so im about to go out for the 4th time this week, my first time alone. my friends always tie my lines for me and say throw there. so i really dont know what im looking for. i went into a local fly shop yesterday and picked up a couple of flies they said would be good for this time of year, and gave me tips on how to fish fast water (fish are behind rocks, trees, and in the slower water, etc.) and websites on what the water is doing.
but what am i looking for out there? how long do i fish a spot before i decide theres no fish there and move on? i plan on using the traditional rig for nymphs. should i try others rigs (bounce or dry dropper)? are eddys a good place to fish, or is it called pocket water? i think i understand what a seam is and know i want to fish those now. i understand i probably wont catch anything but it will be nice to get out there. oh and for those who have been here, ill be fishing the upper provo.
Thats a good start (the site you mentioned). Keep your eyes scanning for flashes and movement if the water is clear enough. To keep it simple fish with what you are most familiar and comfortable with. Most importantly have a ball!
I really like Dave Hughes' book on the subject, "Reading the Water". But then almost anything by Mr. Hughes is good stuff. You should check it out if you want to delve deeper. However, nothing is going to teach you like time on the water. Pay attention to where you have luck and really think about why the fish was there.
I'll concur with gadfly in that taking a read where an author has condensed his life's experience into a learning tool for you (the reader) is the best 'fast track' out there. Take the time to read and absorb a book like gadfly has suggested and then as you spend time on trout streams you will begin to connect the dots that lead to comprehension.
The best way to become good at this is to put a great effort into learning. It has been many years since I fished on the Provo River but you have there a great place for learning.
Another great book for reading water is "Prospecting for Trout" by Tom Rosenbauer. He really gets into trout behavior and how to dissect a stream. Then time on the water will bring it all together for you so you'll walk up to a stream and systematically work the water to you advantage!!
Books will help you but nothing is better than spending time on the water.Try to locate fish feeding on the surface or under athe water.Anyway trout live in the same places everywhere in the world,little by little you will learn to know where fish must be when you wade a stream even it's the first time you fish it.To start with I advise you to fish fast little streams it's a good school to understand where fish can be and feed...here's a simple but useful piece of advice ....fish the slowest part of the fastest and the fastest part of the slowest....not sure it's clear but you'll understand what it means soon
A lot of good information so far. Here are some suggestions that might help.
1. Make sure you have Polaroid Sun Glasses.
2. Study the water before you make your first cast. Look for fish and study how the currant is working in different water types. Look for fish rising and taking bugs on the surface. Turn over a few rocks and see what nymphs are there. All of this will help you decide what and how to fish.
3. Always fish the water closest to you before wading. If you see a spot that you know holds fish or looks like it should hold fish, fish your way to it. Don't just pass up all the water between you and the spot.
4. Buy one of the books mentioned in this thread. A lot of us learned how to read water from books.
5. Hire a guide and watch his every move and ask questions. He can show you how to read water.
6. Concentrate on what you are doing every second your fly is in the water. If you catch a fish as soon as you have landed it go over in your mind exactly what you were doing when you got your strike. Keep a log or remember where you caught every fish. There will be fish there next time you visit the river. If you keep a log write down the water temp, time of day, water level, weather, fly and just about anything that will help you the next time you fish. This really helps next year at the same time.
7. When to move on. That is a hard one. With experience you will have a much better idea when to move on. Some fly fishers will stay at one good looking spot, or a spot they caught a fish, for way too long. Rivers do not hold fish in every stretch of water. Some stretches don't have what a fish needs to be comfortable. Water temps, water depth, lack of food, lack of protection or who knows why fish may not be in a stretch of river or stream. I tend to fish the available water and move on to the next spot faster than some fly fishers. If you fish the same water all the time you will learn the river and not waste time on areas with no fish or small fish. As a beginner I would make sure I had tried all of the water and fished all the seams and holding water and then move on. If you catch one or two fish and they stop biting change the fly or move on and then come back to the spot.
8. Fish the flies and use the techniques that your local fly shop recommends. He wants you to catch fish and has the knowledge to help you.
thanks guys ill check into those books, but i feel a guide would be much better for me. im a very visual learner.
also as for a log. are there any good fly fishing apps for droid? all the fly apps cost a couple bucks and dont wanna waste money on a bad one. my phone will tell me my gps cords of where i took a picture so if not i can make my own pretty easy.
Mac...fish have few needs. They have to be able to eat, breath and be safe from predators. They like to live in water within some temperature bounds. The other thing to know is they are calorie savers...they are lazy.
So, if you were a fish, where would YOU hang out? Somewhere out of the main current, but close enough to it to be able to snag a passing snack, while safe from Ospreys, et al.
As you learn to read water, if you understand WHY fish are where they are it'll make more sense to you...-Mike
Oh, and if you're a visual learner, definitely get with a good guide and you'll take years off your learning curve. Do it. You won't be sorry.