Stream Information:

Ridley Creek

(Updated 6/1/17)


Tan Caddis, #14-16, pupa and adult patterns

Olive Caddis, #16-18, pupa and adult patterns

Pheasant Tail nymph, #16 and smaller

Blue Wing Olive, emerger and dun, #18-22

Rusty Spinner, #18-22

Little Sulphur (E. dorothea), nymph, emerger, dun and spinner, #16-18

Light Cahill, nymph, emerger, dun and spinner, #12-14

Craneflies, #16

Walt’s Worm, #16-20

Olive Zebra Midge, #16 and smaller

Black Zebra Midge, #16 and smaller

Al’s Rat, #22

Griffith’s Gnat, #22-26

Various midge patterns, adults and pupae, #20 and smaller

Carpenter ants, dry or wet, #14-18

Beetles, black or brown, #14-18

Inchworm patterns, #12-16


We have been having, for the most part, an unusually cool and wet spring season.  This will extend our local trout fishing well into June.  Hatches are tending to run late as well.  It’s difficult to predict what may emerge and when.  All of this makes for very interesting fishing, with many fascinating and potentially thorny problems for the angler to solve.  Under these conditions, it will pay to have your fly box well-stocked for any hatches of aquatic insects you may encounter, as well as for the terrestrial insects which will become increasingly important as the weather inevitably starts to warm up.

The wise angler will also have change-up flies available for times when no hatch activity is apparent.  Streamers, including both imitative and attractor patterns, can move a large trout that has seen a parade of insect imitations go by and perhaps been stung by a few.  Larger bead-head nymphs serve the same purpose.

As our local streams drop to typical summer levels in the coming weeks the trout fishing season will effectively come to an end—with the exception of spring-fed streams like Valley Creek, which remain cool enough to fish all summer.  Once water temperatures exceed 70 degrees for a substantial portion of each day, surviving stocked trout are under stress.  Each angler must make a personal decision about the ethics of targeting trout during the summer months, especially when they are laid up in a thermal refuge provided by a spring seep or cold tributary.

Why not change gears and fish for bass and panfish during the summer?  When the water is warm, fish for warmwater fish.  Seems obvious, doesn’t it?     




Various Woolly Buggers and other streamers, #4-10

Cork or foam poppers and sliders, #4-8

Dahlberg Divers and other hair bugs, #2-10

Unweighted soft hackle wet flies, #10-12


Fishing for Largemouth Bass, Smallmouth Bass, and an array of panfish is now well under way in area lakes, ponds, rivers and streams.   At present the bass spawn is behind schedule due to cooler than normal temperatures.  As of last weekend bass were still pre-spawn in most local waters, but that period is nearly at an end now as the fish start to build and settle onto their nests.  Warmwater fishing will come on like gangbusters as day length and water temperatures increase this month. 


Most of the small to medium-sized streams in our area contain good populations of bass and panfish that will respond eagerly to flies.  It’s like the proverbial box of chocolates, you never know what you’re going to get.  You might catch a Redbreast Sunfish, one of several other sunfish species, a Rock Bass, a Fallfish, a Smallmouth Bass, or even a holdover trout.  It’s an interesting game to see how many different species you can score on a given day.

You can use your trout tackle and larger trout flies for this fishing, although you should add a few cork or foam-bodied poppers and sliders to your fly box for surface fishing.  Conventional feather-and-fur dry flies are too hard to keep floating when you are catching eager sunnies one after another. 


Warmwater fish, particularly sunfish species, are prone to swallow small flies when they are on an aggressive bite.  If fish are taking your flies too deeply, go to a larger size.  It’s amazing how large a hook a Bluegill can get into it’s little mouth.


Carp fishing is becoming increasingly popular with fly fishers, and our area provides numerous opportunities to pursue this challenging sport.  Check out some of the numerous websites devoted to fly fishing for carp, then come on in to The Sporting Gentleman for some tips about where to go, and get geared up for an exciting chance to hook and land some of these big, powerful fighters.