by Tom Welch
Registered Maine Guide
Magalloway Guide Services offers guided fishing trips in northwestern Maine and southern Maine. Founder Tom Welch, a Registered Maine Guide, focuses on fly fishing excursions on rivers and streams in the Rangeley, Maine, Region, and in the Cumberland and York County Regions of Maine.
Clients can enjoy a range of fishing experiences, from the challenging waters of the Magalloway River to the more gentle but nonetheless productive waters of the Upper Kennebago River in the Rangeley area. In Southern Maine, clients can enjoy productive trout and bass fishing in the Presumpscot River, the Saco River and the Royal River, among others.
We are in the midst of the summer fishing season. I am very much a seasonal person, as you can probably tell by my blogging history. For me, mid-season is a celebration, a time when fish are active; insects are popping through the meniscus, and at this period of year, there are more varieties of fish food than you can shake a wading stick at.
I prefer dry fly fishing, so it is particularly significant for me to have this ever-so-brief window of time in which to do what I enjoy best. I say brief, as the weather and water conditions dictate the quality of this discrete element of the sport.
Though we got off to a slow start, the surface fishing is excellent from Rangeley to Windham (though the water is warming in the latter, and smallies are apparently beginning to move up into the Presumpscot.)
I just returned from Grants Camps at Kennebago Lake, where there was one of the more prolific and persistent green/brown drake hatches I’ve seen in 15 years. We landed countless fish among the three of us (wife Lin, friend and fellow guide Dick Buffum, and myself), including several 15-inches (and fat!) and over; salmon ranging from 14 to up to 17 inches. All with drake patterns, caddis, and the always successful Hornberg. Much of our success was on an emerger pattern I developed 7 or 8 years ago, called the Welch PTE (pheasant tail emerger). I’ll include the recipe below.
I and others noticed some odd behavior on the part of the trout, particularly, wherein they would rise and “slap” down a surface fly and then eat it as it submerged. That meant that many strikes were “misses” because the fish weren’t actually trying to eat the fly. The emerger pattern worked overall, because they were grabbing for it. Those turned out to be perfect lip-hooks.
Then there’s a story about a loon and a very, very large brook trout (perhaps one of the biggest I’ve ever hooked in that lake), but I’ll save that for another post.
Here’s the recipe for the Welch PTE:
Welch PT Emerger
Thread: Black (fine, 8-0)
Hook: Mustad # C53S or Klinkhamer Special hook, 14-20
Body: Pheasant tail, wound loosely, leaving tail
Underwing: CDC; natural / or Beige/Blue Dun
Wing: Polypropylene Floating Yarn (LLBean; Cabelas)
Antennae Mallard duck; 4 6 fibers; Gray
Collar: WAPSI Superfine Dubbing Adams Gray /or natural Gr Muscrat
Note: above is the article on my fly published in ‘Fly Fisher’ Magazine a few years ago (bottom article).
Magalloway Guide Services can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or our Facebook page at Magalloway Guide Services ( https://www.facebook.com/pages/Magalloway-Guide-Services/713288905423592. ) Don’t wait; the calendars are filling up.
About Me and M.G.S.
Maine Guide Tom Welch of Magalloway Guide Services offers guided fly fishing trips in northwestern Maine and southern Maine. Tom, the founder and a Registered Maine Guide, focuses on fly fishing excursions on rivers and streams in the Rangeley, Maine, Region, and in the Cumberland and York County Regions of Maine. Clients can enjoy a range of fishing experiences, from the challenging waters of the Magalloway River to the more serene but productive waters of the Upper Kennebago River in the Rangeley area. In Southern Maine, clients can enjoy productive trout and bass fishing in the Presumpscot River, the Saco River and the Royal River, among others.
Tom is an experienced fly fisher and guide, and will supply gear, if needed, to clients for river/stream fishing. Parties are generally limited to two people.
In addition to fly fishing, Magalloway Guide Services offers other types of fishing experiences. Registered Guide and MGS member Dick Buffum offers guided fishing trips on the Saco River for species ranging from brown trout to bass and more.