Entries tagged with “strike indicator”.


Now that all the rivers in southwest Alberta are in full runoff mode, many stream anglers have shifted their attention to some of the local trout lakes. Most of these lakes became ice-free weeks earlier than normal this year, thanks in large part to the mild temperatures we experienced in March. I’ve been able to venture out to fish some of these stillwaters a half dozen times or so and the fishing has treated me pretty well, at least until the other day.

Lake fishing can sometimes be a bit of an enigma to me. I still can’t quite figure out how angler #1, who’s using the same technique, the same set-up, the same fly, and fishing 30 feet from angler #2, who’s doing exactly the same thing and catching fish, yet angler #1 is not catching anything … nada, zilch, zippo. That’s what happened a couple of days ago, while fishing with my friend, Terry. In case you’re wondering, I was angler #1 and Terry (angler #2) was the one busy catching all the trout. Terry tried his best to help me out and at one point offered to move his pontoon boat so I could try fishing in his spot. By this time, I was beginning to feel desperate and took him up on his offer. But even that didn’t help. Meanwhile, Terry kept on catching fish from his “new” location. The only thing different between the way Terry and I were fishing were our strike indicators. Actually, even those were the same … only the one he was using was bright green in color and mine was bright orange. Now, that’s what you call picky fish!

I’m not trying to brag, but by the end of the afternoon, I managed to land two rainbows. At least I didn’t get skunked, and I’m grateful a couple of fish felt sorry for me. Afterward, Terry wouldn’t tell me how many fish he caught. He probably felt sorry for me, too!

BTW … If anyone is thinking of picking up some bright green strike indicators from our shop, we’re expecting a new shipment soon. When I returned to work yesterday, I purchased all the ones we had in stock. There’s lots of bright orange indicators available, though. Who knows, maybe tomorrow the fish will prefer this color?

On our way home from a trip to Lethbridge on Sunday, my brother-in-law, Paul, and I made a quick detour past Lee Lake to check whether it was ice-free yet. We discovered that except for a couple of small bays, the lake was completely open, thanks to the hurricane-force winds that had been blowing in Crowsnest Pass most of the day. We returned to the lake yesterday morning at about 10:30 and fished until 4:00 pm. The wind wasn’t quite a bad as the day before and we were able to deal with it, without too much difficulty. The nice thing about Lee Lake is you can always find a spot that’s sheltered, regardless of how hard it’s blowing, or its direction.

Within minutes of arriving, we had launched the raft and we’re fishing. Paul hooked into the first fish on his second or third cast. Paul’s visiting from Winnipeg and although he’s more experienced fishing for walleye on his home waters using spinning gear, he’s really taken to fly-fishing for trout in recent years and can hold his own with a fly rod.

How was the fishing? Quite good … actually. We were into fish from the get-go and it was pretty much non-stop action the entire day. Lots of rainbows in the 10 to 12-inch range, and a surprising number of fish in the 14 to 16-inch class. The only fly we used all day were Bead-head Prince nymphs, and we fished them under a strike indicator. One of my flies became so torn apart by fish that the only material left on it was the bead and a bit of thread holding the white goose biot wings to the hook shank. The trout didn’t care, though, and they kept eating it anyway! We only saw two or three bank anglers and one other boat the whole time we were out. More Canada geese have arrived at the lake and we also saw a bald eagle, loons and quite a few mallards. Here’s a couple of photos of the day.

Paul landing a rainbow trout

Paul landing a rainbow trout

Flying fish?

Flying fish?