09/15/12

Insects and other foods the trout should be eating:
Hatching:
1.    BWOs (Little and Eastern BWOs)
2.    Little Yellow Quills
3.    Little Yellow Stoneflies
4.    Slate Drakes
5.    Needle Stoneflies
6.    Mahogany Duns

Most available/ Other types of food:
7.    Sculpin, Minnows (Streamers)
8.    Craneflies
9.    Beetles
10.  Grasshoppers
11.  Ants

Great Trout Streams

What constitutes a great trout stream? Ask any ten anglers and you will probably get ten different
answers; however, there are a few things that most of them will have in common when describing
what makes a great stream.

The size of the fish is one factor most all of them will consider important. Big is a key word in
describing any fish.

Most anglers, though they may not even realize it as such, will place a great deal of importance on
being able to catch a large number of fish. In other words, many prefer streams that offer easy
fishing and lots of trout. Far fewer anglers will prefer a stream that challenges their skills although
being able to outwit fish from tough to fish waters heightens some angler's satisfaction and
pleasure.

Some will place preferences on the species of trout available - brook, brown, rainbow or cutthroat.

Still others will place a great deal of importance of things other than the fish, such as the scenery
and wildlife found along the stream.

For sure you will hear the word "accessibility" mentioned. Not all anglers are physically able or care
to hike into remote backcountry locations.

Crowds bother most anglers, so the solitude a stream affords is usually a big factor.

Still others place a great deal of importance on hatches, some traveling to streams in an attempt to
time their visits when various insects emerge.  

Naturally, most all anglers will prefer to fish streams that are in close proximity to their homes. Trout
Unlimited's "Top 100 Trout Streams" illustrates this point well. Members of T. U. selected the
streams included in the book and it should not come as a surprise that there are a few streams
listed in all of the geographic regions in the U. S.

Some anglers place importance on the type of stream preferring to fish spring creeks, still water,
tailwaters, or freestone streams.

Another big factor, overlooked by some anglers, is whether the trout are native, wild or stocked
fish. Certainly, wild or native trout are more difficult to approach and fool than trout that have been
raised in a hatchery.

It is an impossible task for anyone to judge what should be the top 100 or top 10 trout streams in
the nation, in a particular state or even in Great Smoky Mountains National  Park simply because
by doing so, they are trying to tell anglers what they should prefer-big fish, lots of fish, etc.

I do have my own personal ideas as to what constitutes a good trout stream. I certainly prefer
fishing for native or wild trout as opposed to stocked trout although given enough time holdover
trout can certainly become difficult enough to catch. Although most trout in the U. S. are not native
trout and all wild trout, meaning trout that are stream-bred, have ancestors that were at one time
stocked, I still much, much prefer catching wild trout to stocked trout, holdovers included.
Furthermore, I couldn't possible justify rating any stream that will not naturally reproduce trout as
high or higher than one that does have natural reproduction and does not require stocking in
order to maintain a good trout population. The same holds true for a stream that has some
stream-bred trout but that requires stocking in order to maintain a good population of fish.

I'll bet there are plenty of you that disagree with my preferences and there's certainly nothing
wrong with that. The single most important thing that fly fishing for trout should provide is fun.
Copyright 2012 James Marsh