Peter Basta Guide Service and Outfitter

Guided Fly Fishing
On-stream Instruction
Special Travel Fishing Trips

Orvis Endosed Fly-fishing Guide



For May so far spring has progressed but with some very cool and wet weather the first week of the month. On May 2nd-3rd we had a steady cold rain that raised water levels beyond fishable heights and so it may have affected the Hendrickson hatch and Bracycentrus ( Olive Caddis). The hatch probably was fine, just not for us to fish. On the 3rd of May, the Battenkill was 1800 CFS,The Walloomsac was 839 CFS and the Mettawee was 600 CFS. The second week temperatures rebounded and we actually saw the sun on numerous occasions. Fishing conditions have improved till this date and all watersheds I target have seen a steady drop in flows with no rain since that first week. As I write this report the levels are all in very good shape for this time of year. The Battenkill 505 CFS, the Walloomsac 145 CFS, and the Mettawee 145 CFS. Water temps. are now in the low-mid 50's F.

Stocking has continued in both Vermont and NY. but as of yet the Wallomsac (upper river) and the Hoosic have not been stocked. They did stock the Otter in Wallingford last week with Rainbows but I don't guide there out of respect for 2 guides in the Rutland area who focus on that target. In NY there have been a number of small stockings in both the BattenKill and the Mettawee, so I have been fishing in NY as well as some small water in VT.

For hatches this week, tan Caddis are starting to hatch as well as Light Cahills and I am seeing a few March Browns, I have had some respectable dry fly fishing in small water.

For bookings, the remainder of May is sold out but I have some open dates in June so if interested in booking, email me asap so we can get you on the calendar.

Tight Lines


I am sitting in my vehicle looking over the Kill after having just left the stream myself scouting and fishing during the Hendricksons. I was focusing on swinging flies to fish with their heads up. I was looking for wild fish and the river was quite high. Most places that I looked at that I thought a fish would be working showed nobody looking up. Not many bugs in Vermont but more as I got lower in the river in NY. I found one place that I thought could have the correct flows but it required crossing and a bit of walking. When I arrived there were heads looking up but way too far to get a proper drift with a dry fly. This was the perfect condition to swing a wet fly or nymph emerger just under the surface. And the perfect weapon was my 11' 4" 4 WT Trout Spey. I was successful hooking and landing 2 of the fish before others were put down. Nice wild Battenkill fish!!

Since my last report spring has been cooler and a bit wetter than normal. At the time of the opener in VT (April 8th.) river conditions were unfishable and though levels kept dropping throughout the month many remained too high to fish. The levels today are the Battenkill 937 CFS,The Walloomac 350 CFS and the Metawee in NY around 350 CFS. As for stocking rivers and streams NY has been doing so on the Battenkill and the Mettawee. Their stocking policy is to spread the stock out over a longer time frame. It appears they are stocking every 2 weeks so these watersheds have had 2 stockings already. But because of the higher flows and lower water temps. I am finding it hard to get the fish to take under these conditions. Vt this week stocked the trophy stretch of the Otter and the Walloomsac as well as East Creek in Rutland.

I have been fishing Bullhead Pond and Lake Shaftsbury for stocked pond fish. Still figuring it out and catching a few as well.

Pray for some warmer weather and a sunny day or two to get things really going.

Tight Lines.


It's the first week of April, a few days before the official opener for our Trout Season. Since last year there has been a change from a closed season in the winter to many streams open all winter to catch and release fishing with artificial lures and flies. This holds true in both VT and NY. While last year I did not take advantage of it due to a cold winter and winter employment commitments. This winter I was able to fish several times when the weather was tolerable and water levels appropriate. In mid-February I fished big water in NY swinging flies with my trout Spey with limited success. I also fished some small water targets with fair success. I spent time (when snow levels were not too deep) to prune my bounce trails and check targets for access and changes in the streams since last fall. Our February was one of the warmest on record. Mid February to early March was when I was astream.

While February and early March were warmer than normal, the rest of March was very much winter again. Several big snowstorms back to back and colder than normal temps. produced some of the best skiing of the season. I got 42 inches at my home in one of those storms! As a result, now in Early April, we are now seeing significant snowmelt in all my watersheds from these events. Flows are pretty much bank full and quite cold. The Battenkill is in the 1950 CFS range. The Walloomsac is about 1200 CFS and The Mettawee around 900 CFS. Water temps are in the 38-42' F range. It doesn't look good for rivers and streams for the opener. Actually it is not safe to be in the water at those flows. Lakes and ponds are your best bet. As I write this, VT has done some stocking of lakes and ponds in advance of the opener. Examples of that are Lake Shaftsbury, Lake Paran, and Bullhead pond all in Bennington County. When it warms up a little I will target myself with my Flycraft rowing raft. I am finishing installing a front brace for the front angler and a new rod rack.

That's all I have at this time. Be safe and cautious with this high and cold water.

Tight Lines.

Established 1986
Orvis Endorsed Guide
Licensed in NY and MI
All Equipment Provided