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Read Trout Streams Like an Expert, Even if You’re Not

fall fishing fall

When I take newcomer fly fishers to a stream, one of the first questions asked is where to cast the fly. Teaching newcomers to read trout streams is challenging. More experienced fly fishers are accustomed to breaking down the water into primary lies, feeding lies and holding lies. They look for riffles, runs, pools, tailouts, […]

“Nymph Fishing for Larger Trout”, a book review

nymph fishing for larger trout

Another of my favorite author’s is Charles E. Brooks. He hales from an earlier era, and wrote several books, two of which I have read. I particularly liked “Nymph Fishing for Larger Trout” (1976). It is  illustrated by Dave Whitlock. Although concise, the author summarizes ten nymphing methods employed at that time. In addition, he […]

Fishing Streamers

fly fishing fall

As leaves begin to turn from green to crimson and gold, trout anglers begin to think of fishing streamers. While streamers can, and probably should, be fished throughout the year, few question their especial efficacy in the fall. This is particularly true in streams inhabited with fall spawners, that is,  brown and brook trout. Exhausted […]

Book Review: “The Fly”

the fly

Anyone interested in the history of fly fishing should give “The Fly”, by Dr. Andrew Herd, a read. He covers 2,000 years of fly fishing history. His writing style is engaging, with wit and bits of humor. Unlike most such books, he includes non-fishing information. This helps one appreciate fly fishing’s place during different time-periods […]

Trico Spinner Falls- Breaking the Code

speckle wing dun

Summer is finally here! With it comes the eagerly anticipated summer hatches. On many streams, the early morning trico hatches and spinner falls offer the best chance to fish to rising trout. Background The trico hatch is a sight to behold. Clouds of insects fill the air. The trico hatch shown below was filmed by fishing buddy […]

Book Review: Nymph Masters

nymph masters, book review

Trout spend the majority of their time feeding subsurface, specifically on nymphs. Thus serious trout fishermen strive to become better at nymph fishing. I previously regarded Charles Brooks’ “Nymph Fishing for Larger Trout” as the best summary available on the topic. But after reading Jason Randall’s most recent book, “Nymph Masters, Fly-Fishing Secrets From Expert […]

Fly Fishing Season Transitions- Strategies for Trout

four seasons of fly fishing

Over the past several years, I have written separately about the four seasons of fly fishing for trout. Done in this manner, I think it’s difficult to convey the many changes that occur during the transition from one season to another. With this piece, I will focus on the transitions. It is during these periods […]

Euro Nymphing- an Old American Fly Fishing Technique

tightline nymphing

In the past few years, Euro nymphing, or tight-line nymphing, has become all the rage. It has been hailed as a new, and very effective way to fish for trout. But I beg to differ. Effective it is, new it is not! In the Beginning English angler, G.E.M. Skues, began the development of tight-line nymphing in […]

Book Review- “Lore of Trout Fishing”, by Art Lee

trout fishing

The warm weather and waters in Montana this summer have limited the trout-fishing opportunities recently. So I perused my library shelves, and plucked Art Lee’s “Lore of Trout Fishing” off the shelf. Art served as editor-at-large for “Fly Fisherman”, “The Atlantic Salmon Journal”, and “Wild Steelhead & Salmon”. He contributed to the fly fishing literature […]

Ten Tips To Catch More Trout and Have More Fun

tips to catch more trout

Although I have previously written in more detail about many  of the topics below, it seems that most fly fishers prefer their information drilled down to a short list of tips, not to exceed ten. Perhaps on another occasion I’ll explore the implications of that. But for now, I’ll venture into the genre of “ten […]

Fish Tandem Flies and Catch More Trout

tandem flies

Many’s the occasion that I have been asked how many flies I fish with at a time. In truth, I fish with as many as regulations allow, which in most instances is two. Why do I put up with the potential hassle of tangled flies and tippet? Because fishing tandem flies offers trout more choices. Sometimes I fish with […]

Fly Fishing Tactics – Fly Rod Length

fly fishing tactics- how long thy rod

Like so many things in life, the ideal fly rod length has evolved not in a straight line, but rather, in a full circle. Today, the standard, or most commonly manufactured trout rod, is nine feet in length. Most manufacturers offer shorter rods for fishing small streams, and a few are beginning to offer longer rods […]

Fly Fishing Fall- a Photo Essay

fly fishing fall

Fall is a special season for all, especially for fly fishers. The multi-colored riparian foliage is like a brilliant tapestry, strung along the  streams’ edges. Its sheer beauty is sometimes distracting when fly fishing fall. But the trout, brook and brown, are in peak condition, ready to spawn, and fiercely defend their reds. Thus it is the […]

Fly Casting for Distance

fly casting

When teaching fly casting, I emphasize casting accurately to short and intermediate distances, that is, less than fifty feet. But once a caster has acquired that level of skill, I will often make the statement that they should learn to “cast a hundred feet”. This is often rebuffed, and rightfully so, as fly fishing for […]

Summer Fly Fishing- Strategies for Trout

terrestrial fly pattern

Summer Fly Fishing- Strategies for Trout I have previously written about fly fishing for trout in the fall, 10/14, winter, 1/14 and 1/15, and spring, 4/14. With this month’s article, “Summer Fly Fishing- Strategies for Trout”, I will complete the cycle of seasons. Each of the seasons alter conditions in trout streams, especially freestone streams, which in […]

Presentation- Fly Fishing a Hatch

a Bit of History The first description of the concept of presentation appeared in 1676, in “The Universal Angler”, the only edition to combine Izaak Walton’s “The Complete Angler” with two additional works, written by Charles Cotton and Col. Robert Venables, respectively. It was Venables’ who penned the description of presentation, which is as applicable today as […]