Category Archives: fishing report

for river related condition reports

Warmer Water Temps and Active Trout on the Gunpowder River


The Gunpowder River is clear and flowing at 38 CFs. Water temps this week have been swinging as high as 48 degrees F. Wind has been the only detractor. Thanks to Gene for the stream report and photos.

Spring is around the corner & with the pleasant spells in weather we’ve been having dry fly fishing has been particularly productive on the Gunpowder. Small grey midge patterns are the go-to when fish are rising. Nymphing in riffles has been been consistent on zebra midges and brassies. Darin Crew caught this healthy looking 13 inch fish doing just that. I have been fishing streamers recently, stripping them slowly tricked this 15 inch fish that ate a black and green wooly bugger.


Fly Fishing in February on the Gunpowder River

Tom Starrs with a nice Wild Brown
The Gunpowder River is clear, flowing at 38 Cfs and is 41 degrees F. Weather this weekend should be on the warm side which may result in a nice bump in water temps. Stoneflies, BWO’s and cream midges will be part of the mix. As the latest stream report will attest-fish those streamers people! Didymo is still about above Falls Rd so try a little lower if you’re dead set on nymphing. Thanks to Tom Starrs for the great stream report and photo.

It’s been a while. I was just in the shop last Sunday, it was my first time at the new location. The shop looks nice as always. I spoke to Gene (the young man from the UK). We were speaking about the cold and clear water that we have been seeing so far this year in the tributaries (Little Falls, Beetree and such). It makes for tough fishing, the trout are little lethargic and they get a good look at everything you throw. I told him it would be good if we got a little rain. We talked about working woolly buggers on some of our exceptional area wild trout streams this time of the year, fishing the deeper holes and undercut banks where the trout will be holding. I picked up a few woolly buggers, some tippet and a new Backwater Angler hat.-Well we got some rain today. So I hit one of other streams in the Gunpowder watershed. The conditions were nearly perfect to give my new hat a workout!

Tom Starrs

February Gunpowder Stream Report


The Gunpowder River is clear, flowing at 38 CFs and is 38 Degrees F. Thanks to Gene for the Gunpowder stream report!

Fishing has been very productive on the warmer days. You’ll see stoneflies skittering across the surface size 16 early afternoon. I’ve found the trout tend to ignore the adult but will be looking for the nymph in the riffles. American pheasant tails and prince nymphs imitate these well at the heads of pools. Midges (20 – 22) often hatch alongside them and you can find fish rising to these in the slacker water in the tails of pools. With the weather warming up this weekend rising water temperatures once again will provide good fishing opportunities between Falls to Big Falls road. Upstream from Falls to the dam is better fished with a streamer or small dry midge pattern.


Groundhog Day Gunpowder River Stream Report

Log Jam Mojo

The Gunpowder River is clear, flowing at 37 CFs and is almost 40 degrees F. Nymphing works this time of year. Dry fly fishing is not out of the realm. Chances are you won’t catch a fish if you are sitting on the couch. Remember-fly fishing before football.

Thanks to Gene Howson for the stream report and pictures:

Groundhog Day Update:

With the consistent water flow and the mild winter I have found the fishing to be very good for the time of year. Particularly following rain or during calmer conditions. Optimum fishing times are between 11-3 when the water temperature peak. Fishing nymphs; tungsten midges, prince and pheasant tail nymphs size 16 are working great in the faster water. As for dry flies, small crippled midge patterns and Mike Bachkosky’s cream midges (size 22) which we have in the shop are great at this time of year in the calmer water.

I was out with Darin Crew for a few hours on Tuesday, fishing a tandem nymph rig under an airlock indicator was productive once the temperatures rose above 40 degrees. The best of the bunch caught by Darin was a robust wild trout in the region of 15 inches which engulfed a red zebra midge. We saw clouds of small cream midges and a good amount of black stoneflies coming off the water from midday til 3pm and the fish were rising in the slack water for the midges.

Everyone should take some time to enjoy this pleasant weather we’re having and spend a few hours on the Gunpowder!

Gunpowder Brown Trout  Release

Gunpowder River Stream Report

Tiger Trout In The Gunpowder RiverThe Gunpowder is gin clear and flowing at 38 Cfs at 42 degrees F. This time of year little black and early brown stoneflies are just starting in the riffles between Big Falls Rd. and Bunkerhill Rd. On days without wind, little black flies or snow flies in the #20-22 range can be found above Falls Rd closer to the Dam but a long (12ft) and light (7x) leader is needed to present these tiny flies properly. Blue Winged Olives and cream midges will also make an appearance from time to time through the Masemore Rd stretch. Log jams should be covered with a heavily weighted streamer like a zonked or sculpin pattern and pulled away from banks on an upstream presentation rather than fished on a swing. Thanks to Anthony for the great shot of a recently released Tiger trout.

January Gunpowder River Fishing Report

Jonathan Barnes

Thanks to Gene for the stream report and pictures of merry old England and a bright wild fish from the boulder pools.

Midges are hatching late morning through the afternoon and with the flow remaining at 38cfs the water temperature can increase significantly on warmer days triggering the fish to feed. I’ve been using small hares ear nymphs and zebra midges size 18. I caught this nice looking fish at falls road recently.

Over a visit back home in England last November I was lucky enough to go fishing on the river Tees with Jonathon Barnes from He helped me refine my Czech and French nymphing techniques to help catch fish in even the toughest conditions. On that morning the temperature barely got above freezing and we ended the day with half a dozen beautiful grayling. Since then I’ve been attaching a French leader straight to the backing of my reel. Using a 10 foot 3 weight rod I can detect the subtlest of strikes much more effectively.

We have 3 different 10 foot models in the shop that are perfectly suited to this technique. The Echo shadow II (retail $249), G. Loomis pro 4x ($375) and the Winston BIIIx Super 10 ($845). Highly recommended for those who want to catch more fish year round!

Winter Gunpowder Brown

Please note: We will be open on January 16 from 10AM till 5PM.

Winter Fly Fishing on the Gunpowder

Cold weather fish
The Gunpowder River is flowing at 38 Cfs and is 43 degrees f and clear.Streamers continue to be a nice way to keep warm out there. Just use the trails and fish the bend pools and shallow riffles with a #8-12 wooly bugger and hold on. Some have been lucky to find a few fish rising to BWO’s and black flies in the flats between Masemore and Falls RD access points. Long leaders in the 10 to 12 ft range ending in 7x are a must for imitating tiny flies in the flats. Trails have been wet and slippery especially in the mornings but putting a few studs in wading shoes and bringing along a wading staff can work to keep one dry this time of year. Thanks to Stefan for the nice shot of a chunky wild brown. Be sure to stop in a see Gene and Stefan for friendly advice before you head out to the river.

A Year End Stream Report for the Upper Gunpowder Falls River

Gunpowder Brown Trout
The Gunpowder River is flowing at 38 CFS and is 43 Degrees with mid 60’s air temps forecast and with low flows expect the River to continue to warm up through the week especially by each day in th elate afternoon. Stoneflies might be worth shot and streamers are in the mix and a fun way get a good hike in along the River this time of year. Thnaks to Liam for the great photo of a recently released 17″ brown and the following stream report:

Theaux, Gene and Stefan,
First of all, happy holidays! I hope you all find a plethora of fly fishing gadgets beneath your Christmas trees this year! I’d also like to thank you; 2016 has been a monumental year for me in terms of fly fishing. I’m endlessly appreciative for the help you’ve provided me in the past year. I would never have thought I’d have such success when I began fly fishing in 2015. Secondly, Gene mentioned last week that I could send in a picture of the fish I caught last weekend to be featured on your blog. I actually caught another fish of the same size yesterday (Thursday), as well as saw a huge fish (20+ inches) tucked beneath a log jam!! It seems that by now the Gunpowder browns have completed their annual spawn and are quickly transitioning into winter mode. After fishing streamers almost exclusively for the past few weeks, it has become apparent that the fish are in a sort of post-spawn, pre-winter feeding mindset. I found that very few fish bumped, chased, or slashed at my fly. Rather, almost every trout that showed interest took the fly in its mouth with confidence. This has led me to believe that the fish are no longer feeling territorial and aggressive, but instead are hungry and therefore happy to eat whatever tasty morsel passes by. In my opinion, this scenario is preferable to the pre-spawn aggression phase since the fish are more intent on eating the fly as opposed to chasing it away or giving it an angry bump. Furthermore, the fishing pressure is slowly declining on the river, especially in some of the lesser fished spots. It’s amazing how receptive the fish are of your fly when they haven’t been bombarded with artificial food for a few days! In terms of fly choice, I think picking the right sized streamer is more important than any other factor. The fly should be large enough to make it worth the trouts effort, but not so big that it’s downright obnoxious. Adding weight to a streamer and getting it down to the fishes level can never hurt this time of year, but I’ve had no problem getting fish to move a good distance for the fly. In fact, I’ve seen a number of trout break the waters surface in an effort to grab my fly as I lift it from the water into my back cast. I think that anyone who ties on a good streamer and really puts it to use will have some success on the Gunpowder this time of year. I’m certain that any medium sized streamer in a dark color will be productive!

Once again, thanks and happy holidays!!

Please Note: The shop will open Thursday and Friday from 10 till 5, New Year’s eve from 10 till 4 and will be closed on New Year’s Day.

Winter Fly Fishing on the Gunpowder River

IMG_1677The River is flowing at 37 CFS, is 42 degrees F and clear. Lots of edge ice and areas of the River were slicked over downstream of Monkton through Friday. With the rain and sleet this morning those areas are opening up. Chest waders, studded boots and a wading staff are must have items to fish safely through the “just now” seasonal weather. Stoneflies with zebra midges droppers are best fished in the fastest shallow riffles one can find. Streamer fishing is a great way to stay warm and cover a lot of water. Be sure to use the trails avoid wading through the redds and make sure you slide rather than step into the river. BWO’s and small midges are worth a shot if you’re dead set on fishing dries above Masemore.

Thanksgiving Fly Fishing Weekend

IMG_1560The Gunpowder River is still a little green, and is flowing at 90 CFs at 52 F. The river is clearing and the wild fish are waiting. With mild weather forecast throughout the weekend get out of the house with friends and family and fly fish a little. Prince nymphs and other stonefly patterns are a good bet. Streamers fishing has been tough lately but if we get some rain and a bump in flow things could swing the other way. Studs are great idea this time of year as one if starting early will likely be walking on frosty trails. Thanks to Alex McCrickard for the great shots from a productive nymphing session this afternoon. Have a safe turkey day! If you’re on the NCR trail this week you might see a few “on the hoof”.

Please note our Shop Hours:
We are closed on Thanksgiving but the River is always open!
We are open: Friday 10 till 5
Saturday 10 till 4
Sunday 10 till 4
Monday 10 till 5