By Trevor Kugler
For the trout fishing addict the wintertime can bring on a feeling that rivals the morning after a professional football fans team loses their final game and they wake up to the realization that there is no more football for seven or eight months. In other words, for many trout fishermen the winter means that fishing for trout is over and they have to wait until spring to wet a line. What’s interesting about this phenomenon is that this doesn’t have to be the case.
Although it is usually not as productive as during warmer seasons, trout fishing in the winter can actually be quite productive at times if you follow a few simple rules. As a matter of fact many states throughout the United States even have winter stocking programs that result in some nice catches even when the weather is less than what would be called “ideal”.
First and foremost you need to dress properly which means wearing wool socks and insulted waders anytime that you are wading. A wool beanie and a pair of fingerless gloves or glove liners is also in order anytime that you are fishing for trout in the winter.
What about baits? In the winter I have always found that the saying smaller is better to hold true and this fact is true for the size of the hooks that are used as well. Trout feed much less often in the winter and often prefer to eat small meals when they do feed. Maggots and grubs are both good trout bait idea’s in the winter, as well as the old standby salmon eggs.
You will receive bites from trout than you might be used to when trout fishing in winter, and don’t expect the trout to “hammer” your offering. Bites will be very subtle during the winter so make sure that you watch and/feel your line at all times and anytime anything “out of the ordinary” happens, set the hook. Patience is the biggest key to catching trout during the winter months.
Next you want to maximize the time that you spend on the water, so try to fish during the heat of the day (which is when trout tend to be more active during the winter) and try to plan your trout fishing trips in accordance with the moon rise or set. For anyone who doesn’t know, the moon rises and sets twice a day just like the sun does and during these times fish tend to be much more active. Do an internet search for the term ‘moon rise’ and you will find the information that you need.
The bottom line is that trout fishing doesn’t have to stop during the winter months. It may not be as productive as it is during the more comfortable seasons, but fishing for trout during the winter can be an enjoyable and productive experience.
Trevor Kugler is president of JRWfishing, a website dedicated to ultra light fishing, with an emphasis on ultra light river fishing. Sign up for our FREE newsletter and get a FREE ebook about How The Weather & Moon Moon Impact Fishing
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