Blue Stream Fly Fishing
Fly Fishing Report for:

South Branch Raritan River - High Bridge - New Jersey

Hatch Chart - Best Access/Spots - Local Fish - About

Water Flow Chart

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Using Water Flow Charts & Weather Reports: Begin with our water flow charts to grasp stream velocity and volume – look for stable or rising trends to pinpoint ideal fishing times. Learn to interpret sudden spikes or drops, which can indicate potential challenges. Next, consult our weather reports to understand ambient conditions. Pairing the two, you can anticipate fish behavior, choose the right gear, and select the best fishing spots. Use these tools together for a holistic approach to your next fishing adventure.

In-Depth Weather

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Directions To Location

Hatch Chart

Month Hatch Time of Day Recommended Fly Sizes Popular Fly Patterns
January Midges, Blue Winged Olives (BWO) Midday 20-24 Midge Emerger, BWO Emerger
February Midges, Blue Winged Olives (BWO) Midday 20-24 Midge Emerger, BWO Emerger
March Blue Winged Olives (BWO), Quill Gordons Midday 18-20 BWO Parachute, Quill Gordon Dry
April Hendricksons, Caddisflies Late Afternoon 12-16 Hendrickson Dun, Elk Hair Caddis
May Sulphurs, March Browns Evening 14-18 Sulphur Comparadun, March Brown Emerger
June Light Cahills, Tricos Morning 14-18 Light Cahill Dry, Trico Spinner
July Tricos, Terrestrials Morning 18-22 Trico Spinner, Ant Patterns
August Tricos, Terrestrials Morning 18-22 Trico Spinner, Ant Patterns
September Tricos, Terrestrials Morning 18-22 Trico Spinner, Ant Patterns
October Slate Drakes, Blue Winged Olives (BWO) Midday 12-18 Slate Drake Dry, BWO Parachute
November Blue Winged Olives (BWO) Midday 18-22 BWO Parachute, Pheasant Tail Nymph
December Winter Stoneflies Morning 14-16 Winter Stonefly Nymph, Zebra Midge

While we strive to ensure the precision of our hatch charts, some reflect broader river region insights. Through ongoing partnerships with local guides and fly shops, we’re committed to refining our data. Should you notice any inconsistencies or have feedback, we welcome you to reach out. 

Best Fishing Spots

High Bridge on the South Branch Raritan River is a prime location for fly fishing enthusiasts. The area provides ample opportunities to catch a variety of fish species. Below are the best spots:

  • Ken Lockwood Gorge: This stretch is well-stocked with brown and rainbow trout. Its swift currents and deep pools make it a top choice.
  • Hampton: Just downstream from High Bridge, this section offers shallow water making it ideal for wading and fly fishing.
  • The Confluence: Where Spruce Run Creek feeds into the South Branch Raritan, there’s excellent fishing for both trout and smallmouth bass.
  • Hoffman’s Crossing Bridge: Upstream of Ken Lockwood Gorge, this spot features slower moving water and is great for beginners.

Please remember that these are all catch-and-release fishing spots and follow local regulations.

Best Access Points

The South Branch Raritan River in High Bridge offers spectacular spots for fly fishing. The best access points are:

  • Calf’s Bridge on River Road: This spot is known for its abundant variety of fish, perfect for both beginners and advanced fly fishermen.
  • Union Forge Park: This offers plenty of parking space and a large area for fishing. It’s an excellent place to fish for wild trout.
  • The Water Treatment Plant off of Annandale High Bridge Road: Though the parking lot is small, the fishing spot makes up for it with its wide variety of trout.
  • Jughandle Area at Main Street bridge: This spot is ideal for fly fishing as it offers easy river access. The fishing area extends upstream and downstream from the bridge.

Remember, before heading out, make sure you have the appropriate fishing license and always check the current regulations.

Local Fish

  • Brown Trout – This fish is sought after for its vigorous fight when hooked, making it a thrilling catch for any fly fisher.
  • Rainbow Trout – Known for their beautiful rainbow markings, these fish provide a great challenge for fly fishing enthusiasts.
  • Brook Trout – The brook trout is a favorite among local fly fishers due to its beautiful colors and tasty flesh.
  • Smallmouth Bass – Highly sought after for their fighting ability, making them an exciting catch on a fly rod.
  • Largemouth Bass – This is a popular fish for all types of anglers due to its size and the challenging fight it puts up when hooked.
  • Bluegill – Although small in size, bluegills are quick to bite and fun to catch, making them a favorite target for fly fishers.
  • Northern Pike – This predatory species is prized for its fight and size, making it a exciting challenge for anglers.
  • Chain Pickerel – Known for their aggressive behavior and sleek body design, chain pickerel are a sought after game fish for fly fishing.

About The River

Welcome to the remarkable South Branch Raritan River – High Bridge. Boasting a length of 51 miles, this beautiful river has a fascinating history that truly brings its scenic beauty to life.

Starting from its roots, the South Branch Raritan River can be traced back to the Glacial Ages. Back then, melting glaciers formed the river, carving it through the hills and valleys. It became a major resource, garnering the attention of various tribes, like the Lenni Lenape, who settled and prospered along its banks.

The High Bridge is deeply embedded in this river’s narrative. With its construction in 1876, it became a centerpiece of the Raritan River and a symbol of architectural prowess. The Bridge was part of the major railway system during the iron industry boom that helped High Bridge evolve into a lively city.

  • The South Branch Raritan River and the High Bridge together form an important piece of New Jersey’s history.
  • From offering sustenance to becoming an emblem of infrastructural prowess, the South Branch Raritan River with High Bridge is truly a historical marvel.
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