Offseason peace calls for a little different kind of fishing
On the Fly
Leaves are turning and angling pressure has begun to drop off. The peace of offseason is almost on our doorstep. This time of year with as cooler weather begins, anglers should take note of numerous factors to continue their success on local waters. This past week float and wade fishing throughout the valley has remained quite consistent.
The factors anglers need to be considering as we move into shorter and cooler days will be focusing on the slower deeper pools — and get your flies down deep during non-hatch periods. Water temperatures have been cooling off and trout will begin to seek the warmth of slower deeper pools and runs. This cooling off also reduces their activity periods throughout the day. Thus, late morning throughout early afternoons are generally the best times to target fish. This is not to say that you cannot have good fishing earlier or later, but bankers hours will be most consistent day in and day out.
Stay on the technical side of things with your flies, leader and tippets. Low, slow and clear water means tiny 18 to 22 midge and baetis patterns attached to 5X, 6X and yes, 7X tippets! Plenty of weight is needed to bounce your offerings along the bottom where fish will be stacked up. Overall, the key to finding fish throughout the fall is time, depth and technique. The only variable to this will be swinging or stripping large streamers to produce some more violent takes.
Favorite technical patterns patterns are Blings, Sidewinders, Jerome Baetis, RS2s and Freestone Emergers. For the meaty streamer stuff, try Autumn Splendors, Gongas, Ziwis, Meal Tickets, Dungeons and Peanut Envies. Stop in your favorite shop and get the inside scoop for the day, have them write you a sick note and go enjoy some hot fishing!
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This column is provided by Taylor Creek Fly Shops in Aspen and Basalt. Taylor Creek can be reached at 970-927-4374.
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Wayne Hall took a job as an air traffic controller at the Aspen-Pitkin County Airport in 2003 thinking he would stay for a short time. Instead he stayed for nearly 17 years and was promoted up to the position of air traffic manager. He reflected on the experience upon retirement.