Small Mouth on the Hudson

August 3 – North Creek, NY

Streamside Fly Shop is on 28N in North Creek and is an eclectic mixture of fly fishing and Adirondack furniture-making with a bit of backwoods charm mixed in. Gary floated with Tom last year and had a 40 fish day which included trout, small mouth and even a giant pike. He kept telling me about it all winter and we finally made a date to do it together.

I met Gary at his lake house and we caught up with each other before heading to town to check in with our guide. The river was low, although the rafting companies were all riding the bubble that is provided through a release at the dam on the Indian River.  We were heading downstream, toward and through Warrensburg, past where the Schroon River comes into the Hudson.

Tom keeps the cost of his trips low by enlisting his clients to provide the shuttle to the take out and in launching the craft where there is no ramp. He also brings his best friend along – Winnie, the 2 year old German Short-hair Pointer.

Our plan was for me to use his 6 weight, 10 foot Orvis fly rod from the front seat and Gary to spin with either a chartreuse or orange Rapala from the back. Tom provides all tackle, lures, flies and lunch. He had me start with an articulated sculpin pattern and then switched me to a chartreuse and white Clouser, exactly like the ones I use at home for striped bass. It produced right after Gary’s plug brought in the first bass.

With The river low, Gary being in the aft seat was our “pusher.” He cheerfully fulfilled the role, jumping out and shoving the raft through the low spots. The water temperature was comfortably warm, which is why the trout were absent this day.

Tom knew the holes and runs that were going to produce and we worked them all thoroughly, bringing 1.5 to 3 pound bass to the net all day long. Another accomplishment of note is that we didn’t lose a fly or a plug in spite of some close to the bank encounters.

Gary’s bass of the day (photo below) was at the Warrensburg bridge and mine was almost at the takeout.  A big boy rose to the frog imitation and missed. As Tom rowed back to the spot, I cast short but he came and tried again.  The third time was the charm and he was on. A big boy of a solid 3 pounds.

So if you find yourself in North Creek and want to see what the Hudson has to offer, give Tom Welsh a call at (518) 251 4038. I think you will be happy you did.

Gary’s Hudson River small mouth

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