One of the enjoyable things about trout fishing is problem solving. Duping a wild trout into mistaking your feathered imposter for a living is not for the casual angler.
Knowing where to look is essential.
Sheltering lies are where a trout goes to feel safe and secure. Sheltering lies are in water waist deep or deeper, and/or under something.
Since most danger comes from above the deeper the lie, the more secure the trout feels.
Trout in sheltering lies are not feeding. It's best to leave them alone so as not to spook them or their finned associates. You want to know where sheltering lies are, because a hooked fish will usually head there.
Feeding lies Trout move from the safety of sheltering lies to feeding lies to eat. Feeding lies are in shallow slow water where it converges with the current. Trout can conserve energy in the slow water and intercept food as it drifts in the current.
Trout are often skittish in feeding lies because they are exposed to predators.
Feeding lies are often located near obstructions such as rocks.
Fish the confluence of the slow and fast water. Look for bubbles! Bubbles indicate a concentration of food organisms flowing through a feeding lie.
The cushion is the slow water at the bottom of the water column. The flags exhibit the diverse currents of the water column.
The flags at the bottom illustrate the cushion (slow water) at the bottom of the water column Wild trout seek refuge from the current in this cushion as they monitor the current above them for food.
A hydraulic cushion is formed when the current encounters an obstruction.
If I were to shovel snow over a rock, a pile of snow would form in front of the rock and another behind it. Water does the same thing.
If you see a rock in the current, assume there is a trout in front of it and behind it.
Prime Lies provide a trout the benefits of a sheltering lie and a feeling lie without having to move.
The trout can feed while feeling safe and secure. The best fishing in the pool is in the prime lie. Prime lies should be the first place you fish.
Like sheltering lies, prime lies are in water waist deep or deeper, and/or under something and like feeding lies are at the confluence of slow and fast water
Look for slow water adjacent to fast water under overhanging foliage, undercut banks or bridges. (Bridges often offer prime lies around the bridge piers and sheltering lies between the river bank and the bridge pier.)
Prime lies hold the best fish. The best trout in the pool is in the best prime lie. There is definitely a pecking order!
When you approach the stream, take a moment to analyze it. Fish the prime lies first. Don't waste valuable fishing time in water that isn't productive.
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