Searching for Gold in Colorado

Golden Trout in CO 1

Jonathan Hill with a Colorado golden trout, a fish that many thought had gone extinct.

photo courtesy Jonathan Hill

For the past eight years, I have been hiking in to some of the most remote high mountain lakes in Colorado. I am not saying that I’m a snob and I thumb my nose at the beautiful rivers we have here, but it is nice to get a little bit of exercise along with your fishing. It is also nice to get away from the crowds that frequent the Gold Medal fisheries that we are lucky enough to have across the state. This year, one trip in particular. . .

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Tying a Simple Foam Beetle

As the story (perhaps apocryphal) goes, someone once asked the British scientist J.B.S. Haldane what we could infer about the Creator from studying nature, and Haldane replied, “I’m not sure, but he has an inordinate fondness for beetles.” Haldan’s point was that beetles make up some 40% of known insects. And since trout eat insects, it’s only logical that trout share this inordinate fondness for such readily available sources of protein. Earlier this summer, we featured a. . .

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Tuesday Tip: The Steeple Cast

Welcome to our tenth installment of “Ask a Fly-Fishing Instructor,” in which we answer readers’ questions about their biggest fly-casting problems. Several readers have asked variations of a common fly-fishing question: What do I do if I don’t have room for a back cast, and my roll cast isn’t doing the trick?

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Picture of the Day: Summer in the City

Zach Matthews Striper

Atlanta is hot in August, so striped bass seek thermal refuge in cool rivers. This
15-pounder probably lives most of its life in West Point Lake, 60 miles south of town,
but it was caught smack dab in the middle of Atlanta on the Chattahoochee. The
best way to fight these fish is from a canoe, so they can give you a sleigh ride!

photo by Zach Matthews

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Picture of the Day: Vermont Lawn Trout

Vermont Brown Trout Flood Victim

Scott McEnaney, Orvis Eastern ELOG Director, sent me this picture of a trout he found on
his neighbor’s lawn as the floodwaters receded yesterday in Bennington, Vermont. This gorgeous little wild brown trout would be a trophy from the small mountain stream it
came from. Unfortunately, it got swept out of the stream and then stranded on land.

photo by Scott McEnaney

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The Battenkill at Flood Stage

As you surely know by now, Vermont has suffered historic flash flooding in the wake of Hurricane Irene, which passed through yesterday. The problems here were not caused by high winds or storm surge, but by massive amounts of rainfall over a short time. I live a couple miles uphill from the Battenkill and route 313, which runs alongside the river, and that meant that we were stranded all day yesterday because the river had jumped the banks in both directions. When the road became passable. . .

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Repost: How to Cast in the Wind

Editor’s note: Given the conditions that anglers on the East Coast will be facing over the weekend, I figured it was time to repost Peter Kutzer’s video lesson on casting in the wind. This does not mean that you should venture out into the heart of Irene with a fly rod in hand, of course. But if you do get on the water ahead of or behind the storm, you’ll find these tips useful.

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Picture of the Day: Rainbow Under the Bridge

Bridge Rainbow Trout

Being surprised by a giant fish where you didn’t expect one is always a blast.

photo by Joe Phillips

I was fishing a local river with my friend Joe, trying to catch big fall brown trout on streamers and nymphs. The river in question (which shall remain nameless) definitely holds some beasties in the 25-inch range, but we mostly catch browns in the 16- to 20-inch class, which is still good-size for northern New England. What we don’t catch are rainbows. So imagine my surprise when I laid into something heavy in a deep pool under a highway bridge, only to see a slab of green, pink, and white when the fish rolled near the surface. After a few long runs, the fish came to hand. Based on the health of the fish and its perfectly formed fins, we concluded that it was, in fact, a wild fish. Where it came from, we couldn’t even guess.

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