ANGLE(RS) OF ATTACK: CREEKS
Attacking small water is closer to hunting than it is fishing. Skittish creek trout must be stalked rather than waded up on. Due to the limited space, your sounds and movements as you approach can cause quite a ruckus. Like bow hunting, the angle of attack for creeks is stealthy with an acute awareness of environment and your impacts to it.
The first step when approaching a creek is to assess the water. Of course, you are looking at the water but an approach with a plan is often more successful. Decide which side of the creek you want to traverse based on depth and terrain. Stick to shallow areas as the decreased depth helps with noise and water displacement as your big foot hits the bottom. To minimize the impact to your stride, slow things down, step heel-to-toe, and keep your foot in the water. For extra noise canceling, try a felt bottom wading boot like a Korker Buckskin. Check your state and local regulation regarding the usage of felt. When assessing terrain identify potential holes then look for potential obstacles. Watch out for long hanging limbs, your buddy filming, powerlines, bankside yocals, and the other limb that has flies on it already. Growing up in the mountains I have caught about a dozen trees to every fish I’ve landed. For beginners, casting becomes an obstacle for which the left bank is easier to fish from for right-handers and vice versa.
Fish can see and you should take that into heavy consideration when approaching creek fish. With eyes on the side of their body, trout have both monocular and binocular vision just waiting to catch a glimpse of you. The good thing is they spend about 99% of their life looking upstream which is how you should move through a creek. Stay behind the fish and cast up to him. Your fly can also become a visual disadvantage if you yank it out of the water. I’ve got a buddy who just can’t grasp this concept no matter how many ways I try to explain it. This best tip I can give you is to let every cast float back to you a little before resetting. Every fish and especially pressured fish know that something ain’t right when a grasshopper is suddenly moving at breakneck speed then lifts off into the sky. No matter the cast, let it drift and you will catch more fish. Much like hunting, blending into the color scheme of the creek gives you a little more forgiveness when spotted. Check out the Allszn Hoody in our Oxbow™ camo to keep you both concealed and cool.
- More stalked fish results in more caught fish.
- Stay behind the fish and for the love of God let your fly float on every cast.
- Blend in while being comfortable.
Charles Hargrove | Shopkeeper