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New Jersey Fly Fishing Report May 30 - June 4

Updated 6/2/17 - JH



Shannon's 2017 River News . . .

Rivers remain in great shape. Cool nights and regular rains are keeping the fishing hot! Some of the bugs you should be prepared for are...

  • Grey Winged Yellow Quill (epeorus vitreous) use a sulphur #14

  • Cornuta (Drunella cornuta) use a size #14 BWO

  • Yellow drake (ephemera varia) use a size #12 sulphur

  • Blue Winged Olive (Drunella attenuata) BWO #16-18

  • Sulphur (ephemerella dorothea) #16-18

  • Slate Drake (isonychia bicolor) use a Dun Variant #12

  • Light Cahill (stenacrom interpunctatum) Ithaca Light Cahill #14

  • March Brown/ Grey Fox (Maccaffertium maccaffertium) #12-14

  • Spotted Sedge or Tan Caddis (Hydropsyche) use Elk Hair Caddis Tan #14-18



General Hatches, Fly Recommendations and Tips . . .

Hatch Update: Mayflies and caddis are hatching now! Look for sulphurs, march browns, blue quills, and tan caddis.


Nymphing during the day: Fish tandem rigs to improve your success. Fish nymphs and emergers or midges in tandem. I always prefer to fish the larger fly first, but to each their own. The easiest way is to tie the first fly on as usual then attach the second by using a  clinch knot tied to the bend of the first fly. Space the flies about twenty inches apart. It is also a good idea to balance your tandems by keeping them within a couple of hook sizes of each other. Use enough weight to keep the flies just off the bottom drifting slowly. Drag free drifts are a must now. Keep as little fly line on the water as possible and pay attention! Strikes may be subtle or fierce. If using a strike indicator, place it one and a half to twice the depth of the water you are fishing from the first fly. Any additional weight should be about six to eight inches from the first fly.   Streamers: Muddler Minnows, Woolly Buggers, Grey Ghost, Black Nose Dace, and Zonkers if the water is off color. 

  • Hare’s Ear nymph standard and beadhead #12-18.

  • Pheasant Tails #14-22 with or without a bead.

  • Trail a RS2 or WD40 #16-22 Grey, Brown or BWO to imitate those small Baetis so common now.

  • Rainbow Warrior #18 Another great midge larva pattern

  • Prince Nymph/ Zug Bug (Beadhead, Poxy Back, Standard) Great for Isonychia and stoneflies.

  • Scuds and Sow bugs: Olive, Grey or Tan, #16-18

  • Caddis Larva: Olive, Green or Chartreuse is a must right now #14-18.

  • Midge Larva: Disco midges in Green, Red, or Black size 18-22

  • Woolly Buggers: Black, Olive and Brown #10-14 Conehead Muddler Minnows work too.

Note: I use larger nymphs and bead-heads when the water is higher and less weight when water drops. On the South Branch, use the heavier flies when the stream flow exceeds about 175-185 cfs. 


Current Local Hatch Chart . . . 

Lemon Cahill    March Brown  

Updated 5/16/2017


MORNING (6am-10am)

Note: Some hatches overlap time periods



ALL DAY 10am-5pm


Midges may be hatching. Try a small Adams or BWO Parachute #18-22


Dry Flies:

  • March Brown/ Grey Fox (Maccaffertium maccaffertium) #12-14

  • Spotted Sedge or Tan Caddis (Hydropsyche) use Elk Hair Caddis Tan #14-18

  • Blue Quill (Paraleptophlebia adoptiva) use Blue Quill or Adams #16-18

  • Small BWO (Baetis) #18-20

  • BWO #16-22 seems to work everywhere as it matches any number of small Baetis, Paraleptophlebia and midges




  • WD40 or RS2 in Grey, Black, Brown (especially on the Pequest).






  • Spent Caddis #16

  • Rusty Spinner #12-18

  • Sulphur (Ephemerella invaria) #12-14

  • Pale Evening Dun (Ephemerella dorothea) #16-18







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