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Western U.S. Arizona, Utah, Idaho and Nevada. Post fishing reports, ask for information, discuss this area...

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Old 05-08-2014, 12:33 PM
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Default Transitioning from winter to spring?

I started fly fishing about 6 months ago during November so everything I have learned up to this point has been during the winter. I also haven't had anyone to really "teach" me what to do... Everything that I have learned I have either read online or learned just by practicing.

Anyways, during the winter I seemed to be having more success than I am now during the spring (which definitely shouldn't be the case). During the winter I would mainly fish size 22-20 bugs and I would always try to get them on the bottom of the river with however many split shots were needed.

Ever since the weather has warmed up, it seems that everyone is catching a lot more fish, and I'm not catching very many.

Is there a different way that I should be setting up my rig to catch more fish (ie: dry dropper, less split shots, more split shots, bigger bugs, etc??) I am constantly checking online blogs to see what bugs people are having success with, and when I use those same bugs I don't have much success at all... Hope that makes sense and any help would be great!
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Old 05-08-2014, 12:41 PM
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Default Re: Transitioning from winter to spring?

What type of rivers are you fishing? Is the water high from runoff at this time or low as it is here in California because of drought? What bugs do you see if any give a brief description if you don't know the name? Also what type of trout are you targeting?
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Old 05-08-2014, 03:11 PM
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Default Re: Transitioning from winter to spring?

Hubba: You will get better responses to your questions on catching fish if you would let us know what part of the country you are fishing and as smilingduck said, what kind of water. Please update your profile to show the general area of the country you are located, that would be a good start.
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Old 05-08-2014, 03:15 PM
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Default Re: Transitioning from winter to spring?

I'm fishing rivers here in central and north eastern Utah (green river, provo, etc). The water seems to be pretty normal and still clear (they're both tailwaters so not a ton of run off effecting them). On the provo the only bugs I have seen (remember I'm kind of new to this fly fishing, so there are probably a lot more that I'm not seeing) are the small grey midges that are everywhere on top of the water. Since it's been warmer later I have seen a few hoppers and bigger bugs like that flying around. And just targeting browns and rainbows!

---------- Post added at 02:15 PM ---------- Previous post was at 02:14 PM ----------

Will do mcnerney!
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Old 05-08-2014, 04:18 PM
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Default Re: Transitioning from winter to spring?

I was down on the Green below Flaming Gorge a week or so ago, the first day I waded in the afternoon after walking up from Little Hole about 1 1/2 miles. It was really windy, I primarily nymphed using a scud and small sjw and caught 2 nice rainbows and 4 browns before I had to walk out and catch up with my fishing partner. There was a nice bwo hatch coming off, but by the time I had re-rigged and setup with a small parachute bwo pattern the fish weren't coming to the surface and I got no action off the bwo pattern, so I switched back to nymphing, later in the afternoon just as I was leaving an even bigger bwo hatch was coming off but I didn't have the time to fish it. Next time I will take two rods so I don't have to spend so much time re-rigging. The next day it was about 10 degrees cooler and the wind was even stronger, we did a guided float and the guide started with a two fly rig of midges on top and a baetis nymph on the bottom, but later switched to two baetis nymphs, we lost count of the fish landed, but it was probably around 20 fish each and we had doubles on four different times.
Maybe some of the other UT members can give some ideas for fishing the Provo, I have never fished it.

Edit: One thing I forgot to add that when I'm wading this time of year, I'm looking for seams or other obstructions in the water that offer the trout a little softer water to hold in, so I try to cast into that type of water, mend upstream to try and get as good as a drift as possible and lifting as much fly line as I can off the water.
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Old 05-08-2014, 04:39 PM
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Default Re: Transitioning from winter to spring?

Here are some links for fishing reports for the Provo.
Utah Fishing Reports :: Trout Bum 2
Provo River | Utah Fly Fishing Reports & Conditions

Fly fishing reports on the Provo River, Utah and the Green River

I tend to start out with the basic nymphs: hairs ear,pheasant tail, split case caddis zebra midges ect.(size it depends on water clarity and bugs found in the water, usually no bigger than 14. 16 and 18's seems best) I have not been to the Provo since February.
Hope that helps.
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Old 05-08-2014, 10:45 PM
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Default Re: Transitioning from winter to spring?

I also started last year and I fish lower provo pretty often(at least twice a week). I don't have a lot of success like others do, but the flies that work for me when no surface activity is red midge(18-20). parachute adams 18 when some surface activity and also have had good success with griffiths gnat. I recently started fly tying and have been trying out rainbow warrior, but only 1 fish on it so far. Fish in provo are real picky, even with crazy hatch going...they won't take dries usually and I rotate different flies, size a lot until 1 works.
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Old 05-09-2014, 09:07 AM
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Default Re: Transitioning from winter to spring?

You also have to remember that the upper and lower Provo and Weber river in that area see a lot of pressure all year.
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Old 05-09-2014, 11:04 AM
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Default Re: Transitioning from winter to spring?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mcnerney View Post
I was down on the Green below Flaming Gorge a week or so ago, the first day I waded in the afternoon after walking up from Little Hole about 1 1/2 miles. It was really windy, I primarily nymphed using a scud and small sjw and caught 2 nice rainbows and 4 browns before I had to walk out and catch up with my fishing partner. There was a nice bwo hatch coming off, but by the time I had re-rigged and setup with a small parachute bwo pattern the fish weren't coming to the surface and I got no action off the bwo pattern, so I switched back to nymphing, later in the afternoon just as I was leaving an even bigger bwo hatch was coming off but I didn't have the time to fish it. Next time I will take two rods so I don't have to spend so much time re-rigging. The next day it was about 10 degrees cooler and the wind was even stronger, we did a guided float and the guide started with a two fly rig of midges on top and a baetis nymph on the bottom, but later switched to two baetis nymphs, we lost count of the fish landed, but it was probably around 20 fish each and we had doubles on four different times.
Maybe some of the other UT members can give some ideas for fishing the Provo, I have never fished it.

Edit: One thing I forgot to add that when I'm wading this time of year, I'm looking for seams or other obstructions in the water that offer the trout a little softer water to hold in, so I try to cast into that type of water, mend upstream to try and get as good as a drift as possible and lifting as much fly line as I can off the water.
What baetis patterns were you using if you don't mind me asking? I was just on the green this last monday-tuesday and we did alright, but not like the guides were doing. We got about 20 fish total in two days between the two of us... nothing like we should have done. I got most of mine on a grey RS2 and we got a few others on a grey scud...
I've been looking for some juju baetis but i've never been able to find them in stores, they're always sold out for the most part.

---------- Post added at 10:04 AM ---------- Previous post was at 09:58 AM ----------

We also used quite a bit the Higa's SOS and got a few on it, not as many as I thought we would though...
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Old 05-09-2014, 11:36 AM
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Default Re: Transitioning from winter to spring?

Quote:
Originally Posted by hubba_3 View Post
What baetis patterns were you using if you don't mind me asking? I was just on the green this last monday-tuesday and we did alright, but not like the guides were doing. We got about 20 fish total in two days between the two of us... nothing like we should have done. I got most of mine on a grey RS2 and we got a few others on a grey scud...
I've been looking for some juju baetis but i've never been able to find them in stores, they're always sold out for the most part.

---------- Post added at 10:04 AM ---------- Previous post was at 09:58 AM ----------

We also used quite a bit the Higa's SOS and got a few on it, not as many as I thought we would though...
Hubba: We used a black RS-2 and a jujubee (I think it was a dark brown, if I recall correctly). The jujubee is a Charlie Craven pattern, Google Charlie's Fly Box, I'm sure you can pickup that pattern from his shop in Denver. It isn't that hard to tie if you tie your own flies, same with the RS-2, it is pretty simple. The guides will always out fish the rest of us as they are on the water everyday, they know what is working and what doesn't and know the river like the back of their hand so they can put the boat in exactly the right position to raise the chances of hooking into fish. Wade fishing you will never be able to duplicate what the guides are doing as they are covering so much more water. Twenty fish total in two days is pretty low for that stream, I'm just guessing here, but you might have been running into a presentation issue. It has been really windy down there lately, which makes getting a drag free drift very difficult, but it can be done. So I would work on that and then watch your indicator carefully, some of the strikes I had were very subtle, you have to really concentrate on watching that indicator or you will miss the take, other times it is just the opposite and the whole indicator goes under the surface. On those subtle takes, you will want to set the hook if the indicator does anything strange, like suddenly slowing or stopping for just a second or moving sideways just a bit. Also your rig should be tapping the bottom every so often, so if you aren't think about adjusting the indicator up or adding additional weight. As you move from spot to spot you will be constantly adjusting your rig. If you rig up in the morning and never do any adjusting the indicator up/down or add/subtract weight you will be missing a lot of fish as you are not fishing along the bottom.

With two days of fishing on the Green you should have run into some nice bwo hatches, especially if you had any overcast skies. Next time I go down there wading, I'm carrying two fly rods so I can start out nymphing and when I see a hatch, I can put that rod down and pick up the other fly rod setup with dries and/or emergers.

Several years ago I did a float over on the Grey Reef, I was on the oars and had invited a forum member and his son to fish with me. We did the float from the dam to Lusby, about 7 miles and I think they landed four fish. The next day I had set them up with a guided float with the North Platte Lodge, the guide they floated with had been guiding on that river for the past 15 years. It was a high water year and the guide put in at the dam and took out at Secrest, approx a 23 mile float. They landed 24 fish with three over 20 inches. Afterwards, I ask the guide how he did that and he said he rowed past all the dead water and didn't waste time trying to fish it. This guide knew that river so well that he would tell them that they are approaching a shelf on the left, and you will hook into a fish on your top fly and sure enough they did. For us weekend fishermen, we don't have a chance of learning a river that well, but it's still lots of fun to try. Keep working at it and you will get better, it is just like anything else, put in the time and you will learn something new almost every time you go out. That's the fun of fly fishing, it is a constant learning experience and I'm just scratching the surface.
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