View Full Version : Skinny water advice: approaching the stream?

09-10-2010, 01:57 PM
I haven't fished in the Fall as much, so I was wondering how much your tactics have to change due to the gin-clear, low water. I will be up the third week in September and looking for some tips. I realize once a fish is spooked, its game over, so I was wondering how far downstream you guys stay to cast to a small pool or run, how low to the ground you stay (ie crouched vs full belly crawl), etc. Also, how long and fine a leader do you all fish in the park.
Thanks Again,

09-10-2010, 02:21 PM
I don't modify my equipment. Same 4wt rod, 7 1/2 ft leader, but I may go to 6x on the tippit. Big thing from my perspective is to be very careful in approaching the tail of a pool. If there is a fish lying there and you spook him he will dart to the head and that seems to put everything down. Stay low, walk soft and slow, and stay out of the water if you can particularly in slow water.

Jim Casada
09-10-2010, 02:26 PM
Dwagvet--Longer leaders, finer tippet, lengthier casts, and delicate presentations all figure into my personal mix. But far and away the most important consideration is keeping a low and hidden profile. That means earth-tone attire, stooping to conquer, taking advantage of streamside vegetation and boulders to mask your approach, and more. Also, keep in mind the fact that browns, in particular, like to haunt the very lower end of pools at this time of year.
Jim Casada
www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com (http://www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com)

Rog 1
09-10-2010, 02:30 PM
Ditto last post....I have also found that once I have fished the tail end of a pool I will try to approach the rest of the water from the side if possible....this allows me to get a better drift without putting so much line on the water and spooking the fish....a lot of times this approach will keep me out of the water and allow my profile to blend in with the woods behind me.

No Hackle
09-10-2010, 03:16 PM
I was looking @ some pictures of some bigger fish that either I caught or some friends caught.I noticed 2 things. One in some of them the water was very low, telling me it was late in the year and the other in most of those pics our legs were dry. Try to keep wading to a minimum. Hope this helps. The other posts are all useful, But IMO stealth is the key. Like you said if he knows your there its over. Oh Yea if your with a friend and you spot a fish, Ihave a friend who swears that the fish will think your a herron and spook. He thinks your exstended arm looks like their long beak. I'm just saying? Let the fish tell you and learn from it.

09-10-2010, 07:06 PM
In addition to what everyone else has said, I wear full camo. I dress as if I were turkey hunting.

Get no closer to the hole than you have to.

Think guerrilla warfare ambush tactics.

Jim Casada
09-10-2010, 08:52 PM
ifish4wildtrout--I also wear full camo, but I already have it because I'm an avid turkey hunter. I think earth tones will do almost as well, although full tan or grey isn't going to blend in as well as a camo pattern. One other neat thing about wading wet is that a lot of the lightweight turkey camo is fast-dry stuff which will be dry 10 minutes after you leave the creek. Also, some of it comes off with zip-off bottoms if you are inclined that way (I'm not--legs too ugly, I want the bit of extra protection from nettles and the like, and if one gets into a yellow jackets' nest there's a bit less exposed territory for stings).
Jim Casada
www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com (http://www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com)

09-10-2010, 09:53 PM
Good replies.
I agree with stealth. When fishing small mountain creeks for wild trout in clear water, think hunting...particularly stalking wary game. I dont change my equipment. Same rods, length leaders, etc. Just stay low....really low. Use available cover to sneak within casting range and stay behind that cover if at all possible while fishing the run. If the fish see you, game over. Someone already said it, but it's worth repeating...watch the rat-fink's at the tailouts of pools and dont overlook that area. Spook them and they run into the rest of the pool spooked and it's over.

09-11-2010, 01:34 AM
Great thread for sure, and being a novice at this game, have experienced most of the above all ready. When I started out fishing this season, I was wearing tank tops and no hat ( trying to stay cool ). After spooking so many fish I switched over to short sleeve shirts in earth tones, to hide more of my arms. Helped a ton. A persons skin just shines to much. Which brings me to one more suggestion......... try and keep your upper body movements slow and controlled. Watch a heron and how he hunts, slow and controlled. Fast movements will catch the eye quicker than anything, IMHO.

When fishing the mountains, I also try to avoid those "rays of sunlight" which filter through the canopy early morning and late evening.