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  • Matt Reilly


For the better part of February, we've been battling high water in southwest Virginia, keeping us off the big river and prepping for spring and the great smallmouth and wild trout fishing that comes with it. Despite snow and frigid temps coming this weekend, in just three-and-a-half weeks, spring will be upon us. If you want to get on the river or creek this spring, don't hesitate to reach out, as dates are booking up, quickly.

After the water dropped, mid-month, we were able to get on the mountain streams. Numbers of fish can be taken now nymphing. Dismal days, this time of year, and on some of our more productive streams, can offer some dry fly fishing in the form of Blue Quills and BWOs. Streamflows are still a tad high, and streamer fishing will continue to be viable in coming weeks, provided we get the spurts of rain that are in the forecast.

I was able to get out and run a few musky trips late this month, and despite difficult conditions--high skies, wind, and cold temps--we were able to get some fish to play. John, from Abingdon, put his first musky on the fly in the boat, this week, after it crushed his fly on the figure-8 from beneath the boat. On tough days, it can be a challenge keeping first-time musky anglers focused and figure-eighting intentionally, and so I love having people catch fish on blind figure-eights to really drive home the lesson that they can engage and trigger fish, even when you can't see one following!

My musky trips for the rest of the week are transitioning into trout trips, due to extreme weather coming our way. I'm incredibly thankful for clients who are versatile and willing to brave the elements in search of adventure and fish, particularly this time of year, as you are just as liable to have 60-degree temps and sun as you are snow, wind, and 20-degree temps.

I do still have a few musky and trout dates available for the winter season. If you'd like to try your hand at chasing giant toothy fish, or throwing flies at feisty wild trout, let's get in touch and start planning the adventure!

I look forward to fishing with you!

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