Washington County, Maryland, February 11, 2009
Another beautiful day with temperatures well above normal for this time of year. I had to pick up the 'little one' at the bus stop so I needed to fish somewhere that would not be too far away and would put me out of rush hour traffic. So it was off to Beaver Creek.

I parked at the Upper Fly Zone and hiked upstream to the hatchery and fished back. Water temperature was 50 degrees and the sun was out. I had on a very light layer when I left the house but I ditched the jacket before starting the walk and even the light shell I was wearing was a bit much for a day that hit a very warm 72 degrees.
The water was running low and clear. I could spot fish on the bottom. Some turned out to be sucker fish but others were definitely trout. Most of the fish were hanging out in the deeper pools, finning behind rocks or in depressions in the stream bed. With the water so clear, I dropped a nymph upstream and steered it into the fish. The presentation had to hit them almost right on the nose because they weren't interested in moving much for food.

I used a two-fly
dropper rig with a size 8 Montana Mud Snake as the primary and a size 16 Hare's Ear nymph as the dropper. Both flies produced fish throughout the day. A particularly effective presentation was to let the flies finish the drift, then let the line go tight. This brings the flies up off the bottom on a slow rise.

When I got back downstream to the 'improved' section of the creek, the trout seemed to be tight to the bank, particularly where there were rocks casting an overhanging shadow. After putting several drifts through the deep runs with no takes, I placed the fly in the current from an upstream position and let it drift downstream, mending line and using the rod tip to keep the flies tight to the rocks. This technique produced fish but hangups on debris were also an issue.

EQUIPMENT: I used 9' 5-weight rod and an assortment of nymphs and streamers.

DIRECTIONS: From I-70 heading towards Hagerstown, take Exit 66 (Boonsboro) and turn left at bottom of ramp onto Mapleville Road (66). Continue down 66 and turn right onto Beaver Creek Road. About 100 yards past Beaver Creek Church Road on your right is the fly fishing parking lot. Follow the signs and instructions.