Monday, January 31, 2011

Modifying Trout Spoons For Better Success

Here's a great tip on modifying your Salmon Spoons. Of course, even though this video talks about spoons used for salmon fishing, the concept can be applied to other trout lures as well

Friday, January 28, 2011

New Mexico Trout to Offer Fly Fishing Classes to Veterans

The New Mexico Trout Fishing Association will begin offering fly tying and fly casting classes to patients of the Raymond G. Murphy VA Medical Center in Albuquerque. There will even be some day trips included in the classes.

This wonderful outreach is part of Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing. This project is dedicated to the physical and emotional rehabilitation of disabled active duty military personnel and Veterans through fly fishing and fly tying education and outings.

This program is free for veterans, and New Mexico Trout will provide equipment for those who need it.

Fly tying classes are scheduled to begin on Feb 9, 2011. Additional classes will be held on:
  • Feb. 16, 2011
  • Feb. 23, 2011
  • March 9, 2011
  • March 16, 2011
  • March 23, 2011
  • April 13, 2011
  • April 20, 2011
All classes will start at 6 pm in the Recreation Hall (Bldg. 2) of the medical grounds, and run til about 7:45 pm.

Fly casting classes will be begin in April 2011 (time and dates still to be determined).   Fishing outings will start in June and run through mid-September (more information still to come).  Fly fishing outings will normally depart from the V.A. grounds at 7 am and return about 4 pm.

Although this program is free, veterans must pre-register since space is limited. For more information or to signup, contact Michelle McKenzie at (505) 265-1711 (ext. 4160) or email her at

Veterans also may call Dave Patton of New Mexico Trout at (505) 681-0835 or e-mail him at for more information.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Ice Fishing Tip for Rainbow Trout

Some folks think trout hibernate during the winter months, but that's not true. They do get a bit sluggish and less active, but they do still need need to eat to survive.  The difference in winter is that they're looking for an easy meal.  They don't want to have to work as hard for their meals in the winter months.

That said, many anglers enjoy ice fishing for rainbows during the colder months.  If you're one of those anglers, you may want to try the trout tip offered in this video. 

So next time you're out ice fishing for rainbows, try adding a nightcrawler to your tip-up. Have other ice tips for trout, let us know.

For more winter trout fishing tips, click here.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Winter Trout Fishing Tips

Despite the fact that many of us have had a few warmer days this month, we're still in the heart of the winter trout season. This means that you have to adjust your tactics a bit to accommodate slow, sluggish trout. 

Trout do not hibernate, but they do become lethargic in cold water. They still need to eat, but they're less likely to be aggressive predators. Instead, they'll eat whatever comes near them.   So to catch them, you have to not only have to get your baited hook or fly near them, but you many also have to offer them something they can't resist. 

Spoons tend to work well in winter months for this reason.  The flash emitted as they move through the water can excite fish and cause them to strike at it.  This flash can also "wake" them out of a lethargic stupor. This strike is not always one of hunger, but sometimes one of defensiveness ... in that the trout is trying to protect its territory from unwanted intruders. 

So when trout fishing in winter, try using a variety of spoons (different colors, sizes, etc.).  And course try to fish them in deep pools or warm pockets of water where trout may be holdingLearning to read the water, is important when trout fishing.

Spinners can also be effective lures when trout fishing in the winter.  Like spoons, spinners emit a flash as they move through the water, but they're vibration is different.  This vibration can also help entice a sluggish trout into checking your offering.  Once again though, you want to get the spinner close enough to a trout lie to entice the fish without scaring them away.

If you're fly fishing, nymphs and other wet flies are usually the best bet during the winter months. Fly fishing during the winter tends be more challenging than spin fishing, because of the fact that there aren't as many insects around. 

Lighter line (or at least leaders) can also help during the winter months ... especially if you're fishing in clear water. Trout will often taste bait before eating it 9which is why some strikes tend to be subtle).  This is especially true in the winter months.  Using a lighter line can help disguise the fact that your baited hook is a trap (so to speak).

Another thing to adjust is the time of day you go fishing.  During the summer months, we conditioned to fish in the early morning hours and at dusk.  The afternoon hours (between 10 am and 2 pm) are generally the worst hours to fish during the summer months.  However, during the winter months, fishing between 10 am and 2 pm tend to produce better results.  This is because the water warms up a bit during these hours and warmer water means less sluggish trout. 

Trout fishing may be slow in the winter months, but you can still catch trout.  So don't give up.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

How to Rig Double Nymphs for Trout Fishing

Every serious fly fisher generally has a nice supply of nymphs in their arsenal.  Nymphs are designed to imitate the juvenile stage of aquatic insects.  The nymph stage of an insects life begins after they hatch and when they start to grow. Nymphs are sub-surface insects and typically remain in this stage for weeks to years (depending on species of insect). Once they mature enough, they migrate to the surface and begin emergence.

So because nymphs are underwater insects, the artificial flies created to imitate nymphs are classified as wet flies (that is, they are fished below the water's surface). Trout strikes tend to be more subtle with nymphs than with dry flies, so many anglers like to use strike indicators.  Yarn, corkies and even dry flies, are popular strike indicators. 

If you're state allows it, you can even rig two nymphs on your line to increase the chances of trout strikes.  The video below shows you how to rig double nymphs.

To learn how to rig a dry fly as a strike indicator, click here.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Wooly Bugger Tips

The Wooly Bugger is a favorite fly for trout anglers.  It's a wet fly, so it's generally fished below the water's surface.  Wooly Buggers are a type of streamer (a large artificial fly that is designed to resemble bait fish or other aquatic prey).  Carrying a selection of Wooly Buggers in different sizes is a good idea.

Because the fly is fake, you have to fish it in a way that makes it come alive so trout will be attracted to it.  The video below shows you how to fish with a Wooly Bugger. 

Monday, January 17, 2011

How to Use Dry Flies As Strike Indicators

Tired of using yarn and cork indicators when fly fishing?  Check out this guy's solution!   He uses artificial flies as indicators.  This is trout fishing tip is for the advanced angler, but the video does an excellent job of showing you exactly how to rig a dry fly as an indicator while fishing with a nymph. 

Saturday, January 15, 2011

2011 Fly Fishing Film Tour

It's that time of year again when the Fly Fishing Film Tour is making the rounds.  Throughout February, March and April, the Fly Fishing Film Tour will be visiting over 80 cities in 2011. The goal of these tours is to inspire film makers who make outdoor sports and education videos.  Folks making videos for outdoor enthusiasts are especially encouraged to attend one of the Fly Fishing Film Tours.

But even  if you don't make films or videos, the annual event has become popular for it's entertainment value. For more information about the 2011 Fly Fishing Film Tour (including tour dates), click here.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

2011 World Fly Fishing Championship

While updating the website this morning, I noticed that the dates for the upcoming 2011 World Fly Fishing Championship dates had been posted on the FIPS-Mouche website and wanted to share the information here.

The next World Fly Fishing Championship will be held in Italy 28 Aug. - 4 Sep., 2011.This will be the 31st Annual World Fly Fishing Championship. There's even a facebook page to help folks follow the 2011 tournament. Team USA also has a facebook page now.

Last year's championship was held in Poland and the Czech Nymphs took the gold in the competition. 

For more information about the 31st World Fly Fishing Championship, click here.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Fishing With Bobbers

A lot of trout anglers like to use bobbers when fishing.  Whether or not you use a bobber has a lot to do with where trout are actively feeding.  If trout are feeding near the bottom of a lake, then a bobber won't help you much.   But if they're feeding near the surface, then using a bobber is a good idea.

Bobbers offer two main advantages.  First, they keep your baited hook near the surface of the water.  So if you're fishing a lake (for example), your baited hook typically hangs below the bobber the length of your leader.  Generally speaking, most trout leaders used in spin fishing is 18-24 inches in length.  So if using a bobber while lake fishing, you're typically fishing 18-24 inches below the surface.

Another advantage of fishing with bobbers is that they serve as a strike indicator.  When the bobber dips below the water's surface, it's usually means a fish is checking out your bait and this is the time to set the hook.

Bobbers can be used when fishing in lakes and streams too (even though these bodies of water are usually much shallower than lakes).

Bobbers come in various sizes and colors.  The smaller the bobber, the easier it will be for a fish to pull it under the water when it strikes (so it disappears from your sight).  When fishing for smaller fish, smaller bobbers are preferred because because they don't interfere with a fish strike as much.

There are a few different different ways to rig a bobber on your rod and some of this depends on the type of bobber used (used stationary bobber, slip bobber, etc.). 

Below are some videos you may find helpful.


Slip bobbers offer the advantage of making it easier to adjust the depth of your hook.

Monday, January 10, 2011

How to Tie Egg Loops

Egg Loops are a type of knot that are often used by salmon and steelhead fishers to attach a leader to the hook.  Salmon and Steelheader fishers like this know because it's strong and helps roe and shrimp stay on the hook longer.

If you've never tied an egg loop before, the videos will teach you how to tie it.  If you are familiar with tying the egg loop, you might find the "pimped out egg loop" useful.


Friday, January 07, 2011

Winter Trout Flies

Fly fishing in winter is challenging for a lot of anglers because trout tend to feed below the surface this time of year.  And if you want to catch them, the fly fisher typically needs to fish nymphs and other wet flies. 

Some of the more popular nymphs to fish with during the winter season include the Wooly Bugger, Wooly Worm, Hare's Ear and Muskrat Nymph.  Large stoneflies and dragonfly nymphs can also be good for catching trout in the winter.

The golden rule in choosing a fly is to observe insects are currently hatching.  In winter, where you typically don't see any insects flying around, looking under rocks in the water can be helpful.  Overturning a few rocks will give you an idea of what trout are feeding on ... as well as help you select an appropriate nymph to entice them with.

Bass Pro Shops offers a nice selection of freshwater Wooly Buggers in different sizes.  They offer other assortments of flies as well in nice kits.

Umpqua Freshwater Fly Assortment - Wooly Bugger

Umpqua Freshwater Fly Assortment - Wooly Bugger
It never hurts to have a number of Wooly Buggers. Probably the world's most popular all-purpose fly, Wooly Buggers are incredibly versatile patterns that will catch fish just about anywhere. This Umpqua assortment includes a fly box included. Consisting of 12 great wooly patterns, this assortment includes 2 of each of the following: Black Wooly Buggers - Size 10Brown Wooly Buggers - Size 10 Olive Wooly Buggers - Size 10Gold Bead Rubber Leg Wooly Buggers Brown - Size 8Gold Bead Rubber Leg Wooly Buggers Olive - Size 8Gold Bead Rubber Leg Wooly Bugger Black - Size 6. UmpquaƂ® Freshwater Fly Assortment - Wooly Bugger - 12 Piece

For more winter trout fly fishing tips, click here.

For more general winter trout fishing tips, click here.

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Ice Fishing with Tip-Ups

Since many of us live in areas currently covered in snow and ice, I thought some ice fishing tips would be helpful.   And I love videos for obvious reasons.  This video below offers some tips for ice fishing with tip-ups.

For those who aren't familiar with them, tip-ups are strike indicators that rest above your ice fishing hole.  Your line is typically attached to one end of the tip-up and lowered into the water and a flag is attached to the other end.  When a passing fish strikes your line, the flag raises to let you know you a fish may be on the line.

The advantage of using tip-ups is that you can sit warmly in an ice shanty and watch your tip for strikes rather than sit in the cold holding a pole.  Another advantage is that you can fish multiple lines at once.

The video below offers a few tips for ice fishing with tip-ups.

Click here to see an ice fishing tip for rainbow trout.

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

New Trout Records for 2010

There were some new trout records set in 2010 and I thought it would be fun to share them here with you.  While Roger Hellen's 41.8 lb  brown trout was certainly the highlight of the year, there were also several new state records set.

Roger Hellen's 41.8 lb brown trout shattered the previous 1986 IGFA line-class record  and tied the Tom Healy's all-tackle record which was set in 2009.  The only reason Hellen's brown trout didn't break Healy's record was because of an IGFA ruling which states the new record must weigh more than the previous record by certain margin.  Hellen's fish is also Wisconsin's new brown trout record.

Kansas recorded new records for rainbow and brown trout in March of 2010. The new brown trout record weighed in at 4.18 lbs (measuring 20.25 inches).  This fish was caught with a Kastmaster lure  in Kanopolis Reservoir Seep Stream.  Ten days later, a 10.29 lb rainbow trout was pulled out of Shawnee Mission Park Lake using Berkley PowerBait.

Maine recorded a new brook trout record weighing in at 9.02 ounces.  This trout was pulled out of Mousam Lake  The previous record (8 lbs 8 oz) was set in 1979.  A new rainbow trout record was also recorded in 2010. The new rainbow record weighed 8.42 lbs and was caught in Kennebec River in Solon.

Ohio recorded a new steelhead trout record. This 21.3 lb and 38 inch rainbow trout was pulled out of Lake Erie.

South Carolina also recorded a new state record for brook trout.  Amazingly enough, the previous 30 year brook trout record was broken three times in less than a week!  The newest record weighs 3 lbs 9.5 oz was caught using a Super Duper Spinner in South Saluda River.

Texas recorded three new trout records back to back with the final record weighing in at 8.92 lbs and measuring 26.5 inches.  This rainbow trout set the new all-tackle, rod and reel state record.

Wyoming recorded a new Tiger Trout record in November, 2010.  The new record weighed 5.12 lbs and measured 23.9 inches in length.  This fish was caught in High Savery Reservoir.

For more information about previous trout records, click here.

Monday, January 03, 2011

Ice Fishing Tournaments in South Dakota

South Dakota has several ice fishing tournaments throughout January that local anglers may be interested in.  They also have several other fishing tournaments scheduled through 2011.

Included in the tournament schedule is the 9th Annual Kids Fishing Tournament on January 15, 2011.

For a complete listing of 2011 fishing tournaments in South Dakota, click here.