There is perhaps nothing more satisfying than standing in your waders with the morning sun coming over the water while you’re fishing for trout. It doesn’t matter what time of year, true anglers know that is an itch that can only be scratched by getting out and ripping some lips. But the thing about fishing, is that it isn’t catching. And sometimes those pesky fish don’t cooperate, which can make for some pretty disappointing drives back to the house.
As with most things in life, a little bit of homework and a change of tactics can make for a fast learning curve, and great success. Here are a few trout tips that can help put more fish on your stringer and a smile on your face.
While the old-school train of thought when it comes to fishing is that the early bird gets the worm, and that can be true, trout feed primarily under low-light conditions. The last light of the day tends to produce more strikes. Also, keep in mind that even trout that prefer cold temperatures are less active when it comes to the cold and feeding. Particularly during the fall, the nights get colder. This means that your trout mornings can be less than eventful. Try hitting it at midday and see what happens when the sun warms the water just a bit.
While leaves can sometimes be a trout fisherman’s worst nightmare, by covering up the surface of the water or even getting down into the water column and hindering bait presentation, there is a silver lining. The cover of leaves can make for both shade and concealment. Leaves that have been blown onto the surface of the water also carry insects, which entice trout to be on the lookout. Another added bonus of leaves on the water is that they reveal current lines, which in turn let you know where the trout are likely to be as they wait for food to come. Watch how the leaves move and see where the current takes them. This will help you identify honey holes.
This tactic also works well for autumn anglers. Fall is when the big boys come out to spawn. This means they have a bit of an attitude. By making your bait presentations larger, you can tempt these bad boys. For fly fishermen, that means drifting large buggy dry flies and big stonefly nymphs. For spin-fishing anglers, this means going big with your in-line spinners, jigs too. This is relative to the size of the stream, but err on the large side of things and see who shows up for dinner.