Springtime in the Rockies is known as big fish time.
This is the season when many of the largest fish of the season will be hooked and landed. Ice off usurers in the spring spawning season for cutthroats, cutbows and rainbows and with the days lengthen and eggs in the water trout will grow more in the April and May then they will all year. This is perhaps the most productive, most aggressive big fish fishing on the entire season as well as the most productive deep nymphing of the season takes place from now until the end of runoff. Remember after runoff the best fishing may not long be deep nymphing and your techniques should change accordingly.
Flies: Organize your fly box. Most of us have not
looked at our boxes since last fall. Now is the time to re-stock and organize
to make the most of our time this spring. Take a look back at the fishing
reports from 2008 and 2007 and see what bugs where working when. Make sure you
have those bugs in stock and be sure you have enough to lose a few to the
river. My favorites for spring include eggs, caddis, micro black stoneflies,
bwos and midges in that order. As we move toward runoff and the water swells it
is time for large stoneflies. Ready yourselves with olive, brown, black and
golden stones in sizes 2-10. PMD’s will be hot on their tail as the water
starts to recede along with green, brown and gray drakes.
Rods and Reels: Farrell wax is a nice way to prepare your rods for a new season. Simply apply a bit of the wax on the male end of the connecting rod section and you will be sure to have good, non-slip, easy to remove rod sections for the season. Cork grips can be clean with a mild detergent and some elbow grease, cleaning your grips each year can extend the life of your cork. Preparing your reels for the season varies depending on the model and manufacturer, read up on their recommendations before cleaning or oiling a reel.
Nets: For those of you using rubberized baskets you should take a minute to check and be sure there no cracks in the plastic or hole in the bag. Unlike cloth mesh nets the holes or cracks that turn into hole in rubber baskets stretch under the weight of the water and fish so what looks like a very small hole can be large enough to allow even the best 10 pound fish to escape. I speak from experience on this one!
Waders and Boots: It is always nice to start the season smelling great. Gortex waders can be washed in the machine using powder detergent. Revivex can be used to restore the “bead up” ability of water on the outside of the waders. The new Revivex is much easier to apply and achieves great results. Check the laces in your boots, especially in Simms boots; they are good for one season at the most. New laces and a good rinse off with 409 will ensure you are not transporting aquatic hitchhikers.
Fishing License: Remember that all 2009 fishing licenses expire at the end of March 2010; be sure to renew your license before you go fishing the DOW will be out in force between now and run off.
Thanks to our affiliate Catch Magazine for the photos.