Field and Stream - - CAMPFIRE -

• Lit­tle black stone­flies hatch all win­ter across the coun­try, pro­vid­ing re­li­able for­age for wild fish. Slower rif­fles and tai­louts are prime fish post­ing lo­ca­tions when these bugs are present, but even if they’re not, a lit­tle black stone rarely gets snubbed. To up the ante, a Green Wee­nie rigged above a stone pro­vides a sec­ond tar­get with a dif­fer­ent color. If a trout doesn’t see one, it may see the other and take the shot. While this rig works in free­stone rivers, it’s ex­trapo­tent on lime­ston­ers and in tail­wa­ters.

LIGHT WEIGHT Add just enough split shot be­tween the flies to get the stone­fly tick­ing bot­tom. If you’re hang­ing up too of­ten, try one shot lighter or ditch the weight en­tirely. MINI MITE Though you may be tempted to fish a large fly, win­ter stones are tiny. Opt for a size 18 or 20 to match the hatch. MEA­SURED OUT A 12-inch drop­per be­tween flies is ideal, as this length keeps the nat­u­ral-look­ing black stone close to the bot­tom, while the Wee­nie wig­gles away up higher, coax­ing a re­ac­tion strike. THE SLOW LANE Soft rif­fles are ideal for win­ter for­ag­ing, as they don’t re­quire fish to ex­pend lots of en­ergy. COLD SWING Swing this rig on a tight line from an up­stream po­si­tion. Re­cast af­ter the line straight­ens.

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