Some like it hot
Tips and tricks for catching fish in a tight spot
Tips for catching fish lying under trees in hot weather, with Don Stazicker
THE NEXT TIME someone suggests cutting down trees and trimming branches to tidy up the river and make casting easier, remember that trout live under cover for a reason. I view trout under cover as an opportunity, not as a problem. If you can get a fly to these fish, they are the ones that have rarely been caught before, they are more likely to be rising on the brightest of sunny days and because they feel secure they will often take your fly confidently.
WHY TROUT HOLD UNDER COVER?
They are protected from predators, including anglers. The greater the fishing pressure that a stream receives, the more the trout will be found under cover. Tree cover creates areas of slow-moving water where fish can hold effortlessly, darting out into the faster current to take passing food. Trailing branches channel and strain food from the surface and harbour food organisms that fall on to the water. Also, the fish may find it easier to see prey clearly when it is not being viewed against a bright sky.
WHY DO ANGLERS NOT LIKE COVER?
It is harder to present a fly well to fish lying under cover. We fear losing our flies and leader. Where cover overhangs a bank, the current is often slower than in the main stream and presenting the fly without drag over this current differential can be difficult. Trailing branches that touch the surface can also prevent us getting a drift.