Fly Fishing

Early Season River Nymphs

It wont be too long now till the months of February and March when we begin to see the return of the nymphing anglers back on the water after a long winter. Eager to wet the winter tying’s and see if the new patterns will tempt fish from the runs of their favorite rivers and streams. The enthusiasm of the angler can be quickly dampened as the cold waters prove it quite difficult to entice a trout to take. At this time of the year brown trout’s metabolism is low and they are still lying in their winter protective lies. So, fishing the typical runs and spring/ summer lies will often lead to disappointment and poor catch rates. 

However, searching through the waters you can discover the more protective places that there could be a chance of a fish or two. These are usually along the margins, in deeper pockets, or places where the fish would remain safe from the winter high waters and cold weather. It is often the case also that you will come across pods of trout in these places, moving from pod to pod will result in a productive day during early spring for the fly angler.
So once you find the fish the next question is what you are going to throw at them to get them to open there mouths. The fish are on the border line from being in their winter feeding mode and their spring hunger encouraging them to snap at anything going by. Selecting the right pattern could be the key to catching rather than blanking.
Here are a few nymphs that I have found to be attractive enough to hook up some early season trout. 

1.Hare’s Ear Grub

Hook: Dohiku 644 or 622
Bead: Copper 3mm-4mm
Thread: Olive tying Thread
Rib: Flat Copper Tinsel
Body: Natural Hares Ear dubbing
Thorax: Mixed Hot Red Dubbing and UV Ice DubbingThis is a great fly for early season nymphing but will also produce fish throughout the season. I find it best on the point and you could also add some flat lead in the under body to give it that extra weight to get down to the deeper fish.

2.Leggy Caddis

Hook: Dohiku 18-16 Jig
Bead: Slotted Gold or Copper 3mm-4mm
Thread: Olive Tying Thread
Tag: Glo Brite No 12
Tail: Natural Partridge Fibres 
Rib: Gold or Copper Wire
Body: Natural Hares Ear Dubbing
Thorax: Hends Peacock Dubbing
Legs: Speckled Rubber legs
Great Jig nymph and aa great attractor pattern for getting fish to open there mouths. This nymph can be successful on either the point fly or on a dropper. By jigging the rod tip up and down you get those legs moving and they can be a real trigger point for the fish.

3.Black & Orange

Hook: Dohiku 18-16 Jig
Bead: Slotted Gold or Copper 3mm-4mm
Thread: Black Tying Thread
Tail: Glo Brite No 9
Rib: Copper Wire
Body: Root Beer flat tinsel
Hackle: Black CDC Spun and Brushed Back
Thorax: Hends Peacock DubbingAnother favourite for early season, black can be a good colour if the waters are a bit mucky at this time of the year. The CDC has lovely movement in it when it’s swimming through the runs and the little orange tail peeping through is just enough to entice the fish to have a taste. This fly is one of my go to fly’s no matter where I go.

At this time of year I like to have some movement or bushiness to my nymphs. I tend to stick to more natural colours and materials and use larger beads with smaller bodies to get the nymphs down right where I want them. But a key to successful fishing trips in the early parts of the season is your work rate. You must search the rivers for the fish and don’t be afraid to look in the unlikely spots, you may be surprised, Tight Lines.
I hope you enjoyed reading my blog and trying out some of these fly’s and enjoy catching fish with it even more. If you have any questions please feel free to give me a shout on my contact details and if you are interested in Dohiku hooks, top quality tungsten beads, or Syndicate competition Fly Rods drop me a line or check them out on my website. Thanks for reading.

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