The West Branch of the Delaware River, in the western Catskill Mountains, is often said to be a notch or two above other eastern trout streams. The appeal of this tailwater lies in healthy wild brown and rainbow trout populations, known to be some of the strongest on the East Coast. Its trout are also reputed for testing the skills of the most seasoned trout fly anglers. Not all days spent on this river are successful, which makes every fish hooked — and hopefully released — even more special and memorable.
I was lucky enough to net a few with the guidance of Jeremy Horn, Ron Chiavacci and Frank Trojanowicz, three accomplished fly anglers whose passion for the Upper Delaware and its wild trout is only rivaled by the steelhead runs of upstate New York. My story and photography of our days on the river appears in the May/June 2016 issue of Eastern Fly Fishing magazine, which is also available in PDF.
For a stay on the Upper Delaware, I recommend Dream Catcher Lodge in Deposit, NY, the most recent of the fly-fishing resorts that border the West Branch of the Delaware River. With nine riverside cabins and a lodge, Dream Catcher Lodge offers a private access to a prime stretch of the river. It also features a boat ramp that can be used as the starting or ending point of float trips when conditions allow.
Photo: Frank Trojanowicz (standing) and Ron Chiavacci on the West Branch of the Delaware River, NY/PA. © Christophe Perez.