Category Archives: news

the news section is for shop events and programs

Gunpowder River Fishing Report

The Gunpowder River has been flowing at 263 cfs for the past 4 days and is at 57 degrees. With the higher and slightly warmer water the fish have been on the move. Higher flows mean excellent terrestrial and streamer fishing. We suggest using hopper, ant, and beetle patterns. Streamer patterns in black have also been very productive. Patterns such as the Gonga and Bond’s Dragon have been very effective. Make sure to stay safe out there while wading-don’t plan on crossing at these flows. Tight lines!

End of August Shop Schedule

With everyone, even staff (my hat’s off to the guys pictured above- Dave, Jacob, Hudson, and Peter) who were so great to work with during the summer season. Great News-Hudson and Dave will be continuing into the fall! If you need to place an order online before September, we’ll still be shipping in-stock products including gift certificates during this time. Thanks to all of you who have supported the shop this season through some wildly strange weather! I gather that between us, we’re all trying to get some fishing in before school starts so we will have limited hours through the end of August as follows

The shop will be open from 10-3 on:

Monday the 21st
Friday the 25th
Saturday the 26th
Monday the 28th

Get Ready For a Trip Out West!

This past week I was lucky enough to fish Yellowstone National Park and many of the surrounding waterways. This was my fourth time visiting the park and it was for sure one to remember. After fishing 16 different bodies of water in the area I am sure on what is necessary to have a great trip.

A good pair of waders is key to an enjoyable fishing trip. Leaky, worn, or uncomfortable waders can hinder your maneuverability, create unnecessary wet clothing, and cut your fishing trips short. I have been using the Patagonia Swiftcurrent waders this summer and they provide the perfect balance of comfort, breathability, and durability. Heavy enough to protect you from the cold water and light enough to not be sweating buckets. Even more important are the boots. You need to ensure that your boots are fresh rubber or equipped with studs because the currents, rocks, and algae make for difficult wading on many of the rivers.

Your rod is another major factor to your success while fishing. Depending on the size of the water you’re fishing the rod needs to change. Larger water like the Madison River and many of the lakes a 5 or 6 weight rod is ideal. With larger fish and stronger currents, you need a rod with a little extra backbone to turn the heads of fish. Larger rods also help fight the wind commonly found out on western streams. If you’re looking to fish smaller water like the firehole, gibbon, or water similar to them a 4 or a 5 weight is ideal. Rods like the G. Loomis NRX, Scott Centric, or Echo Trout all have a fast action to battle these tough fish and conditions.

A large Yellowstone Lake Cutthroat caught on an articulated streamer.

The last and possibly most important is your fly selection. From the biggest streamers to the smallest dries, it is important to be prepared for any situation on the water. We can set you up with the perfect assortment of flies for your trips out west and cater them towards the bodies of water you plan on fishing.

Backwater Angler Employees

Dave, Jacob, Hudson, and Peter (left to right)


Dave Matthews with Backwater Angler. I enjoy helping out at the shop as much as my schedule allows. I grew up close to the Gunpowder River, and still live nearby. However, most of my early years of fishing were spent fishing Prettyboy reservoir for perch and bass. It wasn’t until more recently that I picked up fly fishing.

Jacob – I began my fishing on the Gunpowder and its tributaries. I started fly fishing when I was 11 Years old and have now worked at the shop for the last six years. My experience at Backwater includes both in the shop and guiding on the water. This is my second year guiding for the shop and it has been a wonderful experience. I have experience fishing throughout Maryland, Pennsylvania, Montanna and lots of fishing down in Florida while at school.


Hudson- I grew up 5 miles from the river right here in Monkton. I’ve had a rod in my hand since I was 5 years old. growing up on the river has helped me learn the behavior of these fish and the bugs they eat. This October I plan to begin guiding for the shop after working here for 4 years. I look forward to getting people out on the river and bring fish to net.

Peter- I grew up in Owings mills Maryland and have been fishing since I was 6 years old.  My experiences with the Gunpowder begin with me and my dad thoroughly unknowledgeable stumbling over our feet trying to catch trout. It took us 2 years before we caught our first trout and by then we were far from better fishermen as we refused to learn from our faults. Since then, I’ve improved and gotten an intimate knowledge or the river and its inhabitants. I hope to bring others into the sport alongside passing down some of my experiences.

Scientific Angler Leader Sale!

A look at our extensive selection of Scientific Angler leaders and tippet.

Through July we are going to be running a sale on Scientific Angler leaders. We will be selling 4 packs for the price of three. This is a great value and helps you stock up on leaders for your summer fishing or trips in the future. The leaders are very high quality and come in a variety of sizes and styles for your needs.

Stop by the shop and stock up on all your fishing necessities.

June Gunpowder River Stream Report























The flows on the Gunpowder River remain at 74 cfs out of Prettyboy dam with temperatures in the low 50s and high 40’s in the morning. The increased flow has improved our fishing and fish a little less wary of us. Nymphing has been very successful throughout the day, but particularly good in the mornings. Most of our success has come on small caddis and mayfly patterns. Patterns such as the Pheasant Tail, Prince Nymph, Hare’s Ear, and Iron Lotus have been most effective.

If you want to fish streamers now is the time. While the water is higher the streamer bite has been more productive, however getting out early will still improve your chances with them. Fish are willing to chase dries on the surface in the warm afternoons and evenings. Any Sulphur or caddis dry has been working well as long it is in the 14-20 size range. We recommend fishing lighter 5x to 6x with the larger dries and nymphs and 6x to 7x with the smaller flies. Tight lines.

Mid June Stream Report

A quality Brown Trout landed on Sulphur dry during a guide trip this week.

On the evening of June 16th The flows on the Gunpowder River raised to 74 cfs out of Prettyboy dam with temperatures in the low 50s. The increase in flow should improve our fishing and make fish a little less wary of us. Nymphing has been very successful throughout the day, but particularly good in the mornings. Most of our success has come on midge patterns, but imitating caddis or mayfly has been productive as well. If you want to fish streamers now is the time. While the water is higher the streamer bite should be more productive, however getting out early will still improve your chances with them.

The sulfurs are still prevalent throughout the afternoons. We will see caddis mixed in earlier in the day so fishing a caddis with a small nymph dropper is effective. As the afternoon progresses you will see lots of Sulphurs in the upper sections of the river. It is important to have a variety of Sulphur patterns as the fish catch on to your imitations quick. The evenings are also fishing well with dries as you often can find a spinner fall just before dusk. Get out and enjoy the river!



Best Fly Lines on the Market

airflo Ridge Tech 2.0 Takeover

Airflo’s ridge 2.0 technology has been received incredibly well by anglers. This technology offers all the benefits of textured lines without the drawbacks. These new lines will generate a greater line speed and shoot smoothly through the guides without the tacky whistle of textured lines.

Airflo offers a variety of lines to meet the needs of each fisherman. The universal taper is the go-to line that will get the job done no matter the scenario. The power taper has an aggressive front taper that helps with turning over nymph rigs, large dry flies, and streamers. The tactical taper is perfect for your “dry fly” rod. The thin diameter and gentle taper offer exceptional delicacy, perfect for those picky fish. The streamer max will help you up your streamer game. the short sinking head helps get flies deep even in the strongest currents while still offering great cast-ability. Perfect for any lake or larger river fishing. Stop in the shop to check them out.

Airflo Ridge 2.0 Streamer Max | BACKWATER ANGLER

Airflo Ridge 2.0 Power Taper | BACKWATER ANGLER

Airflo Ridge 2.0 Tactical Taper | BACKWATER ANGLER

Airflo Ridge 2.0 Universal Taper | BACKWATER ANGLER


airflo Ridge tech 2.0 tactical taper 5wt displayed on an Abel Super used by staff member Hudson Weber




The Perfect Father’s Day Gifts!

With Father’s Day steadily approaching Backwater Angler is a great place to look for that perfect gift for a father in your family. Whether they are a seasoned fisherman or just looking for a new hobby, you can’t go wrong with a gift certificate to Backwater Angler. You can specify these certificates for guide trips, fly fishing schools, or store credit so that they can choose just what they need for the next time they’re out fishing.

Backwater Angler Gift Certificate | BACKWATER ANGLER

Backwater Angler Guide Trip Gift Certificate | BACKWATER ANGLER

Backwater Angler Fly Fishing School Gift Certificate | BACKWATER ANGLER

An assorted box of flies is another great gift as fisherman can never have too many flies. These flies can be specified or employees at Backwater can pick a selection for you.

Personalized Fly Selection | BACKWATER ANGLER

A Fisherman’s bag is essential to their excursions on the water. The sling style packs are great at maintaining mobility while also having easy access to the pockets in the bag. The packs come in waterproof and fabric materials based on the needs of the user.

Fishpond Thunderhead Submersible Sling | BACKWATER ANGLER

Patagonia Stealth Sling | BACKWATER ANGLER

Another great option is a new fly line. Recently Airflo release a new generation of fly lines in the Ridge 2.0 series. These lines are perfect for any freshwater needs and are no doubt the top of the line.

Airflo Ridge 2.0 Universal Taper | BACKWATER ANGLER

Airflo Ridge 2.0 Tactical Taper | BACKWATER ANGLER

Airflo Ridge 2.0 Power Taper | BACKWATER ANGLER

Airflo Ridge 2.0 Streamer Max | BACKWATER ANGLER

If you’re really looking to spoil a father in your family the best place to look is in the rod rack. We have a great assortment of rods for both fresh and saltwater at a range of different prices. Check out the online store, give the shop a call, or stop by the shop to find what you need!


Early June Stream Report



The Gunpowder is flowing at 37 CFS and swinging between 46F and 56F throughout the day. Despite the low water the Gunpowder has been fishing excellently. Throughout the mornings we have had lots of success both nymphing and swinging wet flies through the deeper pools and riffles. Finding the faster water will greatly improve your efforts as the fish concentrate there to find easier meals.

A customer fishing a sulphur hatch during a guide trip this week.

The afternoons have been wonderful on the gunpowder. Once the water begins to warm up the sulphurs will begin to hatch in rapid succession. Fishing a long leader is essential when the water is low because it will reduce the number of fish spooked and improve presentation. We have been fishing patterns such as Parachute Sulphur emerger, Parachute Sulphur, Partridge Yellow, Pheasant Tail, and Sparkle Caddis Emerger. Using lighter tippet will yield better results. we recommend fishing at least 6x.