catching trout

Want to catch a rainbow trout?  Here I will give you some basic information about trout, valuable information on how to catch rainbow trout including fishing gear, methods, and techniques, and then some great tips that you will find to be most helpful to bring in that extra catch that you might have otherwise missed.

Like no other fish, trout have their own persona that is emulated by nothing more than pure sheer beauty.  The beauty of the pristine cold waters required for its survival also provides that quintessential scenery that trout fisherman has come to fathom so much.  Add to that the vivid colors and natural beauty of the fish itself.  Or maybe it is the delicate method in which striking trout rise to swallow a mayfly, or the particular skills involved for the species unpredictability. Whatever it might be, trout have their own following.

There are 3 species of trout; Rainbow, Brook, and the Brown Trout:

The rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) is a class of salmonid native to cold-water tributaries of the Pacific Sea in Asia as well as the United States. The steelhead (sometimes “steelhead trout”) is an anadromous (sea-run) form of the coastal rainbow trout  that normally comes back to fresh water to spawn after dwelling two to three years in the sea. Freshwater varieties that have been introduced into the Great Lakes and migrate into tributaries to spawn are also called steelhead.  Mature freshwater stream rainbow trout average between one and five pounds, while lake-dwelling and anadromous forms might reach twenty pounds. Colorings vary widely based on subspecies, forms and environment.  Mature fish are distinguished by a wide reddish stripe along the lateral line, from gills to the tail, which is most vivid in breeding males.

The brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis), sometimes called the eastern brook trout, is a type of fish in the salmon family of order Salmoniformes. It is indigenous to Eastern North America in the United States and Canada. In most parts of its range, it is called the speckled trout or squaretail.  Although commonly called a trout, the brook trout is actually a char (Salvelinus) which in the North American continent comprises the lake trout, bull trout, Dolly Varden and the arctic char.

The brown trout (Salmo trutta) is an initially European species of salmonid fish. It includes both purely freshwater

 populations, and anadromous forms known as the sea trout. The latter migrates to the seas for much of its existence

and comes back to fresh water simply to reproduce.

The majority of profoundly successful trout fishermen are usually those who are knowledgeable in the environment,  diet, behavior, and angling methods for the trout types they want to catch. My purpose is to try to give some teaching points that trout fishermen can use to their benefit — to assist them out on the river. Want to catch more trout? Change your methods as the seasons and local conditions change.  Here is some essential information you need to do it.

Essential Rainbow Trout Fishing Gear

    • A hand net used to land your trout.  The line can easily break if the trout is pulled from the water.

    • A good pair of waders.

    • A stringer to hold your catch of the day.

    • A fishing vest to hold what you need out on the water.

    • A good pair of polarized sunglasses so that you can see trout under the water.

    • Rod and Reel. A standard spinning rod and reel will work very well.  Ultra-light rods and spinning reels tend to be more flexible and better to feel a hit. Rods six to 6.5 ft long prove to be more advantageous for castability and make it simpler to use a float. An ultra-light spinning reel is especially made for light line like 4 lb test. Trout and fly fishing are somewhat synonymous. Tackle for this type of angling is available in a vast array of types and models, like most fishing equipment. But there are some important factors for a comfortable experience. The rod, reel, and line should be matched up (use the manufacture’s recommendation that is stated on the rod). In general, a 7.5 to 8 foot flyrod with medium to slow action is just about perfect for trout fishing. The reel is not as crucial since it simply stores the line; select one that fits you best. Fly lines come in numerous weights and styles. Again, make use of what you are most comfortable with to use. Highly Pro fisherman recommended rod and reel combo-Berkley Trout Dough Series Spinning Rod Combo


Rigging the Rod and Reel 

  • A leader, preferably tapered, with a 3 lb test tippet should be attached to heavy line.  Make sure to use a light leader, which makes the end of your line less visible to trout whilst enabling you to use heavier line on the reel. A leader is a 2-foot a segment of 2-pound test (or possibly lighter) line. Affix a snap swivel to the original line on your reel. The leader is going to tie to the snap swivel.
    If using a hook, attach a split-shot about the size of a BB above the snap swivel on the reel’s main line. Several different types of hooks could be used depending on the type of bait chosen. A treble hook (sz 16-18) is effective with many cheese and dough baits. One single hook sizes- 10-16 is the preference for salmon eggs. When utilizing a lure or selected artificial, just tie the lure to the leader. You should not use a split shot unless the water is high.

Flies, lures, and baits for Rainbow Trout

    1. Natural as well as scented baits—A natural fish food like bait fish, crayfish, frogs allowed as bait, grubs, insects, larvae, worms, salmon eggs, cheese, corn as well as other diet substances not containing any kind of ingredient to injure or destroy fish. Good examples are worms, mayflies, minnows, crayfish, fish eggs,  crickets, grasshoppers, fly larvae, waxworms and numerous additional bug larvae. Also comprises dough bait, putty or paste-type bait, any material designed to draw in fish by taste or scent and virtually any fly, lure or bait containing or used with such materials.  Hooks used for these baits ranges from No. six to fourteen, generally fitting bait size with hook dimensions. Worms should be threaded on the hook in at least two places and the whole hook concealed. On occasions trout are going to grab a worm, squash it, spit it, and then pick it up again. This nibbling routine can make a cautious fish difficult to catch on an uncovered hook point.
      There are 2 types of hooks which are great for worm fishing. The first is a split-shank hook, that contains sharp points over which the worm can be threaded. The other is a tandem hook rig in which two hooks are attached by a length of leader — the lower with the curve aimed downward, along with the upper one around an inch above and the bend aimed upward. Hook the worm so that the head and tail extend about an inch past the points, leaving a loop in the middle. Worms are probably the best all-around trout bait and work especially well in springtime and fall, particularly after rain fall.
      Grasshoppers and crickets are most often used in the fall. They are usually hooked once through the tough portion of their body, above the front legs, or simply threaded onto the hook. These baits are most effective while drifted downstream into likely trout cover.
      Minnows are sometimes employed for trout, particularly for large Brown’s. Hook the minnow gently through the back or lip and drift it into the deep pools which have hiding habitat structure. Petite, soft-shell crayfish and fish eggs, typically from salmon, can also be productive whenever drifted in a similar fashion. Egg hooks should be used for salmon eggs. Insect larvae are productive sometimes, especially if they are plentiful in streams and are starting to emerge. Most of the time they are fished similar to worms, but take care in casting because they can come off the hook very easily.
      Prepared trout bait ranges from commercial products to do-it-yourself concoctions. Most varieties have a cheese base and come in small chunks or balls. Cheese baits are normally cast across a pool area and the bait allowed to drift with the current. Other popular baits include whole kernel corn, marshmallows, and cereal kinds. It doesn’t take much imagination to fish for trout.

    2. Artificial Lure— A lure made from any material not including the soft plastic bait and natural and scented bait.  Artificial lures for trout are approximately the same variety as for any other sport fish; primarily the size is generally smaller. Spinner-baits and leadheads are utilized quite often. 2 of the very most essential suggestions are to make use of smaller sized lures — one-sixteenth to one-thirty/second oz, and present these kinds of lures by angling upstream with a moderate rate of retrieve. In such a position the lure appears more natural, in addition to being less difficult for a trout to go after and strike. Both spinner-baits and leadhead lures may be dressed with a variety of materials or with live bait. Soft plastic dressings are quite possibly the most well-liked by nearly all trout fishermen. Take note that rate of the retrieve is critical; not too fast. Pro Fishermen highly recommend the wee-crawfish lure.  I must have in the tacklebox.

    3. Soft synthetic or plastic bait (unscented)—Synthetic eggs, worms, or grubs and other soft plastic lures.

    4. Fly—A man-made lure crafted on a single-point hook, utilizing any material except soft plastic bait, natural and   scented bait, that is somehow permanently affixed.

Rainbow Trout Baits

Trout depend predominantly on their sense of smell as well as sight to find food.  For this reason, there are many different colored scented baits on the market to catch trout. Common commercial brand names include Berkeley’s Power Bait and Zeke’s. They both come in a variety of colors and use fragrance attractants. Velveeta cheese and breads are also effective choices. Hatchery-raised trout have been fed compact brownish pellets for most of their life. Because of this, locally produced dough-baits can show to be somewhat incomparable for catching trout.

Seasonal Methods

The truth is trout can be caught the entire year, and with small number of exceptions many trout streams contain fish way after the normal stocking schedule, and some contain trout continually.
Every one of the 4 different seasons possess important meteorological events that can make 1 day better or a whole lot worse compared to the next. Springtime showers, as an example, can turn Brown trout fishing into a feeding frenzy. Greater flows after a mild rain dislodges food microorganisms and this, consequently, incites the trout to go on a feeding spree.

Summer Fishing

Summer time angling is a time of natural selection for the majority of serious fishermen. The warmest time period of the year is likely to decrease the number of fishers. Bait fishing remains productive in summer, however this period is an excellent chance for fly fishing because natural insect hatches are numerous and intense. Angling with spinner-baits, the ones that imitate minnows, is also at its best because all natural minnow capacity is highest during this time period. Summer time additionally signifies a significant time period for trout survival as temps and oxygen become important factors. The maximum temperature for trout is 62 deg Fahrenheit, additionally the dissolved oxygen ought to be about 8 parts/ per million. Trout constantly look for desired habitats that have environmental climates near the optimum, as a result search for springs or artesians that flow into trout streams and work these spots carefully; many contain some good fish.

Fall Fishing

By autumn, natural or prepared bait, wet flies, and spinner-baits are back into the trout fishing picture. Fall is also grasshopper time. They can easily be gathered in the cool of the morning and are particularly good for Brown trout. Artificial grasshoppers also work well at that time. Equally effective are night crawlers, especially following light rainfall.

Winter Fishing

Perhaps the most overlooked time period for trout angling is winter time. Rather than fantasizing about fishing, a fisherman ought to be doing it. The ideal time for trout in this period is the warmest period of the day – 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM. Fly fishing is usually not good, but nymphs and wet flies, particularly the ones that mimic small, freshwater shrimp are going to catch some trout. Spinner-baits also work nicely just under open riffle reaches. The majority of trout in winter may not have seen a lure for months. 


Rainbow Trout Fishing Techniques

Drift Fishing

Using this method can prove to be very effective in any condition. You may cover a sizable area and present your bait to a number of trout. Start by using a split shot approximately twelve to twenty-four inches from your hook. Make use of a leader if angling is slow-moving. Adjust to water conditions appropriately (larger split shot and lengthier leader for deeper fast-paced streams). Utilize a smaller sized treble or salmon hook. If you are using a treble hook, mold your bait (Berkley’s Power Bait, Velveeta cheese, Zeke’s cheese, bread or locally made dough bait) on the hook to ensure that it is covered entirely. Use precisely enough bait to cover hook and no more. If you are using a salmon hook merely hook the salmon egg through the center. Cast upstream from the fish (if visible) and keep pace with your bait by little by little reeling in the slack line as the current
pushes it downstream. Trout could bite lightly so be ready. Setting the hook requires a moderate pull back on the rod. A hard hook set on trout will cause you to catch less fish. Trout could be choosy and may like 1 color on a given day but not the following. Try out different shades if one is not working for you. Another useful tip is to discover what other fisherman are using which may help save some time. Flies and lures could also be used for this method

Float Fishing

This method is comparable to drift fishing with the exception of utilizing a floater (bobber). A smaller slender floater is advisable. Manipulate your floater accordingly with the depth of the trout. Set the hook when the floater makes a quick movement.
Fishing with Jigs
There are many different man-made lures available; however, marabou jigs have proven themselves every year. They come in a number of sizes (1/16-oz to 1/256th oz) and colors. Successful colors are yellow, olive, white, black, brown or a combination of shades. It is possible to drift fish your marabou with or without a float. No split shot is required unless it could improve your presentation in swift/deep streams or when utilizing light jigs. Weightier jigs may need trimming the tail to approximately 50% or more. Try out different techniques like a slow vibration (“jigging”) retrieve. Quickly set the hook once you sense a strike. Avoid setting the hook on eyesight alone and rely much more on feel. Like with bait, test out different colors

Tight lining

Bottom fishing might be the simplest method, yet it can be quite effective. Use your polarized sun glasses to see trout in slow moving water and get ready for a relatively carefree fishing experience. Rigging involves utilizing the ideal hook with bait and crimping the appropriate split shot twelve to 24 inches above the hook. Cast your line upstream from the trout and allow the bait settle to the bottom. Reel up your slack line and settle-back and take it easy whilst you watch for a strike. Watch your pole closely for the slightest movement since trout may bite lightly. After a short while reel the line in and check out your bait. Fresh bait your hook and cast in some other location. Avoid using this method in high water.

Rainbow Trout Fishing Tips For Success

Murky Water
You can utilize more heavy line and a weightier split shot during murky water conditions. The murky water will help camouflage heavier line. A weightier split shot or lure can often be required because the water level would tend to be higher and faster when murky.
Clear Water
Use clear nylon sewing thread or two pound test line for leader line on very clear sun-filled days. Trout will often notice bigger line and keep away under visible water conditions. Utilize your polarized sun glasses to locate fish. Trout generally tend to school up in the deeper holes whenever the springtime level is lower.

Fishing Structure

Streams have a variety of cover habitats, both all-natural and man-made. All-natural cover consists of dead water pools, boulders, bank-cover, aquatic plants, and tree log jams. In high gradient streams with swift current, a great place for a lurking trout is on the downstream section of boulders. Right behind many of these rocks an eddy is created where a feeding trout can face upstream, protected from the principal current in the still water of the eddy. Occasionally in less current Rainbow trout locate in front of a boulder exactly where the current is split. Browns and Brook trout wish to have the slower, more protected eddies.
Bank cover is preferred by trout whenever it has a minimum of six inches of over-head shading along with a foot if not more in depth. The bank decreases the current and offers habitation that is similar to boulders. Obstacles like brush, wood logs, and tree roots that extend outward from the bank add even greater attraction for cover. It is very difficult to forecast the exact location of trout in a brush or log pile, so take some time and fish this setting with utmost care.
Aquatic plants are probably the most difficult yet one of the most effective habitation covers to fish for trout. In many instances the principal stream current scours a tunnel through the vegetation bed. Thin strands of the plants expand out from the primary body that turn out to be a nuisance by fouling baits and lures. Trout often lay at the inside border of the vegetation where it slows the drift and provides a comfortable feeding station.
Deep pools interspersed with riffles provide a variety of spots for trout fishing. They are logical places for the fish to conceal and ambush their prey. The riffle offers feeding sites for small trout, whilst the lunkers frequently dwell in the pool. The upstream end of a pool is the best place to fish for trout, where the inflowing current is strongest. Trout will congregate near the bottom and forage on drifting food organisms. The trout may possibly sometimes move to the lower end of the pool at the time of late evening if you experience a large insect hatch.
Locating trout close to man made habitat improvement structures employs the same procedures as natural cover. Bank hides that have been constructed on the outside bends of streams are probably the most difficult to fish, but they are likewise very productive for trout. These types of structures provide remarkable concealment for even the largest trout. Trout frequently orient them-selves at the upstream end of such structures and catch food that drift along the outside edge. The best method is to float the bait or lure into this vicinity. Many unsuspecting trout fishermen have remained directly on a bank hide and fished the water at their feet without success. These types of structures blend perfectly with the surrounding terrain, therefore focus on the bank terrain as well as the stream.
Orientation of trout along a rip-rap armored bank is comparable to that in pool habitation except the fish are inclined to locate closer to the rock structure. Half-logs are not common structure in Iowa streams, but where they are found the trout normally hide themselves directly under the structure where they can ambush forage.
Be focused at all times whilst trout fishing. Actively feeding trout will frequently times expose their existence to the knowledgeable angler. Learn to look for specific habitats and approach these spots with care and patience. Generate mental notes of drifting aquatic microorganisms, both on the water surface and substrate. Ask yourself questions relating to water quality and take notice of exactly what terrestrial activities along the stream bank which may influence trout. Try to become an integral part of the stream system; attempt to read the stream.

Landing Trout

Once you have a fish on the hook, there are many techniques necessary for playing and landing a trout, and several are very crucial. Maintain your rod tip high; as a consequence the impact of an abrupt run is on the rod rather than the line. You should not allow or encourage a big fish to swim downstream; this will only prolong the battle from the current. Whenever this occurs, the best guidance would be to follow the trout along the bank. Trout tire very easily, particularly if they have to work in the current in an upstream path or the fish is allowed to make many runs. If you plan on releasing the trout, do not wait too long because stress might kill it. Fish meant for release ought to be landed swiftly and netted. Release the fish underwater and in the spot where it was caught.

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Hopefully this information will be a good guide for your next trout fishing excursion.  Although there were many tips and techniques given, there is no way to include all the information that can be known about how to catch rainbow trout.  Below are some resources that will help further guide you on trout fishing tips, knowledge, techniques, and equipment and gear for catching trout. 

Wikipedia -Trout  -  Find out more details about each trout species.

Michigan Department of Natural Resources – Great resource for tips on how to catch trout.

Video on Trout Fishing Tips from Thundermist

Excellent Video below on Secret of Trout Fishing:

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