life cycle.  Iso patterns size 12-10 will continue to be productive for the next few weeks.  2 -3 inch Woolly Buggers black/grizzly, white/white and olive/black. X-Caddis in green size #14 – 12 and amber size #12 -10.
We have been getting a bunch of guide requests from parents and alumni coming to Vermont for Parents Day weekend and Home Coming  at area colleges.   If you are one of those people, and have some free time, grab your son/daughter or a friend and give us a call.
wp couple1Updated by: Brian Zinger
VT River Report: September 15th 2015 (Otter Creek)
We also do the river report for Orvis every week on the Mid to Lower sections of the Otter Creek. Here is some updated info on the OC.

Best techniques:

If you have been waiting all Summer to try fishing at night with Mouse patterns this is a great time of year to get out and do it. It’s getting darker earlier so you can head out around 8:00pm and the rivers are low so wading is safer.

In the Otter I focus on big pools above and below it’s many dams/waterfalls. I use a 6wt-8wt and medium sized Deer hair or foam Mouse flies. I am fishing for Smallmouth Bass and Fallfish and the action is usually pretty steady. Some folks are picky and don’t enjoy catching Fallfish but any fish that slams the surface and hits a Mouse is one I want to catch! Good luck!

My tips of the week:

Spend a day in a canoe, kayak or small boat and do a big float on the Creek. Go with a buddy and have their car down river and do a shuttle so you don’t have to paddle back up river.

Bring a 6wt for Bass and a 8 or 10wt for Pike. The Bass are very active right now and Wolly Buggers, Sculpin patterns and even big Hoppers or dry flies will get their attention. My favorite two dry flies for river Smallies are the Orange Stimulator and the Ausable Bomber.

For Pike try big 8″ to 10″  streamers with a thick profile in color’s like Pink/White, Perch, Black/Orange and Chartruse. Use a steel leader so they don’t cut you off with their sharp teeth. Make sure you have a big net as well!


7 Day Outlook:

The current flow of the Otter bumped up from 163 cfs to 427 cfs. Recent rain has raised water levels and cooler nights should help get the water temps back below 70 soon. The river temps will vary from 70-73. The clarity is great and we have no rain in the 7 day forecast.


————————————————————————————————————————————————————Stream and Brook Mendon Brook BKTStream and Brook Nick Sep 2015 SKI

“Brookies and the Beast”


NICK MAYER ART and I found lots of mountain Brook Trout recently hitting Elk Hair Caddis and Ausable Wulff’s. River temps were 63-64 degrees way up high in Mendon Brook and the Big Branch of the Otter Creek. The next day Nick found a beast and a small one and they both crushed a 8″ Orange/Black “ManBearPig” from rusuperfly.com!

Stream & Brook Clients 2014 3sunrise
Weekend Update and tips:

Ok as the sun is rising you should be fishing. During periods of low / clear water this is the time to be fishing.

If your going for trout you will get cooler water temps. Also you will be the first one through each pool or run. Make your first cast or two in each pool count. Trout are very wary in skinny water. Stealth will put a few more trout in the net. Consider using fluorocarbons and smaller flies. You won’t have to share the river with swimmers at this time of day.

If your chasing Pike they are most active this time of year from 5:30am-9:00am. Mid day can be tough. You get lots of follows but it seems like they just are playing cat and mouse games. Sometimes the Pike will be inches behind your fly following for 20′ then just give up. They just sink slowly out of sight and it may be another 40 minutes of floating before you move another then the same thing happens.

So our advice set the alarm for 4:45am and catch an awesome sunrise plus a few fish.

If your chasing trout and releasing them bring a thermometer and make sure the water temps are below 70, below 68 would be ideal.

For extra fish karma bring a trash bag with you when fishing and help clean up what others leave behind!

Streamandbrook.com for River reports and to book a trip with one of our guides.

Otter Creek Update 9/1/2015
Top water Pike this time of year is a blast. Try Frogs and Mouse patterns around weedy/grassy banks and around log jams or brush piles. Sometimes you will find very big fish in these areas. Pike are an ambush predator and they tend to hang out in areas where they can get a quick meal. Spots where lots of bait fish to mid size fish hang out.If your fishing for Pike be ready. Polarized sunglasses are a must. Have a net big enough to land them safely. Have pliers to remove the hook. Jaw Spreaders can be key as well. Use a steel leaders or tie-able wire. Wet your hands before touching them. If your taking pics keep the fish in the net and in the water while turning on the camera or switching to video. These are basic things for any kind of fishing but just repeating it again. I Don’t know how many times I hear stories about not having a big enough net, no pliers or getting bitten off plus watching as folks drag fish into the mud and grab them dry handed.  This seems very basic but my landing ratio of really big Pike went up as soon as I got a very big net with a long handle also it’s so much easier on the fish.The current flow of the Otter is 220 cfs. The river temps will vary from 70-73. The clarity is great and besides a few chances of thunder storms we have great weather in the 7 day forecast.
Hope your geared up for a great weekend!
Plenty of great fishing in VT this time of year.
Wet wading for wild Brookies in the Green Mountain Forrest is a fun way to kill a few hours. For this keep it simple. A 3wt. a small net and a fly box with a few dries, hoppers and maybe some nymphs. It’s very low and clear up in the hills so long cast and wade carefully.  To get the coldest river temps start early, like 6am.
If your a night owl try fishing topwater Bass at dark. This is a must a few times a year and very exciting when you get that “Toilet Bowl” take while stripping in a Popper, Frog or Mouse Pattern. The later you fish the better it can get.
The Pike Bite this time of year can be hit and miss. Usually you want to be on the water by 6:00 am in August. The fishing can be hot till about 9:00 am. I’ve often seen an afternoon bite start around 2:00 or 3:00. Hot flies right now are Perch Patterns, Pink/White,  Black/Red and Top Water Frogs.
Sight fishing for Carp and Bowfin can be a challenge but casting to 10 to 30 pound fish is always a good time. Polarized glasses are a must. Fish mid-day till dusk on calm days in the many shallow bays of Lake Champlain.  I usually have a 8wt rod rigged with floating line and a 9′ 8lb leader. Tie on a Black Stonefly or some other fly a Carp may inhale. Then I will have a 8 or 10wt rigged with a very short leader of 5′ of 30lb for Bowfin. Maybe bring a few topwater flies if you fish till dark and hit some Large Mouth Bass as you paddle back to your car.
These are some of the fish our guides chase all the time. From Brookies to Bass and Bowfin this is a fun time to be fishing in the Green Mountain State. (BC)

River Report August 12rd 2015a bass

We have had a great string of weather, in turn we have had some really fun trips recently.   We have been able to fish all the water, so our clients can fish for whatever they want.
For the most part the big rivers were  running at seasonal levels. Temperatures have been in the low 60’s in the a.m. and mid to upper 60’s in the pm. The Connecticut rv. was 58 Sunday morning with fog until 9am the river never got above 61. Thing will be changing over the next couple days. I received .86 inches of rain yesterday here in Westford, and areas in the south received  over an inch.  The rain will be accompanied with cooler temps.  While today you will find higher dirty water in the big river, it exactly what we need and keep the fishing going well into the weekend and beyond.a brookie
Right now you can’t beat a size 10 – 8 Black or Gold stone fly nymph dead drifted at the head of a deep pool, on the larger river. You also can’t beat an Ausable Wulff on small stream brookie , browns and rainbows.

We are approaching, what I consider, the best time of year to fish for trout. Soon Isonychia mayflies will be showing up. Instead of Stone fly shucks on the rocks at the rivers edge, you should start to see a smaller blackish nymph shuck showing on the same rocks. Trout love all stages of this, last of the large Mayfly hatches, and it lasts thru September.

Updated by: Brian Zinger
River Report August 3rd 2015
WP TRIP 1WP trip 2
The Otter has been pushing 70- 72 degrees which is to warm to target Trout but the Smallmouth Bass, Pike and Fallfish have been fishing great. Lots of recent clients have caugth there first fish ever. Hot flies have been the White Wulff, Orange Stimiulators, Hoppers, Black Wolly Buggers, Hares Ear, Prince Nymph and the Golden Stone.
The fishing this time of year is so diverse. We can target wild Brookies up in the mountains. Bass on local ponds. Pike/Bass on the Otter Creek and rough fish on Lake Champlain.
Some thunder storms in the next few days could drop an inch or two of rain but other wise expect low clear water. To get cooler temps fish early in the morning. Good luck!
River Report:  July 28th, 2015
Small stream wild bow

Small stream wild bow

Summer has finally hit Vermont. The larger rivers are all 70+ degrees, and if they’re not, they will be.  All size rivers have above avg flows thanks to the month of June and the summer time afternoon and over night Tstorms different areas of the state have been receiving . These conditions will persist until early next week as the dog days of summer hit the area with 90 degree air temps. over the next couple of days.
Meanwhile small and mid size brooks are fishing well, with all dry fly action.  These streams are still running in the low to mid 60’s. Some nice wild bows and browns have been coming to the net on the usual flies for this time of year. The Ausable Wulffs, Royal Wulffs, Stimulators and Hoppers have been the main culprits.
We have several trips going out this week for bass and pike, which is a great option this time of year. (BZ)
River Report July 25th (Weekend Update)
After a very wet June with its 10 plus inches of rain its nice to have the rivers low and clear. Just hoping they stay cool! Remember your riverside thermometer and take temps before catch and releasing trout. If its over 70 leave them alone. Just friendly advice also wet your hands, use a net and quickly release to make sure the trout will live on to fight another day.
The Pike and the Smallmouth Bass have been very active on the Otter Creek but it getting to warm for Trout. Yesterday in Weybridge it was 72 mid day with a flow of 512 cfs. Today I was standing up in a kayak sight fishing to Pike in the low clear water. Only had one hook up but it was a tank. Less than a minute after it ate my fly it had my very deep in a log jam and I thought it was going to brake my fly rod. My line ended up braking off above the steel leader….
The Otter Creek, White River and Winooski River tribs up in the mountain are fishing great! Holding mid day temps of 66 with lots of bug activity. Best time of day for cooler temps is very early in the am! Hot flies for Brookies and Bows have been Hoppers, The Ausable Bomber and Orange Stimulators. For nymphs the Golden Stone, PT’s, Zug Bug and of course the Red Copper John.
Fly fishing Lake Champlain has been very good and in the last few weeks I have had some great success fishing for Bowfin. Caught a small one last night on a streamer tied by Kevin Ramirez called the Drunk Dad. They are a great battle once hooked, often times cartwheeling into thick grass and lilly pads! This is sight fishing at its finest. Also been seeing tons of Carp while hunting for Bowfin. One tip is to carry a rod rigged for both species as you paddle around  cause you never know what is going to swim in front of you on the big lake.
Smaller Pike/Bass ponds have been great in the last two hours of light. Say from 7-9pm. The mosquitos can be hard to deal with so bring repellant and long sleeve clothing. The reward is topwater Bass. This is the best time of the year for this style fishing. Bring a headlamp and fish well into the night for the best action. Some folks don’t even start fishing till 10pm.
We have a bunch of trips on the books but do have a few openings. Shoot us an email to book a trip. (BC)
River Report: July 18th 2015
pocket water rainbow

pocket water rainbow

Since the cold front, and 1.1 inches of rain that went thru the northern part of the state last Tuesday, big river temps have falling back to catch and release status.  Both the Lamoille and the Winooski got dirty , but cleaned up nicely by Thursday morning.  Water temps in the morning  on both rivers have dropped back to the mid 60’s and last night on the Winooski it was 68 at dark.
I  finally had a chance to get out and throw some line last evening with S&B guide Dave Durovich. We started in Bolton where we  found plenty of fall fish that were very receptive to any size 12 nymph. Dave caught a Master Class fall fish on his “Double D” nymph.  We moved up stream to the Middlesex area where we finally found some trout. There was few hatching Yellow Drake(Varia) size 10 coming off, and with the few rises we saw, we figured it must be what the fish where taking even thought we never actually saw a natural get consumed. We tried nymphs and emergers early on.  As dusk settled on us we went dry.  Dave tied on his Drake compara and I an SS Sulphur.  Both of us had a couple of hook ups with good fights, but neither of us could seal the deal.  I found out later that the loud explicative that I heard coming from Dave’s direction was a big bow that came unbuttoned.
Southern VT wild bow

Southern VT wild bow

Stever continues to put client on wild bow in small and mid sized streams in the Killington and Middlebury areas.  He reports water temps in the low 60’s all day with fish active one both high floating drys and and small nymph droppers.
We’ve got some warmer air temps until Wednesday, when a cool front comes thru with lower air temps and good chance of afternoon T-storms.   Best time to fish will be in the morning or late evening when you might catch a hatch to try and match.
Updated by Brian Zinger
River Report: July 13th 2015
What a difference a week makes. Over the past weekend we have had a stretch of dry very warm  and humid weather.  It has allowed big rivers to drop to where  access to all fishing oppertunities. Unfortunately, the hot weather has pushed the day time temps on the big rivers to over 70 degrees.  The Winooski was 69 degrees at 11am yesterday morning in Middlesex. Water temps that are 70+ are very oxygen depleated , in other word, trout can not breath well because of a lack of disolved oxygen in the water. So, unless you plan on keeping fish for diner, it is advised that you carry a thermometer and don’t fish for trout where temps are above 70.  If you are a catch and release fisherman, fighting fish in these conditions stress the fish further,  only to release them back into water that will not allow them to recover.
Last week while river conditions finally got back to perfect, our guides had outstanding outings with there clients.  Everything from mountain brook trout to Pike in the lower sections of lake Champlain tribs.  Dave Durovich, finally got  fellow guide from Maine Lou Zamello out after postponing a trip earlier in June. They went for a tour from Montpeiler  to Jeffersonville catching rainbow at every stop along the Winooski and Lamoille rivers and their tribs.   Stever Barlett is guiding a husband and wife team who have been targeting wild trout in the Killington area over the last couple days. The report is that the small streams they have been fishing,  are producing fish on dry/dropper rigs.
We stand a small a small chance of afternoon Tstorms over the next two afternoons. The chance tomorrow come with a cold front that will drop day time air temps back into the 70″s  for the rest of the week. If we get the cool rains and below avg temps back in here, we might be able to get out on the big rivers, at least in the mornings by the weekend.    Hatches have been sparse, but small sulphur (dorothea ) #18 -20, PMD’s #18 -20,
and light Cahill have been drawing some attention, as well as the ever presents caddis in green or tan.  There is also a ton of black and gold stonefly activity.  Nymph shucks have been showing up on all of the rocks at the stream edge.  Grasshoppers and ants are a big part of the summer menu as well. Do not underestimate the power imitating these terrestrials for the rest of the season.
Updated by Brian Zinger
Happy 4th of July!
We have received over 10 inches of rain in the last 4 weeks! This has caused rivers to flood and then come down than flood again a few times. Which has made the fishing very unpredictable. I prefer fishing higher off color water than low and clear so I have enjoyed the rivers surging up and down. This have given our guides many chances to fish big streamers to big trout and also kept lots of folks away so the rivers/ ponds have had low fishing pressure. The high water has kept the rivers cool as well. The Middlebury River was 61 yesterday!
The Pike fishing has been excellent. From Otter Creek to Lake Champlain  the Pike have been very active and hitting topwater flies as well. Local Bass ponds have been on fire! It seems that even if you can only get out for an hour or two you still have a great chance at catching some very solid Bass. I have had a blast fishing poppers and getting lots of topwater action.
Folks who fish for Brookies have been doing very well with the Ausable Wulff, Stimulators and Elk Hair Caddis. The smaller Brooks return to normal flows very quickly after a big rain so the fishing has been great up in the hills. I suggest using a hopper dropper as well!
Have a great weekend as the weather looks great! Lots of sun with very small chances of rain.
high water bass
Otter Creek River Report : June 24th 2015
Best Technique:
In high water fish big White flies. My favorite for Trout is called the Muddy Buddy. I like to fish it on a 6wt or even an 8wt with split shots to get it down deep. Slapping down Hoppers and waking big dries like a Ausable Bomber or a Stimulator can cause fish to crash the surface as well.
Tip of the week:
If your fishing for Pike be ready. Polarized sunglasses are a must. Have a net big enough to land them safely. Have pliers to remove the hook. Jaw Spreaders can be key as well. Use a steel leaders or tie-able wire. Wet your hands before touching them. If your taking pics keep the fish in the net and in the water while turning on the camera or switching to video. These are basic things for any kind of fishing but just repeating it again. I Don’t know how many times I hear stories about not having a big enough net, no pliers or getting bitten off plus watching as folks drag fish into the mud and grab them dry handed.  This seems very basic but my landing ratio of really big Pike went up as soon as I got a very big net with a long handle also it’s so much easier on the fish.
7 day forecast:
The Otter is super high (2,420) and the clarity is very poor. The next two days look hot and sunny but chances of rain maybe Friday and Saturday. Lets hope it drop back down below 2,000 by the weekend and the clarity improves! BC
Northern VT River Report: June 24th 2015
I couldn’t even write a river report last week, because no one could get on one to fish.  Even as I write this one I don’t have much to say other than,” better days are ahead” I have received 8.10 inches of rain this June, and we have had a number of cancellations along the way.  Things are looking up though. We are slated to have 4 days of dry, beautiful , sunny weather.
The big rivers are still brown and turbulent, and will be for a few more days.  Hopefully some of the upper reaches will be good to go by the weekend.  Meanwhile, small streams and ponds have been very productive.   They have really been the only game in town.  As the small streams drop and clear quickly, there has been windows of opportunity to cast a dry fly to some wild rainbows and browns.  The ponds have been giving up some great fun with panfish and bass on  dry flies as well.  It just goes to show that even with all the rain you can still go fishing if your not particular about the fish you catch.
Hopefully we’ll have  more than the 4 days of dry weather predicted.  My garden, the fish and all the young wild animals being born these days, could use a break.  All this rain does have it’s benefits in the long run.  As wee move into July and the summer, we generally get into worries that the rivers are getting low and the water temperature is getting to warm.    We won’t have to worry about those items for a awhile. Also, the heavy flows spread fish out.  Once things get back to normal, you’ll find fish everywhere, particularly the fish that were just stocked before the rains.     You’ll also find big river fish, that are savvy enough to get out of the big river and migrate into a trib to take a break from the big brown, turbulent water they have been dealing with.
Tip of the day!  The fish have not been able to feed easily for a while now, so  as the water levels drop, try to get out while the clarity isn’t so good, When you can only see a foot or two into the water. This is when the fishing is at it’s best in my option.
Updated by Brian Zinger
VT River Report: June 16th 2015

Give your Father the best gift you ever gave him for Fathers Day:  a fly fishing outing with a Stream and Brook Guide! 

If your Dad is a beginner, expert,  or something in between, we we can give him expert instruction,  or get him on a secluded stretch of water casting to the variety of species Vermont has to offer. The only thing that could be better,  is if you or a friend could join him on the adventure!  The Fishing has been great!  We have gift certificates that can be used at any time. Please contact us to find out more.

Save the worms!

VT River Report: June 12th 2015
This weekend is shaping up to be great fishing. The hitch is how much rain we get tonight. There is a flood watch for tomorrow. If we just get a little rain the rivers will be ideal. I checked out an Otter Creek trib tonight and it was swift but great clarity. I was fishing a Hopper/Dropper and had action on both flies. If we get the high winds, hail, thunder and over an inch of rain tonight I am afraid the rivers will flood for sure.
The Otter is full bank but great clarity right now. The USGS says it’s at 1,710 CFS right now. That’s high but very fishable. If its tribs to flood of course it will shoot up over 2,000 with poor clarity which will make for some tough fishing this weekend.
The Pike fishing on the Otter has been on fire. 3 Pike over 40″ since June 1st. All from my Jackson Kayak Big Rig. Hit a few Bass ponds last week and found they are hitting top water flies which is a blast. Also landed my largest VT Musky ever. It taped out at 47″
Good luck if you get out this weekend and be carful if we do have high water! (BC)
VT River Report: June 9th 2015,
We have been getting more than our share of rain. Over the past 7 days I have received 2.8 inches of rain in Westford.  As I write we have another big blob of rain coming with a line of Tstorms leading the way.  Most of the rain has been mostly to the north  and has put those rivers on a flood watch through Wednesday morning.  This area of precip. that is coming is expected to be heaviest to the south . Stay tuned the big rivers may not fish well until the weekend.
Small streams and brooks, as well as ponds and lakes will likely be your best chance at finding the TLC (temp., level and clarity) that your looking for.   When things settle down, look for Sulphurs in sizes 14-18 and caddis to dominate the surface action. The SS Sulphur is a great fly to have as it imitates dry and emergent sulphurs as well as the Yellow stone flies (yellow sallies)that will be making their appearance soon. The Xcaddis in green and tan is an excellent fly to imitate adult, emergent and egg laying caddis. There will be days this month when they are the only two flies you’ll need.
Updated by Brian Zinger
VT River Report: June 4th 2015 (Otter Creek- Pike)
Otter Creek Beast

Otter Creek Beast

It’s June as the water warms up you can work your flies for Pike much faster. You can also pull out the bigger flies and top water arsenal! Nothing is more exciting then pulling your fly off a clay bank or from a log jam as fast as you can and having a Pike shoot out of from nowhere and grab it going a hundred miles per hour!

In about 4 hours combined on the first two days of June I caught 6 Pike and two were over 40 inches, including a personal best 45.5 inch river monster! Both were only a few feet off the shore when they hit and were crazy battles to get them in the net from a Jackson Kayak “Big Rig”!

I also, for the first time this year, tried big top water flies. I’ll fish them now until early November. One I have had since last Fall that I have been waiting to try is a 9″ articulated Rat that Ken Capsey tied for me. It is huge! I use a full sinking line when fishing flies like this for Pike and recommend using a 10wt. Cast the flies as close as you can to log jams, culvert openings and the bank. Just as it touches the water strip the fly fast for about 4 strips. The fly will stay on the water causing commotion . I let the fly sit for about 20 longs seconds then strip it 2 twice and pause, strip it twice and pause and repeat back towards me. During the 20 second pause the line sinks and by the time the fly is back to you it’s 3 to 8 inches under the water even though it’s designed to float. I have found this drives Pike crazy and even though the topwater fly may be a few inches down when they hit it they often go airborne. I had several fish follow and one small one hit it. Then bam a big one smacked it in the center of a flooded log jam ( Photo above). It was a bit tricky landing it but it was a violent take that I wish I had the GoPro recording!

Also above a photo of the 45.5 inch Beast that also hit a Ken Capsey fly called the “Tally Wacker” Thanks KC!

If your fishing for Pike be ready. Polarized sunglasses are a must. Have a net big enough to land them safely. Have pliers to remove the hook. Jaw Spreaders can be key as well. Use a steel leaders or tie-able wire. Wet your hands before touching them. If your taking pics keep the fish in the net and in the water while turning on the camera or switching to video. These are basic things for any kind of fishing but just repeating it again. I Don’t know how many times I hear stories about not having a big enough net, no pliers or getting bitten off plus watching as folks drag fish into the mud and grab them dry handed.  This seems very basic but my landing ratio of really big Pike went up as soon as I got a very big net with a long handle also it’s so much easier on the fish. (BC)

VT River Report:June 2nd  2015,
TLC. Not tender loving care, but temperature, level and clarity. Those are 3 important elements when venturing out to wet a line.  In May all 3 came together and we had great fishing for all species.  The totals for the month of May showed that it was the warmest in Vermont history dating back to the early 1900’s.  The totals also showed that it was amongst the lowest for precipitation.  Although the average was warm we had our share of cold. Early in the month we a stretch of weather that saw record breaking high to a record breaking low, and back to close to record breaking high all in a 7 day period. Some of those cold fronts mad fishing tough even on lakes and ponds..
All through the month water temperatures never approached critical(70 deg), the levels were at or below avg, which allowed anglers to get to all their favorite spots and clarity was great, so there where very few days where the 3 element didn’t aline and make river conditions unfishable.
More recently we have received anywhere from 1.7 inches of rain (Westford VT rain gage) to 3+ in area that had thunderstorms in the past 4 days. So, while the water temperatures are going to be good, the rivers are at bank full, but coming down, and there is zero clarity making the TLC negative for today.   We really needed this rain to cleanse the system and move some of the fish around a little. Levels will lower staring with small brooks particularly if they are with high gradient over the next few day with some nice weather moving in for the weekend. Just as everything becomes fishable again.
March Brown Nymph & Early Quill emerger

March Brown Nymph & Early Quill emerger

The days prior to the rain, the fishing couldn’t have been better. Grey and Tan Caddis imitated by an X-caddiswas high on the trouts menu until the March Brown”s (Stenonema vicarium) started emerging making for some great dry fly action. If they weren’t hatching  fish were gobbling up the nymphs. There were some Sulphurs(Ephemerella invaria) popping the time I was out. They will become increasingly important as the March Browns wane.
Updated by Brian Zinger

Give your Father the best gift you ever gave him for Fathers Day:  a fly fishing outing with a Stream and Brook Guide! 

If your Dad is a beginner, expert,  or something in between, we we can give him expert instruction,  or get him on a secluded stretch of water casting to the variety of species Vermont has to offer. The only thing that could be better,  is if you or a friend could join him on the adventure!  The Fishing has been great!  We have gift certificates that can be used at any time. Please contact us to find out more.

Save the worms!

VT River Report: May 29th  2015
This is a great time of the year to be searching Vermont for any kind of fish that you wish.
The Trout are looking up and taking flies off the surface. A few days ago I spent some time skating big dry flies like the Ausable Bomber(pictured below, tied by Brian Zinger) in fast water. Ended up landing a nice wild Rainbow in an Otter Creek trib. One of our guides recently texted me pics of Walleye he had been catching with streamers. The Bass fishing is on fire right now! We have had several clients record personal best in the last 10 days or so. Big natural colored streamers have been the ticket. Although I did catch one on a topwater popper as well. The Pike bite is strong right now. I Have a Pike trip tomorrow so check back in and see how we did. Carp and Bowfin are out and about as well eating everything in sight.
Otter Creek is at a perfect level to wade or float for Pike, Bass and or Trout. Our guides who fish the Winooski a lot say it’s on with lots of big fish being reported. The local Bass/ Pike ponds are in great shape and filled with hungry fish. If your looking for Steelhead and or lake run Smallmouth Bass they are still in the rivers. Our guide Kenny down on the Black River said his river is on fire as well.AAABomb
The rivers are low and clear with some rain in the forcast. We have trips in the books for the next week but have openings as well. Book a trip today!
VT River Report: May 21st  2015
Stream and Brook Guidehire Pike
Stream and Brook Guidehire Bass
The Bass/ Pike trips have been a blast. Had a Father/Son from Boston out last weekend and they had a great time. Landed a few nice Smallmouth Bass on Vermont Fly Guys streamers including a monster that ended up being Joe’s personal best! We did not get any Pike to eat our flies but were sight casting to them in 3 different spots. Pat had one in the 36″ range charge his fly and that got his heart rate pumping for sure.
On Tuesday had the founders of guidehire.com out for another Bass/Pike trip. They also are from Boston and look for a video from our day on the water soon. I was taking some video on my GoPro that I have mounted on a Panda Poles “Camera Wand”. This is great for getting under water release shots. They also had a high end DSLR. There friends at Badfish will be putting together a sweet edit. We (I got to fish with them!) caught well over a dozen Smallmouth Bass, many over 16″ and two were 20″!
Macgill had only nymphed for Trout and had never streamer fished so he had a great time hooking into many Bass and then chasing them around till I could get them in the net. The hot flies were all tied by one of our guides named Kevin Ramirez. His Drunk Dad, Egg Snatcher and Wolly Buggers produced for sure! He sells them through rusuperfly.com. Kevin is also part of the Vermont Fly Guys and the Noreastah’ Pigfarmink crew.
After taking a break and getting sandwiches at Noonies Deli we started to search for Pike on the Otter. James was super excited for this and sure enough he hooked into a big one right off. I netted it quickly and we got a few pics, had a few fist pumps and high fives. His first ever Pike hit a Ken Capsey Yellow streamer.
The fishing is super right now! I have not been chasing Trout in the last 10 days or so but all the rivers are prime and the stocking trucks have been out. The upcoming weekend should be ideal for any kind of fishing Vermont has to offer. Hit us up to book a trip. Our guides will make sure you have a great day on the water! (BC)
VT River Report: May 19th, 2015

They don’t call this time of year “Prime Time” for nothing.  Every trip we have guided has left our clients with big smiles. Why not, rivers are in great shape right now, temps on the big rivers range from high 50s in the morning to low 60’s in the afternoon, levels are avg. but dropping and gin clear.  This could be a concern with limited precip in the forecast for the remainder of this week, however dropping air temps will keep the water in the comfort zone. We haven’t really experienced any great hatch of anything, but there are sporadic hatches of Hendrickson and caddis that have brought some fish to the surface. Surface activity usually picks up with the emergence of March Browns which begins around the beginning of June.  Meanwhile, nymphs like Dave’s Double D, Red headed prince and olive and white woolly buggers have been drawing most of the attention.

S&B Guides for 2015

S&B Guides for 2015

Last weekend we held our annual “Guide BBQ”. This is a great event for us, as most of us get together to have a hamburger or hotdog wash it down with a cold one while reacquainting and going over the business plan.
We are welcoming 3 new guides to the stable, Dave Durovich, Ty Mercier and Andy Masenas.  These guys really know there stuff , but they will be working along side our experienced guides for there first couple of outings to see what it takes to to have a fantastic day with clients.
VT River Report: May 11th,  2015
This is a prime time to search for jumbo Smallmouth Bass and drop back Steelhead in Lake Champlain tribs. Over the weekend our guides found both with some of the biggest Steelhead of the Spring and Smallies up to 6 pounds taken on topwater flies and streamers! Sutton caught 3 Metalheads on White streamers he tied up for big Browns last Fall. One he said was Pulaski sized… over 26″ with a brilliant Red side! Meanwhile I was chasing Smallmouth Bass with some new streamers tied by Kevin Ramirez. He calls them the Drunk Dad and you can but them through rusuperfly.com I got broken off by a bruiser that was over 20 inches long. Tied on another Drunk Dad and bam landed a football 19″ Smallmouth. Then I decided to switch it up and look for a Pike on the Lower Otter. Ended up hooking into a few Gar and landed one!Book a trip through streamandbrook.com to get in on the action. DCIM108GOPRODCIM108GOPRO
VT River Report: May 1st  2015
The Otter Creek tribs are in great shape! Mid day river temps are in the mid 40’s with great clarity. Hot flies have been Wolly Buggers, Sculpins, Muddy Buddys for streamers. For nymphs try Copper John’s, PT’s, Golden Stones, Black Stones and also try the San Juan Worm.
Lake Champlain tribs on both sides of the Lake are hot right now! The Steelhead run has been fantastic. White Wolly Buggers, San Juan Worm and Black Stones have been putting 17″ to 25″ fish in the net. The Smallmouth run is going to heat up any day now. Our guide MT caught a nice one yesterday while nymphing for Steelhead.
The Otter is still raging but the clarity is ok. The Pike bite is going to pick up soon. I moved one the other day. It followed my streamer for a while then just vanished. It was great just seeing the long slender shape of a Pike comeup to the fly and inspect it!
On Wednesday after work I put in the kayak at the Lemon Fair a flow that enters the Otter Creek. I was fishing above the dam in Shoreheam so it’s more like fishing a slow moving Bass pond. I did catch a nice Largemouth Bass and a small Pike. Had plenty off fish come unbuttoned. This bodes well for fishing any of the local Bass ponds as the fish seemed very active. Both fish hit a Kevin Ramirez Pike streamer. Kevin just joined forces with the Vermont Fly Guys!
May get some rain today but not enough to change river levels. Could even see 70 and sunny this weekend!
Good luck if you hit the rivers, ponds or lakes this weekend! Also Saturday is Greeh Up Day in VT. Please bring bags with you and do a little river clean up as you fish! This is something that colud earn you some good fish karma and we encourage cleaning up spots year around.
VT River Report: April 23rd, 2015
Spring in Vermont means rain, rain, rain.  But after such a harsh winter, anything is better than snow.  As the ice melts and the rain falls we watch tributaries swell, and dream of all the life stirring below the swift moving surface. This time of year fish are on the move.  These are all sure signs it’s time to dust off those those rods and get on the river.  Reports have been slow,  but increasing with each day as rainbows and suckers are beginning to stage up for spawn.  White streamers and black stone flies size 14 have been the ticket in this high and dirty water.  San Juan worm, black phesteant tails,  blood leaches and sucker spawn have also proven successful on the river this season. Things to look forward to in our tributaries: pre spawn bass!!! Get out there, be safe and have fun.


River Report: April 16th, 2015
Rain plus snow melt had the rivers exploding on Monday! The Otter is yet to settle down and is at 2,550 cfs right now! The clarity is pretty bad so today I hit one of it’s tribs with big White streamers. The OC tribs are pretty much perfect right now. Great level and clarity but still cold with mid day temps around 35. As I said I was tossing streamers but make sure your fly box has plenty of nymphs. Basic ones like the Hares Ear, Black Stone, Golden Stone, Prince and PT’s will do just fine. This time of year lots of folks are putting nice fish in the net using the old San Juan Worm as well. Pink, Red are standard and some folks tie them in two different colors.
So I get out of work and race to the river. Decide not to gear up to much and fish from the bank (still in jeans and sneakers) I have on a White Muddy Buddy and dropped off a small Rusty Bugger. After swinging the combo into a deep corner pool and stripping it out I head down river 30 feet and hit the same area from a different angle. Bam my second drift and I get freight trained. Before long I have a healthy, wild 21 inch Brown in the net! A few folks were walking by so they snapped a pic on my I Phone and I got a great release.  I hit this same spot twice during the two day Otter Creek Classic and during that weekend fished about 15 hours and got skunked. Today 15 minutes of fishing after work and I found a big Brown. Guess it’s called fishing and not catching for a reason!
Tomorrows forecast is calling for rain and that will drive the tribs up a bit but the weekend looks sunny. I was in the Salisbury area looking for Pike on the Otter on Monday and lots of fields are flooded along the river. The river will remain high till those all drain. I would expect the Otter to stay above 1,500 for at least the next two weeks. Once the clarity improves a bit I hope to be landing my first 2015 Pike!
Tight Lines (BC)
River Report: April 14th, 2015
The 2015 Vt trout season is open! With day time river temps still in the mid 30’s it will be awhile before the fish are looking up. Continue swinging streamers in the deeper pools and nymphing to put a few in the net. Hot flies this weekend were the San Juan Worm, Black Stones, Copper Johns and various streamers.
On Saturday morning the Otter Creek tribs were very high and off color but by 3 in the afternoon they had dropped and cleared up quite a bit. They looked awesome on Sunday. Myself along with 4 other Stream and Brook guides were fishing in the 7th annual Otter Creek Classic. The tournament is hosted by our friends at the Middlebury Mountaineer and raise money for the New Haven River Anglers. The tourney had 89 folks in it and 8 or 9 folks caught fish. Most were of great size from 17 to 20 inches! Ill share the breakdown of the winners in a tourney recap soon but Stream and Brook guide Sutton Doria took second place in the pro division with a chunky 20 inch Brown (see picture) caught on a White streamer he tied. Another S&B Guide John Synnott took 4th.
Tight lines! (BC)
River Report: April 7th, 2015
River levels have been dropping since last Friday, thanks to air temps dropping to a few degree above and below freezing night and day.  Air temps last Friday got to the upper 60’s in most locations, which really got everyone talking spring, however we were all rudely slapped back to reality when we woke up to snow and wind chills in the teens Saturday morn.  Luckily the winter warlock, will be releasing us from his grib later this week, just in time for opening day and the Otter Creek Classic.
Look for water levels to be on the rise and off color over the next several days. Even though the air temps might feel warm the water temps will be fidget, so fish will still be in their wintering spots, and generally feeding opportunistically on large easy morels. Targeting slower sections of the river and slowly dead drifting large nymphs and streamer  through them will be the most productive strategy.  You can really expect fish this way until the 1st aquatic insects start to get active. Good luck to everyone getting out this weekend.
Brian Zinger
River Report: April 3rd, 2015,
Stream and brook LC STEELEHAD March 2015
It’s almost here just over a week from the 2015 trout season! We have been getting out on the Otter and other smaller Lake Champlain tributaries all Winter so its going to be nice to have lots more water to fish. With day time temps in the mid 50’s and rain in the forecast the rivers will be rising all weekend. Be careful if you get out on the rivers. Fish have been keying in on Black Stones and other natural nymphs. Swinging White streamers produced some nice fish in the last week or so.
As I mentioned the opening of trout season is almost here and if your in the Middlebury area we have the Fly Fishing Film Tour on Friday night. The two day opening day Otter Creek Classic, a fly fishing tournament in it’s 7th year. For more info on those events stop by the Middlebury Mountaineer. On Saturday night at the Marquis Theater is an Iron Fly put on by the Pig Farm Ink crew!

River Report: March 31st, 2015,

Ice out brown trout

Ice out brown trout

March didn’t really come in like a Lion, we received no storms and had below avg precipitation all month. It’s been cold throughout, even by Vermont standards.   March is going out like a lamb, or is it.  No storms and very little precip., many days of sun, but temps well below avg and a bunch of wind. Today, the last day of March at 3pm in Northern Vermont there isn’t a cloud in the sky 36 degrees with a light NW breeze. That breeze will be ushering in lows tonight in the low teens.  I guess that’s lamb like.
The sun is so warm this time of year,  that even on cold days the sun will melt snow and ice particularly on moving water.  We have been getting plenty of sun and it has been opening faster sections of the rivers.  Many of the Lake Champlain tribs are opening up in there lower sections and our facebook page is lighting up with pictures from our guides already out scouting and hooking up.  The picture above is one of several  ice out trout that John Synott was able to find  last weekend.
Brian Zinger
VT River Report March 26th 2015,
The ice is breaking up and the rivers are rising. It rained this afternoon and may rain till day break. Air temps pushing in the high 40’s and low 50’s over the next few days will also melt lots of snow in the hills.
This combo may make the Otter and other Lake Champlain tribs unfishable this weekend but we need these events to make the river fishable in early April. As of Tuesday all slow stretches were still iced over. Hopefully in the next 10 days or so the changes are all positive. You may just catch the river at a great level and find some very hungry fish.
If you do get out in the next few days be careful and if it’s up and off color try big White Streamers. A few days ago I was swinging streamers in the Otter and thought I had hooked into a decent Brown Trout. As I got a glimpse it was a small Pike of about 18 inches maybe 20 anyway it shook its head and swam away with a mini White Wolly Bugger still hanging in it’s mouth. It popped the 7 pound flouro like nothing. So it’s time to start thinking of chasing Pike again! If you are fishing for Pike use some kind of bite tippet.
River report; March 24th, 2015
1st day of spring 2015

1st day of spring 2015

Patience… It’s what we need when we’re waiting for the fish to bite, and in Vermont it’s what you need when your waiting for Spring to come.  Since the 1st day of spring, we have only had highs in the 20’s and the last 2 nights were in the single digits.  It’s hard to believe that in 2012 these last 5 days were in the upper 70’s and low 80’s.hen
 While it’s been very cold, we have been getting a bunch of sun which is making the maple sap run and opening up some stretches of river.   Brian Cadoret was able to get Brian Runnals, the founder of Postfly Box, out on some open water this past weekend.  Not much biting , but both men enjoyed a brisk bluebird day.
April 11th is the official opener of trout season. This date seems to only be signification if you are a bait fishermen, someone who harvests trout for consumption, or you are entered in the 7th annual Ottercreek Classic.  I know there is more to than that, but with the amount of catch and release water open year round, as long it’s ice free you can fish for trout.
We have some warmer weather moving in over the next few days, with rain and snow mix on Friday and temps in the 40’s. Keep your fingers crossed especially if you are hitting the April 1st opener in NY.
Updated by Brian Zinger
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River report; March 15th 2015
    Vernal equinox approaching.  The calender date for the vernal equinox is March 20th, 2015.   It is classified as the time of growth and expansion… In Chinese lore, known as the “Green Dragon”.  Many farmer and horticulturalist return to this most delicate part of growth in  all the four seasons.  Without a strong foundation to develop upon, nothing can exist.  All life is awakening, and will graduate slowly into grandeur, as is evident on this stretch of the Dog River, in Northfield,VT.
     We are in the midst of a warm streak in the state of Vermont.  Temperatures are expected to remain in the 40 degree F range for the next week, at least.  I think this will allow a great thaw during the day.  I greatly look forward to the level rising and the fish moving around.   The Dog, has been designated Catch and Release, often produces Trophy trout throughout the season.  I am certain those critters are on the move and have already decided to be proactive.  Have we indeed missed some of the best fish, beneath the seams?
  Tighten up
RJDog River headed northeastdogriver2NFf
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The frozen river report; Feb. 15th 2015


The report is real simple, rivers are  mostly frozen over, and wind chills are expected to reach -40 in some locations over the next couple days. With that being said I recently held a meeting with some of our guides(indoors) . The topic was flies, focusing on  which flies should be tied to make absolutely sure that we have, in our box, what we need to give our clients the best opportunity to get action.  We discussed flies for all the species that we fish. Many thoughts were shared, including specifics on materials, color, sizes, and the right way to fish them.  It was a great discussion. We all walked away learning something from each other.

The flies listed below are what we believe are the best patterns for everyday trout fishing during the season. Included in our box will be hatch specific pattern, which are rotated in as they become important to the fish.  Terrestrials, such as ants and hoppers, will be present much of the season.


  • Gold and Black Stoneflies (8 and 12)
  • Red Headed Princes ( 10, 12,14)
  • Hare’s Ears (10,12,14)
  • Pheasant Tails (14-20)
  • Zug Bugs (10 and 12)
  • San Juan worms (14)


  • 88 (10 and 12)
  • Lamoille River Muskrat (14 and 16)
  • Soft Hackle Pheasant Tail (14 – 18)


  • Parachute Adams ( 12 -18)
  • Ausable Wulff (12-14)
  • X-caddis (12 -14)
  • Stimulators (8 -12)


  • Woolly Buggers- White/White, Olive/Black, Rainbow/Dunn
  • Muddler Minnow (6 – 12)

Best stoke up the stove and get busy!


River Report 2/06/2015
Valentine’s Day is next weekend already. If you want a big reaction from your special fishermen, then let me suggest a Stream and Brook gift certificate.  Don’t delay!  We have gift certificates:
  •  full/half day trips
  • fly fishing school
  • casting lessons
  • assortments of Stream and Brook “guide flies”.
  • Special Valentine”s Day discount for couples. Just mention Valentine’s Day when inquiring.

You can’t give your favorite fly fisher a better gift!  Give us a call and make your gift the one they’ll remember. 802-989-0398

Happy Valentine’s Day from all of us at Stream and Brook Fly Fishing Guide Service.
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With Daylight Savings on Monday, the days a getting noticeably longer, especially to those of us who are usually on the water or approaching the water at this time.  After the temperature has been in the negative for so long, it is amazing how 10 F  feels like 40F  !  However, the rivers are barely giving us any opportunity to fish them.  Many of the times, the best part of Winter is sitting back, tying flies, making beer and drinking beer ( or Root Beer).  We often need to figure on testing those flies at some point as well.  Either in the fish tank, bathtub, or on the river where you can get the assistance of the currents.  After a quick snowshoe to the river, I returned to the vice since the river was nowhere to be found.!    Man was it a great feeling just to get out in that fresh air though.   It won’t be long now.  Set those clocks forward one hours, or two months on Sunday and get buttoned for some fishing!
Updated by Rob Jordan
River Report 1/30/2015 : Otter Creek
Best Techniques:
Being late January this may be the toughest time of the year to fly fish in Vermont! Most of the Otter is frozen over. To keep fishing you must focus on the fast water under any of the waterfalls and or dams. This water will remain open because of the current. Trout still eat this time of year and common nymphs and streamers will do just fine. For nymphs try Black Stones, Prince Nymphs, Red Copper Johns and PT’s. Your streamer box should have a few White Wolly Buggers, Olive Sculpins, Mickey Finns and mini Muddler Minnows. Egg patterns and the San Juan Worm are a good choice for Winter Trout as well. Consider rigging a nymph rod and one for streamers. It’s easier to switch rods with cold hands then tying up a new setup!  Nymph all the likely water first then warm up in the car for a bit then swing some streamers!
Tips of the week:
Remember to get your 2015 VT fishing license! The VT trout season closed! The Otter has now moved to a catch and release only season from November 1st back though the start of trout season this April. Consider debarbing all of your flies as it will be easier to release the fish. Play them quickly and wet your hands before touching them. Keep the fish in the net & in the water as much as possible. If your going to get a “Grip and Grin” photo have the camera on and in the correct mode before you take the trout out of the water.
7 Day outlook:
The morning have been single digits or even below zero since Sunday! The best time of the day to fish in January and warmest is around noon till 3pm. The Otter is very fishable (700 cfs) and should continue to drop as the slow stretches totally freeze over. Saturday may hit in the mid 30’s and be sunny so good luck if you get out. Be safe and stay warm!
Christmas 2014 Otter Creek River Report:
Best Technique:
The Otter is high (2,300) and a bit off color. Recent rain and snowmelt will keep the Otter at an above average flow. If your looking for Trout try nymphing with combos of bright colored nymphs and natural ones. For high water success try a weighted Golden Stone and drop off a Pink San Juan. White Wolly Buggers are a key fly in high water as well!
 On Christmas Eve our guides were out on the Otter taking a break from last minute shopping. Sutton was catching Browns on PT Nymphs with a Rainbow bead head in the Middlebury area. I was in the Brandon area looking for Pike. I had one crush a Perch Deceiver tied by another Stream & Brook guide (Kevin Ramirez) called the “PNasty’s D”
Just got a text from Mike T. He just got broken off by a huge Christmas day Pike. It bit right through his steel leader! So even though it’s almost January the Pike are still putting on the feedbag.
Tip of the week:
The VT trout season closed! The Otter has now moved to a catch and release only season from November 1st back though the start of trout season next April. Consider debarbing all of your flies as it will be easier to release the fish. Play them quickly and wet your hands before touching them. Keep the fish in the net & in the water as much as possible. If your going to get a “Grip and Grin” photo have the camera on and in the correct mode before you take the trout out of the water.
7 day outlook:
The Creek is very high for late December 2,300 cfs and may be even going up with rain predicted overnight. This weekend it should drop back into the 20’s/30’s. It’s over 50 degrees in Middlebury right now. Bring a shovel to hit the Creek as they do not plow the pull off/ parking areas. Some of the long slow stretches were starting to freeze will now be open again.
December 24th 2014  Happy Holidays
With the Solstice behind us, the days are beginning to get longer, ever so slightly.  We got a fair share of snow, but the next few days are showing rain.  The air temps are in the high 40’s F, that might just be enough to get some other things moving around.  As we move around outside with the “warm” temperatures, we see evidence of other creatures moving around as well.  We’ve been seeing hare tracks, bear tracks, fox, and a few others out there.  The fish are probably doing a little dance as well.  If nothing else, get out there and test out those flies you’ve been working on.
Keep Em Tight
River Report: Dec. 15th
The Holiday giving  season is right around the corner! Don’t delay!  We have gift certificates:
  •  full/half day trips
  • fly fishing school
  • casting lessons
  • assortments of Stream and Brook guide flies. 

You can’t give your favorite fly fisher a better gift!  Give us a call and make your gift the one they’ll remember. 802-989-0398

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from all of us at Stream and Brook Fly Fishing Guide Service.
An army of BH Red Headed Prince's

An army of BH Red Headed Prince’s

Fresh off the vise

Fresh off the vise

Last week, we received anywhere from 16 to 24 inches of snow state wide.  It was heavy wet snow,  great for  putting a sold base down at the ski resorts, but bad for power outages.  Air temps have been either side of 30 degrees day and night, so the trees are still full of snow making it a true winter wonderland.  River conditions are good shape. Most sections should still be ice free with average levels and good clarity.  If you do venture to the river, please be careful as you approach the rivers edge. The banks will have over a foot of snow, so they will be steep and slippery.  Large nymphs and streamers dead drifted  or with a slow retrieve will be your best bet until spring or until we get a warm spell.
Santa came a little early to Stream and Brook this year.  Pictured below is some of the gear we had on our wish list. To accommodate our clients better for the spring small mouth run out of lake Champlain.  We received 3 new Greys 9 ft.  6wt. rods.  They are “Tip Flex” rods for casting large streamers and nymphs and they have the backbone to handle tackle busting bass in the 3 to 5lb class all day.  Should also be excellent for going lite tackle for pike as well.  We also received 10 new pair of Orvis Sonic convertible waders with Clearwater II wading boots to match.  We had a great season in 2014, with many new clients and old friends taking to the water with us.  Everyone was comfortable and dry and the Eco Trax sole on the wading boots seam to have better gripping ability than most rubber soled boots.
Greys GS2 9'ft 6wt

Greys GS2 9’ft 6wt

2015 gear


Updated by : Brian Zinger
River Report: Otter Creek Update December 9th 2014
Kevin Ramirez PIKESLAYER OG Dec 4th
Best Techniques:
The Otter is at 739cfs. If your patient you can still get your Pike fix in! I caught one on 12/4 and have seen well over a dozen BIG Pike in 3 or 4 outings this December. This time of the year fish very heavy flies and retrieve them slow. Use sinking line to help get them down. You want them to scrape the bottom and pull them up toward the surface and then let them sink back to the bottom. Almost jigging them. The key is to keep the fly moving and use flies that have lots of movement. Use the same colors as the Summertime. Like Perch, Chartruse Yellow, Red/White, Black/Yellow & Olive/Orange. I still use big tandem flies and then if I’m getting follows but they wont eat I go smaller. Some folks I know even fish flies as small as 4″ this time of year for toothy critters. You can use a small boat, canoe or kayak to cover lots of water or fish form the shore. The advantage form fishing from the shore is you can hit a few spots and warm up in the car in between spots. This time of the year the Pike are super thick and much heavier that the Summer as they fatten up for the Winter.. You just may get the biggest Pike of the season. Had one follow the other day that was well over 40″. It was crazy big and it stayed an inch behind my fly for 10 feet. When my fly was half out of the water it was still watching it.  Bring a big net, steel leaders and long nosed pliers.
Tip of the week:
The VT trout season closed! The Otter has now moved to a catch and release only season from November 1st back though the start of trout season next April. Consider debarbing all of your flies as it will be easier to release the fish. Play them quickly and wet your hands before touching them. Keep the fish in the net & in the water as much as possible. If your going to get a “Grip and Grin” photo have the camera on and in the correct mode before you take the trout out of the water.
7 day outlook:
The Creek has been dropping but is still high for December. It’s at 739 cfs and has a great clarity. We are expecting maybe 7-12″ of wet snow Tuesday/Wednesday. So bring a shovel to hit the Creek…. they don’t plow out many of the pull offs! If it warms up right after the snow storm it will melt quickly and raise the level and may affect the clarity. This could also turn on the Trout. If all this takes place I would get out the streamer box and look for a big wild Brown. Nothing like stripping big flies in a snow storm!
River Report: Otter Creek Update December 2nd 2014
Best Techniques –
The Otter is at 794cfs. This is a great time to get after the big trout that call Otter Creek their home. I prefer the “take” of a swung streamer but nymphing is the best bet this time of year. Try different flies till you get the “hot” one. Most likely a Golden Stone, Copper John, Prince Nymph or PT Nymph will get the job done. For streamers try White Wolly Buggers, the Muddy Buddy or the classic Muddler Minnow. Fish flies deep and slow….
Tip of the week –
The VT trout season closed! The Otter has now moved to a catch and release only season from November 1st back though the start of trout season next April. Consider debarbing all of your flies as it will be easier to release the fish. Play them quickly and wet your hands before touching them. Keep the fish in the net & in the water as much as possible. If your going to get a “Grip and Grin” photo have the camera on and in the correct mode before you take the trout out of the water.
7 Day Outlook –
Now that it’s December the long stretches of flat water will start to freeze. This means you have to stick to the water below the many waterfalls. Any areas where there is ample current it won’t freeze and many spots are open all Winter. The rest of the week will looks to be in the mid 30’s during the day time with possibly 40 on Wednesday.
River Report Nov. 20th
BC steel
Business has slowed down a bit, which has allowed all of us at Stream and Brook to get to do our own thing for IMG_5760awhile.  Many of our guides are making their annual migration to fish the tributaries of Lake Ontario.  The pics I have received, show that the fishing has been excellent. Brian Cadoret is pictured above with a huge metalhead he caught during his trip.  To view other photos and video of the trip check us out on facebook.  I on the other hand have been putting my time in filling my freezer with fresh venison.
I haven’t heard from anyone getting out own the local waters, but I’m sure once Thanksgiving and the hunting season are behind us, the boys will be getting back to taking there shots at the expanded fishing waters granted to die hard anglers last year.
Even though the regular season has closed,  we are still ready to guide any one who always has the passion to stretch their line.  There is plenty of year round open water for catch and release, artificial lure fishing.  Fly fishing in the winter has some obstacles.   It takes a hearty individual who is willing to endure the elements and  overcome these obstacles.  Any guided trip is subject to cancellation/postponement due to river conditions and safety concerns.  So if you are one of those individuals that never loses the passion to throw some line, or you are a hearty sole who wants to extend there fishing to year round. Let us show you how.
While you’re gathering with friends and family this Holiday season, and reminiscing about the 2014 fishing season.  Remember that Steam and Brook has gift certificates for guided trips, casting lessons, fly fishing school, flies the guides use (for all species) for the 2015 season.  During the holidays and all winter long, be sure to keep an eye on our web page and Facebook for giveaways and specials.  I’ll be twisting up a ton of those “guide flies” this winter so keep an eye to Castawayflies.com to see what I’ve got in the vise from week to week, and get in on the some of the specials I’ll have going on .
Updated by Brian Zinger
VT River Report : OC Update 11/12
Best Techniques:
The Otter has dropped (482 cfs) and this has the big Pike on the feedbag. I am not kidding the Pike are twice as heavy now as in August. Even a 32″ Pike is so thick your hand has a hard time stretching across it’s head.  The clarity is great so the key is to get your flies down and in their face. I have been using sinking line on a 8wt or 10wt with a 5′ 35 pound leader with a 9″ steel leader tied onto that. When fishing big streamers in November slow them down and let it hang for several seconds before recasting. This can be key as a lunker could be following 5 feet back. Giving it a another look can and will trigger them to strike. Nothing like getting splashed when a pike decides to punish your fly! On Saturday I caught (& released) a 41.5″ Pike from the Otter Creek. It was a crazy battle from a kayak and on a day when folks were skiing in the mountains! On November 1st I had a client catch his first two Pike ever on a fly. Both were landed wading the Creek and well over 30″…. and thick. So just because it’s cold it doesn’t mean you couldn’t catch the fish of a lifetime.
Tips of the week:
The VT trout season closed! The Otter has now moved to a catch and release only season from November 1st back though the start of trout season next April. Consider debarbing all of your flies as it will be easier to release the fish. Play them quickly and wet your hands before touching them. Keep the fish in the net & in the water as much as possible. If your going to get a “Grip and Grin” photo have the camera on and in the correct mode before you take the trout out of the water.
7 day outlook:
The Creek is at a great level for wading (428 cfs) and the trout are still willing to chase streamers! Try a Rusty Bugger, Black Leech pattern or my favorite the Muddy Buddy in White. Add a few split shots if you have to and let them swing across the current. Hang on when you hook up as this time of year we sometimes see the biggest trout of the year. Look for some very cold weather coming up. Dress accordingly and have fun!
……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….20141030_173618Screenshot_2014-11-01-19-29-14-11026141512b-1River Report: November 2nd 2014. Lake Champlain LL Salmon

As fall approaches and the leaves begin to turn in beautiful Vermont, some of us fly fishers turn our attention to Lake Champlains Landlock Salmon.


Starting in late summer LLS will find suitable spots in the lake, but more often will migrate into Champlains tributaries to begin their fall spawn.  This provides anglers the opportunity to present flies to (IMO) one of our most amazing species, Salmo Salar.  We have a great number of local spots where LLS can be found in numbers. Certain spots hold fish that are very eager to play ball, while others will leave us scratching our heads and changing flies like machines.  When we do connect with these amazing Salmon, we are treated to acrobatic jumps, strong head shakes, and line singing sweetly out of our reels. And we love every second of it!!


My recent attempts at finding LLS to volunteer have been successful, and also challenging. It took me a while to get anything happening at one of my favorite locations. However, once it turned on, my excitement turned to gratitude as I was fortunate enough to go 3 for 4 in about 20 minutes. I had fished really hard for about 60 minutes before I saw one large fish surface in front of me. I threw a white Wooly Bugger (tied by Stream and Brook guide Kevin Ramirez) immediately into the ripples and was hooked up on the first strip. I was fortunate enough to land a nice big male LLS equipped with an amazing kype. I would land another couple fish who came clean out of the water several times that day.


Productive flies have been, White Wooly Buggers, Gray Ghosts, Black Stoneflies, Hares Ear nymphs, egg patterns (chartreuse esp.), and various small deer hair deceivers. Sometimes even your dogs hair will suffice!


Early afternoon has proven to be most productive for me personally, but fellow anglers have been successful in the morning as well.


I have been consistent in fishing an 8 wt fly rod for the past few years, equipped with a floating line. I have found that this year, using a sink tip leader has also been very beneficial. Sometimes we want to use a lighter rod for that extra fight and maybe some bragging rights, correct? I use my 8 wt in light of the size of some of the fish I have encountered. Most of which would have been a nightmare and a complete loss using something like a 5 wt. Lake Champlains Salmon restoration efforts seem to be in good standings.


Things are still very much happening currently with LLS. I have handled these fish in late November in past years, and even into December. We are also hunting in the same systems as some large Steelhead and Brown Trout as well! You never know what you’re gonna get!! Tight lines, good luck and have fun out there to all.  ~MT

River Report October 31st: Otter Creek

Best Technique:

For late October the Otter is pretty high (823 cfs) and this has the big trout on the feedbag. The clarity is great so the key is to get your flies down and in their face. I have been using a 8wt with a 7.5′ 15 pound leader and swinging huge streamers to catch big Browns. When fishing big streamers in turbulent water trout are not line shy. There is nothing worse than hooking a big trout and having it brake you off because you are fishing light tippet. You also lose less flies on snags fishing a stronger line. I have hooked huge trout fishing a 4wt and have had a tough time evening moving the fish. The quicker you can land the fish it has a less of a chance of getting off and its mush easier to get a good strong release. Using a 8wt with a few split shots and a 5 inch streamer is not for everyone and you may go a few days without catching anything but that is how you could also catch the trout of the year or your lifetime!
Tip Of The Week:
The VT trout season closes on Halloween! The Otter then moves to a catch and release only season from November 1st back though the start of trout season next April. Consider debarbing all of your flies as it will be easier to release the fish. Play them quickly and wet your hands before touching them. Keep the fish in the net & in the water as much as possible. If your going to get a “Grip and Grin” photo have the camera on and in the correct mode before you take the trout out of the water.
7 Day Outlook:
The Creek is high (823 cfs) but is fishing very well with great clarity. I have been doing very well fishing the fast water under waterfalls/ dams for trout. In the slower stretches I have been also doing well with Pike. The big Pike are on the prowl and very fat! They are still be hitting big flies as they are fattening up for the harsh VT Winter. The weather looks like a mixed bag of rain and overcast days right through the weekend. Perfect for searching for trophy fish on the Otter. Good luck!
Today I fished 3 spots very quickly so I could write an accurate report and maybe give a little advise for the weekend. Well I hit the lower New Haven River, Otter Creek in Middlebury and the Middlebury River below route 7 in about an hour. Missed 6 or 7 fish on big streamers and landed a 23″ Brown!
 My advice is if you can get out fishing this weekend do it!
The 2014 VT trout season ends on 10/31!
Recent rain has the rivers looking prime, especially for throwing streamers for Trout. 5 streamers you should have in your box right now are the Muddy Buddy, Bugs Bunny, Muddler Minnow, Circus Peanut & the Zoo Cougar. From bright colors like White, Orange or Yellow to natural colors in Brown, Black or Olive. Fish them hard.
 My guess is as the rivers drop a bit over night the folks who nymph will do very well all weekend. Recent hot nymphs have been the Prince Nymph, Green Copper John, Black Stone, Zug Bug & the Lime Green Caddis.
Now the Lake Champlain tribs (Clyde River in the NEK as well) are heating up and our guides, friends and clients have been catching Steelhead, LL Salmon, Browns and even Lake Trout! This will be good till December and beyond.
Don’t forget my favorite toothy critter the Northern Pike. They are fatting up for a long Winter and still looking for big streamers stripped by them. Perch Patterns, Pink/White, Orange White and all Yellow are producing some violent strikes.
Book a trip to learn some great late Fall/ Winter spots by emailing brian.zinger@gmail.com. or call 802/989/0398.
Good luck on the rivers! (BC)

October 23rd report:

clyde cipclyde laker

With the recent rains, stream and brook levels have come up to average levels,  which we haven’t seen in awhile. The increased flow has put spawning fish on the move and filling up area tribs.  Kenny has been guiding clients  in the NE Kingdom with great success.  He has been putting them on LL Salmon, Browns, steelhead and even Lake Trout.   The season closes Oct 31st in the Kingdom, so If you would like to tangle with some large fish give us a call.

I got out on the Lamoille yesterday to try to beat the rain from our present weather maker. I found the river in good shape. Higher than I’ve seen in some time; just off color and 48 degrees.  I fished deeper, stable, wintering type sections looking for a big ugly brown.  I fished multiple fly rigs. Mostly large streamers and nymphs. I wound up catching 3 small wild browns, all on a grey 3 River streamer on the up stream side of large boulders.

The weather people have been suggesting that we are going to get a bunch of rain from what they are calling a Nor Easter. We haven’t received any yet, but an inch and a half of rain is predicted through tomorrow afternoon.  We’ll see how it plays out on our river conditions over the next few days.


October 17th report,

Rocktober C&R

Rocktober C&R

As we wind down to the close of the regular trout season on Oct 31st, we are still having good fun on areaoct 18th client rivers.  We have had record breaking warmth.  Air temps of 80 degrees which is 30+ above avg.  We’ve had some decent rain and some decent hatches of BWO’s that are bringing fish to the surface.  All of our clients this past week have enjoyed Vermont at peak fall foliage and some great fishing. This weekend will see air temps get more seasonal and the rest of the week will follow suit with highs in the 50’s and lows in the low 40’s.  A coastal storm starting Wednesday could spell some significant rain thru Friday.

We have been getting a few inquiries about fishing during the off season.  We have guides that don’t hunt, so they still fish all year around. As long as it is safe. We have plenty of water open to fishing year round. November is a great month to chase LL Salmon and Steelhead. We are not saying the fishing is as good as say September or June, but sometimes it can be. Fishing in the dead of winter takes a hearty sole.  The fishes metabolism is at it’s lowest and therefore the bite is at it’s lowest.  There is something about a powder day and slapping on the old boards; making a few runs on the mountain in the morning; then making a few casts with the hopes of bending your rod a few times as the day warms up.

oct 18 bow

Updated by Brian Zinger


October 10th “Streamer Report”

  It’s been great to dust off the streamer box and throw some meat since the recent rain. On Saturday much of Vt got 1-2 inches and more since then. I hit 2 different Otter Creek tribs on Tuesday and found some nice fish. Black sparse flies like a Deceiver or Leech Pattern seemed to draw the most interest. The big Brown hit a Muddler Minnow. As always when stripping big streamers through high water I missed and moved a bunch of large Browns…..and Fallfish. Ended the day looking for a Pike in the Jackson Kayak “Big Rig” South of Middlebury. Found one that was hungry and it crushed a tandem fly tied by Pat Cohen! (BC)

DCIM106GOPROOCT 7th 2OCT 7th 3


October 8th report,IMG_0182

We’ve been guiding from the Ottauquechee River to the Lamoille,  and reports have been really good.  Most of the big rivers are in the upper 50’s.  We’ve been receiving rain fall recently.  Since last Friday I have received 1.4 inches here in Westford. In some areas, where the rain came a bit heavier, water levels did come up and got cloudy, but the rivers have been so low that there has been little effect over all.  More rain today will help get the fall spawning fish moving.  After today, we have some dryer and sunnier weather for the next few days,  with more seasonal air temps  setting us up for a great weekend.

This weekend, most of the state of Vermont will be at peak foliage and we are booked with people coming from Texas, Idaho and we’ll be having some fun with a small group of reps from Whistle Pig Whiskey.

Fishing should remain good over the 10 days with seasonal air temps and some days of precip in the forecast. We are still seeing several hatches coming off at different times of day and weather conditions.  Yesterday I got out with Lee Bansung and I took him to all my “Honey Holes” on the Winooski.  He says they are his… Any way he won the 3 dollars for first fish, most fish and biggest fish. It was a drizzly raw morning with no hatches, but as the day wore on it got warm and so did the fish catching. Still not much of anything hatching above water, but we found many Isonchya nymphs on many rock.  Princes and Zug bugs were not effect, as we both caught more fish on flies tied more natural.  The Winooski has had the best population of trout that I have seen in a while.  Many fish in the 8 to 12 inch class and more recently it has been giving up some 16 to 20 inch fish.IMG_0186

Updated by Brian Zinger


October 2014The leaves are changing and the fish are all getting dressed up.  As they say, ”  as above, so below.” The temperatures have been in the forties in the evenings making the water temps in the mid to high fifties during the day.  The bugs are getting noticeable smaller and there are fewer anglers present on the water.  It seems that the hottest time of the day has been presenting great hatches, but fish have still been much more receptive to taking flies when the light is substantially lower.
There was frost covering the windshields the other morning when we hit the river.  I could see my breath and the dog piles harden as the car was warming. Steam clouds were rolling from the rooftops to release the chill from the previous evening.
I suspect most to be off to work or scouting their turkey, deer and what have you.  I have to admit that getting out early is an invigorating way to begin a day.  Having relocated and not been on the water too frequently, I have fished the Winooski River.  This system offers great fishing within a 10 mile drive from my front door. I am excited by the views of the range in the Stowe area, as I come over the hill into the Duxbury-Waterbury area.
There, my day started fishing streamline nymphs in a tandem fashion, separated by a single soft weight.  I fished pockets and riffles to pick up rainbows and browns that had not been disturbed by any anglers thus far.  I definitely noticed a spark of activity the moment the sun glazed the water surface.



























































































































September 29th Report:

We have had an amazing string of weather this past week capped off by a cloud free, 80+ degree weekend.  The fun doesn’t stop there. We have sunny above avg. temperature until next weekend.  While this weather feels good for late September, all water systems could use a bunch of precipitation.
The low water levels haven’t effected the resident trouts feeding and fishing for them has been good. Water temps on the large rivers have ranged from the high 50’s to low 60’s. Hatches of Isonychia, BWO and tan, green and Autumn caddis are still on the menu. Fly’s matching any phase of these hatches are still effective if you focus on not letting the fish be aware of your presence.
Low water this time of year usually spells trouble for fall spawning fish. That didn’t seem to be the case on a LL salmon river I fished up north on Friday. I meet up with Kenny Lambert, who grew up in NE Vermont. We have be corresponding with Kenny about his desire to guide for us in the NE section of VT, so I decided to go see what service he could provide for our clients.

After some business conversation, and a few hours of fishing, Kenny appeared to have what we look for in our guides.  He was fun and professional, very knowledgeable, skilled as an instructor, and has plenty of availability from now until Oct 31st.   If landlocked salmon is not your bag, Kenny has plenty of options for all trout species in the NE.  If you would like to have Kenny share his knowledge and techniques  give us a call at 802-989-0398. kenny salmon

Updated by Brian ZInger


September 24th Report:

 The early hard freeze last Thursday; then the strong winds (gusts over 35mph) on Saturday and Sunday with high temperatures topping out in the low 80″ on Sunday  has made trout fishing over the past several days a bit challenging.  During that time frame we only received .25 inches of rain which didn’t help the low level conditions we have been experiencing for some time now. River temps have remained stable during the time period,  generally around 60 on the big rivers.  Unfortunately there is no rain forecast for the next 5 days and we have a string of full on sun and highs making it into the upper 70″s by the weekend.

The warmer weather should get hatches going again during mid day and evening.  Before the crazy weather Iso”s, Bwo’s and Autumn caddis where prevalent and the fish were all over imitations.   The key this week will be, to be able to present your fly to fish without letting the fish know of your presents.  The low water levels have caused the fish to concentrate in the deeper pools and runs.  The low water also allows the fish to be aware of your presents easier, so longer leaders with lite tippet and delicate fly presentation is important.  Keep a low profile; cut down on false casting  and be care not to cast the excess water off your line over the area that your fishing.

I’ll be checking on how the low water has been effecting the salmon run Friday, then teaching the 1st day of our 2 day fly fishing school in Middlebury Saturday.

Updated by :Brian Zinger


September 21st report:

Fall is here! This is a great time to target large Northern Pike looking to pack on the lbs! Here is a photo of a fish from last week on our local hunting grounds. It inhaled a fly I tied inspired by Vermont Fly guys Ken Capsey. The second fish is from late last November on the same stretch of river. It ate an “Indiana James” tied by Brian Price of VFG. Come on out and land your dragon with us! MT



SB Sep trip 1SB Sep trip 2SB Sep trip 3

Fall is here! This is a great time to target large Northern Pike looking to pack on the lbs! Here is a photo of a fish from last week on our local hunting grounds. It inhaled a fly I tied inspired by Vermont Fly guys Ken Capsey. The second fish is from late last November on the same stretch of river. It ate an “Indiana James” tied by Brian Price of VFG. Come on out and land your dragon with us! MT

A few pics from yesterday’s guided trip in the Rutland area. Nick and his dad hail from the Cape. Nick won the amateur division at this summers White River Open and won the trip we donated to the fly fishing only tournament that benefitted the local Trout Unlimited club

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..KR Sep Trip 1KR Sep Trip 2Rain and cold temperatures didn’t stop stream and brook client John Meinen from catching fish this weekend. October caddis was the ticket! 3 landlocked salmon smolts and a nice Buttery brown. It’s trout time! Get your trip booked with stream and brook! -KR


September 14th report,

For those of you who check our river report to gain some insight into how the fishing is going, I’m sorry we have been slacking lately.  I hope it hasn’t deterred you from getting out during the first half of September because it has been great.  Many people think that May is the best month of the year to fish in Vermont. They have some very good reasoning. I think September is the best month.

Generally by 14th you don’t have to worry about taking water temps to see if you can trout fish. The only reason to look at a thermometer is to see how warmly you need to dress.  Trout, like all wild animals, are weather sensitive. So, with the stress of summer water temps behind them, the now cooler water temps, along with a couple of other environmental changes, trigger fish to start feeding vigorously to get ready for the long winter. These environmental changes also trigger fall spawning fish to start making their way out of the lakes and migrate to the river systems, thereby becoming accessible to river anglers.  The wild fish, as well as stocked fish, have had all spring and summer to feed easily, grow larger, and get stronger.  They have fed in all levels of the water column on a smorgasbord of trout favorites. There is no comparison. The fight of a fish caught in September is quite a bit stronger then one caught in May.  Put these things together and add in the last of the large Mayfly hatches, and what I believe to be trouts favorite insect hatch of the year,  the Isonychia and you have the making of some awesome time on the water.  If you have been out, you’ve probably noticed fewer angler.  Many would-be anglers are building duck blinds and putting up tree stands for the upcoming hunting season. Let’s not forget how beautiful the rivers are when the leaves are in full color.   An added bonus.

As for current river conditions, all the above is true.  I have been guiding the Winooski river system over the past couple days; river temps in the upper 50’s to low 60’s; air temps from the upper 30’s in the morning to the mid 50’s in the afternoon.  We have had mostly cloudy conditions; northern parts of the state picked up between a .10 and .20 inches of rain yesterday evening.  We had been having some good hatches of Iso’s when the sun burned through the fog of the morning, warming the water by afternoon. The cloudy conditions have made  for a sparse hatch. Surprisingly, that did not make for a good BWO hatch. However, the the fish are so tuned into the Iso hatch, that anything we threw to imitate the Iso’s got attention.  Dry, emergers, and nymphs are all working.

This coming week should be no different.  Below average air temps will make for very comfortable fishing for the angler.  We do need more rain. Area rivers are very low which has concentrated fish to the more stable deep holes.  We also need the rain to give the fall spawning fish some area in which to maneuver.  Tuesday looks to be our only chance for a small amount of precip.  Fishing will still be good, just need to go stealthily, d swing and strip your iso nymph imitation.

Updated by Brian Zinger


August 26th report,


Otter Creek Update:

Best Techniques:
For Pike cast as close to the bank as you can and strip it back to the boat, kayak or canoe about 6 feet very quickly. Give it a 10 second pause and repeat. This has gotten me some explosive strikes in the past two weeks.  Pike are ambush predators and they tend to follow a lot without striking. Giving them that quick burst from the bank and an extra few seconds to see your fly followed by a another quick burst can make the difference. Make sure you have a steel leader/wire, a net, long pliers and the appropriate gear (8wt-10wt) to deal with toothy critters.
Tip of the week:
You heard it here first the leaves are changing and starting to drop in VT! This means shots at big Brown trout. Fish the lower reaches of the Otter Creek tribs. From now till Halloween (last day of VT trout season) the fish will push up the tribs during high water in search of gravel and appropriate spawning ground. I caught and released a 24.5 inch Brown on Friday in a trib on a streamer in super high water. If you see fish on a “red” enjoy watching them but please don’t bother them!
 7 day outlook:
 Rain rain rain! Over 4 inches in the last week and the rivers got a bit crazy but are near perfect as I type this. The next 4 days look like sunny and near 80 degrees. Maybe a chance of rain next Monday. Till then I would expect the Otter to drop from 552cfs back closer to 350cfs. It did peak out at 1,300 a few days ago! Water temps are really great for late August! Even mid day the Otter has been 66-68 with its tribs in the low 60s dumping in cool water. The clarity is great and the big fish are out and about. Book a trip at streamandbrook.com


Since my last report we have continued to receive unseasonable air temps and occasional showers.  The combination has made the fishing a little confusing.  Generally we are off the big rivers for trout due to high water temps and low levels. That has not been the case this August. However, even with these excellent conditions the fishing has not been all that excellent.  The scattered showers have made clarity an issue from day to day in different locations and fishing the morning and evening, which is usually the routine in mid to late summer, is not when the best fishing has been. It has been more of a spring pattern, where the warming of the water makes mid day the better time to be on the water.

Yesterday was a perfect example of this and tough to swallow as a guide.  I guided Shane Fencer a young aspiring fly fisher fresh off a fly fishing school out west.  He is eager to continue learning the sport and improving his skills as well as catch a few fish.  We fished a section of the Winooski from 7am to noon. It was a foggy overcast morning, the river was stained from the tribs flowing in from the south that received a hefty shower the day before and the water temp was 61 degrees.    Sounds pretty good.  With nothing hatching we fished nymphs and wets and worked on casting and line maintenance.  After about 2 hours the sun started to break out and gave us some hope for a hatch.  Well the hatch never came, and we walked of the river with no fish to show for our efforts.   Shane is a great sport and was very appreciative of the instruction and knowledge he received.

Afterwards, I meet up with one of my guides Rob Jordon.  He was scouting that morning for trip he was doing today.  He also had nothing to show for being out that morning.  We ran into some other anglers that fished the morning and the report was the same.  I had the rest of the day to fish , but was not liking the prospects.  By 3pm I was ready to head home.  However as I drove I came up on a favorite stretch in Jonesville. I decided to make a few more cast.  As I got down to the river I notice much more insect activity. Iso’s, BWO’s and some caddis had begun to come off.  Still no rises to any of this activity.  I decided to throw the very first fly I tied on for Shane, and my favorite fly for stained water and finicky trout.  My first 10 casts at the head of the run produced 4 fall fish.  This brighten my spirits that at least some fish were feeding.  As I inched down into the deeper par of the run I found a bunch of trout, both brown and rainbows eagerly chasing down my fly.  During this activity I never saw a rise to the naturals. After restoring some confidence to myself I pulled out to save the spot for Rob and his clients for today.

Conditions will be a changing again this week as a strong high pressure system looks to settle over us and provide sunshine and temps into the mid to upper 80’s all week.  It will be interesting to see how warm water temps will get to, especially since the mountain tribs are running in the upper 50’s and the mountain air temps will be 10 degrees cooler than the valleys.

Updated by: Brian Zinger


August 8th Report:

The state of Vermont has been receiving it’s share of rain over the past two weeks.  My rain gauge here in Westford has gulped 4 1/2 inches since July 28th.  Except for the all day rain on the 28th, we have been lucky to not get the rain to hard and to fast, so levels went up but the clarity was still good.  Also, much of the rain was in the evening or during the night making for great early morning fishing.  Most of the rain was associated with weak cold fronts which made for very cool nights and days.  What some people don’t realize is that cold fronts product cold rain.  I received .5 inches of rain from a passing cold front Tuesday eve.  It was 73 degrees before it stated to rain, 1 hour later it was 59 and the temp of the rain in my gauge was 56.  This type of weather is great for keeping the rivers under 70 degrees.  Now we have a string of sunny days ahead of us with highs in the mid to upper 80’s.  This will make any water that is still dirty push back up to 70 quickly so make sure your checking the temps if you’re a catch and release fisher.  Hopper patterns have been killer on the surface recently. Hint,  make sure you have some size 16-18 amber colored flying ants.


August 4th Report:


Spent Saturday with Ian and his son Bas. They did a two day learn to fly fish school and Brian Z had them all day Friday. On Friday they learned casting, knots, entomology, flies, gear, reading the water and much more.  I had the fun part and brought them fishing on 3 different rivers in central Vt. Right off we found some rising fish and Bas laid out a long cast and was rewarded with a nice Brown on a Ausable Wulff.  He caught another one just a few minutes later.  The fish are looking up for sure! At the next spot landed a few Fallfish on the same Wullf.  Then we headed up in the hills for Brook Trout.  Many were landed on Brian Zinger’s White Caddis, Ausable Wulffs, Ausable Bombers and mini Hoppers .  Including one really big one that Bas caught on a Bamboo rod his grandfather had given him. Learn to fly fish schools are great because it’s two days and we are not rushed. We go over every aspect of fly fishing at your pace. (BC)


July 30th, report:


As we approach the beginning of August, I must say that July was an outstanding month.  It was a record month for Stream and Brook and every trip was successful in catching fish and clients having fun.  I can attribute that to two things, great water conditions and an excellent stable of guides/instructors.  There were only a hand full of days where the big rivers were of limits due to temperature.  We got rain when we needed it and non was to heavy to mess the clarity up.  As we move into the 1st week of August we expect the same conditions to continue.  I received 1.9 inches of rain at my house on Monday which was needed but really messed big rivers up for now.  Small mountain streams and trib are all back in good shape today and with the big river dropping quickly, they will be fishing well again tomorrow.  Cool temps and small chances of rain should keep things in great shape over the next several days.

During the summer months most hatches take place when most fishermen are off the water. from dusk to dawn.  During the time most angler are on the water is when terrestrial are most active and should be a big part of your strategy for hooking up.  We have getting fish to take huge foam grasshoppers and  Chernobyl ants.  Even the brook trout have been crushing #10 Ausable Wulffs and Simulators. These are great flies to use in a “dry dropper” situation as they can support bead head droppers.



Stream & Brook Clients 2014 2..Hello fly fishing friends! Took a trip yesterday with Kathy from Seattle. Kathy did a great job and had an amazing cast and presentation. Her goal was to catch some trout in VT on dry flies. It took a bit for it to happen but ended up coming together nicely. Things cooled off and the fish started looking up. Kathy also had a few takes and misses on a small bugger/nymph combo. Great job and great climbing skills! MT…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………


IMG_2364IMG_2365IMG_2366IMG_2372IMG_2376July 20th River Report,

Had some clients out on Friday and we found some nice trout willing to eat off the surface. The hot flies were an Orange Stimulator, Chernobyl Ant, Ausable Bomber & Hoppers. We fished an Otter Creek trib in Central VT and went up in the hills for colder water.  I told them make their best few cast they could into each pool and we got action almost every time. But the water is low and clear so after a few slaps on the surface the pool would shut down. The couple was from Baltimore and they enjoyed fishing in a “postcard” setting. We had to skip around some swimmers as it was a sunny Friday afternoon in the 80’s. Good luck if your heading out on the water!





July 12th report
Conditions, conditions, conditions, you can’t beat the conditions we have had over the past few weeks. Just as rivers start to get to the 70 degree mark and levels start to get low, we get a welcome rain fall and air temps drop to put rivers right back in the zone.  Right now, rivers are at or just below their average for the season and today the big rivers could be pushing 70 again.  Rain starting tomorrow and chances early next week will get the levels back up. We are also in for a big cool down the end of next week that will make for great river conditions again next weekend.
Morning fishing has been best this past week with cool overnight temps.  John Synott reports some great fun on the upper stretches of a Lamoille river trib that is generally low and very warm this time of year.  He found low water, but temps in the low 60″s and a bunch of fish taking a #14 green stimulator and a small white woolly bugger.
For the Month of July, if you don’t see a hatch to match, the flies that will serve you well will be: ant and hopper patterns, black and gold stones nymphs and all phases of caddis with olive as the primary color. There are still some hatches of sulphurs and cahills, and on cool foggy morning look for bwo’s.
Updated by Brian Zinger




July 4th report,
small stream fishing
Happy Independence Day.  With the kids out of school,  and for some folks a long weekend,  fishing is one  of the recreational activities we try to squeeze in.  As you make your plans, check the USGS stream flow data http://waterdata.usgs.gov/vt/nwis/rt to see how the river you intended to visit is flowing. Different parts of the state received different amounts of precip over the past two days.  The southern part of the state got hammered with heavy rain on Wednesday eve, while the northern half got little and then received around an inch last evening and this morning.  This is all very welcome, as for the last 2 weeks rivers had received only a little water and very warm air temps, which had put most of the big rivers over the 70 degree mark.  If you are a catch and release fishermen, you should be carrying a thermometer  because when the water is 70+ many trout will not survive being caught, putting up a fight and then released back to 70+ water.  This doesn’t mean you have to stop fishing.  Small brooks, like the one pictured above, and ponds still remain cool and the action heats up when the air temp does. Also, the smaller stream clear up faster after a heavy rain and ponds and lakes are generally not impacted at all.
We have had several trips with clients to these beautiful mountain streams over the past week.  The wild brookies, browns, and rainbows in the waters are not as big as the fish in the larger river, but what they lack in size is made up for in beauty and their willingness to take a dry fly.  We typically fish high floating patterns on these small brooks like Wulff patterns and foam hoppers and ants.
june brookie
Updated by:  Brian Zinger
June 25th report:
The Otter continues to produce impressive Pike. I caught this one from my Jackson Kayak “Big Rig” on Monday morning in the Proctor area. It hit a Lime Green/ White Deceiver. I was fishing in the Green Mountain Pike Rodeo hosted by our friends at the Middlebury Mountaineer. I had some other equally huge fish around my fly but only landed 3 other Pike in the 24 hour event. So far I have heard of a 39.5′ and a 38′ Pike entered! This one was 33.5″ and was missing a big part of its tail probably from fighting with bigger Pike.
  Best Techniques:   The Otter is dropping and warming up.  It seems like when this happens the fishing is very hit or miss. The smaller Pike (18″-24″) are super active right now and can get in the way when searching for that 40 incher. Even throwing big tandem 8″-10″ flies does not stop them from eating your flies. Targeting big Pike is a blast and sometimes you catch jumbo Trout and Smallmouth Bass. For Pike Lime Green/ White Deceivers and Red/White Bunny flies have been hot. Fish a sinking line to get your flies down and pound the banks, log jams and any spots that drain into the Otter
Tip of the week:   Set your alarm for 4am and get after the fish early. You could have a great day on the river and be done by 11am.  Being on the water super early in the morning is kind of a magic time. You know your the first one to fish that spot and the fish are just waking up and in the mood to eat.
7 day outlook:    The Otter is dropping fast! In the last 10 days it has gone from 1,300cfs to 739cfs! At this point it is very wadeable and I have been wet wading quite a bit. The temp is between 65 and 70. It rained pretty good today and maybe more tomorrow, Looks like it will be in the 80’s and sunny this weekend. Remember to get water temps before fishing for trout. If its 70 or over switch to chasing Bass, Pike or Fallfish
———————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–June 24th report,
IMG_0149I spent the weekend giving a 2 day learn to fly fish school to Stewart Scott who has become a good friend over the past several years. His wife purchased the event for him as a Christmas present. I’ve gave him a casting lesson last year while on vacation, but he was very enthusiastic about learning more about the world of fly fishing.  I thought him everything about the gear you need  and the cost of it, entomology and anatomy of a water system,  the flies I tie to imitate the various source of food trout eat,  knots, and of course much casting on the lawn and then applying those skills to the actual fishing conditions.  He was a great student. By the middle of the 2nd day we started to put this wealth of knowledge towards seriously trying to catch fish.  We started where the casting was easy and the method was the easiest, swinging wet flies.   He caught and missed a couple of fish with one off the most productive flies to swing, the 88.  We then work on the nymphing method. We switched to a BH Hare’s Ear because that was similar to the naturals we found doing our little entomology lesson.  We started out “High Sticking” to get a feel for the flow of the river and to really  use your senses to see and feel a strike.  This is a difficult method even for  experienced fly fishers, but he was able to land a brown and miss a couple other strikes.  When I put and indicator on, he was able to see the strike better and land a nice rainbow . To round out the day we still has some small stream dry fly fishing to do.  The stream that we hit had all the obstacles you could expect on a pocket water mountain stream. I demonstrated the straight upstream cast and the line management needed.  I tied on and Ausable Wulff, which is my favorite pattern for this situation and he quickly went to work. He missed the first couple take on the fly out of sure amazement. After a quick dry of the fly and a discussion of what to do the next time you see a splash on your fly, he was able to hook and play a couple of the wild brook and brown trout that reside. It was a great 2 days we both learned and laughed a lot.
As for the river conditions, everything we fished was ideal. Water temps ranged from 62 on the small stream to 65 on the larger river.  The level was good, but over all area rivers are in need of a drink and a cool down.  We are forecast to get some showers later today with a chance of storms over night and tomorrow.  hopefully we will get the rain, but we could do without a heavy Tstorm.
Updated by: Brian Zinger
June 20th report,
I had the pleasure to guide Paul Quinn earlier this week. We fished the Lamoille in the Johnson area and I was very surprised to see how low the water was after the rain from last weekend. Even more surprising was how warm the water was, 68 at 8pm.  There was no hatch to speak of, so we blind cast nymphes and wet flies and found a couple fish willing to eat in the deepest parts of the pools. Two days later Matt Farnham took Paul out after pike and bass.  Paul was able to get a couple small pike on the fly and then caught a 39in. 13lb pike on hardware.  This fish would have took 1st place in the LCI tourney last weekend.
River conditions should be great for the weekend. Most rivers are running at average levels and with the cool nights and days for that matter, temps should be great for both the fish and fisherman.
Updated by Brian Zinger
June 16th report,
Since June 12th most river systems received between 1.5 and 2 inches of rain.  Most river needed precip as water temps where approaching 70 degrees and getting low.  It didn’t come all at once in a heavy down pour, so most rivers are in pretty good shape today.  I spent the weekend fishing with friends in the NE Kingdom of Vermont.  The focus of our trip is to fish the Connecticut river from Beecher Falls to Bloomfield.  In this area of the state the weather truly changes from hour to hour. This weekend was no different.  The Conn. was higher than we like it to be for great fishing, so we hit many of the tribs. which means better casting skills, beautiful scenery and even more beautiful brook trout.  None of the water we fished ever got off color, and the Conn. was only 54 degrees.  The brookie we caught came mostly to our garden hackle fishing friend, but Mickey Finn’s, Royal coachmen and March Browns where the bread and butter for us fly fishes.  On my way back home I noticed the Lamoille Rv. system had received the upper end of precip. It was high and dirty, but not unfishable.
This week will be another busy week  guiding with trips going out all over the state.  We have some rain in site for over night tonight and Wednesday, but the majority should be dry with air temps in the low 80’s early in the week and then cooling into the 70’s later in the week and next weekend.
Updated by:Brian Zinger


Stream & Brook Clients 2014 1
Stream & Brook Clients 2014 2 Stream & Brook Clients 2014 4 Stream & Brook Clients 2014
6/7/14  The Cooley Glenn Gang
Rob & I had a nice day doing casting instruction & guiding Jacob, Justin, & Tyler on the New Haven.  All three anglers made leaps & bounds in their casting ability over the course of the day and their newly learned skills allowed them to land some brookies in the Cooley Glenn where they were camping.  The guys had fish hitting their flies in the upper New Haven– Brown Caddisflies & Blue Winged Olives.  We showed these guys some beautiful fishing holes that made them feel like they were in a nature photography calendar!  (NM)

Stream & Brook Clients 2014 3

6/13  Upper New Haven River Report
Conditions on the upper New Haven have been stellar despite the intermittent rain.  Lower in the river flow rates have hovered in the 100-200 cfs range, but the New Haven is one of the quickest rivers to recover from rain in the area.  Large Brown Caddisflies and Blue Winged Olives have been hatching in the upper New Haven and associated beaver ponds pretty reliably in the evenings and we have been keeping our eyes peeled for Hexagenias which can turn the beaver ponds into a feeding frenzy right now.  The upper New Haven is dominated by
beautifully colored Brookies which take a fly readily.  (NM)

June 10th Report:

Had a bunch of Brookies slam the Ausable Bomber yesterday up in the mountains & landed 3 or 4. Went lower down the river and caught a nice Brown as well. Love the  moment a fish slides over and pounds a dry fly! Started the day on a small Bass pond throwing topwater and caught a few Rock and Smallmouth Bass from my Jackson Kayak.  Also stopped at a Pike spot and landed one on a tandem VFG fly and had a few other blow up on the fly. Pretty much whatever you want to target it’s on! (BC)

June 10th report:

new Haven 2014

River reports from all of our guides this past weekend where outstanding.  The TLC (temperature, level, clarity) of all the different rivers we fished was perfect, and our clients where treated to great fishing on a chamber of commerce  weekend.  The fly of the weekend was a bead head Red Headed Prince.  I had one client lose both wings from catching fish, and continue to catch fish.  Not much hatching in the morning, but in the evening there have been several insects hatching with March brown patterns and the X-caddis taking fish off the surface.

This week features mostly cloudy conditions with air temps in the low 70’s and rain during the end of the week which could make things tough for father’s day  weekend.

matt's pike

Updated by: Brian Zinger



June 6th River Report,

We have a busy weekend with many trips so we will have a full river report Sunday or Monday.


We did have some clients out yesterday. They had some luck with Smallmouth Bass at first light. Wolly Buggers in Black, Rusty Brown and White are key right now. Then we switched it up and targeted Rainbows. The hot fly was a single Prince Nymph with one small split shot to get it in the strike zone. Hares Ears have been producing as well.

It was a full day trip and the clients decided they wanted to chase Pike in the afternoon. After a great lunch brake at Noonies Deli we hit Otter Creek in search of Pike. It was super sunny and even though we hit 4 spots all we had was follows. We could not get any to “Eat” maybe they had just had a sandwich as well.

Today after work I went to one of the spots we had Pike follows and launched my Jackson Kayak. Within a half hour I had 3 small Pike (all were around 25″)  in the net and had a few big boys interested! The hot fly was a “Indy” tied by the Vermont Fly Guys. For a great VT fly selection check out Castaways Flies (castawayflies.com) owned by Brian Zinger.

Good luck on the water this weekend! To book a trip call 802-989-0398 or email brian.zinger@gmail.com



June 5th report,

We have really been enjoying some great fishing and great conditions since my last report.  We have been putting clients on all species of trout, bass and pike in some of the most beautiful places.   Yesterday, I spent the morning with a fun young couple out of Florida.  They where celebrating their 1st year anniversary by doing a world wind tour of the NE.  I was lucky enough to be a part of their adventure by teaching them how to fly fish.  I picked them up at the Basin Harbor Club early to beat the heat of the day and the afternoon showers.  We spent the 1st 45min. learning to cast. We then went out to put there new found skill to work and continue to improve while trying to catch a fish.  That’s a bunch of things to think about as a beginner.  I didn’t have much of a chance to teach the fish catching, fighting, landing and releasing skills much.

The rain last evening, amounting to a little over a 1/2 inch in most part, was right on time.  Most river’s were in need of a fresh drink and a cool down.  Conditions should not have been effected much. You have have found some off color water, but nothing to ruin the day.


Updated by: Brian Zinger


May 26th reportwinooski oct bow

There are 2 things I like to do on Memorial day.  Pay respect to those men and women who have served and sacrificed for this great country, and go fishing, to enjoy the freedom that they fought for.   I got the fishing part out of the way first. I was on the Lamoille at 6am amidst a lite rain.  I went right to my honey whole looking for a big brown, but was greeted by hungry wild rainbows.  I could have given a clinic on how to, blind cast streamers and nymphs, and  catch every fish in the hole.    The first, and hardest thing, is to find the fly that will get the trouts attention.  This usually involves multiple dropper rigs and changing them frequently until you find one that works.  This worked out quickly for me this morning.  The #12 BH muddler that I dropped off an Olive/ black bugger was the 1st and last rig I gave any thought to.    The next thing you should do is start fishing with short casts before you enter the water. This gives you the opportunity to catch the fish along the bank and high in the riffle.  Continue to cast from the bank making 1 pull of line until you reach a comfortable amount of line to cast or the terrain dictates that you enter the water. Don’t pull any more line.  Just move one or two step at a time .  Make several cast to cover the water.  Then take one or two more step out or downstream, and cover that new range of water.  This method keeps you in a comfortable casting range and gives you a strategy for cover every square foot.

We have been getting periods of rain since last Thursday, which has caused rivers to go up and down like a kids roller coaster.  All the while never being unfishable. This morning was no different. The Lamoille was up a little and stained with a temp of 59 at 10am.  There was a sparse hatch of March Browns about a size 14 and even fewer #16 yellow sallies.

Updated by:  Brian Zinger


May 23rd report,


We had a great week of fishing and fishing conditions.  River finally got down to seasonal average flows with great clarity and temps in the 50’s.  As we move into Memorial Day weekend, so does some wet weather. I received .70 inches of rain here in Westford which has brought levels of the Lamoille  and Brown’s rivers up a bit but clarity is still good.  We are not supposed to have any wash outs, but there are isolated Tstorms in the afternoon forecast that could make things challenging.

Hatches have consitied of Hendricksons, Quill Gordons, Tan caddis, and on dreary overcast days like today look for Blue Quills and BWO’s.

IMG_0120The fly on the right is a Early Quill Emerger.  I’ve been using this fly for years. I originally tied it to imitate emerging Hendricksons and Quill Gordons.  It’s best fished in the slower riffles before and during the Hatch.  Sometime, fish are feeding on the emerger at the surface.  So even with rising fish I won’t switch to the dry fly. This fly has taken a ton of fish this time of year.

The next big hatch on the horizon is the March Brown hatch.  I feel this is the 1st may fly hatch of the season to really draw attention to the surface.  However trout really love the nymph phase of the March Brown. The fly on the left (above) is an imitation that I have been tying and fishing with great success for the past 5+ years.

If you haven’t befriended us on facebook, please do so. Brian Cadoret is always posting pictures and video of his adventures with clients and friends on the water.  He has an excellent video of some pike action that is heating up. Also, if  you “Like” “Share” or “Comment” on this video and you could win a Stream and Brook T-Shirt and a handful of of in season guide flies tied by yours truly.

Updated by: Brian Zinger



May 16th report,

spring bass       fingerling steelhead

Pictured above are a couple of the reasons that make fishing, this time of year, so special.  For the rest of May, we have the opportunity to catch smallmouth bass spawning out of Lake Champlain.  Lake Champlain has become a destination location amongst Bass pro’s for catching big bass.  Now is when tributaries start to fill up with these monsters giving river anglers a great  chance to catch near state record size bass.  We have guided many anglers for this opportunity,  and most are blown away by the size, strength and in same cases quantity of the fish they fought with.  I had a chance to get out on my birthday and was treated to a beautiful day of landing 10 of these tackle busting bass in the 3 to 4 lbs. range.  In between bass, I had several fingling steelhead take the fly, then take to the air in an effort to regain there freedom.  Many times the bass can be keyed in on a particular color.  That was not the case yesterday as I caught fish on every woolly bugger I through at them.

River condition around the state have been great this week.  Limited rain fall and water temps in the low 50’s has opened all streams and brooks to the best conditions this year.    Hatches of Hendicksons have been coming off in the afternoon and are starting to draw fish to the surface.  The state has completed most of it’s stocking efforts for this year.  Great fishing is finally here!

It looks like we many have  a great fishing busting weather system coming in later today that looks to dump heavy rain over night.  Depending on the outcome, our great great fishing expectations could be lowered for a couple days.



May 11th report,

Happy Mother’s Day.  If you happen to be a Mother who is also an angler and plan to get out fishing today, you should be greeted with pretty decent conditions.  Parts of Northern VT received .5 to .7 inches of rain Friday night into Saturday morning.  I woke up Saturday morning thinking we didn’t get much rain, but when I looked at my rain gauge it showed .7 inches.  As I headed towards St. Johnsbury to pick up my client Doug Sickol. The Lamoille and all of it’s tribs, from Fairfax to Morrisville, were up and muddy. After that it was only stained. By the time I was looking over the Passumpsic Rv., it was just a little off colored. The southern part of the state fared much better on rainfall amounts.

I believe Mother’s day weekend is the kickoff weekend to great fishing.  The water is warming to where all aquatic life starts to thrive.  Both cold and warm water species start to put the feed bag on, so “catching” becomes a better possibility.  We’ve got large spawning smallmouth bass in area rivers and ponds. To add more “catching” opportunities,  the state stocking program really gets moving.  Yesterday was a perfect example.  We arrived at the river in early afternoon to sunny skies, perfectly dodging the morning rain shower.  It was a warm 73 degrees and the water temp was 51.  The river was just stocked on the 8th and it didn’t take long before we had our first take.  The #12 Black Woolly Bugger that I tied on first, was the only fly we needed.

We have a couple of great looking days coming up.  Southern part of the state have already been see some sparse hatches of Hendrickson and Quill Gordons. With water temps getting into the 50’s,  the North won’t be far behind.


May 1st report,

April Chrome

April Chrome


Just as rivers were starting to lower and clear, we find ourselves in a showery cycle.  Wide spread rain over night and showers this afternoon has deal the state anywhere from .75 to 1 inch of rain.  This will undoubtedly dirty many area streams and brooks.  It will be hit or miss for the next few days.  There is a drier forecast for the middle of next week.  Hopefuuly that will hold true along with some warmer air temps.  Before the rain, lee bansung was at it again with a nice steelie caught on a Lake Champlain trib.

Last weekend we held our guide rendezvous in Middlebury.  After discussing business and breaking bread, Brian Cadoret, Sutton Doria and myself went after pike on the Otter Creek watershed.  We found a bunch of Pike cruising in there regular haunts, but we couldn’t get any love.    They seemed more interested in spawning than eating.  That will change soon enough.

The influx of water should start pushing more steelhead and smallmouth out of area lakes.  The dry/warm weather next week should get the stocking trucks out.  There will be good fishing for everyone as move into one of the best times of the year.







Pike June 6 2013 Pike 4-26-2014River Report 4/26/2014


Otter Creek Pike. Found lots of Pike yesterday. Only had one eat my fly and it was a very healthy 32 incher. The Creek is full bank with many fields between Brandon and Middlebury flooded. As the fields drain the Pike will be stacked up in ditch drainages and small rivers. Try Perch patterns and Red/ White flies stripped slowly back to your feet! Also put up a Pike pic from the same spot last Spring that was closer to 34″. Saw a few yesterday that were pushing 40″!!


Good Luck! (BC)







April brown

April  25th report,

As we move into the last weekend of April, we find ourselves still hoping for warmer weather.  However as I look at the long range forecast we continue to be stuck with highs in the 50’s and low’s in the 3o’s which will keep water temps hoovering around 40.  We have been in a good rain cycle where we get a day of lite showers and then a couple dry days. This has allowed for some decent fishing on small and mid size streams as they clear and lower quickly.  The fish above was caught by Lee Bangsan on the New Haven earlier in the week. On the other hand the larger rivers are still struggling with high levels and clarity .




April 14th River Report

Now that the 2014 trout season has started the fun begins! At this point it will be a week or so before the smaller rivers settle down and the clarity improves. The lower NHR & Middlebury Rivers were basically unfishable this afternoon. The bigger rivers like the Winooski & Otter will be very high and dirty for weeks! With snow still melting in the mountains and heavy rain in the forecast it will take some time for them to drop. The water is still very cold as well. All this means if you do decide to go fishing in the next few days be careful and consider leaving the nymph rod at home and chuck some meat. Streamers that are big and White do well in dirty water. They can drum up some fish in water that does not even look fishable!
This is how I was able to land a few fish in the Otter Creek Classic this past weekend. I fished the slack water along fast water and in big bends. I was using an 8wt (Rock River Rods-  Lug Pro Model) to help me work a few split shots and two big streamers at the same time through these zones. Running tandem flies is a piece of cake when its a Copper John and a Prince Nymph but when your chucking a White Muddy Buddy followed by a huge Black Zonker it takes some practice. I like to space them about 30 inches apart.
I would like to thank Jesse & Steve form the Middlebury Mountaineer for again hosting a fun opening day tournament with great prizes. I won a Sage Method 6wt for taking the Pro Division! Ross Crowne won the same rod for winning the Amateur Division. He also was throwing large streamers and landed a 22 inch Brown then a 14 incher. All the proceeds go to the New Haven River Anglers and so did the $$$ raised form Friday nights Fly Fishing Film Tour movie. Which was again at the Town Hall Theater in Middlebury.
As the Otter drops it will be time to hunt big Pike! This is one of my favorite times of the year! They will be done spawning and soon will be putting on the food bag. If you have not chased Pike with a fly rod it’s a blast. When the conditions are right you can have shots at big fish all day long. Its best to use a 8wt, 9wt or even a 10wt rod to deal with the big flies and to keep Pike from running into log jams once you have hooked up with one.



April 6th report,

Opening day for trout is next Saturday.  This is one of those days many anglers look forward to all winter long, and no matter what the weather or river conditions,  will get out to try there luck.  Generally, opening day in Vermont is a challenge.    With the long cold winter we are still enjoying, and enough snow pack in the mountains that ski resorts are looking to extend the season, opening day this year will prove to be a challenge as well.

Rivers have been opening up with the warmth of the sun, however they are filling up with run off and jamming up with ice and debris. This weeks forecast will be more seasonal with a couple days pushing 60, and fairly dry. Lows will still be in the high 29’s and mid 30’s so the sap will still be flowing and we should have a nice gradual thaw.  Most river should be free of ice by the the opener, but they will be high and murky so use safe wading practices.  Access to all of your favorite spots should be ok.

There are many anglers getting ready for the Opening day Otter Creek Classic this coming weekend, so we wish them all good luck.  Fishing this time of year doesn’t require being stealth.  Sink line, short leaders and big heavy flies usually rule the day.  There will be several Stream and Brook guides in the pro division of the contest.  They will mostly be  fishing eddies, side seams, inside bends and tail outs.  They’ll be using nymph and streamer patterns.  They’ll be trying to get to the bottom quickly working the fly slowly with an occasional twitch or strip.  The fish will still be sluggish so if there is a hatch they won’t be moving on it.  They may have bouce the fly off the fishes head.  Popular nymphs for this time of year are gold, black, brown stone nymphs, BH Hare’s Ear and Red Headed Princes, size 12 -8.  Popular streamers are White, Black, Olive Woolly Buggers, Muddler Minnows, Micky Finns.  Other must haves are San Juan Worms and egg patterns.



March 31st report,

New snow in the hills and rain all over the state should make the rivers messy for a several days. Some sunshine in the future will be nice but we can expect some flooding as all of the snow melts. When the ice brakes up it can cause jams and this can be dangerous! All of this is good news for the folks looking for Lake Champlain fish that head up the local rivers. The usual patterns for Steelhead should be in your fly box. Like Black Stone Flies, San Juan Worms, Copper Johns, Crystal Meth, White or Purple Wolly Buggers, Sucker Spawn in many colors and Egg Flies. Resident fish should be putting on the feed bag as well and will hit a slowly stripped streamer or nymphs if you get them on or near the bottom.

Good luck & be careful!

6th Annual Otter Creek Classic Opening Day Fly Fishing Weekend

Stream and Brook guide Sutton Doria with a huge brown to promote the Opening Day Otter Creek Classic.





March 29th , report


March can be a great month to fish.  There should be a ton of water to fish for trout, and steelies should be making an occasional “Fin and Grin” pic on facebook.  That has not been the case, fishing for open water has been the challenge.  Now with April looming and opening day on the 12th things are starting to look up.  Looks like the mountains will have to deal with 4-8 inches of wet snow tonight, but that shouldn’t hang around long as we have several dry above avg. temperatures days on there way.  Nothing crazy warm, but some nights could remain above freezing.  This is great sugaring weather and should open things up to finally get to your favorite spots.

Meanwhile, I continue to tie flies, get boxes out to clients, and ready for the guide season.  I tie a ton of flies watching the NCAA tournaments (men and women).  I’ve been focusing on early season nymphs and streamers as well as egg patterns.


March 23rd, 2014

It’s been a while since my last update, that’s simply due to the fact that conditions never changed.  This has truly been a winter for the ages.  March stands to break a 100 year old record for cold.  The next three nights are going to the single digits and below zero again.  I’m probably going to have to cancel my annual trip to fish ice out browns on Lake Ontario, due to 3 feet of ice at the boat launch.  I could go on and on, but lets look at the bright side, summer can’t be far away… I might be able to attend my first Otter Creek Classic on opening day.

Things will eventually get back to normal.  There is a string of days forecast to be in the 40’s and 50’s starting on 28th.  This should start to open up some water by the 1st weekend in April.   Conditions will remain tough through the period with increased flow  of very cold water.  Nymphs and Streamers fished slow and low will be the preferred method.


Ben Stimson, winter 2014

Ben Stimson, winter 2014

Feb 5th report,

As you can see, conditions have change, but not very much. Since my last report , we caught a break from the bitter cold which has allowed some of our guides to  venture out to throw some line.  This has by no means opened everything up,  it just made the water that was open more accessible.  The boy’s have been dredging the bottom with full sink line and heavily weighted nymphs and streamers. Not much action,  they’re just happy getting out to do what they love.

Conditions should remain the same for the next several days.  Day time highs will be in the low 20’s with several inches of snow today and another chance the begining of next week.  A friend of mine just informed me that we have past the “Imbolic”, which is the  Mid point between the Winter Solstice and Spring Equinox… the waning of Winter. So, spring is not far.

Valentine’s Day is next week.  What are you going to do for the angler in your life? How about a gift certificate for a day on the water , in the spring, with a Stream and Brook Guide or maybe an assortment of flies for opening day.  Guy’s,  women have been making up a large percentage of clients who are learning to fly fish and they love it.  We provide lessons and schools that will get them off to a great start, or show experienced anglers new water or strategies for fishing different species .  Give us a call to discuss different options.


Jan 5th report,

Good news, if you haven’t heard.  On January 1st 2014, The Dept. of Fish and Wildlife  opened a bunch of water for year round , catch and release, artifical lure only fishing. Check the link for details   http://www.vtfishandwildlife.com/Detail.cfm?Agency__ID=2333 .  This is great news for anglers who are always looking to get out when ever conditions are right.  It might be a while before we can take advantage of these oppertunities however as we  have had a very cold start to the winter.

Last week we had record low high temperatures which have put rivers  in mid winter conditions, very iced over and very challenging to get to any open water.  These conditions should remain the same through next weekend at least.  If you do get out, keep your fly assortment simple, and fish them  in slow water dead drifted.  If you need any productive flies for fishing wintering trout let me know.

There is plenty of hard ice out there , but again, it’s been challenging to stay out  very long.  Live bait and hardware have been hot on the panfish, with red and pink “Ice” flies picking a up a few.


Nov. 26th report,

2013 S&B crew

On behalf of the Stream and Brook fly fishing crew we would like to wish everyone a festive Thanksgiving.  We had a great 2013 season except for early spring when rivers where high and murky for days on end.  Once the rivers dropped back to a fishable levels, we were able to get clients on just about every species of fish that you can present a fly to.

We are expecting another great year in 2014.  We’ve had several client from this year book a trip for their return to Vermont next year. We’ve had a couple gift certificates, and fly assortments  purchased for Christmas gifts. No matter what your experience level,  we can customize a trip  for you.  Everything from an hour casting lesson to full and half day guided trips to two day schools.  If you live in Vermont or plan to come next year, put a Stream and Brook Fly Fishing Gift certificate at the top of Santa’s list.  If you have a loved one who loves to fish, and you want to hit a home run on a gift for any occasion, you can’t miss with a fishing trip with a guide and assortment of flies .

River conditions are not exactly favorable right now. We had bitter cold settle over us this past weekend, which caused some ice to form and now we have a significant storm headed or way with a mix of precipitation and wind.  It takes a certain type of angler to get out in these conditions,  but if you are a hearty person looking for looking for a winter adventure we are here to help.


Nov. 4th report,

nov pike

Nov 2nd Otter Creek Pike

The closing of the regular trout season on Oct. 31st has meant nothing to the trout, salmon and steelhead that continue to feed and spawn, not to mention Pike.  There is a ton of water that remains open all year to catch and release, and we guide on all of it in particular Lake Champlain tributaries.   November is a tough month to fish mostly because there is so many hunting opportunities. the weather and river condition are also not in most anglers comfort zone.  However if you’re like most of us and want a chance at some great fishing oppertunites give us a call.

River are on there way back down after some weekend rain and should be fishing well today.  No significant  precipitation for several days and air temps approaching 60 by mid week will make for continued great fishing. This time of year you may find a BWO hatch on days in that hit 50 so make sure you have representatives of all phases of that hatch. Make sure you also have a variety of large streamer in multiple colors.  Pike are very active right now and just like trout, sometimes it’s  color or lack of color.  Sometimes it’s flash or stripping technique.  Point is, change things up.




Oct 17th report,

oct brown

winooski big bow

Rivers are in great shape.  Over the past 3 days we have received from .10 to .50 inches of rain over night. This has kept area rivers at average flows and the warm air temps have kept hatches going, fish feedingand comfortable fishing conditions. Water temps remain in the mid 50’s, which is crazy for this time of year.  This perfect combination of weather has made for consistent BWO’s hatches in the afternoon.  Unfortunately, fish are rising in the calmer tail outs, so presenting a size #20 parachute has been difficult.  On the other hand, many big browns and rainbow, like the ones pictured, have been coming to the net on bigger flies. 3 and 4 inch white and olive buggers have been very productive on Winooski bows while gold stones are taking browns in the Middlebury area.

We have an unsettled 10 day forecast with cooler air temps and chances of rain throughout, but nothing that should blow things out.  Hookups on landlocks and steelhead have been increasing, so this a a great forecast for that to continue.


trophy section bow


Oct. 12, report,

We have been absolutely blessed with river condition for early October.  We were hit with a much needed inch of rain early in the week, which only stained  the systems for a couple days.  The fishing remained good through it all, only the methods have changed.  Chilly mornings, with tee shirt weather afternoons have kept water temps on the main stems in the lower 50’s and tribs are in the upper 40’s.  No change to these stellar conditions until late next week, when we could see a couple days of showers. We’ll be needing it again by then for sure.

We have been finding fish every where we go.  Early in the week, while the water was stained, big streamers and nymphs, were working well.  As things cleared and lowered we where back to smaller nymphs and dries.  The Lamoille and Winoski have been giving up some really nice fish in very popular places.  Last evening I was in one of those spots on the Lamoille with a friend.  A couple Yellow quills coming off and only one fishing rising. My buddy promptly tied on a size 14 Cahill and 3 cast later was hooked up to a beautiful 17 inch browny.

The regular trout season ends October 31st, but there is still plenty of water open year round, to C&R artificial lure only.  Sections that are just now starting to gather landlocks and steelhead.  We have plenty of availability for guided trips through the regular season, and all winter long.  So if your not a hunter and want to find some of the opportunities that still exist, give me a call.  We’ll get you out, with rivers all to yourself.


Oct 4th Report,

nh bow

Fishing, and conditions to fish, have been great.  We are still seeing, and catching trout on hoppers. We are atoct. brown peak foliage, and air and water temps are 10 degrees warmer than normal. What could be better.  Rain that’s what. While everything has been great, we are definitely in need of rain. Things are so good that rain is on it’s way over the next couple days. No wash out scenarios, and air temps remaining above avg through next week.  Ben Stimson put his client on some nice fish the Rutland area nymphing with small princes 14 -16 and even smaller phez tails 16-20.  They also caught a beautiful brown on a fly the client pulled out of his box called a Birch Creek.  Gerry Nugent has been getting into quality fish, but not quantity on the New Haven fishing small streamers. The water temp on the New Haven is still 58.

See below for some specifics:

 Clear, always fun for big browns this time of year.
New Haven Clear and fishing well with streamers.
Otter Creek Fishing really well with hatches all day long.
Middlebury River
Great fishing, still using hoppers.
.Furnace Brook Clear and low.
Lewis Creek Fishing well in upper reaches
Winooski Fishing well with iso nymph imitations on the swing
Rivers Temp Hatches Suggested Patterns
Otter Creek
58  Isonychia,BWO Isonychia particularly nymphs, green caddis pupa (18-16), zug bugs (10″s & 12’s) bugger (weighted), BWO (18 – 14), X-caddis
Lewis Creek (lower) Rt. 7 area 57 streamers (muddler, zonkers, clousers, buggers), hare’s ear, black stones, prince
New Haven River
56  Isonychia,gold stones Isonychia particularly nymphs, X-caddis, Golden Stones, Zug Bugs, Olive Buggers,Small Muddlers (12) , LR Muskrat (16 -14) Adams (14 -12) .
Middlebury River Lower 56 Hoppers and stimulators, Black & Gold Stone Flies, Copper John, Mice, BWO
Neshobe River 55 Hares Ear, Prince Nymph, , Ausable wullfs
Furnace Brook
55 Mini Mudlers, Pheasent Tails, Small Black Buggers,prince (14-16)
Winooski River
Below Bolton Dam
59  Isonychia,BWO Isonychia particularly nymphs, caddis pupa (yellow and green), BH Zug Bug (12 -10) pheasant tail (14-16), hare’s ear (12-14),


Sept. 30th report,otter brown

Another weekend, another group of happy clients.  I guided the Lamoille Saturday Morning and the Winooski Sunday morning.  Similar conditions and similar outcomes.  Both rivers had a layer of fog above them, until about 10am,  with air temps in the low 40’s and water temps of 58.    No hatches until the fog cleared and we were walking off the water around noon.  Fishing was good early Saturday morning, but once the fog lifted we did pick up another fish.  Sunday morning Kyle didn’t touch a fish until about 11am.  The the fog lifted and the bright sun had been on the water for about and hour, and it was like hitting a light switch.  We finished up netting 10 bows of 8 – 11 inches and missed as many.

We have guiding clients out of Rutland, Middlebury and Burlington hitting every water system in between, and all reports are of great fishing.  Reports also highlight the importance of fishing a Red Headed Prince, swinging it hard and giving short erratic strips.  Right now, Isonychia nymphs are still prevalent.  So, generally I am trying to imitate the nymph with one of 3 flies. RH Prince, Zug Bug or or an all natural that I tie.  When I nymph this time of year, I always fish two fly set ups.  One of those flies is always a RH Prince.   Sunday, Kyle caught most of his fish on a BH all natural that John Synott tied.

We are needing some rain, but we won’t be getting any for a couple days anyway. There are hatches going on just not a lot of surface activity or I haven’t been out when it’s happening.  Some of our guides are having good results on grey hoppers and black CDC ants.

new haven bow


Sept. 23 report,

Walking and wading rivers, this time of year,  is particularly fun with the colorful backdrop.  Unfortunately, there have been more pictures of the foliage, than caught and released fish.  The fish have been active,  just tough getting them to the net.  We’ve been fishing from Newport to Rutland, still chasing pike and bass as well as spawning browns and landlocks.  During the warm up last week, pike and bass fishing warmed up on the Otter, but shut down the salmon on the Clyde.  The rain from this past weekend will keep levels good, and the cool weather for the rest of the week, could lend to better trout fishing.  On that note, there are a couple things I believe do not lend to a good trout fishing day.  Bright sun days and wind out of the north.   Humans love that weather scenario, but fish don’t.  Whether you like it or not, that’s what is forecast for this entire week.  if you do get out this week, afternoons and evening will be best.

See below for some specifics:

 Clear, always fun for brookies and browns.
New Haven Clear and fishing well with hoppers
Otter Creek Ready to fish, streamers and nymphs
Middlebury River
Great fishing up and down.
.Furnace Brook Clear with great surface activity
Lewis Creek Fishing well in upper reaches
Winooski zug bug on the swing and stripped
Rivers Temp Hatches Suggested Patterns
Otter Creek
58  Isonychia,BWO Isonychia particularly nymphs, green caddis pupa (18-16), zug bugs (10″s & 12’s) bugger (weighted), BWO (18 – 14), X-caddis
Lewis Creek (lower) Rt. 7 area 57 streamers (muddler, zonkers, clousers, buggers), hare’s ear, black stones, prince
New Haven River
56  Isonychia,gold stones Isonychia particularly nymphs, X-caddis, Golden Stones, Zug Bugs, Olive Buggers, Stimulators, LR Muskrat (16 -14) Adams (14 -12) .
Middlebury River Lower 56 Hoppers and stimulators, Black & Gold Stone Flies, Copper John, Mice, BWO
Neshobe River 55 Hares Ear, Prince Nymph, , Ausable wullfs
Furnace Brook
55 Mini Mudlers, Pheasent Tails, Small Black Buggers
Winooski River
Below Bolton Dam
59  Isonychia,BWO Isonychia particularly nymphs, caddis pupa (brown and green), BH Zug Bug (12 -10) pheasant tail (14-16), hare’s ear (12-14),88 (10 -12) Sulphurs (14-16)


Sept. 19 report,

River around the state are in good shape. The big rivers are back to being fishable. They’re all running clear and with average flow for this time of year. Water temps have have ranged from mid 50’s in the morning to low 60’s in the evening.  These temps should be on the climb with air temps, both overnight and during the day will be on the increase over the next couple day’s.  Nothing to worry about, we cool right off again with some precip this weekend.

There are some decent hatches coming off, caddis in the morning with BWO’s under the fog. but no surface action.  Fish have been coming on big stuff. Brown, two tone black/olive bugger and #10 redheaded princes and zug bug’s on the bottom, and grey hoppers on top.  Brian Cadoret broke out the “Mouse Box” evening, so we’ll have to see how that worked out.

See below for some specifics:

 Clear, always fun for brookies and browns.
New Haven Clear and fishing well with hoppers
Otter Creek Ready to fish, streamers and nymphs
Middlebury River
Great fishing up and down.
.Furnace Brook Clear with great surface activity
Lewis Creek Fishing well in upper reaches
Winooski zug bug on the swing and stripped
Rivers Temp Hatches Suggested Patterns
Otter Creek
58  Isonychia,BWO Isonychia particularly nymphs, green caddis pupa (18-16), zug bugs (10″s & 12’s) bugger (weighted), BWO (18 – 14), X-caddis
Lewis Creek (lower) Rt. 7 area 57 streamers (muddler, zonkers, clousers, buggers), hare’s ear, black stones, prince
New Haven River
56  Isonychia,gold stones Isonychia particularly nymphs, X-caddis, Golden Stones, Zug Bugs, Olive Buggers, Stimulators, LR Muskrat (16 -14) Adams (14 -12) .
Middlebury River Lower 56 Hoppers and stimulators, Black & Gold Stone Flies, Copper John, Mice, BWO
Neshobe River 55 Hares Ear, Prince Nymph, , Ausable wullfs
Furnace Brook
55 Mini Mudlers, Pheasent Tails, Small Black Buggers
Winooski River
Below Bolton Dam
59  Isonychia,BWO Isonychia particularly nymphs, caddis pupa (brown and green), BH Zug Bug (12 -10) pheasant tail (14-16), hare’s ear (12-14),88 (10 -12) Sulphurs (14-16)


Sept. 14th report,

Rivers around the state have received 2-4 inches of rain in the past  5 days, which won’t make for good fishing this weekend, but is great for the rest of the season.  We are in pre spawn for fall spawning fish, so the increased flow will lend to fish getting on with their journey.  This is also a good time to target the larger fish in the waters you frequent.  As the levels drop and clear,  fish will get back on the feed and with limited insect activity baitfish and cray fish will become the main coarse. Large Muddlers, black/brown/olive colored buggers are great to throw at them, and don’t be afraid to swing 4 -6 inch streamers like Clouser minnows.

The weather forecast will allow things to clear with not much for precip in the next 5 days. When things settle hatches of Iso’s and BWO’s and tan and green caddis should get going again.

See below for some specifics:

 Clears very quickly and always fun for brookies.
New Haven Clears fast in upper reachesl
Otter Creek Muddy,Will be a while to start fishing well.
Middlebury River
Great fishing up and down before the rain.
.Furnace Brook Clear with great surface activity
Lewis Creek  Fishes well with stained water.
Winooski Probably got hit the hardest, should be ready to go mid week.
Rivers Temp Hatches Suggested Patterns
Otter Creek
58  Isonychia,BWO Isonychia particularly nymphs, green caddis pupa (18-16), white zonker/bugger (weighted), BWO (18 – 14), X-caddis
Lewis Creek (lower) Rt. 7 area 57 streamers (muddler, zonkers, clousers, buggers), hare’s ear, black stones, prince
New Haven River
56  Isonychia,gold stones Isonychia particularly nymphs, X-caddis, Golden Stones, Zug Bugs, Olive Buggers, Stimulators, LR Muskrat (16 -14) Adams (14 -12) .
Middlebury River Lower 56 Hoppers and stimulators, Black Stone Flies, Copper John, Perch SleezeBurger,BWO
Neshobe River 55 Hares Ear, Prince Nymph, Black Leech Paterns
Furnace Brook
55 Mini Mudlers, Pheasent Tails, Small Black Buggers
Winooski River
Below Bolton Dam
59  Isonychia,BWO Isonychia particularly nymphs, caddis pupa (brown and green), BH Zug Bug (12 -10) pheasant tail (14-16), hare’s ear (12-14),88 (10 -12) Sulphurs (14-16)


Sept. 7th report,

Rivers around the state are in good shape and the comfort level for fishing has been awesome.  I can’t say theIMG_0004 fishing has been great, mostly due to the bright sun and the barometer.  We have one more chilly day and then it’s back up to the lower 80’s by midweek with chances of precip every day except Monday.  The rain shouldn’t be heavy, but will bring levels up and put a stain to the water in certain areas.  This is all good with some fish preparing to spawn.

I took a trip to the Clyde River yesterday with Tim Hayes to take a shot at some eager to spawn landlocks.  if any one remembers Tim won our fb Big Fish contest last year with a 9lb. Salmon he caught on the Clyde.  Tim like to sight fish to eager spawner’s, as he knows he’ll have the river to himself so he can check every good lie. We did have the river to ourselves, but the lack of a good flow (80 -90 cfs) and warm water didn’t lend to any good fish being present.  We managed a couple of juveniles on a beautiful fishing day.






September 1st report,

I know when the fly boxes come back from guides, void of Ausable Wulff’s, that the big river have been to warm to fish for trout.   The small and medium size streams are getting pretty skinny, but  the brook trout fishing has been on, if you can make long casts with a long leader.  Fishing for warm water species has been good , as it has been all year.  One of our guides, Nick Mayer,  caught his first Musky recently and had an awesome grin and fin moment.

September is traditionally a great time to fish.  We don’t have to carry a thermometer any more, there is still plenty of insect activity, Brown’s and Brookie start to take on their spawning colors, and all fish go on the feed to prepare for the winter.  With the forecast for rain tomorrow and cooler air temps for the next 10 days, the mouth should hold true to form.  Iso’s patterns should rule the day, but on cooler foggy mornings BWO’s  will have there moments.


Aug 25th report,

I finally had a window to get out fishing Friday evening.  I had a good feeling the fishing would be good with the cool rain that  northern VT received the night before and the cool day time air temps.  I didn’t have a whole lot of time so I fishing my honey holes on the Lamoille.  the river was a bit low and 65 degrees at 7pm. Usually, I wait to sting up my rod until I get to the river and see whats going on.  This evening was different as I know there are Iso nymphs on the rivers bottom, so I tied a natural imitation on 1st and drooped a Red Headed Prince about 16″ off it. That was all I needed for the rest of the evening.  The rainbows where extremely active and only on the #12 Prince. I couldn’t bye a fish on the natural or my other favorite Iso imitation the Zug Bug.  As dusk settled on the evening there where small fish rising to hatches of #12 gold stones, #18 BWO’s .  I saw a couple adult Iso’s as well as a few Epherons hatching and dragging their shucks.

We have a couple chances for rain this week, but they should just amount to a drink of water for most river systems in the state. We have also been waking to morning fog with the night air dropping weel below river temps. This has made for good morning fishing with hatches of BWO’s and Tan Caddis.

Brian Zinger


See below for some specifics:

 Clears very quickly and always fun for brookies.
New Haven Clear and fishing very well
Otter Creek Excellent conditions for August, will be fishing great this weekend.
Middlebury River
Great fishing up and down.
.Furnace Brook Clear with great surface activity
Lewis Creek  Fishing well in the upper reaches.
Winooski Fished well last week on zug bugs and large black stone nymphs
Rivers Temp Hatches Suggested Patterns
Otter Creek
65  Isonychia Isonychia particularly nymphs, green caddis pupa (18-16), white zonker/bugger (weighted), sulphurs (16 – 12), X-caddis
Lewis Creek (lower) Rt. 7 area 67 streamers (muddler, zonkers, clousers, buggers), hare’s ear, black stones, prince
New Haven River
 64  Isonychia Isonychia particularly nymphs, X-caddis, Golden Stones, Zug Bugs, Olive Buggers, Stimulators, LR Muskrat (16 -14) Adams (14 -12) .
Middlebury River Lower  64 Hoppers and stimulators, Black Stone Flies, Copper John, Perch SleezeBurger
Neshobe River  63 Hares Ear, Princ Nymph, Black Leech Paterns
Furnace Brook
63 Mini Mudlers, Pheasent Tails, Small Black Buggers
Winooski River
Below Bolton Dam
65  Isonychia Isonychia particularly nymphs, caddis pupa (brown and green), BH Zug Bug (12 -10) pheasant tail (14-16), hare’s ear (12-14),88 (10 -12) Sulphurs (14-16)




Aug 20th, report

The fishing has been really good over the past several days.  A bunch of cool nights and days, plus an increase in insect activity has blessed us with the good conditions.  Unfortunately, over the past two days summer has returned pushing big river over the 70 deg mark .  We only have to endure the heat one more day, then we get some refreshing rain on Thursday then back to  some more unseasonable cool air temps which will se us up for good fishing again by the weekend.

Prior to the warm up, we a family fish with us in Rutland and a return client out of Basin Harbor join us for some great fun.  Plenty of action on a variety of flies.  Nymphing with a Iso pattern has been the best, but big grey and olive hoppers working well on the surface.  Flying ant swarms should be the talk soon. I have size #20 cinnamon colored ants hatching in my back yard, and the dragon flys are hitting them hard.   During cool foggy morning there have been BWO”s hatching, but not much moving on naturals or imitations.

See below for some specifics:

 Clears very quickly and always fun for brookies.
New Haven Clear and fishing very well
Otter Creek Excellent conditions for August, will be fishing great this weekend.
Middlebury River
Great fishing up and down.
.Furnace Brook Clear with great surface activity
Lewis Creek  Fishing well in the upper reaches.
Winoosk Fished well last week on zug bugs and large black stone nymphs
Rivers Temp Hatches Suggested Patterns
Otter Creek
65  Isonychia Isonychia particularly nymphs, green caddis pupa (18-16), white zonker/bugger (weighted), sulphurs (16 – 12), X-caddis
Lewis Creek (lower) Rt. 7 area 67 streamers (muddler, zonkers, clousers, buggers), hare’s ear, black stones, prince
New Haven River
 64  Isonychia Isonychia particularly nymphs, X-caddis, Golden Stones, Zug Bugs, Olive Buggers, Stimulators, LR Muskrat (16 -14) Adams (14 -12) .
Middlebury River Lower  64 Hoppers and stimulators, Black Stone Flies, Copper John, Perch SleezeBurger
Neshobe River  63 Hares Ear, Princ Nymph, Black Leech Paterns
Furnace Brook
63 Mini Mudlers, Pheasent Tails, Small Black Buggers
Winooski River
Below Bolton Dam
65  Isonychia Isonychia particularly nymphs, caddis pupa (brown and green), BH Zug Bug (12 -10) pheasant tail (14-16), hare’s ear (12-14),88 (10 -12) Sulphurs (14-16)




Aug 14th, report

pike aug.14 2013

I’m just getting back from a family vacation and from the reports I’m getting from our guides, the fishing has been very good.  River conditions around the state are in great shape for mid August.  The big rivers have plenty of water and temps are in the low to mid 60’s.  The Pike bit has been better in the a.m. as shown in the picture above by Nick Mayer.  John Synnott reports that the Otter is on fire with the emergence of Isonychia’s. The Isonychia  hatch marks some of the best trout fishing of the year in Vermont.  It’s the last of the big May Flies (size #10 and 12) to hatch and can last into late September.  It’s always better to try and match the natural phases of the hatch, but common flies like Princes, Zug Bugs, Lamoille River Muskrat and Adams are great patterns to have.


July 29th report

This past weekend was the 1st time in a long time that most water conditions where good for fishing.  The big rivers where under 70 and for the most part clear with good flows.  The Lamoille was 66 yesterday morning and fished pretty well with a bunch of bow in the 9 to 14 inch range coming to the fly.  I have not been on this river this year with a good hatch and yesterday was no different.  As usual the Lamoille River Muskrat, X-caddis and an 88 did all the work.  We got off the water just as it was starting to rain and looking at the USGS this morning it must have pick up a bucket load. Looks like the Winooski and its tribs in the Montpelier area also received a bunch of precip as well.  The Middlebury area didn’t receive as much and fished well this past weekend with pike and bass being the very active on the Otter Creek.

This week will be tricky again with scattered T-storms, but air temps are supposed to be below normal.  So keep an eye to the the sky, and we only have about a month until we don’t have to worry about high water temps.




July 18th 2013

17th smilin brookie


17th early morning


Not to long ago you couldn’t fish the big rivers due to heavy flows and muddy water. Now you should only be fishing bass in these rivers due to high water temperatures.  No problem, you just do like guide Brian Cadoret did yesterday with a father and son team. Get up early, I’m talking crack of light early, head up into the mountains and fish Brookies with dry flies.  Just about every high floating fly they threw got some action from the feisty little fish. Nothing like beating the heat in a cool location catching beautiful fish.

Conditions and fishing strategies should remain the same over the weekend.  We do have afternoon Thunderstorms forecast for the weekend with gradually lower air temps.  So, keep an eye to the sky and fish early to get in on the cooler water temp. There hasn’t been much of any hatches going on so get out the grasshoppers and ants.


July 13th 2013 River Report

Should be an epic weekend for fishing in VT. Get after them and let us know what your catching. The Otter is still super high but it’s tribs are perfect and have great temps for trout. This time of year the lower Furnace, Neshobe, Middlebury & New Haven Rivers are normally over 70 but right now they are all low 60’s at first light and by mid day pushing 65. Lake Champlain is super high but fishing great. If you paddle slowly through the flooded trees and grass you will find hungry Carp/Bowfin. I found that fishing around the islands like Button Bay are producing some nice Smallmouth Bass. Fish On!

IMG_0008high water bent rodhigh water bass

Report: July 10th, 2013

Looks like we are finally going to get some relief from the record breaking amount of rain we have received, across the state, in the past two months.  Air temps and humidity levels are going to be dropping ove rtthe next several days as well.  Over the past couple of week we  have only found reliable water conditions on lakes and ponds. Our clients have been bending rods on bass using many methods. Brian C. has been getting them on poppers and duckling patterns. and I have hitting the Hex hatch on Joe’s pond, catching small mouth , perch and even bull pout.

The big rivers are still high and dirty, but depending on what section of which river, they could be fishable, by late in the weekend.  The Lamoille and it’s tribs are my pick of the up coming weekend.  On my drive up to Joe”s pond it looked good from Jeffersonville to Hardwick and should continue to improve.

Brian Zinger


Report: July 4th, 2013

Happy Independence day. If you tried to get out river fishing on your day off, you probably noticed the same conditions that we have been dealing with for the last two months.  The Lamoille and Winooski small head waters streams have been hit or miss, just like the T-storms that every other day mess them up.  Small and midsized  tribs to the Otter have fared better over recent days and have fished well.  The pattern dosen’t change in the long range forecast, so try to pay attention to where the storms are hitting and go the other way. Nymphs, mini buggers and muddlers have been most produtive, but when the sun shines and the water clears, Stimulators and Ausable Wulffs  on the surface.  At least most of the fireworks have been spared for the most part. We’ll see how things go tonight.


Report: June 26th, 2013

I’m sure glad I got out last Saturday. I have felt that way to often this spring. I have received just over 4inch since Saturday, mostly in the form of heavy rain from T-storms, 2 inch just last evening.  This has made every river, stream and brook high and muddy in the north.  Things are a little better in the middle of the state. Brian Cadoret and Nick Mayer had a good day on the Upper New Haven yesterday with a client. Reports from them are that the Otter is very high and murky as well as the lower portions of it’s tribs. The upper portion of the tribs are swift and stained, but fish are active.   The weather forecast is the same for as many days as you dare to look, so conditions don’t look to improve much.


Report: June 23, 2013

I drove up to Jeffersonville last evening, to drop off a brand new Fisknat San Juan Guide net at the GreenP1230780 Mountain Troutfitters. The net is a prize donation, from Stream and Brook, for next weekends Ditch Pickle Classic.  The net  has a long wooden handle, made from Walnut, Ash and Bubinga with a large rubber basket. Perfect for canoe or kayak fishing. Good luck to everyone in the derby.

Moderate rain had been falling the whole time on my trip, but I continued NE to the  Johnson area to hit the Lamoille.  The river was in good shape. Temperature is getting a little high, 66 at 7pm.  The river received about .5 inches of rain in the evening and overnight.  I fished the special regulation area in the rain, looking to have a fight with a “Big Ugly”, but no love for me.  The rainbows farther down stream showed up to play after the rain stopped.  There was no hatch to speak of and no rising fish, but I landed a dozen bows(Mostly wild) in the 9 -13in. range all on my initial offering of an X-Caddis and a dark green sparkle pupa as a dropper.  Most hook ups came on the swing with small twitches, the X-caddis was crushed floating dry several times.  It’s great when both flies are productive.

Brian Zinger

See below for some specifics:

 Clears very quickly and always fun for brookies.
New Haven when clear is fishing very well
Otter Creek Still high, and dirty.
Middlebury River
Great fishing up and down depending on the pathes of heavy rain.
.Furnace Brook Hit or miss fishability.
Lewis Creek
Winoosk High and muddy, not looking good for a while.
Rivers Temp Hatches Suggested Patterns
Otter Creek
60 caddis pupa (brown and green)(10-16), white zonker/bugger (weighted), sulphurs (16 – 12)
Lewis Creek (lower) Rt. 7 area 59 streamers (muddler, zonkers, clousers, buggers), hare’s ear, black stones, prince
New Haven River
 58 X-caddis, Golden Stones, Zug Bugs, Olive Buggers, Stimulators,         LR Muskrat (16 -14) Adams (14 -12) .
Middlebury River Lower  61 San Juan Worms, Black Stone Flies, Copper John, Perch SleezeBurger
Neshobe River  57 Hares Ear, Princ Nymph, Black Leech Paterns
Furnace Brook
55 Mini Mudlers, Pheasent Tails, Small Black Buggers
Winooski River
Below Bolton Dam
61 caddis pupa (brown and green), BH Zug Bug (12 -10) pheasant tail (14-16), hare’s ear (12-14),88 (10 -12) March Brown(12-10), Sulphurs (14-16)



Report: June 22, 2013


This past week, we have been fishing clients from Rutland to Richmond and found streams in great shape all over.  The big rivers are still big, but there temps are great for this time of year.  I spent much of my time on the Winooski this week conducting 2 day fly fishing school.  The river still has plenty of stained water with a temperature range from 57 down stream from tribs that were running 50 degrees, to 62 below the Bolton Dam. It was a great week for fishing with comfortable, and most importantly dry weather.   My client was able to catch fish using all the methods for imitating the different phases of aquatic insects.  Not all fish were trout.  Plenty of Fall fish actively feeding which is great when trying to teach catch and release part of the whole experience. An X-caddis fished dry and then allowed to pluck under the surface on the swing worked well in the evening and a BH Zug Bug was preferred off the river bottom.

We stand a chance for scattered T-storms everyday for the next 7 days, and any down pour could change conditions quickly.  Look for hatches of Sulphurs and light Cahills.

Brian Zinger


June 6 2013Pike June 6 2013

Report: June 9,2013

The remnants of TS Andrea left the Champlain Valley with  about an inch of rain.  Most of it was of a garden variety, which raised the already swollen rivers, but did not dirty them much more.  Brian Cadoret had a client down in the Rutland  area for trout yesterday. Not only did they find fishable water, but active fish as well. After the trip Brian had some free time to cast some new pike flies and caught 4 fish, all similar to the one pictured.

This weeks weather features a bit of a drying period today and Monday, then showers mid week, then a little drying out until rain again on Father’s Day.   Conditions should continue to improve as long as we don’t get any down pours.  When the conditions are right, March Brown’s, Sulphurs, Green and Tan caddis should draw some top water action while Red Headed princes, Pheasant Tails, March Brown nymphs and Olive/Black woolly buggers should serve you well on the bottom.


Brian Zinger

See below for some specifics:

 clearing. Copper John’s and Zug Bugs fished ion the fast water have been producing.
New Haven Just stocked and in great shape. Lots of fish looking at the surface…
Otter Creek Trout, Smallmouths & Pike are very active!
Middlebury River
Dirty below Rt7. Try fishing the fast water above rte 7
Furnace Brook Still cool and clear. This is a wild trout stream so wade slowly and use floro.
Lewis Creek Still some good Smallmouth action. Should be good for the next week.
Winoosk High and dirty,just recently stocked!
Rivers Temp Hatches Suggested Patterns
Otter Creek
60 caddis pupa (brown and green)(10-16), white zonker/bugger (weighted)
Lewis Creek (lower) Rt. 7 area 59 streamers (muddler, zonkers, clousers, buggers), hare’s ear, black stones, prince
New Haven River
 58 Golden Stones, Zug Bugs, Olive Buggers.
Middlebury River Lower  61 San Juan Worms, Black Stone Flies, Copper John, Perch SleezeBurger
Neshobe River  57 Hares Ear, Princ Nymph, Black Leech Paterns
Furnace Brook
55 Mini Mudlers, Pheasent Tails, Small Black Buggers
Winooski River
Below Bolton Dam
61 caddis pupa (brown and green), pheasant tail (14-16), hare’s ear (12-14), March Brown(12-10), Sulphurs (14-16)

If you are looking for some great locally tied flies for your trip to Vermont we recommend Brian at Cast Away Flies.


River report 5/25/2013

With wide spread rain and some flooding all across Vermont it will be a few days before the rivers settle down. This would be a great time to get out your canoe / kayak and try your luck in small ponds that can fish very well when we get big rain events. You could target trout in mountain ponds or find bass & pike in many ponds in Addison & Chittenden County’s.


Good Luck!



River Report 5/9/2013

What ever you want to target on your fly rod this weekend it’s on! Steelhead, Pike, Bass, Trout, Carp, Bowfin etc. Can’t go wrong trying dries, streamers, nymphs & top-water. With some new rain yesterday and more on the way we are in great shape. Get out there and fish!



River Report 5/5/2013What a great time of the year to be fly fishing in VT!  The rivers are fishing great. River temps are between 58 & 63 which is prime…almost warm enough to start wet wading! Some hot flies from yesterdays guided trip were the Golden Stone, Copper John, Zug Bug, Mini Muddlers and even had some fish slashing at an Ausable Wulff. We were fishing an Otter Creek trib and I can tell you it has been stocked. If your looking for a big trout consider fishing at first light in these ares with 6-8 ” streamers!  Lunker Browns have been known to feed heavily on stockers… same with big Pike. With low clear water an Olive Bugger might be the fly of the week. You could target lake run Smallies, Steelhead & trout and do well just using an Olive Bugger. We have a bunch of guided trips in the next 10 days and will be busy but still have some openings in May & June. Email Brian Zinger brian.zinger@gmail.com if you want to get out on a guide trip.  We guide all over Vermont for anything that swims. This is prime time for trophy Smallmouth Bass, Pike, Trout & we will be looking for Largemouth Bass on the surface in the next week or so. Tight lines!————————————————————————

River Report 4/30/13

The Otter Creek is in great shape. The clarity is perfect and it is under 1900 cfs for the first time in a while. Fishing is turning on quickly as the river temps are now in the 50’s. The Smallmouths are getting active. Had a client catch one yesterday on a White/Lime Green streamer and I caught one this morning before work on a large White streamer. Both were in waist deep fast water. Try dead drifting a Wolly Bugger and drop off a Copper John through the fast water for hungry trout. The Pike bite should be on fire in the next 10 days. Book a trip (www.streamandbrook.com ) if you want to try and chase trout, some toothy critters or look for some trophy Smallmouth Bass as this is the best time of year to catch 20 plus inch Bass. The lower Middlebury River was 58 degrees yesterday and we found some big trout and White Suckers. Hot fly was a Montana Prince!



With some heavy rain last Friday night the Otter is still high with poor visibility. The New Haven River, Middlebury River & Neshobe River were blown out Saturday but have come down to a fishable level. On Sunday the Middlebury River was 38. So slow down if your stripin streamers as the water is still cold. Dead drifting a large streamer this time of year can entice some big fish to eat! Nymphs such as the Copper John, Golden Stone, Hares Ear and PT’s have been producing nice fish. As soon as the Otter drops I am hoping to catch my first Pike of the year. Try a smaller fly in the Spring for Pike and as the baitfish grow increase your fly. The Lake Champlain tribs are still holding some nice Steelhead and will fill up with spawning Smallmouth Bass soon.

Good luck on the rivers!


Thanks BC


Area rivers are in great condition right now. Still on the chilly side, and low, but the clarity is excellent. We should start to see a change leading up to the opener for trout next Saturday.  Starting tomorrow we’ll see air temps in the 50″s causing snow melt, and April showers will persist all week. We need the water already and if you remember last year, we’ll take it.  We’ve been doing well on on Champlain tribs for steelhead all winter long.  That should continue with the spring run steelies making their move, so the higher flows this week will spur that on. Copper John’s, BH flashback Hare’s ear, white woolly buggers and zonkers have been the hot pattern.

I’ll be heading to Lake Ontario next week for some ice out, planner board fishing for football shaped Browns.  Last year aboard the “Jus’ Fishin'”, we had a great week. Along with browns and the steelhead we normally catch, Spring Kings in the 20lb range were frequent and proved to be a challenge on our lite tackle.

Don’t forget, opening day is the Otter Creek classic in Middlebury, details are on our blog page

Brian Zinger


March 27th, 2013

The warm sun on my face the past two days has been welcome.  It has also made my fever for spring fishing go up a couple degrees. This winter was interesting for Stream and Brook. Long time S&B partner John Synott resigned as a owner. John was and still is a huge asset to S&B. Thankfully he will still be in the guide sable  this season.  We also upgraded our website, with the help of Infinity Design.  It has many nice features for updating and editing, however working with the software is exposing us for how much time we spent fishing and notin front of a computer.   This year some of our guides will have access to update the river report, which will provide a more accurate and a wider range of river conditions.  There is also a new page “Events/Blog”.  This is a page you’ll want to frequent as we’ll posts fishing events and in season articles from Stream and Brook guides.  You may notice we have a new logo as well.  This was designed by Nick Mayer at his Escape Studio. Nick will also be joining the S&B guiding staff this year.

As for  current river conditions.  Area waters that are open to fishing are high right now.  We have had a couple of 40+ degree days sno snow and ice melt have been the reason.  Expect conditions to remain the same over the next several days, with a chance for rain switching to snow over night and air temps reaching into the mid 50’s this weekend.  This is a great forecast for moving steelhead.





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