Insects and other foods the trout should be eating:
1. BWOs (Little and baetis BWOs)
2. Little Yellow Quills
3. Slate Drakes
4. Needle Stoneflies
Most available/ Other types of food:
5. Sculpin, Minnows (Streamers)
Reviewing the Basics - Part 2
As I said yesterday, trout have a blind spot in their peripheral vision. It's a small area directly
behind them. When they are positioned in the moving water of the stream facing in an upstream
direction, that small blind area enables you to get fairly close to them provided you approach them
from their rear. This must be done carefully and quietly. Approaching them from their front (the
direction they are looking) isn't as easy and usually next to impossible to do without being spotted.
Again, it is movement of objects at a distance that gets their attention quicker than anything.
Another big factor in just how well they can spot you has to do with your contrast with the
surrounding background. For example, unless your fishing in deep snow, If you are wearing a
white shirt and white hat, you are not blending in very well with the typical background of a stream.
You want to blend in with the background in the same manner a deer or turkey hunter would. In
fact, the best clothing you could possible wear would be the best matching camouflage outfits you
could find to match the colors of the forest during the different seasons of the year.
I am not suggesting you should go so far as to wear a camouflage net over your head or that you
should shade your eyes. I am not even saying that camouflage clothing is necessary even though
it would solve the problem very well. Trout will not detect your presence near as well if you blend in
with the background. Subdued shades of browns and greens usually work best. You should avoid
bright, flashy colors.
Another factor in how close you can approach trout is how well you can see them. If there is a lot of
glare on the water, and there always is, you should wear polarized glasses. There is no sense
in stumbling over a trout directly in front of you. It will go upstream and warn its entire family that a
creature is coming. Seriously, when trout suddenly shoot upstream, I believe it signals other fish
that danger is approaching or it at least makes them aware something is not normal. The least fish
you can spook, the better off you are, even if you are not trying to catch them.
It helps if you can see what's ahead - period. I don't want to get into wading yet, but when you can
see everything in the water ahead of you, you can wade making the least amount of disturbance.
Trout do not have to see you in order for them to detect your presence. They can hear you. You
can yell at your buddy and that won't bother them. If you move a rock on the bottom of the stream,
it will. If you stumble along the bank, it will disturb them. They can hear the sounds you make on
the bottom wading or out of the water fishing on the banks through their lateral line.
Again, I don't want to get technical. This is not the place to discuss how fish hear in detail. Just be
aware that you should walk softly, without disturbing things on the bottom of the stream or the
Lets summarize what I have said so far about hiding from the trout:
1. Keep a low profile: I don't mean crawl along the bank or even that you need to stoop low when
you are wading. Just be aware that the higher you are, the farther away trout can see you. Don't
climb up on boulders and search the water for the trout. They are there. You are just warning them
that you are there.
2.Move Slowly: Your sudden movements spook trout as much or more than anything. Even
though they cannot see you clearly, they can and will detect your movements in their 330 degree
2. Fish in an upstream direction: Whether you are wading or moving along a bank, progress in
an upstream direction, not downstream. Cast in a general upstream direction, not downstream.
They are a few exceptions but most of the time, this is the direction you should be fishing. You can
get closer to the trout and they won't see you as well as if you approached them when they are
3. Dress to blend in with the surroundings: Don't wear flashy or bright colored clothing.
4. Don't disturb the bottom of the stream or the ground along the banks:
Trout can detect your presence through the vibrations you make though the ground and bottom of
the stream. Avoid moving and/or kicking rocks.
5. Wear polarized sunglasses: The better you can see what is ahead in the water, the easier it
is for you to prevent spooking the trout ahead. If you loose your footing and step off into a deep
hole you will spook every trout in the creek.
More on the basics tomorrow
Copyright 2012 James Marsh
This instructional DVD illustrates how trout
can see you and your fly better than anything
ever shown on video.
Stalking Appalachian Trout