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Torrey Collins was born and raised in Connecticut and has been fly fishing for 30 years. He caught his first trout, a wild brookie, at age four on a garden worm that had somehow managed to loop itself over a tree branch and dangle in the water. Torrey started fly fishing at age 14, and was a fanatic by age 20. He "discovered" the Housatonic River, nestled in the northwest corner of CT in the Litchfield county hills, over 23 years ago, and it's been a non-stop love affair since then. The Housatonic River, or "Housy" as she is known to her regulars, is a famous New England freestone trout river flowing through limestone deposits, and best known for heavy hatches and fat holdover trout. It is also a superb but underrated smallmouth bass fishery in the warmer months when the trout fishing slows.
Listen to Torrey Collins' Show...
Housantonic River - Trout and Smallies
Torrey Collins has guided and fished the Housatonic River for over 20 years. It's one of a few places where you can enjoy fishing an Eastern river for both trout and smallmouth bass. There's no doubt that there are trophies are in the river and Torrey will share with us his secrets of catching them on a fly.
Torrey has managed Housatonic River Outfitters for the past 8 years, and guided on the Housatonic and Farmington Rivers prior to that. A degree in psychology from the University of Vermont is currently used to "psychoanalyze" the trout Torrey pursues. His employment in the fly fishing industry over the years has also included working for Orvis in Manchester, VT as a Technical Advisor, casting instruction/clinics/schools for Sage, Orvis and others, commercial fly tying, CT fishing guide, NY state licensed fishing guide, and conducting many fly tying classes.
When not working, eating, sleeping, or at the gym, Torrey is probably fishing, talking about fishing, tying flies, or reading his extensive collection of fishing books and magazines. Somebody once said if there was a fly fishing trivia game show, Torrey would win it hands down. One thing is for sure, if you want to know about fly patterns and tying, techniques, equipment, or destinations, Torrey is the guy to ask. And if you want to know about the latest and best equipment or hot flies, he probably knows that too. You will find Torrey to be nice, genuine person, a patient individual who is usually more than willing to share his hard-earned knowledge with you. He seems to thoroughly enjoy helping people find fishing success.
He has been fortunate to be friends with, fish with, and learn from some truly expert fly fishermen over the years- some famous, and some not so famous. After college, he guided anglers for steelhead, salmon and lake-run browns in upstate NY in the Salmon River area for 2 consecutive seasons, working under and learning from well known guide Fran Verdoliva, the first fly fishing guide on the Salmon River, and currently the Salmon River Area Coordinator for the NY DEC. Fly tying classes and a friendship with master fly tier Dick Talleur have shaped and influenced Torrey's personal fly tying style, and a recent friendship with transplanted Welsh fly fishing and tying wizard Davy Wotton has opened Torrey's eyes to wet fly fishing, European methods and patterns.
Torrey's pursuit of trout has taken him all over Connecticut, New Your, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Vermont, as well as western states such as Montana, Wyoming, Idaho and Utah, and down south to Tennesee and Arkansas. Trout are his favorite species, but anything with fins that swims is fair game. Although Torrey fishes by and enjoys all disciplines from dries to wets to streamers, his personal favorite is nymphing, and he especially loves to target big trout. In the past year he has experimented extensively with the Euro-style nymphing (Czech, Polish, French and Spanish.), and is rapidly becoming a convert to it.
You can read Torrey's daily Housatonic River fishing updates at www.DryFlies.com/. He is also actively involved in the forum on www.TroutPredator.com, a source of some of the best Czech/Euro nymphing and wet fly information on the web.