Thursday, March 15, 2012

grant county trout fishing

Location- fennimore wisconsin
Conditions- sunny warm and windy
Target- driftless stream trout
Tactics- nymphing

In total, I fished three different creeks and scoped out two others on drive by's. Of the three streams fished, only two yielded fish catches. Of the two places I caught fish, one was far above the rest in finding an active population of fish. The wind was blowing hard at a sustained twenty miles per hour with gusts over the thirty mark. This generally wouldn't be considered the ideal conditions for fly fishing but for some reason I had a hard time switching over to my spinning gear.

many spots like this looked promising but were just too windy to fish
Instead, I focused on fishing just the pools where I was sheltered from the wind or where it was blowing against my back. This certainly limited the water and forced me to pass over some great looking spots. At one point the wind was beating me up so bad that I had to retreat to fishing under a road bridge. Not only did that bridge sheltered me from the wind, but it also had one of the biggest and deepest pools in this entire stretch of the stream. These are the types of pools that I have grown to love over the past few years of fishing for trout. They are big, and normally fed by good current, and they are so deep that they just look green or dark blue to the eye. When mixed with the proper current they are almost guaranteed to hold good numbers of fish, and this one was no different. I covered a lot of water that day but this was the only pool good enough to returned to.

here's a shot of the water just downstream of the bridge
I spent my last two hours of fishing huddled under this bridge to escape the wind. Late in the day the hatches were coming off the water in full force, an experience I haven't witnessed in almost twelve months, and the trout went absolutely crazy. Fish were rising everywhere and instead of switching to dry flies, I continued to deep nymph the big pool. It proved effective and I ended up catching the bulk of my trout in the last few hours.

measuring 14 inches, my new personal best wisconsin brook trout
Conditions were tough and a lot of my day was eaten up behind the windshield but I still ended up with close to twenty browns (none of which were big) and a healthy brookie that made my day. The brookie really put the hurt on my 3 wt. rod, enough to seriously consider the feasibility of landing a twenty inch trout on it? Either way, the more trips I take out west, the more I learn about the secrets hidden in the hills of the driftless area.

This weekend I think me and Damien will be pounding some streams in Dane County so be sure to check back early next week for a report!


  1. That is a very nice looking Brook Trout... a 14" in that skinny water is impressive! Nice catch!

    1. Thanks Adam, I'm excited as hell to catch it. Even more excited to let it go.

  2. Nice Brookie! That is defiantly a monster for the small stream angling. You have to love the wind, and in this case I would have played the same tactic as you. Hide from it or use it to your advantage. Great report! Thanks for sharing!

    1. After getting my ass kicked all day I just wanted to hide from it for the last few hours. Glad I did cause that bridge treated me well.

  3. Replies
    1. Thanks john. Pretty obvious we didn't keep our ice as long as you guys this year.

  4. Replies
    1. Thanks Blake, glad to hear your back in town. Congrats on graduation.

  5. Blake
    Outstanding Brook Trout----I think the wind is a fly fisherman worst enemy. I fished most of the afternoon Friday in what I would call extremely strong wind. I really like the looks of the streams you were fishing. Thank for sharing

    1. Yup a pain in the ass. I had this day planned for weeks though and I wasn't turning back no matter what.