Home Fishing Tips Small River Brown Trout Hunting | Tom Rosenbauer

Small River Brown Trout Hunting | Tom Rosenbauer

Small River Brown Trout Hunting | Tom Rosenbauer

welcome everyone to the new fly fisher i’m  phil rowley and i’m tom rosenbauer today we’re   coming to you from red deer alberta and we’re  joined by dave jensen from fly fish alberta   and this area is known for its wonderful brown  trout fisheries and together we’re going to show   you how to hunt trout on these great western  waters it’s gonna be a great show stick around   let him go back to live  another day and away he goes great fish wow oh baby look at that fish stop wiggle on the way down   on today’s show the new fly fisher is based out  of red deer alberta it is located roughly halfway   between the capital city of edmonton to the north  and the stampede city of calgary to the south   red deer is a small city with a  population of just over 90 thousand people   perfectly situated to target the numerous trout  streams of the south central part of the province   red deer is a metropolitan city complete with  shopping amenities attractions parks including   heritage parks a nature center and lots of  accommodation options as with many destinations a   quick visitor call to the local tourism office is  recommended the region is also home to a variety   of wildlife including birds such as geese  and wax wings along with muskrat deer and elk our guide today is dave jensen together with wife  emilia they own and operate fly fish alberta guide   service dave has a wealth of experience not only  on central and southern alberta streams but in   particular hunting trout his skills have been  honed on his local rivers and on the crystal   clear waters of new zealand dave has developed  an almost supernatural ability to spot fish   tom and i are both looking forward to our time  on the water with dave our trip has been blessed   mayflies are hatching in good numbers including  hexagina hexagina or hex as they are known to many   is a huge mayfly they spend up to three years as  a nymph before they swim to the surface to emerge   upon hatching the large adults drift downstream  they provide a huge morsel that even the largest   trout find hard to resist hex spinners are equally  effective perfect for our hunting trout theme   when i’m sight fishing for brown trout i’m looking  in the typical areas where i know the brown trout   are going to live that’s going to be a long woody  debris it’s going to be in deep troughs where the   current slows down and it’s also going to be at  the head and inside of seams during a good hatch   and the last thing i i look for especially on  undercut banks is the lower riding fins that are   bright yellow most often and if i’m having a  tough time sighting fish i look right along the   edges for those bright yellow fins so tom what  we got here today uh we’re gonna be walking up   a tiny little spring creek and right in front of  us here we have a beaver dam that’s backed that   water up so it’s crystal clear water and what this  beaver’s done it’s real shallow here but we’re   gonna get into kind of a trough as it goes all  the way up and on either side there’s a drop off   right against the grasses that that the trout will  hold right tight to the grasses come out feed and   go back now that’d be normally to be hard to see  except in this crystal clear water you can pretty   much just walk along real slow look at the base  of the grasses and walk up we’re looking for heads   pectoral fins and tails okay on some of the  bigger males they’re going to have that big   flagging tail right and that’s a  dead giveaway that he’s there okay when you’re hunting trout it’s important to figure  out what they’re feeding on it just makes fly   selection and presentation choice that much easier  and here just by standing downstream from some   prospective water i’ve got a good sample of what  might be on the menu this is a big hexagina nymph   a shuck the size of that thing we’ve got a done  a bit of a [ __ ] you see its wings are all beat   up struggling flopped over in the film another  one that’s passed away this was lying flat and   over here we’ve got a pmd spinner so right away  we can think about imitating hexagena and pmds oh yeah oh yeah baby nice fish we got 17 18 inches tall oh boy can’t  beat that i’ll dry in the middle of the day   in the middle of a fairly bright day yes sir so tom we have a corner pocket here we know brown  trout are big fat and sassy but they’re also lazy   um when the time comes to feed they’ll  do so but until then they’re not going   to leave this depth of water right now we have  the biggest fish that’s working is sitting right   there and and the top end of the bucket he’ll take  the biggest stuff but there’s also two more fish   that have moved up because we have a pmd hatch  and they’re working that seam just in the top end   of that seam coming in okay so they move from the  deep water up into their current to feed yes okay oh he’s moving he got him yeah good shoe good show yeah wow nice fish tom yeah  watch the mud on angle here nice fly she floats here’s those banks i was selling you  a boat earlier in the trip yeah yeah thought i could do it there you go yeah it’s 18 19.

wow wow thanks dave great fish many times  when hunting or just prospecting for trout   you are not always able to cast traditionally  with your dominant hand to be consistently   successful you must adapt and learn different  casting techniques to handle the conditions   take the time to practice  casting with your weak hand   performing a back cast lay down or casting over your opposite shoulder using a  cross body cast as they say practice makes perfect so dave tell me about some of these flies  we’ve been using well tom we we’ve got the   uh beethoven peasant tail nymph that we pretty  much hang underneath any of these other dry   flies that we have beside we have the rabbit  splitter merger which has been great during the   brown drake and hex hatch here we also have the  stimulator we use that later at night these fish   weren’t too shy about anything when the hatch  was on beside that we have the gator done it’s   basically a huge hexagenia pattern it can be used  as a as a don or a spent spinner beside that we   have a sparkle pmd done for the smaller flies yeah  we did have a few pmds this week and beside that   we have a brown drake spinner didn’t get a lot of  brown drake’s this week hexes kind of took over   and then beside that we have a hopper you know  it’s a great hopper pattern that you have there   this time of year it’s early season  so the hopper is a little bit smaller what tom and i are doing is following one of  dave’s great suggestions and that’s working in   a pair up the stream bank tom’s in the water right  now he’s on the right he’s on point if you will   casting to prospective spots or hopefully a  rising fish i’m up on the bank a little bit   especially helpful on a bright sunny day i have  the advantage to see into the water i can see fish   moving laterally which is a clue they’re taking  nymphs so we can not only work them with a dry   we can also hang a small nymph off a dropper and  get them that way as well so we’re just going   to keep walking up the bank here prospecting  our way along and hopefully catch a few fish so dave off my right shoulder we’ve seen a fish  rising sporadically here they seem to be soft   supple rises suggests maybe the  pmds we’ve seen a spinner or a done what about the approach this trout’s  window here well the trout’s window   obviously that fish lives right underneath that  that clump of sticks there he comes out drops out   of that when the hatch is on so we have to make  sure with this slow water that we don’t get too   close because we’re high if that fish should  turn and take something slightly downstream   we’re going to be staring right at them  so we got to make sure that we’re back   and we’re covered with these grasses we’re  going to use these grasses as a screen   for the fish all right yes yes good fish good fish  now the fun begins good fish can we get down there   and land them because it’s a steep bank so we’re  not quite sure about the depth yeah that’s deep   all right it’s deep okay so i’m gonna reel  up because i’ve got lots of grass which is   which is dangerous and you should be able to  come stand here phil okay so i’m just going to   trouble with these grassy banks is your next step  maybe your last oh yeah i can see there’s a little   shoulder here for me to get down on perfect  absolutely perfect oh yeah but she’s steep   so again that fish lateral line dave as  well i think yeah i think so got it got   its attention made it turn a little twitch  and again you’ve talked to us about the   tip slack where the line’s coming back and  we get this bow of line under the rod tip   happy stuff that the fish exploits so  as soon as that line hits you’re almost   stripping in like a streamer just to stay  tight with the drift definitely strip into   that’s a gorgeous fish oh dave don’t go  swimming yes speaking of that bank hey yeah he’s not too impressed well done dave well  done nice fish so we’ll just let this uh   fish go back but there you go understanding  the trout’s window helps you determine how   close you’ve got to be and it’s best to as dave  says protect the edge not only with the line but   with the fly as well work your way in little  trout sees it comes up and takes it confident   just let that beautiful fish go back to  the home under the logs nice dude yeah   protecting the edge is making sure that you don’t  just get into position and hammer a cast right   on top of the fish if you think a fish is at a  certain spot work your way in lay the fly line   back about five five six feet get that fly into  position lay it out nicely and make sure that   you’re not over extending your boundaries always  leave that fly line back downstream of the fly on today’s show we use 4x and 5x leaders ranging  from 12 to 14 feet long depending on water clarity   the clearer the water the longer the leader  it is easy to construct a 14-foot leader by   taking a 12-foot leader and adding two feet of  equal or lesser diameter tippet once you near   the tippet knot you know it’s time to add tippet  once again to maintain the overall leader length   okay dave you know normally most people when they  fish rivers and streams 9 foot 12 foot of max i   know you’re an advocate of 12 foot minimum now  i i see obvious reasons for water clarity what’s   some other reasons we have that nice long leader  um generally i like to go 12 14 foot in this the   water flow is really slow you got a spring creek  that’s absolutely you know crystal clear water   yeah fish is going to see everything being brown  trout they’re going to hear everything they’re   going to know what’s going on their lateral  lines on the brown trout versus any other trout   they’re really keyed in they know what’s hitting  the water and you don’t want to over commit   um so it’s a little bit of extension  it’s a little extra i’ve got   what so i don’t have to make such a long cast  because i’ve got that leader turning over   and an element of stealth to that leader  exactly but if you go to an 18-foot leader like   you know new zealand kind of fishes still water  fishing you don’t get you don’t get the accuracy   no in that 12 14 uh foot zone you have the  ability to get the fly to turn over without   pounding it and without losing control at either  end of the spectrum okay right in that zone so   that makes sense then so we’ve got a fish up here  targeted we’re going to move up and give it a shot you might even help oh yeah there it is here  it is there’s the fish that’s the one there’s   the one we’ve been watching there’s the one so  i’m gonna keep he’s coming right he’s gonna try   that’s the one we wanted so again great tip  there dave i was trying to pinch the line off   to let it slingshot over because i was concerned  about you know splatting the fish and you end up   doing exactly what you don’t want to do let the  line shoot have faith in your casting ability to   let the line roll over and do what it was designed  to do and look what happens nice fish nice fish oh   thank you thank you thank you thank you  good job look at that look at that is that   a look at that can you hold your rod yeah you  wouldn’t mind absolutely you took the hopper   which i think i see a hackle sticking out  of it i think my hopper is due for a change so we’ll take that out hold on he  wants it so much and now we’ve got a   dropper set up here so we’ll get deal with  that so again that’s the upstream approach   and why we systematically work up the run so we  don’t spook the fish and it’s just a classic dry   dry fly approach taking advantage of the fish’s  blind spot as we refer to it just a gorgeous   gorgeous brown this hunting fish  is just a riot not a lot of fish   but just a real intimate contact i love it  we’ll just let them swim out of our hands   go back and rest hopefully another  angler can share the same experience   that’s gonna be perfect here it comes no  i got it so do i actually caught the fly   patience is the number one thing when  trying to find these fish hunt these fish   you have to allow the fish to work its cycle if  it’s going to go downstream of you and work back   upstream you have to let it do that if you’re  not sure if it’s a fish you have to sit there   sometimes wait 5 10 15 minutes and see if  you see a tail maybe a head maybe a peck pin   see movement you’re always waiting  to see what’s going to happen you’re   always waiting to get just the right  moment before you commit to anything so that fish just rose quite a ways upstream of  where i thought he was so it’s a good thing that   i waited now i can slowly move up to his position  hopefully he’ll be in the same place and hopefully   he’ll be interested in feeding well he’s i’m  trying to keep him out of those sticks over there try to lead him turn him on  the side and lead him this way   i think we’re pretty clear  down below here to land him he’s not 20 but he’s a nice fish get his head up yeah there i’ll  get his head up right right now i thought he wasn’t you know he’s  just he’s got wheat over his face   usually that’s that settles him down there he whoa that’s right if i was smart i would have reeled up my line but come on buddy there he’s in the mud now  he’s disoriented there we go yeah that’s   where it’s supposed to be yeah gonna hold  that and i’ll take your rod for you okay dave actually spotted that fish i don’t think any  other human being in the world would have been   able to uh to spot that fish oh there’s the fly  but dave spotted the fish when we were walking up   here the fish wasn’t rising dave said i know that  fish will eat and as much confidence as i have in   dave i wasn’t sure about that but he did eat and  you know dave up there high on the bank talked me   into it got me pretty excited when he said he’s  coming he’s coming he’s coming and he ate the fly nice fat wild brown trout  the kind we’ve been hunting well we were fishing for a riser up there and he  wasn’t interested and this looked awfully good   with that overhang there and all those sticks and   um good feeding lane so i  let the fly go down there and lo and behold there was a nice brown trout  in there a gorgeous little fish yeah blue   oh sparks on the gills hold the neck there tom  we’ll show it to the viewers what a beautiful well it’s been a great experience tom  and i have learned so much from dave   about how to hunt for trout it’s just been  incredible hasn’t it been fun it’s been fun   hopefully you’ve learned a lot as well and you can  add these tricks and techniques to your repertoire   for more information on this show and others  in our series please visit us on the web   at thenewflyfisher.

com thanks for  joining us we’ll see you next week you


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