.......................  ......Fly Fishing Yellowstone National Park


Fishing Cold Water - Part Twelve
Tips for Fishing Cold Water in Yellowstone Country During the Winter

For purposes of defining cold, we are referring to water temperatures between
40 and 50 degrees Fahrenheit.

1. Slow and small are the two key words. Use smaller flies than you normally
would. Slow down the presentation of your flies.

2. The trout want hold in fast moving water. Fish areas of water that is moving
slow or where it's not moving at all. This means areas behind boulders and
rocks, pools, deep areas of the stream, or any other area of water thatj's not
moving fast.  

3. The trout want move a great distance to eat. Place your flies in front of their

4. There are three important types of hatches that occur during the winter
months in cold water: Midges, Blue-winged Olive mayflies and Little Winter
Stoneflies, but this depends on where your fishing. Not all of these will be
hatching at any one time. It will mostly be midges.

5. Fish during the middle of the day when the water is most likely a little warmer
than it would be early and late in the day.

6. Fish sub-surface flies unless you observe trout feeding on the surface: Fish
imitations of nymphs and Larvae imitations as opposed to dry flies or adult

7. Don't just fish on the best weather days. Cloudy, snowy, rainy and bad
weather days (low pressure systems) are great for larger Blue-winged Olive
hatches and the fishing and sometimes, midges. The Little Winter stoneflies will
hatch when it's very cold. They are often called Snow Flies.

8. Avoid wading when possible. Wading can be dangerous, especially if you are
fishing alone. Fish from the bank when you can.  If you do wade, be extremely
careful and keep your wading belt tight.

9. Cold water is extremely clear. Use longer and lighter leaders and tippets than
normal. Stay well hidden.

10. Generally, the water in sections of streams in the lower elevations will be
warmer than sections of streams in the high elevations.

11. Don't sit at home dreaming about fishing - go. Trout love cold water and the
fishing can be very good during the winer months.

13. Anywhere you can find spring water seeping into the streams, the water will
be some warmer. Of course, the spring creeks in Yellowstone Country should
provide the best Winter fishing.

Copyright 2012 James Marsh