Stilesville saves the day.
Woke up this morning to the disturbing chart above. Notice the spike after midnight July 11th. A band of thunderstorms passed through last night and some heavy rain fell across the southern tier and the Catskills. After swilling down 2 cups of coffee, I decided to venture forth anyhow, but after crossing a high and discolored Oquaga Creek and then seeing a murky river at Hale Eddy, I knew there was only one other choice – the Stilesville fishing access above Deposit. The river there, above the junction with Oquaga Creek, was pretty close to gin-clear and COLD. I didn’t take a temperature reading, but I’m guessing temps were in the low 40’s. My legs and feet numbed to the point where I probably looked like a drunk sailor as I waded the river.
As I fished to rising browns, I couldn’t help but hear the distinctive calls of fledgling bald eagles as they goaded their mother (or father) to feed them. There’s a very tall white pine along the far shore that has a nest high up in it the size of a jacuzzi. Near the nest, a distinctive mature bald eagle perched, seemingly ignoring 2 circling fledglings.
Later in the day I witnessed mother (or father) bringing home something in its talons. The two mottled fledglings followed the parent into the nest and cajoled and nagged for food.
I fished the far bank and missed setting the hook on two good fish that rose to my tan caddis. I did end up landing one diminutive brown, a 6″ youngster with beautiful spots and a game attitude. It was good to be on the river…