Yeah, we've got snow in the hills. But it is still autumn. Most times (even with the most dedicated anglers) people will hunker down when the weather turns and wait for it to warm up. We're here to suggest that you NOT be a fair weather angler!
Yes, it's cold. Yes, there might be snow and some wind. Other anglers will be sitting in their warm homes sipping coffee or cocoa just dreaming about the fish they could be catching. But the fish do not stop eating, so you shouldn't stop fishing either. They will move a bit to find deeper water, but they will comfortably eat all winter. Here is what you can do to catch fish, even on the coldest days.
1. Get the fly down to the fish. Use tungsten and a few lead-free weights if necessary. If you aren't catching fish, try more weight before you try a new fly. Make you are you near the bottom. You WILL likely lose some flies. Be ok with it.
2. Use the right bugs. Search the water before you begin to get an idea of what bug to put on. A few of our favorites throughout the winter include skinny nelsons, zebra midges, RS2's, PT's, golden stones, scuds (orange/pink), small worms (pink/red), and of course...the meaty streamers (kreelex, gallops flies, buggers).
3. Thin to win. Those fish do not need to move much to eat in the winter time. And if they see something they don't like, they will just pass on the whole lot. Smaller tippet will rule the winter months. 6x or 7x to catch more fish.
4. Stay warm. If you get cold, you can't fish. Keep your core and hands warm. Carry a towel to keep your hands dry. And wear good gloves. If you're going to brave the elements, you might as well do it properly.
Yes, it's cold. Yes, the fish are still biting like crazy! Get out there and have some fun with your fly rod.