THESE THREE METHODS, combined with a few
more common techniques, form the core of
a mountain lake strategy. The factor that
usually determines the best method, at least
when fish are in shallow water, is the wind.
If the air is calm and trout are feeding,
either a standard dry fly presentation for
rising fish or a Spot-and-Cast presentation
for deeper, cruising fish is a good tactic.
In breezy conditions, with choppy water, the
Hang-and-Bob is most effective. With a heavy
wind the Floss Blow Line is not only easy to
use when other methods are impossible but also
deadly. The concept of wind management determines
our approach when trout are shallow.
When fish move to deep water the wind is
reduced to nothing but an annoyance—it no
longer affects how and where trout feed in
a lake. Our primary method in this situation
is the Multiple Roll because it pulls fish
to the top. If it doesn't work, then it's
time to go deep with a searching technique
such as the Count-Down Method.
Our group of stillwater fanatics use these
methods all season, starting on valley lakes
and ending on valley lakes. We don't just hit
high-mountain fisheries during summer months.
At times other fly fishermen join us for a
day of fishing, but if they aren't stillwater
specialists, they get lost in the animated
conversations we have in the evening in a
restaurant or a bar. To these people we might
as well be talking about golf or tennis. That's
how different stillwater fly fishing is from
moving water fly fishing.
It's the work on the lowland ponds and lakes
that can make you effective on mountain lakes.
Develop an arsenal of methods, tackle, and
patterns, focused on the challenges of mountain
lakes, and fishing them with a fly will no
longer simply be an afterthought. ~ GL
To be continued, next time: From the Bottom of the Food Chain