Fly Fishing the North Branch of the Potomac

At the end of October, I fished the North Branch of the Potomac at Barnum, West Virginia.  Three of us gave it a shot, fishing from sunrise through to early afternoon, and working downstream from the boat launch through multiple shoots, pools, and rapids.


We all worked streamers, some big, some small, all heavily weighted.  We managed…two rainbow trout.  Not great numbers of fish.  Both fish were 12″-14″.

North Branch Rainbow Trout.

Conditions were ideal:  Moderate flows and overcast conditions.  And we covered a lot of water.

A slow section of water, and a beaver dam, on the North Branch.
Fog lifting from the river at the end of a run.


Both fish came from the same small stretch of water, between sections of faster moving water.  We also had a few hits each, which also came from the same area.

Lunch break on the Potomac.

Maybe it was the recent stocking, maybe the cold weather the night before.  Regardless, I enjoyed the hike through some of Maryland/West Virginia’s prettiest water.

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