Fish Where The Fish Are

Fish Where The Fish Are! Steve Dobson gives some great tips on locating fish, and trying NOT  to toss a fly until you find what you are looking for!!!

I had the chance to review some of last season?s fishing with Brad a while ago over lunch. It was not a very serious discussion but one thing he said has stuck with me. We had been talking about how busy we both were last year which meant we did not get out fishing as much as we used to.

I said, “We still did alright though.”
“Yes,” he said “but now we fish where the fish are.”

In thinking it over, I know what he meant. In the years we have fished together, we often spent as much time exploring as fishing. We discovered some great fishing. The best places we invariably named The Secret Spot.

Fishing where the fish are comes down to knowing or finding out a few things:

What species is most active and is therefore the best target for your efforts given how much time you have available to travel and fish?

What are the fish doing that makes them available to you?

How do you adapt your technique to exploit it?

For stream fishing ask yourself; what does the water flow, streambed structure and plant life along the banks indicate about where the fish might be? Is there any insect life obvious?

For lake fishing, what does the shore structure tell you about what might be happening further out in the water? What does the plant life along the shore tell you about hidden brooks or springs? What do the weed beds out in the water tell you about depth and bottom structure? Always look for obvious insect activity, baitfish and of course fish rising or chasing schools of minnows.

What we need to think about is what do these things tell us about where the fish will find food and security? We cannot always see fish but we can often get clues from their environment as to where they will likely be. That is where we should be fishing.


Steve Dobson has been a fly fisherman for thirty years or more and a catch and release advocate for almost as long.  Through his time on and off the water, he has developed two tools that not
a single fly fisher should be without.

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