Saturday, April 7, 2012

Opening Day Early Morning Trout Fishing among Hills Catching Plenty Trout

We fished for about an hour-and-a-half this morning, all to hold my son's interest. Instead of fishing our local river, the North Branch Raritan flowing through our hometown, Bedminster, we rode out to Lambertville, stopped in Stockton to get coffee (Matt asleep), and over the Wickecheoke Creek State Highway 29 bridge, turned right and headed up CR 519 to Locatong Creek.

Sunny and chilly, I had noticed ice formations on the hood of my car loading up earlier, but no matter, the air calm and slowly warming, above all streams in perfect shape invited us in. I think perhaps next year we'll fish for hours because my son felt impressed by our success. We haven't done so well on the North Branch Opening Day, and I really want to wander around these hills again.

Maybe not as interesting as those to the north, these lower ranges of the Highlands, if technically they aren't that--I'm not certain--are part of my exploration, or reorientation since I spent a lot of time here between Lambertville and Milford in my teens. Once I got my driver's license, I used to drive my dad's BWM four speed around tight, rolling turns up here a lot, up there from the vantage of Lawrence, and catch hundreds of trout.

Not much further north, the Pohatcong rushes to the Delaware and the Musconetcong River just above. But my brother Rick discovered the Pohatcong and must have caught close to a thousand trout between himself and his friend Dennis. With those two streams you know you're in the Highlands.

So three trout for Matt and 17 for his dad, 20 total, and enough for a great dinner tonight and more in the freezer, although we did not take two limits. I was just too tired to fix a late breakfast. I really need to get to bed early before getting up early. Matt called his little 9 1/2-incher too small and put it back.

Plenty trout will be in the streams this spring, but very, very few holdover in these Hunterdon County streams and these very few that do apparently remain dependent on a very few groundwater seepages or springs during summer. I've seen it happen in Stony Brook, Mercer County with spring water five inches deep in a little backwater off the main flow. Three trout in August with their dorsal fins virtualy out of the water.

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