Millers River Brown Trout Night Fishing

This is the second night on the Millers River this year and all this water we have been receiving this year has kept the Millers river high.Digital CameraLow water conditions below typical year

Photo above shows high water levels

Kempfield Pool Looking Upstream June 27

Normally this time of year you can see the water level much lower at the banks exposing the ground. Not this year the water is up to the grass banks.

First time out July 12, I stuck out due to high water conditions. I felt my flies were not swinging down low enough in the water column.  I fish a two fly dropper system when I fish almost all the time especially at night.

The two flies I was using were two versions of the picket pin two great flies for the Millers River they have all the qualities that fish like. But not that night.


I felt I needed to use a couple flies that would penetrate the deep water and swing in the zone of where the brown trout maybe feeding. I decided upon using bead head woolly buggers the extra weight of the brass beads would give me enough weight to swing deeper in the water column.

Last night I swung by Pete Mallet’s house before going down to the Millers River.

We discussed about a upcoming event to be held at Pete’s house this September for the Millers River Fisherman’s Association members. Keep an eye open for notice in this blog and in your e Mail inbox all members will be contacted for the final details.

Back to getting ready for the nights fishing for those brown trout. I was setting up my fly rod with some new flies in Pete’s garage, away from the Mosquitoes. For some reason or another I could not locate my woolly bugger fly box disappointed and upset I tied on two other flies for my night out on the river.

For a while I have been breeding genetic hackle chickens and some of my chickens provide me with very large spey hackle types of feathers. I tied this fly on below

103_2604It has a peacock herl head, copper wire body for weight and the largest spey type of hackle wound along the body with a dark tail. A very basic fly that pushes water and has a weighted body of copper wire to over come the resistance of the fly rising as it swings through a pool.

The next fly is my favorite a Black Winged Lead Wing Coachman one of my favorite flies for all occasions.

103_2603The leadwing coachman was my end fly and the spey type of fly was the dropper.

I arrived at the waters edge much later than I really wanted to do so, it was already dark and had to gear up in the dark. Not a big deal but sometimes the action starts early as the sun goes down. I missed this opportunity getting to the river late tonight.

Tonight the water was down a few feet but still very high for this time of the year. The mosquitoes were not bad tonight, last week I needed to wear a mosquito head net to fish without being overcome by the mosquitoes biting you, but tonight I went without a net.

All geared up and ready to go I glanced at my watched 9:20pm and the first cast was made. I normally fish at night traditional wet fly style, quarter cast across stream and swing the flies on a tight line as they make their way through the pool.

9:26pm at the end of a swing bang and out of the water a brown trout as it hammered one of my flies. Nice fish and good resistance. I couldn’t wait to see which fly this brown trout took. Nice fish of about 14-16 inches. I just wanted to get this trout back in the water soon as possible after taking a picture.

103_2598The spey type of fly won out this brown trout hammered this fly viciously.

Now back into the water to make some more swings through the pool. 9:33pm a second take this time a very gently take when I was lifting the line preparing to make a new cast.

This brown trout just a little bigger took the leadwing coachman.


These beautiful well colored brown trout are fat and active so they must be doing well in the Millers River feeding and growing.

A few more casts fishing till about 9:50pm with no other takes from the resident brown trout I decided to call it a night.

I noticed the brown trout I catch at night in the Millers River bite very early and fast within an hour from 9-10pm. I have fished till the wee hours of the morning and never found them to continue feeding through the night. Could be just were I fish, no need to waste anymore time fishing the pool once the activity dies.

Generally the fish show themselves if more than a couple of trout are in the pool, so I knew time to go home.

If you are not fishing at night on the Millers River give it a try you never know how you will do. Just fight your fish hard and fast and get them back into the water ASAP to live another day. The fish are not leader shy so use a heavy tippet and release them as quick as you can making sure to revive them.

Any questions or just comment on this blog if you are a night fisherman and wish to exchange ideas.

Take A Boy Night Fishing On The Millers River

Two nights after my first night out fly fishing the Millers River I take my boy out with me to enjoy what I enjoy.

I typically always check the catch and release section of Wendel to see if the fly fisherman are out fishing. The time was around 7:30pm, this night was no different, instead of just 3 cars, about 7 cars were parked in the lot on the left going over the bridge.

Could be the word is out the fishing is good.

Checked Kempfield Pool to see how many are fishing it only 2 fly fisherman this evening. A few fish here and there rising. Not sure how the 2 fly fisherman were doing. Did not see bent rods tonight.

I have my son with me tonight, his first time out to fly fish at night with me. He was a little excited. So off we went to where I fish with him to another section of the river and prepare to do a little night fishing.

A few nights ago the mosquitoes were not bad, but tonight they were so bad I had to place a net over my boys head to make it tolerable to fish.

Generally June is horrible for mosquitoes and tonight was no different.

This year my boy has a new set of hip boots, getting him trained how to wade and give him a little freedom in the water. Normally he just stands about ankle deep with his normal boots that only go below the knees.

Tonight we talk about how sound travels in water faster than air and how he must move his feet gently between steps. Each time we go out he learns a little more of the art of fly fishing, tonight was just another one of those lessons.

We start settling in, still using my 2 fly combo of stimulators on a dropper system, my boy starts his casting. At the moment he is using my 10ft 5wt rod to fish with, I just watch and coach. It is his night to catch the fish.

Its 8:59pm and a few fish start rising a few feet from where my son stands and just above him. The first fish to rise couldn’t of been more than a few feet from him. Dad, my son said, did you see that! I did, I responded but those are not the fish we are hunting, the fish we are looking for have not moved into the pool yet.

For the next 15 mins fish started rising all around him, making him a little uneasy and want to chase the rises. I kept him focused, a little hard for a 11yr old boy. What time is it Dad? It was 9:18pm, still nothing happening for those night time trout.

Tonight a few trains passed by on the tracks above the river. My Boy asks s few questions about the trains to pass the time away.

Hmm, I started doubting we would see some action, normally before 9:30pm something happens.

9:40pm not a sign of the larger fish we are hunting. Dad I am getting some snags or something hitting at the end of the line. Checked the flies a blade of grass on one of the flies. This could be the problem son, out the brace of flies go out again.

Each year I take my boy out I can see his casting improving, that 10ft rod is a little long for him, I restrict the length of the line and he uses two hands to make the cast, but the control of the line with that rod is superb. I have a hard time going back to my 9ft rods because the 10ft rod out performs them for line control.

I start reminiscing of past times with him in the exact spot we are fishing. Dad, Dad!! I’ve got one, quickly checked the time 9:45pm, the magic hour is almost over.

I looked over and the rod is bent in half, the reel starts screeching taking some line upstream. He gains some line back on the reel, this goes back and forth for a few minutes. He is not getting as excited as in the past, I think I was more excited than he was. These are times when a father and son share and never forget.

Finally I have him back up the bank so we can land the fish. The end of the leader is at the tip of the rod, I reach down and ease the fish up to where I can grab the fish. I was pleasantly surprise a very good fish.

Top dropper same yellow stimulator as the previous night.

It was around the 20in. range and had a small kype. I explained to my son the kype identifies the brown trout as a male trout. A few pictures and my son releases the trout. He rocks the brown trout back and forth till it swam off on its own.

9:59pm we Hi 5 it and made few more casts to make sure more were not lurking out there. Just as I suspected just as quick as it happens it turns off.

I explained to my son every trout is a jewel of the river and even thou we just caught one tonight the river delivered and we must count our blessings as fortunate.

Except for the mosquitoes another night on the Millers River was just gorgeous, the moon rising and lighting up the river is an awesome sight to see. Many think it is dark and you cannot see well it really is just the opposite, most of us have decent night vision and it is not that hard to see what is happening.

Tonight driving by the lot only one car is still parked there about 10:30pm I wonder how that person made out, I hope the night was good to them as well.

A quick call to home and my son reliving his experience talking to his Mom about the nice brown trout he caught all by himself. An experience not to soon to forget. 🙂






Night Brown Trout Fishing Millers River Did Not Disappoint

Summer is in full swing now and night fishing for those hefty brown trout is my target. I went down to the Miller’s River catch and release section of Wendel and noticed quite a few cars parked in the left parking lot just after crossing the bridge.

Good sign, with the recent cool nights after the recent heat wave, maybe the fly fishing is good.

I positioned myself just downstream of the Kempfield pool and saw 3 fly fisherman upstream from where I was standing. I noticed a fair amount of rising fish and insect activity floating on the currents of the river.

Since I was too early to start fishing only 8pm, I sat and watched the 3 fly fisherman have a good time catching and releasing trout. Not really sure what was hatching all that mattered the fish were cooperating for these 3 guys.

With 8:30pm approaching it was time for me to go to my night fishing location in another section of the Millers River. As I arrived a few fish were bulging the surface now and then. Not really sure what they were feeding on, good thing was the water was comfortable enough for them to feed before dark.

Those rising fish were not my target for the evening. I fish a floating line with a 12 leader with 2 droppers. Each dropper has a different colored Stimulator, one yellow and one orange. I fish Stimulators because when fished wet they push water and have an excellent silhouette at night the Brown Trout just love.

8:50 pm I ease into the water and start casting and using a wet fly drift, quartering downstream letting the flies swing directly below me. Some times I will inch the flies back or just pickup the line and start a new wet fly drift again. I very rarely fish more line than what I can pickup, generally 12 ft leader and about 20 feet of fly line or shorter.

For night time fishing the fish almost always feed very close to shore. 9:08 pm still nothing. The magic hour between 9 pm and 10 pm is getting heated up with anticipation. What will this year bring for the first night out. Nothing is moving in the pool I checked the time again, 9:13 pm a small bulge shows into the pool. Could it be the predator brown trout have moved into my favorite pool. More waiting.

More cast, more wet fly swings, then that all too familiar strike, a solid take from the first fish of the night season. The fish rolls and moves water that only a larger fish can do. I use a fairly heavy tippet of about 5lbs or better to bring these night fish in quickly with the least amount of stress related to the fight.

Nice fish over 18 in. 9:18 pm for this fish. He took the yellow stimulator on the upper dropper. Great start to a beautiful evening. While trying to release this trout my fingers reached inside to grab the fly and a mouthful of needle sharp teeth grabbed my finger. It always amazes me how many sharp teeth these night brown trout have. You might not be able to see them immediately but you sure can feel them when they bite down.

Quick picture and off he goes. A quick cast and I blundered the cast, I thought , a quick pickup of the line and another brown trout. This boy has a little more weight behind him a few minutes back and forth, a few short runs of the reel, a heart racing with excitement and the fish is landed.

A little bigger than the prior fish maybe 20 in. plus, this brown trout had large spots all over and more of a silver background than the typical sandy yellow color. Off he goes after taking the same yellow stimulator out of his mouth.

A few more cast and again another trout. This trout was very active, after hooking him, he quickly ran upstream putting some slack into my line. I had everything I could do to try and keep a tight line. With barbless hooks slack line can sometimes help barbless hooks fall out of a trouts mouth. I regained my tension and my 10ft 5weight rod bowed in half, this trout started jumping out of the water a few times. Ran line off the reel giving me the indication of a much larger fish than previous.

Finally got him to shore, I have to admit I thought he was much larger for the tussle he gave me. Similar in size to the first brown trout I caught around 18 in., this fish fought quite well. Maybe it has to do with the water temps not being so warm with the cold snap we recently received. Check my watch again 9:36 pm.

Still a few minutes to go before the magic hour ends. I continued fishing till about 9:59pm nothing moving, nothing happening. Just as quickly as I have gotten into a few fish it turns off.

Over the past few years fishing the Millers River at night I have come to accept this river is most productive for this one hour. I don’t know why. I have fished this many times through the night beyond 10 pm. and always ended empty handed for more fish caught after 10 pm.

Most other rivers turn on and off at different times through the night but not the Millers River it appears. Maybe it is the areas I fish, I don’t know. No complaints from me. I count my blessings, a quick ride to the river from where I live. A quick hour of enjoyment and I am home at a very reasonable time to get a good nights sleep with the satisfaction of knowing the Millers River is a great place to fish.

By the way as I was driving out that lot with the parked cars are still there and the fisherman comparing notes, I hope they had as good of time as I did 🙂