Thursday, November 17, 2016

Colored Up

Late fall is when brook trout are in their finest attire. They get fiery and bulked up for the spawn. The males are particularly impressive at this time of year. Their colors go from beautiful to unbelievable. their teeth start to grow and their mouths become dark purple, they get an impressive humped back... this is when brook trout become little monsters. They have evolved be able to do battle during the spawn. In many streams most of the fish spawn at the same time and it becomes difficult to find fish that aren't on redds during the first two weeks of November. But I happen to know a couple streams where the brookies are so prevalent that only about a tenth of the population is spawning at any one time during the season. And the rest of the fish are super aggressive at the time, probably mad that the best spawning grounds are being occupied by their rivals.

I visited that stream today and some amazing stuff was occurring. Every tailout with good clean gravel had at least a few paired up adult brook trout, ranging anywhere from six to sixteen inches. And the stretch of water three yards down from the redds was PACKED with brookies that were just their to eat and sneak up behind the spawners. These were mostly just a bit smaller than the fish on the redds, and almost all males. These were the fish that did not get places next to females. The deep pools had fish too, mostly smaller fish and a few adult females that were also not spawning this time around. But I focused on those aggressive males waiting in the riffles for the eggs to wash out of the redds. Getting them to take a veiled egg fly was tricky, fun, and by far some of the most amazing native brookie fishing I've ever had.




14 inch male brookie protecting a redd

So, as you can see from the photos above it took me a little while to figure out that an egg fly was the way to go. I got a few on small ice nymphs and one on an Edson Tiger. I just never really thought that egg flies and brook trout were a good combination. Apparently I was wrong. Seeing a big male brook trout come three feet up a riffle to smash a tiny orange egg... that is just awesome.

To make it just that little bit better, these were some of the most beautiful brookies I have ever caught. Just remarkable fish in every way.





















I've had a lot of good days on the water this year. And this was definitely one of them!

11 comments:

  1. Spectacular colors on those brookies!!

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  2. Man - brookies are gorgeous, but this time of year... Whoa, they are amazing looking!

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    1. Thanks,
      With each fish to hand I said aloud: WOOOWWWW!

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  3. WOW, Color and teeth. They are great and you did have a great day. Photos and story, felt like I was there.
    Tie, fish, write and photo on...

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    1. Thanks,
      When they're done spawning I have caught small males with tooth marks on them from larger fish! They grow them big in the fall for a reason!

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  4. Those colors are incredible. Inspiring me to hit my local native honey hole.

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    1. Go for it and write an awesome post to match!

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  5. The colours are amazing on brookies this time of year. Love the photos.

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    1. Thanks Ben,
      They peak once the leaves are done... makes up for the grey in the woods!

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  6. Daaaaammmmn, those are some really pretty fish!!

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