Although I have done a bit of travelling around the west coast I had until this last week never been east of the Rocky Mountain states, so when the chance arose to join my Dad and sister on a trip to the east coast at the end of October, I jumped on it. The trip would see us heading to several states and while it wasn't a fishing trip per-say, I did make sure that I would at least get a little time in on the water while there.
As fishing went I planned on checking out some smaller streams in Vermont where we would be staying for some native brook trout. So after flying into JFK in New York and driving across a few states we found ourselves in Northern Vermont on the edge of the Green Mountains. As this area was completely foreign to me I made one of my first stops the local fly shop. However it was a slightly depressing visit as, I don't think I have ever been in a shop were they were less excited about the fishing. The main reason was Hurricane Irene which had swept through the area over a month prior, but combined with the fall rains had still left the rivers high and swollen waters. Luckily the smaller waters sounded to be at least slightly fishable even if the staff didn't sound so interested in them, so I picked up a few flies and headed on my way.
The next morning I got up early and headed on my way to check out some of the local waters. The first stream that I fished was a beautiful freestone river, but was still so chalky from run-off that I didn't spend much time there before moving on to something smaller. Although the next stream that I picked had picked was more of a random choice than anything, with I stumbled on one of the more beautiful places on the trip.
Fall colors on the road to the creek
With the fall colors in full effect the road with was a tunnel brightly colored leaves and the short hike into the creek was a different experience from any in the rain socked Pacific Northwest. The stream was a still high, but definitely fishable so I rigged up my 1wt with a nymph and soft hackle dropper and started working my way upstream.
The fishing was definitely not lights out and after working my way upstream I had only caught one small brook trout that I failed to get a picture of and have missed a handful of others. However the experience was more important than the fishing and the stream had a unique character compared to those I am used too. The land also had an older more settled feel a about it, a fact made more apparent by the random rock walls that had been built a long the stream in days past.
One of the walls along the creek
After cover a mile or two of stream I started my way back downstream and while drifting a nymph through a pocket spotted a decent brookie inspecting my fly. Although the fish didn't take on the first cast, I made another allowing the soft hackle trailer to swing across the pool and hooked the fish. Which ended up being a beautiful brook trout of perhaps 8".
A native brook trout
Another look at the stream
With that fish I called it an end my day on the water and figured I might as well call it a successful and enjoyable outing. I didn't get another chance to hit the water on the the trip, but had an enjoyable week taking in the sights and history on the other side other country.