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Fishing and kids' activities

Judy Van Put
Posted 7/12/22

This past weekend, the second weekend in July, had to be the best weekend of the year! The weather was just perfect for outdoor activities – warm sun with cooling breezes and no rainstorms to …

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Fishing and kids' activities


This past weekend, the second weekend in July, had to be the best weekend of the year! The weather was just perfect for outdoor activities – warm sun with cooling breezes and no rainstorms to cancel or dampen plans.

Area rivers and streams are a bit lower than average for this time of year; just after the 4th of July, the Beaverkill at Cooks Falls dipped below the average flow of 180 cubic feet per second and by this writing, Monday morning, was recorded as flowing at 128 cfs. The Median average flow for this date over 108-years of record keeping was 170 cubic feet per second.

Best fishing during this period of summer is in the mornings, especially before the sun is warming the water, and in the evenings. If you are fishing our free-flowing streams, do carry a water thermometer, and if water temperatures are up into the 70s, look for a cooler place to fish, such as the headwaters that are likely somewhat shaded, or the tailwater streams below the NYC reservoirs.

Fly hatches for this middle-of-July period include tiny Blue-Winged Olives, small Sulphurs and the larger Light Cahills and darker Isonychias. Watch for Spinner falls in the evenings, and be sure to match your tippet size to the size of the fly you’re using for the best presentation (Smaller tippets such as 6X or 7X for small flies, such as #18s and #20s, on up to larger tippets of 4X or 5X for larger flies, such as #12s and #14s and so on.)

In addition to heading over to the tailwater fisheries, whose cool temperature bottom releases provide a good respite for the trout and great fishing for the angler, it’s also a nice time of year to fish lakes and ponds and the NYC Reservoirs.

I remember many a summer’s day and evening spent with my Dad, fishing from his boat. It was peaceful, relaxing and a pleasant diversion from the hustle-bustle of our busy lives. The scenery was unlike any other –with wide expanses of blue water and sky, white puffy clouds and so much greenery lining the shores. There were birds, ducks and wildlife and every once in a while, a bald eagle soaring overhead. The thrill of a fish ‘taking’ and feeling it at the end of your line was heightened by the anticipation of wondering which species of fish we would reel in… but best of all, it gave us time to talk and spend uninterrupted time together. Sometimes I reminisce on those special days, and wish I had one more opportunity to fish with him, so that I could thank him for instilling in me the love of fishing, and share with him how much it has added to the many pleasures in my life.         

Wondering how to get youngsters involved in fishing? It’s a great time to begin, as now that school is out, there are a number of fishing-related activities coming up. This Saturday, July 16, Dette Flies, 13 Main Street, Livingston Manor, is sponsoring a free Kids Fishing Clinic from 1 pm – 4 pm. This is a great opportunity for youngsters to learn about fly-fishing and the environment. There will be activities ranging from fly-casting, fly-tying, river science activities, fish prints and coloring for young people to learn a bit about fly fishing in a fun, outdoor environment.

And the Catskill Fly-Fishing Center & Museum, 1031 Old Route 17, Livingston Manor, is also offering a series of workshops on improving your fly-fishing skills. Coming up on Saturday, July 23 from 10 am – 1:00 pm, is a Casting Workshop for Skill Improvement, taught by FFI certified instructors Gail & Paul Gallo. Various other workshops for children and adults will be held throughout the summer. Visit their website at https://cffcm.com/eventscalendar.


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