Saturday, March 10, 2012

3 Most Important DC Spring Fishing Websites

Its that time of year folks. The days are getting longer, forsythia and cherry trees are in bloom. Girl scout cookies and Cadbury cream eggs are in our bellies. The shad are also here. They arrive with the cherry blossom gapers.

There are three pertinent websites you need to follow for successful shad fly fishing on the Potomac. We are using the data at Little Falls. This is just above where we all fish.
Here they are:

1. United States Geological Survey (USGS) stream flow data.

Use this site to monitor the current stream flow. You don't want to be out fishing for shad if the water is above 6.5 feet. There will be too much water, the fish will be spread out, and there will be lots of debris floating down. 
Use this site to monitor how much 'junk' is in the water. The USGS sends out some sort of beam into the water and depending on how much dissolved particles are in the water, the stream bounces back slower or something like that. What does that mean to you? Mud. The river will be like chocolate milk and the fish won't be able to see your flies.

Last tid bit of this site is water temperature. The consensus on the river is that shad start to arrive once the river is above the 50F degree mark. Use the right hand side of graph for F and the left for C.

2. The next most important site is the National Weather Service (NWS) National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Advanced hydrologic flow data. This basically means what the river level is like today and what it will look like for the next week-how will the river rise or drop depending on the precipitation outlook.

I won't fish it if its above 6.5'. Fletchers won't let boats out if its above 5'. So pay attention, look ahead at the predicitons for the dates you plan to fish.

3. The Shad Cam. This is a camera in a dam down in Richmond. It shows whats swimming upstream. Its not the Potomac but its about a week or so ahead of us. So if the fish are thick down there on a Monday, you can bet they will be thick up here by Saturday.

If you need some s had flies, shoot me an e-mail


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