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Combing new water

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2006/9/9 22:43
From Delaware Co.
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What techniques do you use to cover new water on a stocked stream to find were the hot spots for the fish are? Now saying this I’m not talking about finding the next big hole on the stream but more or less the B water on the stream. What do you look for in the water to believe it is more productive than another spots and how do you probe the section of water as to were you didn't waste a bunch time fishing over no fish .

Posted on: 2011/4/4 19:14
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Re: Combing new water

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2007/1/2 11:55
From Bozeman
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Stocked stream?

Find a parking lot, bridge, or well traveled path to the stream. That's where your fish will be, unless they do a good job float stocking it.

Really, with stocked streams, the best way to know where the fish are is to keep going there. After a few trips to a stream over a few seasons, you'll learn to pass the long stretches of dead (unstocked) water.

They will spread out as the season wears on, and you'll find them in standard trouty areas throughout the stream, as long as the habitat is good.

Posted on: 2011/4/4 19:27


Re: Combing new water

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2009/4/21 16:39
From G-side AKA GLENSIDE
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about the first week or two i fish mostly with streamers and cover a lot of water. stocked fish love wooly buggers with a gold bead or cone head. but after that you should have a good idea where the fish hang and then go from there with you nymphs.

Posted on: 2011/4/4 21:36


Re: Combing new water

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2008/5/5 11:06
From King Of Prussia, Pa
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Lowrance obv.

Posted on: 2011/4/4 21:49


Re: Combing new water

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2006/9/11 13:05
From Lewistown
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What Jay said, and to add....where the pod of guys is hovering.

Posted on: 2011/4/5 9:21
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Re: Combing new water

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2009/9/9 13:21
From North Central PA
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Look for that telltale signs of empty styrofoam bait buckets, discarded power bait jars and crushed PBR beer cans. That's the spot you wanna fish.

Posted on: 2011/4/5 10:31
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Re: Combing new water

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2006/10/18 15:46
From Patterson twp, Pa (Beaver Falls)
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Sometimes I zoom in on google earth to find some potential good spots near stocking points (bridges, roads, etc.) Above info is good too. I fish a small stocked stream by my house and there are a few spots that are easier for a fly to drift through than anything a spin guy will offer and those few spots seem to hold fish longer into the season than the wide open holes and riffles. But covering water is the best way to figure all this out.

Posted on: 2011/4/5 10:56
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Re: Combing new water

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2006/9/9 17:18
From lancaster county
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JayL had some good suggestions.

Considering fresh stocked trout and exploring a new stream, I would throw a white bugger and twitch it rather than stream it. Fresh stocked trout cant help themselves and will hit that fly. This enables you to cover a ton of water. That way you can fish shallow riffles, undercuts, rocks, holes, back eddies....etc etc until you get a feel for where the fish are mostly holding in a fairly fast order.

If you get no takes or follows after a few casts.....move on, but watch the water just in case. Sometimes spooking a fish and coming back later is not a bad thing. At least you know where the fish is at now. Limit your casts, the first and second are most important anyways. Fishing fast + covering more water = finding more fish.

I think streamer fishing, when trying to figure out what you asked is by far the best course of action. Dead drifting nymphs would give you your answer but would be much slower process.

I love exploring new water

Posted on: 2011/4/6 1:46
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Re: Combing new water
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2006/9/9 9:29
From Monessen, PA
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I use a big bushy dry fly and walk at a good pace upstream, casting to every current seam or other likely feeding lie. I keep my eyes open for flashes, spooks or whatever might indicate a fish (of course, a take would be good evidence too). Once I find the willing or reluctant fish. I may try several other dries in more natural patterns and presentations, and may also eventually tie a dropper on or go under altogether. You say combing the water, I pet it.

Eventually, if the fish are active, they will tell you where they are and how they want their food presented.

If I see a pattern to their prefered holding lies (ie: back of pool, side eddies, main current behind breaks, on the seams, etc.) then I start concentrating on those types of lies, not necessarily to the exclusion of others, but certainly with more effort and care.

Posted on: 2011/4/6 6:42
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Re: Combing new water
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2006/9/11 8:26
From Chester County
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One of the things I hate about fishing in a stream with freshly stocked trout, especially early in the season with the colder water, is there seems to be no rhyme or reason as to where they are located. Many times they hold in the area where they were stocked while hundreds of yards of productive looking water will be void of fish. Also, they often pod up in peculiar places.

The only solutions I know are to search for them, wait until they disperse later in the season, or fish for wild trout.

Posted on: 2011/4/7 8:29


Re: Combing new water

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2008/1/31 17:19
From Pretty much everywhere at some point, Thorndale today.
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I'm pretty much with all of the above. If you learn a stream, you learn where the stockies hold early in the season. On some streams its the same year after year, but on others, you're relearning every year because they dumped the buckets in a slightly different place, which is maddening, cause its tough to be successful on your first trip to a stream for the year, and I hate returning to streams over and over again. I'm the kind of guy who likes to fish a bunch of different streams once each. I'm more attracted by places than fish...

But tactics depends on the stream. If there's stocky rainbows present, I usually use an egg fly as a searching pattern, you're almost sure to get a little action from any concentration of fish. Once I locate em and wear out the egg's welcome, I will switch to nymphs. Browns, often I do the same with a bugger or a streamer if I think water temp and so forth is right for them to be agressive, or a dry dropper if not.

The key in either case is to keep moving till you find them, never sit down and get comfortable casting to a spot.

Another trick on many streams, is to look for evidence of stocking. The tire marks are distinctive on dirt roads, side roads, pull offs, etc. Also boot prints in mud, or the ever telling "bucket ring" in the mud/silt by a stream. Or, know somebody that helped with the stocking effort, lol.

Posted on: 2011/4/8 9:04


Re: Combing new water

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2009/2/10 16:30
From SE PA
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I look for the deepest hole close to the stocking point. Often next to a bridge. Up on Middle Creek (Snyder County) which has few real holes they pod up in a small depression just above the stocking point. It's not that deep but the deepest around. Find one and you often find a lot more. I like a beadhead prince nymph for freshly stocked trout.

I'll add that I have given up spending time on great looking water that I would expect wild trout to inhabit. At least in the first couple weeks of the season.

Posted on: 2011/4/8 9:20


Re: Combing new water

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2009/6/27 23:49
From Pittsburgh
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Its as simple as looking for those obvious holding places. Remember stocked fish dont care if they are fin to fin with 20 other fish, thats all they know anyway, so since that pecking order has not really developed the fish wont get spread out into that B and C water too often.

Just look for deeper slower pools and slower riffles.

In regards to covering a lot of water, I tend to think one place is as good as the next on most stocked streams, at least in the early season.

Posted on: 2011/5/20 18:28
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Re: Combing new water

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2010/12/10 23:52
From Madison co. VA (Conway River)
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You might find some hotspots downstream of the stocked area also, especialy with a lot of high water. The only problem is getting permission. I had a couple hot spots like that on a couple diferent rivers at the confluence of a smaller stream, and no one else was ever fishing there on opening day, when there were crowds of people upstream.

Posted on: 2011/5/20 23:46


Re: Combing new water

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2006/9/9 11:22
From New Castle, PA
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Geez! Lets not make this harder than it is.

Find a likely stocking point (bridge). Read the water like you would any other stream. Start fishing the water that has the best looking combination of depth and current speed. Work your way through to the less likely looking spots. If you don't get into any fish, repeat at the next likely area. If you feel good about a particualr spot, spend a little more time in those locations.

Stay out of the flat featureless areas with uniform depth and speed. They are a often a waste of time unless you see activity and can pin-point the location of individual fish. I can't tell you how may times I see guys fishing water that is barely shin deep and then they are still fishing the same junk water 2 hours later. They could have killed 'em if they would have just focused on the best water in their stretch. Instead they work like hell for only a couple fish.

Yeah some stockies hang out in stupid places, but good holding water is good holding water and if you can read water, you can get into fish. Period. The original question has more to do with reading water than it does with stocked trout IMO. Entire chapters of books are written about this subject.

Kev

Posted on: 2011/5/23 6:37

Edited by PennKev on 2011/5/23 6:52:53
Edited by PennKev on 2011/5/23 6:55:25



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