Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Winter Fly Fishing Advice From Denny Greer-"The Dean Of The Green"

The following is good advice for this river, it may well be appropriate wherever you fish in the winter. As we approach the colder months on the river, remember, winter is a time when trout often use different habitats than they do in warmer times of the year. This transition will occur as the water temperatures drop. Generally, this movement is first apparent when the trout become noticeably less visible along the rivers banks as they retreat to the deeper and more sheltered/structured areas of the river to conserve energy. Anglers should respond to this in two ways: First: it’s time to start thinking about fishing deep with the scud and midge imitations that make up eighty percent of the trout’s winter diet. Second: spend some time to locate the areas that hold the largest concentrations of trout. My typical winter approach is to fish to the fish, not just fish the water. So locate the trout first and don't just fish blindly in the areas you've fished before. It just may be that the trout have moved out of the pool or areas that produced the best fishing for you this season. Again, energy conservation motivates these habitat changes, so more trout will be found in the slower velocity water and fewer will be available in the fast/heavy river sections. Closer to the dam, the fish are either deep in the runs or suspended in eddies. The deep fish will have to be fished with scuds and midge nymphs and will need their flies presented right on the rivers bottom to be most effective. Eddie fish can be caught by suspending nymphs at 5 to 6 feet with an indicator. Too, watch for trout midging the river’s surface, they will only be found in a few areas. Little Hole and other reaches of the river with periods of winter sunlight often have the best opportunities. Historically, 11:00 am to 1:00 pm is the peak of that activity, but timing deviations do occur. Often, their rise forms are more a smutting rise, where you only see their dorsal fin or the top of their nose or tail bulge the surface in contrast to traditional rise forms. Studying the water closely is often the only key to even noticing this activity. Small undressed nymphs fished in the surface film are often the answer to fishing to the fish exhibiting this behavior. Locating these trout may be your best opportunity to surface fish. Typical nymphing will take those trout that are in the riffles in this area. Additionally, but not least, do not forget the value of streamers in winter. Trout who are not getting enough or many opportunities to feed might well risk the pay off of a big meal. As winter stresses trout and increases mortality, flesh flies can add additional diversity to streamer fishing that anglers often pay little attention to in the lower forty-eight states. The tails of pools and faster water are great areas to explore and present winter streamers. My last tip is to dress appropriately for the weather conditions and limit your time exposure on the really cold or stormy days. There’s no better feeling than being in the elements and in the right gear for the situation and the days can be more pleasurable when you are not on a fishing marathon. Short breaks during the day are a great way to notice your surroundings and enjoy all the aspects that winter fishing can bring. One last and undeniable benefit is that winter can be the perfect opportunity for solitude, get out and enjoy yourself!

Writen By Dennis Greer
Owner Of Trout Creek Flies
Dutch John Utah



At 10:16 PM, Blogger Donnie said...

Great advice from a great man! RIP Denny you are sorely missed!!

At 10:19 PM, Blogger Donnie said...

I believe you mean Breer not Greer.....


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