Last year and so far this year we’ve no shortage of water from continued rainfall. Knowing how to adapt and fish higher than average water levels is the key for having great days of fishing under such conditions. One of the most important parts of high water success is coming prepared to fish the right flies. Here are four styles of fly patterns that we rely on while guiding high water conditions.
1 San Juan Worm- Forced to fish one fly in high water, a San Juan Worm would be the fly of my choice. Rain brings out the worms, and there are few flies to produce fish as consistently as a San Juan Worm in high water conditions. Make sure to carry them in Reds, Pinks, Tans, and Browns.
2 Eggs & Sucker Spawn- Eggs and Sucker Spawn work well in high water conditions, even when fish aren’t spawning. Much like the San Juan worm, they are bright attractor patterns that are easy for fish to see in dirty water. Carry them in a range of sizes and in colors such as Creams, Pinks, and Oranges.
3 Rubber Leg Stonefly Nymphs- Whether it’s Kauffman’s Stonefly Nymph, a Pat’s Rubber Legs, or a Girdle Bug, a stonefly nymph can be a great fly for high water. It’s a big profile fly that is easy for the fish to see and take advantage of a big meal.
4 Wooly Buggers- Drift, Twitch, Swing, or Strip them. It’s hard to fish a Wooly Bugger wrong, especially in high water. Fishing a big fly such as an Black, Olive, or White Wooly Bugger in high water can be a great way to pick up fish that are eager to pounce on a big meal.
A lot of really nice trout get caught with a variety of fly patterns under high water conditions. If you need to fill your boxes with high water flies visit the fly shop.
If it’s time for you to get back to the club for a day on the water, talk to Joel to get your on the books for 2019.