Sunday’s Classic / Spotting Big Trout in Unlikely Places

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One of my home waters that I spend 500 plus hours a year guiding on is notorious for big fish holding in water that most people would consider horrible trout water. I’m talking about water that is less than a foot deep that even veteran anglers would regularly walk by without fishing. The other day guiding I spotted a huge hooked jaw male rainbow pushing 30 inches. It was sitting in plain view on a gravel bar in six inches of water hugged up against the edge of a rhododendron. My partner and I watched the fish feeding regularly for about five minutes, while we planned out our spot and stock. I had seen big fish laying in this shallow gravel bar in the past many times, but nothing this size. Here’s the ironic part, right before we had approached the spot I had just explained how important it was to scan the water, even ridiculous looking shallow water before making a cast in the chances we might spot a big fish.

Heavily pressured fish are smart and often sneaky. I truly believe big trout will often search out under pressured water that anglers tend to overlook to stay off the radar. Doing this keeps them from getting harassed by 90% of fly fishermen. Next time your fishing heavily pressured trout water that holds big fish and the water is clear enough to sight-fish, don’t make the mistake of overlooking subpar trout water on the way to your next honey hole. You may very well end up spotting a trout of a lifetime. Just because you’ve fished a spot several times with no luck, doesn’t mean it will never hold fish. Ask any veteran guide, and I’m sure they’ll tell you stories about telling their clients, “Let’s walk through this water and get to the next spot. It never holds fish”, and about that time, a huge fish spooks out of the water. It’s happened to me on more than one occasion.

Keep it Reel,

Kent Klewein
Gink & Gasoline
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One thought on “Sunday’s Classic / Spotting Big Trout in Unlikely Places

  1. Awesome pic and a nice fish, not to mention great advise. In my wading travels in our low streams this summer I have noticed just what you states. I find that regardless to water depth there is some affinity between trout and those gravel bottoms….sort of like me to whiskey. Thanks for the tip.

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