I have had a few people contacting me asking me about tips for fishing the Weber River now that things are REALLY cooling off. In the cooler, actually cold weather I have a few tips for catching more fish on your next trip. I have my favorite winter patterns that I can rely on and I am sure you have your own, but here are a few ideas to think about.
Check the forecast and pick warmer days in the week. This can be tough with a busy work schedule but will make things more productive and enjoyable knowing your fingers won’t hurt for the next two days after fishing COLD days in the forecast.
Bring plenty of layers. It is always easy to shed a layer and throw it in a backpack than wish you would have brought more. I choose not to wear gloves because I want to feel the line, but I will carry a couple dry towels to keep my hands dry and bring plenty of hand warmers in my wader pockets.
Fish during the warmer parts of the day. I will plan my nymph trips around 1 P.M. as the books say fish will be less active until things warm up. Also, this will protect you from many of our early and late canyon winds.
I tend to down size my indicators and will “check” set much smaller takes and hits. We had a trip today and the fish were barely taking our nymphs and we were able to land some fish on not so sure of hits.
Many articles and anglers will say down size your tippet but I will stay the same if not stronger. Nothing is worse than breaking off on a fish or rock knowing you have to re rig with less than functional fingers.
Some say down size your bugs as well but I will fish the same 3-4 trusty patterns I fish all winter long. Find the winter nymphs you like and trust them.
One of my biggest pointers on the Weber River is spotting the fish. The Weber is a trickle late fall through the spring and it is easy to see stacks of fish in predictable spots. White fish are much easier to spot and I will always fish those stacks because we usually pick up some trout that we couldn’t see. I will only nymph sections where I spot the fish or know the fish are there from previous trips.
Bring a net. I don’t usually carry a net when fishing by myself but in the cold temperature it sure makes landing and unhooking fish much easier while keeping your hands warmer than diving in the river to grab a hooked fish. This time of year I almost look forward to the “Sportsman’s Release” when the fish, especially Whiteys, spit it before having to handle them.