April 1 – the dawning of the new Trout Fishing Season in New York State! No matter what the weather conditions are, Opening Day of the Trout season always signifies the official end of winter to those who long to spend time on pristine waters and cast a hopeful line.
The weekend prior was warm and very spring-like, with temperatures in the Livingston Manor area reaching the mid-60s amid a slight drizzle. Sunday evening, March 31, was the date for the annual Anglers’ Reunion Dinner at the Rockland House, Roscoe, NY and spirits were high despite rapidly descending temperatures. The evening ended rather late, with snow flurries and chilly temperatures ushering the ride home.
We awoke early Monday morning to two inches of newly-fallen spring snow and temperatures in the low to mid-20s….typical of conditions here in the Catskills!
On Monday afternoon, April 1, the USGS website showed that the Beaverkill at Cooks Falls was flowing at 1620 cubic feet per second, after having crested the night ebfore at about 2500 cfs. This is above the average flow for this date of 900 cfs based on 104 years of record-keeping. . The minimum flow recorded was 240 cfs in 1965, and the maximum was 10,700 cubic feet per second in 1962. Both the Beaverkill and Willowemoc are still discolored with a greenish cast, due to the ‘snow water’ from melting snow.
Water temperatures this past week stayed above freezing, ranging from 34 to 43 degrees Fahrenheit.
Any fishing success would best be had by fishing sub-surface, with wet flies and nymphs – using weight to get the flies down deep. We don’t expect to see anything hatching (save for tiny “snow flies”) until water temperatures are closer to the 50-degree mark.