August Fly Fishing In Western Maryland

The Savage and North Branch of the Potomac rivers were at typical late Summer low flows while fishing last week, so these rougher rivers were much easier to wade.  The North Branch flowing under 200 Cfs was at prime levels for nymphing the deeper slots where many fish concentrated and allowed sight fishing to big fish in shallow riffles. Hopper-dropper rigs were also a great way to fish these levels and effectively cover different types of water. Numerous miles were recently stocked with large rainbows in the 3-6 pound range, and some wild browns in the twenty inch range were visible in certain runs.
Savage River Pocket Water in August
The MD Fisheries biologists were conducting the electroshocking surveys on the Savage River in the mornings, but flows rose and leveled out in the afternoon at 60 Cfs. Blue quills, caddis and midges brought fish to the surface sporadically during the day, but by evening trout were rising in the flat water pools. A highly successful tactic was highsticking the rough pocket water with big dries on long 6x leaders, which amounted to 10-12 fish to the net over a few hours of fishing in the afternoon. Numerous trout quickly erupted on dries in the pocket water, so missing a number of fish was common.  The selective feeders in the pools were challenging midday, but the bright sun didn’t prevent the opportunistic fish in the swift water areas from rising.  The flat water trout were more aggressively taking flies sized 22-26 toward the last half hour before dark each night. On my last day I caught a dozen trout and got the Savage Slam; eleven inch Rainbow and Brook trout, and a seventeen inch Brown.

The latest video includes a huge, rising brown trout feeding on tiny spinners at Noon on the Savage river, a mix of wild fish caught on the Savage, and heavy rainbows on the North Branch.