Winter has taken a little break this year in Utah until recently, but it's made for some great fishing opportunities locally. Warmer than average temperatures have plenty of insects buzzing around mid-morning and our resident trout are hungry. If you're in town to ski and enjoy the winter weather, don't miss out on some of the best fishing of the year. As the Rainbow's start to gear up for the spawn they start to pack on the pounds. Thats good news for us fly fisherman as February and March continue to produce some of the prettiest and largest fish of the year out of the Provo River.
Before we get too far ahead of ourselves, lets us fill you in on whats happening now and what we are looking forward to in February, March and April (our prime winter fishing months). We focus our energy during these months on the Middle and Lower Provo River as they are the most consistent tailwater fisheries we have. On the "Lower" the rainbows and browns continue to chow sow bugs and midges, but as temperatures start to rise so will the amount of insects we will be seeing in the drift. Blue Winged Olives are a great hatch. We start to see these small olive mayflies in April. Dry fly opportunities can be great, as these are the first "big bugs" the trout have seen in months.
Little bumps in the flows and air temperatures trigger some very aggressive feeding by the Rainbow trout as they stock up before their spring spawn. We don't actively target spawning fish, but the pre-spawn Rainbows are a blast to target with light nymph rigs and small midge and BWO dry patterns. The Brown Trout wont skip any meals either as they huddle into the slow moving runs and for the drifting buffet of bug life.
The Middle Provo fishes well throughout the winter as well. The river is pretty much all brown trout at this point and they are still very surface oriented. If you're into small flies and picky fish, the Middle can be a dry fly guy's paradise. These fish are very particular about what they eat, as even in the winter months they see a few anglers trudging on the banks. Nymphing will work as well, and so will streamers in the dark, slow runs. Fish the slow water, look for noses in the heads and tails of the runs and strip those streamers slowly as you work through the guts. Be sure to be extra stealthy as you approach each spot. Walk slowly, wade quietly and work your very hardest on those dead drifts. With low flows, these diva trout will see you coming from a mile away.
LOWER PROVO: 100 CFS from Deer Creek (minimum winter flows)
MIDDLE PROVO: 148 CFS from Jordanelle (minimum winter flows)
- Sow Bugs (MOSTLY ON THE LOWER, BUT WILL WORK ON MIDDLE TOO. CLOSER TO JORDANELLE. | Size: 18, 20, 22 | Colors: Dark, Light, Rainbow
- Midges | Size: 20, 22, 24, 26 | Colors: Olive, Black, Cream, Brown, Grey
- Blue Wing Olives | Size: 18, 20, 22
- Midges | Size: 18, 20, 22, 24 | Patterns: Morgans Midge, CDC Midge, Transitional Midge, Bunny Midge, Griffiths Gnat, Double Midge, Midge emergers and adults
- Blue Wing Olives (March and April) | Size: 18, 20, 22 | Patterns: Last Chance Cripple BWO, Visidun BWO, Bars Emerger BWO, Comparadun BWO, Challenged Baetis. Cripples and Adults...
- Medium to small size streamers work best. Stay away from the big stuff when the water drops below 40 degrees.
- Brown, Olive, Black, White
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