On the Miramichi River system this week, there hasn't been much fishing to talk about except the weather. Heat was the topic and early morning dashes to the river seem to be the most excitement for most fisherman during the high humidity.
Most anglers took the time to tell stories on the banks of the river or practise their casting. Others said tying flies at times like this made for better days and gives the fish a break.
We all know the weather is very important topic when it comes to fishing and the heat is not the best topic for Atlantic salmon or us anglers when fishing. But after weeks of dry weather with only a few showers to be heard of, 40 to 50 millimetres of rain (about two inches) are forecast for this weekend.
Well that's enough to get excited about. It gives us hope that conditions will be much improved next week.
If the heavy rains come, what can we expect from our rivers?
With the rivers being so low and the water temperatures so high, it has to be better for the fish whatever precipitation comes from Hurricane Earl.
I would think the first day or two from a raise in water it will be very dirty from all the algae we have on the bottom of the rivers at this time. Let's hope when the rain comes it rises the water and puts lots more fish in from the bay to tighten our lines.
There were a few fish landed last weekend after a couple cool nights on the lower stretches. Saturday and Sunday morning seemed to be the first mornings that the fish wanted to take in a few days. Local anglers at Pool 66 hooked fish with one weighing in at 20 pounds. There were a few more around the 15-pound range and a couple of grilse. Flies of choice were brown bombers and small black patterns for the wet flies.
Black Brook Salmon Club also hooked a few fish Saturday and Sunday morning with the brown bomber with white ends being the fly. They said there were plenty of fish holding at the brook and early morning was the better time to fish as fish moved throughout the pool.
Monday at Pool 66 Steve Smith landed and released a grilse on a blue bomber and was netted by Dennis Grant. Joel Kitchen had a couple friends from Ontario fishing with him and landed a 35-pound salmon at Pool 66. They also lost a grilse. The fly of choice was a woolly bugger. I told him he must of been trying everything he had to get to the woolly bugger. It worked and that is all that counts under these conditions so I think I will dig mine out - if I can find them.
Wilson's Sporting Camps said there are plenty of salmon holding in their pools and are taking very well in the mornings. They urged people to take caution in the heat and to break fish off after the hook-up. Bombers were working best in the pools.
Curtis Miramichi River Outfitters had a good event over the weekend as Dennis Grant hosted a fly-casting school. They had a very good turnout on each day including myself for Saturday afternoon. It was a fun time for beginners to the more experienced casters. They said fishing was very slow but a lot of fisherman were in the shop getting flies. There were a few anglers that hooked fish on bombers and bear hairs but most were waiting for the weather to change.
The Cains River is very low and fish are holding in the cold water brooks. The Renous River is also extremely low and warm with fish holding wherever there is cold water flowing in. The Northwest Miramichi has fish holding in the cold brooks and there are rumours of fish in the tide waiting for a raise in water to get them moving upstream.
I hope this is the last of our hot humid weather and conditions will soon improve for your fall salmon fishing. The forecast for the next couple weeks is below seasonal temperatures so things are starting to look up with the rains we are expected to get. September is always a big fish month, so I look forward to hearing from you for that big fish being landed.
A tip for the anglers who have boats anchored or seats/benches out on a gravel bars - keep an eye out as the water may rise quickly and these items could be gone the next morning.
Let me know of that fish of your dreams caught on the beautiful Miramichi. So keep your rods high and your reels screeching until next week have tight lines.
* Rodney Colford is a third generation salmon-fishing guide on the Miramichi River and has been guiding fishermen ranging from greenhorns to some of the finest fly-fishermen in the world for 27 years. His fishing reports appear every Thursday in the Times & Transcript.