Saturday, April 8, 2017

2017 TROUT SEASON OPENS!

                                                                      Egg Patterns

Happy 2017 trout season to all the anglers out there.  As any Veteran VT angler would tell you, the start of the season is often a hurry up and wait approach.  Nevertheless, there are always opportunities for those willing to brave the elements and the high/cold water.  Steelhead, pike, and browns are often your best bet early in the season.  If you're targeting resident trout, finding a thawed beaver pond can pay off as well.  Also, when fishing rivers, try to pick your watershed accordingly.  You do not want to be fishing drainages that funnel tons of snowmelt this time of year.  Look for lower elevation areas that don't drain the spine of the greens, which are loaded with snow still.  We continue to have a decent snowpack (112 in. on Mt. Mansfield as of today) unlike last year and that is going take awhile to dissipate. 

This time of year I personally only throw 2 types of flies for trout - eggs and streamers.  You will see little stoneflies on the warm days and common sense will tell you to tie one on but in my experience I have had very little luck with that approach.  It is a tough sell to ask a trout to move through cold heavy water to eat a #16-#18 stonefly.  It seems like too much effort for too little reward but a protein filled egg or meaty streamer....that's another story.  Don't get me wrong, fish definitely will eat early stones in front of them but I myself have not had much luck "matching the hatch" in Early April.

That's my two cents for April fishing.  Use weighted heads or split shot and slow down your drifts and retrieves whenever possible.  Stay safe while wading this month and when you snag up (which you should be) use common sense when wading out to save your fly or just don't attempt it.  The same goes for crossing rivers on warm days when flows can increase quickly from the sun.  Good luck out there and enjoy all the fishing options VT has to offer.