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Flymen Blog

Winter Pike Fly Fishing: Keys to Cold Water Success

This can be a frustrating and difficult time of year to fish for esox — wind, cold, wet, and a lot less activity than the good months we had after the feed in autumn.

With a few adjustments and a lot of tenacity we can still have some fishing success, and it’s usually at this time that big trophy fish can show up.

You have to be an extremely versatile angler at this time; fish can be deep to find a thermocline that suits them, and in other instances a bright winter sun can bring fish in the shallows for a few hours to warm up. Now more than ever you need to keep an eye on the local meteorological conditions and adapt.

Here are a few pointers to help you in your winter quest.

Get out there! Tips for winter brown trout fly fishing.

Ben Rogers fly fishing guide

by Ben Rogers
Winter can put a damper on even the most avid angler’s day. As a Caribbean guy, I know this better than anyone.

However, if you put in the little extra effort to get out of your cozy bed and head to your nearest trout stream, you could quite possibly have one of your best days on the water.

True, fish get sluggish with cold temperatures. The slowing of their metabolisms causes them to feed less than in the warmer months.

There's one exception to this rule: post-spawn trout expended a lot of calories when they were spawning, and, once rested, they put back on the feed bag they had in pre-spawn.

This time can vary based on your geographic area, so scout and keep notes of the spawn times. Usually within a few weeks these fish are well-rested and start to feed to retain a healthy weight through the rest of winter.

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