Think Like a Trout, Act Like a Bug.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Shifting Gears

This is the time of year that I make the shift from fishing mainly lakes to focusing on streams and rivers. There are a few mayfly hatches at this time of year but is the stonefly hatches that really bring larger trout to their feeding stations. If water levels are favorable on your local trout stream, have a look along the banks for signs of fresh stonefly emergence, then choose your fly accordingly.

Stonefly emergence sites are obvious on bridge abutments
but if you look closely at larger rocks and tree trunks along the stream
you will be surprised at the number of shed exuvia that are present.

There are four species of stonefly exuvia here - all emerging at the same time of year.

The white filaments are the linings of the tracheal respiratory system that are shed along with the exoskeleton.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Looking for a Place to Happen

Yes, dragonflies are on the move. Working a nymph along the bottom and it's game on!


Epitheca spinigera - Fresh from the water and looking for a place to emerge

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Get Real

If you are fishing lakes at this time of year forget about all of those attractor type fly patterns. Dragonfly and damselfly emergence is in full swing - so imitating the migrating nymphs as they make their way to shore is the way to go.



Sunday, May 21, 2017

Out of the Frying Pan and Into the Fire

Blue winged olives are an early season hatch that results in consistent feeding by trout - both on the surface, and sub-surface. But trout are not the only creatures out for an easy meal...

Freshly emerged Baetis dun - straight from the water and into the web.

Escape is no longer an option.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Best Bet for Spring Trout

One of the first mayflies to emerge in the spring are blue winged olives (Baetis sp.). These mayflies tend to have two or three generations per season depending on how fertile and warm the stream is. When fishing the nymphs remember that it will be the larger mature nymphs that are getting ready to emerge that will be the most active. A simple olive Hare's Ear type pattern is all that is needed, but if you're fishing a fly larger than size 16 your fly is too big.

Baetis sp. nymphs - the larger nymph in the foreground will be ready to emerge in a week or so,
the smaller one in the back still has some growing to do and will emerge in mid-summer. 
Most Baetis nymphs emerge mid-stream on the surface but a few species will crawl out along the stream margin.

Baetis sp. nymph getting ready to emerge.
Not all blue winged olive duns are olive - some come in shades of tan or rusty-brown.

Baetis sp. dun almost fully emerged


Tuesday, May 9, 2017

The End of Winter

Zapada cinctipes and the last winter stoneflies of the season.

Zapada cinctipes (adult female)

Zapada cinctipes (exuvia)

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Mirror, Mirror

Air bubbles have a unique way of catching the light and glittering like diamonds. For aquatic insects like backswimmers and water boatmen, that use trapped air bubbles to breath under water, sparkle can be more important than color. Silver tinsel and Krystal Flash are great body materials to work into any fly pattern tied to imitate these groups.