We’ve had lots of snow and precipitation this week, and that is a very good thing. Has the weather slowed down the fishing? Not a lot. Things are good for early spring, and there are lots of fish being caught and some big ones as well. Big fish are coming up for the skwala. Big fish are chasing the streamer. Mid-week fishing has been strong, and combined with the prospect of sun and warm weekend days we’re looking at one of those weekends where the angling traffic will be high. What does that look like in the spring? Nothing like June, but if you’ve been fishing in relative solitude all winter long, look for the fair weather fisherman to have snagged your spot this weekend, and have options ready to go. Time to be a little choosy.
|Choosing a spot where the crowds ain’t ain’t always easy.|
Be choosy about your spot, and try somewhere that might not get the traffic of the obvious hot spots. Same applies to your fly patterns. The skwalas are about, and so are the anglers tossing their secret patterns they’ve worked all winter on. If you’ve got the hot ticket, let ‘er rip. It is early in the hatch, which means they’ll still take a purple chubby if it floats by, but on a sunny mid-March weekend I’d be looking for a sneakier pattern. Remember where you want to fish these patterns this time of year, and target that water where the bugs would be migrating through. Should you tie on a dropper? Sure, if you like, though I prefer to fish a single dry during skwala time or commit to the nymph game completely. Nymphing will get you some numbers this weekend, and a slim skwala nymph and a worm are going to keep you happy. Or they won’t. It’s fishing, after all and spring means codebreaking, so switch things up to find that happy combination. Switch depths, flies, holes, you know the drill.
Streamers? Yep. There have been some big fish committing to the munch, and now is a great time to toss a streamer at those enticing spots. This time of year, fishing a smaller streamer through the inside bends is a favorite way to prospect, and fly shops are well stocked to help you out with a picky pattern that will get the job done.
What can you do to be choosy this weekend and get where the getting is good and the crowds aren’t? I can’t stress this enough: VISIT THE FLY SHOP. The guys behind the counter aren’t there just for the amazingly huge paychecks and glory. They know what’s up. They’ve got the ticket, and you need it to set yourself apart when the weekend hits. I’ll leave it up to them to give you the real skinny.