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Artistic view of a Male Pteronarcys californica (Pteronarcyidae) (Giant Salmonfly) Stonefly Adult from the Gallatin River in Montana
Pteronarcys californica

The giant Salmonflies of the Western mountains are legendary for their proclivity to elicit consistent dry-fly action and ferocious strikes.

27" brown trout, my largest ever. It was the sub-dominant fish in its pool. After this, I hooked the bigger one, but I couldn't land it.
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Posts: 2
Rickhill on Oct 25, 2011October 25th, 2011, 3:06 am EDT
I've been fly fishing for about 5 to 6 years, but still don't think I can develop very good strategies for flies and presentation when I come up to a stream or lake - my understanding of how trout behave is pretty crude. Can anyone recommend a good resoruce for this - readable for the non-scientist - that talks about how and why trout feed in different seasons, different types and temperatures of water etc ?
Oldredbarn's profile picture
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Oldredbarn on Oct 25, 2011October 25th, 2011, 6:28 am EDT

What part of the country do you live in? What streams do you like to fish? There are at least a trillion fly fishing books out there that would be helpful...

Dave Hughes is a very readable writer and you could check out his, "Reading the Water" or "Fly Fishing Basics"...Any book he co-wrote with Rick Hafele is worth while for insect info. Especially out west.

I enjoyed Ed Engle's, "Fishing Small Flies"...It has some nice tactic stuff.

Swisher & Richards', "Fly Fishing Strategy" or their anniversary edition of the classic "Selective Trout" are still usable and helpful.

This list could get quite long...I'll leave some space for the favorites of others here on TroutNut.


"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
PaulRoberts's profile picture

Posts: 1776
PaulRoberts on Oct 25, 2011October 25th, 2011, 7:06 am EDT
Prospecting for Trout by Tom Rosenbauer
-Great breakdown of trout habitat and habits.

Seasons of the Trout by Neil Streeks
-Western in focus but applicable in terms of understanding seasons and the fact that insect genera have enough similarities that you can glean a lot from them.
Posts: 2
Rickhill on Oct 27, 2011October 27th, 2011, 12:49 am EDT
Thanks Paul and Spence.

I spend time and fish around Taos NM, in Washington DC area, southern Switzerland. My two favorites that I get to spend time on often are the Rio Grande - in the canyon for 40 miles south of the Colorado border and the Rio Pino which goes in and out of Colorado and NM.

These are great leads - I'll try to pick them up.

Keystoner's profile picture
Eugene, OR - formerly Eastern PA

Posts: 145
Keystoner on Oct 27, 2011October 27th, 2011, 8:39 am EDT
I have only general understanding myself. One thing I can tell you, is that if you are winter trout fishing, you will want to hit the slower deeper holes. Through the winter, the water is susceptable to wilder temprature swings. For this reason, trout tend to "stack up" in deep slow water where the temps are more constant, and they can conserve energy. Also, this is where the food is, as there are not near as many hatchs over winter, save midges of course.

There are a number of deep holes in PA that are absolutely fantastic from late fall through the winter, and only so-so from late spring through summer. The reason for this, I believe, is that as the water "warms" up to that golden 57degrees, the trout start to leave the deep water and spread out. Anglers it seems mirror this behavior. Holing up through the winter, saving energy and eating. Then, branching out again in spring. One of the reasons I so relish winter fishing!!
"Out into the cool of the evening, strolls the Pretender. He knows that all his hopes and dreams, begin and end there." -JB
Entoman's profile picture
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Entoman on Oct 27, 2011October 27th, 2011, 9:49 am EDT
Great stuff, Matt.
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
Posts: 560
Sayfu on Oct 28, 2011October 28th, 2011, 5:34 am EDT
I sure do concur with Paul Roberts. Both are very knowledgeable guys, and Streeks is one of my gurus. They had his old, wooden driftboat that he made on display in a fountain/fish pond as part of a big developmental center along the Snake River in Idaho Falls. My kinda guy. The guy was on the river much of his professional life, and learned aspects of fly fishing first hand. But I give high regard to the waters you fish, and the approaches made by good anglers that fish those waters at the various seasons...too many variables to make too many generalize statements. Local flyshop information is invaluable.

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