Trout Hitting a Variety of Patterns This Time of
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Trout are hitting
a variety of patterns this time of year for a number of reasons. This is the time of the year before
the fall conditions really start taking hold on streams in terms of light and seasonal
fluctuations. Because of this trout hit a variety flies. Most of the hatches are over with the
exception of some Blue Winged Olives (Baetis) which hatch most of the year and a few Caddis and an
On some streams hoppers, and related
terrestrials will come into their own. Most of the time fly anglers should do well on these stream but
usually don't because they are fishing the wrong flies or are using the wrong technique. So here are some
more keys to the vault on fishing right before autumn or fall really kicks in.
First realize that night time
temperatures are now in the high 40 and 50's. Freestone type streams are cooling down so trout become
more active than just a few weeks ago. However, most of these streams are low unless you have had a good
rain. So the basic rule of thumb on these stream is go smaller and lighter tippets (however, when using
larger flies such as hopper don't go below 5x).
Next, since most of the hatches are
over here's the fly selection:
Baetis Nymphs: Sawyer's Nymphs and similar Blue Winged Olive Patterns in size 16-22. A couple of
Baetis Dry Patterns in sizes 16-20.
2)Small streamers lightly dressed! Sizes 14 and patterns like a Black Ghost or even a Maribou
Use terrestrials such as foam and deer hair beetles as well as ants. The Letort Hopper and Cricket are
still good patterns on any stream and will work well as a searching pattern. All sizes will work.
Have variety of sizes.
Soft Hackles in a variety of patterns from attractor styles to standard patterns in sizes
couple of Elk Hair Caddis Dry Flies in size 16-20 just in case you get a little caddis action on a
stretch of water
Midges: Sizes 16-26 in a variety of colors in the larva, pupa and adult stages. On both spring
and freestone streams a lot midges are the main hatches this time of year.
For the most part these are the
best patterns that you will use and so you don't need a lot for the next couple of weeks. What you now
need is the proper strategy.
freestone streams with low waters the fish will be spooky. The angle of the sun is just beginning to
change from the summer. Look for feeding trout against the banks and adjacent to deeper sections of
water. A good technique is to use a hopper, beetle or ant pattern
to search the water. Remember it's best to usually fish upstream and minimize your casting and
Be careful and realize that
trout can suck in Ants all day and unless you are really observant you'll never see them. Use a small pair of
binoculars and watch the interface of the surface of the water intently. You might be surprised at what
you will find.
Once you've located the fish
try this approach:
1) Use a dry
fly type first. If the fish move for the fly but don't take it make sure you don't have drag. If
drag is not a problem change to a smaller or larger fly next depending upon what you have
2) If they
won't hit the dry but aren't spooked by it try a small soft hackle with a very tiny shot to get the fly
just under the surface. Fish the fly upstream and keep most of the slack out of the line or you will
not hook the fish. Most fly anglers have too much line on the water.
3) Finally go
to a small Pheasant Tail or Baetis Nymph in size 18. Fish this at all three water
4) If you are
not getting the fish to take any of the above put a small thinly dressed streamer such as the Black
Ghost. Do not use the streamer first because on many waters you may spook the fish and put them down
for quite some time.
These techniques and patterns
work on both spring creeks and freestone streams this time of the year and are good until the autumn winds and
temperatures start their drastic change.