This week was our annual family vacation in the Adirondacks. For the last 10 years we have been coming to Indian Lake NY to rest and play. One of my treats on our vacation is that I get a day to go Fly Fishing. The first year I came up here I hired a guide to get a lay of the land. I quickly learned that the Indian River was a good bet for stocked rainbows. Every year it produced a good number of fish.
This year has been quite different. We have had a long stretch of warm weather in NY State and the Adirondacks have not been immune. After heading out to fish with my father-in-law, we found out just how hot it had been. We went to the Indian River in the morning after a rainfall the night before. With the Indian River being a tailwater and a cool rain the night before we thought that fishing conditions would be just right. Well we were wrong. Bug activity was strong (lots of caddis) but no rising fish. When we did coax a fish to the top it was always an 8″ smallmouth bass. After taking a water temp reading we found out we were looking at 70 plus degree water!
After calling it quits for the day I decided I would go back the next day to see if water temps and fish activity changed. They didn’t and I continued to catch 8″ smallmouth bass. After looking towards deeper pools and fishing with a wet fly I was able to pull in a small rainbow who seemed quite lethargic.
I ran into someone from the NYS DEC today and they told me that they did stock the Indian River this year. So my only conclusion can be that a large number of trout are schooling up in larger pools or have died. Not the kind of Fly Fishing I was looking forward to on vacation this year but my larger concern is for the longer term health of the Indian River for trout fishing.