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Catch of the Week & Fishing Tips
Catch of the Week & Fishing Tips
​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​A beautiful cutbow caught at Steamboat Lake!​​

A beautiful cutbow caught at Steamboat Lake!

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Fishing Tips of the Week

Vertical Jigging for Kokanee

During this time of year, kokanee start schooling together and make their run up river to spawn. An effective strategy for catching schooling, pre-spawn kokanee, is to identify large schools and then vertical jig that area. This can result in numerous fish being caught! A boat equipped with a depth finder is a great way to identify these schools as well as determine the depth. If you don’t have a graph, you can also troll until you catch a fish and then jig once a fish is landed. Counter reels are a great way to make sure your depth is perfect, where the fish are schooling. Lighter jigs (3/8 and ½ ounces) can be used earlier in the morning when they are in shallower water and heavier jigs (3/4 and 1 ounce) should be utilized as they go deeper during the day. Kokanee tend to bite as the jig drops in the water so make sure to put tension on the line, in-between each movement, and pause to see if a fish is there. There is no need to be extremely aggressive with the jigging movement and it is best to simply lift and lower the rod a few feet. A wide variety of colors work, from more florescent colors (red, pink orange, chartreuse, etc.) to mute colors (silver, white, etc.). It is most important to be jigging at the correct depth and to identify schooling fish. Jigs can be fished by themselves or with corn to entice a bite. Expect to cover a lot of water and a great fight!

Keeping an eye on smaller flies and setting the perfect hook     

Small dry flies (#18-20) can be incredibly effective patterns for catching trout, but can also be difficult to keep an eye on and follow in the water. Brook sprouts and Griffith's gnats are a great midge/midge cluster pattern. To keep an eye on these tiny flies, try tying a larger caddis (#12-16) about a foot and a half to two feet above the smaller fly on your leader. This will allow you to keep your eyes on a larger fly in the water while still letting you see trout rising about one to two feet away from the caddis. If you see a trout rise in that area, set the hook! This method also allows you to catch fish on the lead caddis. A larger lead fly may not seem as natural and may tip more sensitive trout off so they won't go after either fly. In other cases the larger fly will cause them to investigate the area and they may go after the smaller one. If a trout sips your dry fly be careful not to immediately set the hook. You want to wait until the trout turns its head down, towards the bottom of the river, and then set the hook. Just be sure not to wait too long and miss the fish!