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Coldwater Fly Fishing Trout, Salmon, Steelhead, etc...

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Old 05-11-2015, 02:43 PM
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Default Newbie Questions Regarding Spillways

Hi all. Fairly new to fly fishing. I went out yesterday and the river was crazy with mothers day, so I ditched my usual spots and headed higher up and found a fairly hard to get to spot. About 200 yards up was a small dam or spillway. I mostly fish nymphs, but up near the spillway was a very large pocket that was virtually stillwater. What is the best approach to situations like this when you don't have enough current to really drift anything? A dry or streamer on a retrieve? Also, does it tend to be better above or below a spillway, or does it not make much of a difference?
Thanks in advance.
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Old 05-11-2015, 02:53 PM
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Default Re: Newbie Questions Regarding Spillways

Not an answer, just a reminder.

Some states (California, for example) have restrictions on how close to a dam you can fish. Make sure the pool doesn't conflict with the Nevada fishing rules and regulations before you get out there.
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Old 05-11-2015, 02:59 PM
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Default Re: Newbie Questions Regarding Spillways

How deep was it
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Old 05-11-2015, 03:11 PM
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Default Re: Newbie Questions Regarding Spillways

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Originally Posted by tex View Post
Not an answer, just a reminder.

Some states (California, for example) have restrictions on how close to a dam you can fish. Make sure the pool doesn't conflict with the Nevada fishing rules and regulations before you get out there.
Perfectly fine here in Nevada. There is only one dam on the river with restrictions, and this wasn't it.
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How deep was it
3-6' from what I saw. I didn't stay there very long.
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Old 05-11-2015, 03:24 PM
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Default Re: Newbie Questions Regarding Spillways

I would get high and see what the fish are doing.
If they appear to be cruising in patterns like a still water fish does, I would put something in front of them at the depth the seem to be eating at.
If they appear to be oriented in the same manner and holding like they would be in moving water, I would fish them just the same as I would a "river" fish.
If you like nymphing below an indicator, I would pick two non weighted non specific emerger type patterns (juju baetis and mercury PT?), and drop them behind a tiny floaty or coiled floaty. I'd try as much of a dead drift as possible and slowly work up leading those two flies a little faster until something shows interest.
Streamers and dries aren't in my game well, but I am certain that either would work too.
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Old 05-11-2015, 05:29 PM
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Default Re: Newbie Questions Regarding Spillways

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I would get high and see what the fish are doing.
Well that's an interesting approach!

OK, kidding aside, this "trough" could be void of fish. Some tailwater areas don't necessarily fish well right below the dam (if allowed). It may have a concrete raceway for a bottom and the food chain is just not there until you get downstream a bit.
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Old 05-11-2015, 10:42 PM
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Default Re: Newbie Questions Regarding Spillways

Thanks guys. I didn't really get to try it out or scout it as there was swimmers there, just trying to get an idea of how to approach these situations for future reference. Just below the main pools below the spillways were some rapids to pools, about three of those in the space of about 50 yards, and I did take fish there. The spillway also featured two fish ladders, so I don't see why there wouldn't be fish there, at least in my noob mind lol. It looked pretty good about a 1/4 mile down or so too, but a combo of running short on time and toasting my last leader to the wind cut the day short. But I'm looking forward to getting back out there.
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Old 05-11-2015, 10:53 PM
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Default Re: Newbie Questions Regarding Spillways

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I would get high and see what the fish are doing.
Lmao!
Oh yea, the ol' ninja reflexes. Dem was the days.
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:21 PM
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Default Re: Newbie Questions Regarding Spillways

I figure if there is a dam, there's got to be a top of the dam, and some sort of ground level with the top of that dam. No ninja skills or cash only sales required....
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