It seems as though winter has been tenacious this year and is reluctant to release us from its icy grip. We had to contend with the blustery winds and snow flurries again on Sunday, following …
It seems as though winter has been tenacious this year and is reluctant to release us from its icy grip. We had to contend with the blustery winds and snow flurries again on Sunday, following Thursday and Friday’s flooding rains; by the wee hours of Friday morning the Little Beaverkill had surged high enough to spill over its banks, sending muddy waters onto Pearl and Main Streets in Livingston Manor. The Beaverkill at Cooks Falls had crested at just about 20,000 cubic feet per second – and its waters rose more than 13 feet above the gauging station, three feet above flood stage. The median average flow for that date, April 8, was just about 1090 cfs over 107-years of record-keeping.
Fortunately, the weather forecast for this week looks a bit more spring-like, with most nights staying above freezing and no snow in the immediate forecast. Water levels are receding back to a more normal level and hopefully if temperatures warm enough we’ll begin to see some early-season hatches. For now, fishing below the surface will still be most productive, using larger and more visible nymphs or streamers that will be seen in high, discolored water.
Trout fishers are abuzz over the new trout fishing regulations and lamenting about how confusing they are. There are still no printed copies of the new regulations available; only by searching online were we able to figure out which streams and sections of streams were Wild Premier, Wild Quality, Stocked-Extended, Wild and Stocked, or followed the Statewide inland stream regulations. A call in to Liberty Home & Garden on Sunday revealed that the DEC has contacted license issuing agents saying that they hope to have printed copies out by the end of April. In the meantime, one retired biologist complained that you need to take your computer with you to figure out the rules and regs for where you want to fish! However, anglers can look up a digital form on the website:
https://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/fishing.html; following is a preview of what is posted:
On page 2, “About this Guide” it states, “This guide is a summary that is intended for convenience only. For a complete reference, consult New York State Environmental Conservation Law (ECL) and Title 6 of the Codes, Rules and Regulations of the State of New York (NYCRR). Copies can be reviewed online at:
public.leginfo.state.ny.us/lawssrch. cgi?NVLWO: for ECL
www.dec.ny.gov/regs/2494.html for NYCRR”
In my research, I didn’t find this guide to be “convenient” at all - it is quite confusing and lengthy; and instead of starting at headwaters and moving downstream to describe a river’s regulations as in the past, the new guide has you beginning downstream and working your way upstream – except for a section of the Beaverkill in Region 4, where you begin upstream and work downstream! In the interest of space, we will just cover the regulations on the Willowemoc and Beaverkill.
On page 3, How To Use This Guide, we are told to check, “To see if the water you plan to fish fits into one of the categories. Waters with Special Regulations by DEC Region are covered on pages 7-46.”
However, Statewide Seasons and Limits apply, “If the water you’re fishing or the species you’re fishing for isn’t listed in any of the above section.”
So we scroll down and find Region 3 Special Regulations waters, on page 11. Only lakes/ponds/reservoirs are listed there. It would appear that Statewide rules and regs would apply to the Willowemoc and Beaverkill. However, we need to find out which classification these waters fall under. Continuing on to page 47, we find Inland Trout Stream Special Regulations, and the statement, “Trout stream reaches categorized as Wild or Stocked are managed using statewide inland trout stream regulations (back to page 4). Regulations for other categorized stream reaches are listed below: “Stocked-Extended (SE) and Wild Quality (WQ Categories)
And now, on to the streams:
And for those who continue out of Sullivan County to fish the Beaverkill in Region 4, downstream of Roscoe, the regulations continue:
So there you have it, directly from the DEC website. Hopefully by the end of the month the printed paper guides will be available, we’ll be able to figure this all out and will be spending more time Streamside.
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