Kicked off the 2018 Wild Trout season by taking a client and friend Ryan Rachiele on an adventure chasing Wild Trout on the fabled Little Juniata River in Central Pa. Ryan is a self proclaimed "Streamer Junkie" who runs the popular Facebook page Pa Streamer Addicts.
In preparation of the trip I pre-fished the area the day before to get a grasp on what the fish were feeding on ,as well as what the water conditions were like. Knowing Ryan would be strictly "throwing meat" I opted for my favorite Wild Trout Streamer pattern, the Sculpin. After a few hours and a bunch of chunky fish brought to the net I was confident it the pattern producing similar results for Ryan the next day.
Ryan and I hit " the river" early the next morning and were greeted with absolutely perfect streamer throwing water... a little high with some color. Ryan started throwing and stripping his Olive Sculpin pattern as soon as his feet hit the chilly limestone water. We fished down river several hundred yards without any takers so I recommended a slight adjustment with weight as well as a change in retrieve, and as if on cue Ryan was hooked up with the first of many fish on the day. The fat 16" Wild Brown inhaled Ryans streamer as if it was its last. After a few quick pictures Ryan looked at me and smiled and I heard the words that every guide hopes to hear from his client at some point in a trip.."my day is made".. I responded with " let's go we have a lot more fish to catch"!!
Through the course of the day Ryan caught many fat and very healthy Wild Brown Trout. We found areas where a dozen fish would be surface feeding on Blue Winged Olives and I'd look at Ryan to see if he wanted to match the hatch and throw a dry fly. Ryan would answer by throwing his Sculpin into the pod of rising fish. You gotta love streamer fishermen! They aren't motivated by numbers of fish but by the technique of which they wish to fish.
With the high water the Wild Trout of The Little Juniata River stood no chance against the infamous "Streamer Junkie" of Potter county, Ryan Rachiele. Ryan had a banner day and caught some beautiful Wild Browns and a couple "Wild" Rainbow Trout.
The first nice fish Ryan caught was in the vicinity of where I missed a nice fish a month earlier. I knew of another big fish that was in a particular shallow water spot and Ryan was all over it and caught that fish too! These instances are why people hire guides. All good guides are intimate with the water they work in and that knowledge is usually instrumental in a successful trip or not.
Great Job Ryan!!
Sculpin pattern fly
There's no doubt that our lady clients bring their "A game" when they come to fish and Rachel exemplifies that statement! The night before her trip it rained pretty bad and we were met with high, fast, off colored water that made for some tough fishing as well as less than ideal wading conditions. Rachel never lost her optimism and she played the hand she was dealt and made it happen by catching some beautiful Central Pa Wild Brown Trout! Huge respect to her and I am very honored to call her my Friend! Great Job Rachel!!