March 10, 2013

Allen Afield: Late winter is when eager anglers spring forward

By Ken Allen

(Continued from page 1)

First, a fly-caster puts a strike indicator on the leader, casts quartering across upstream and allows the indicator and fly to float back naturally with the current without dragging -- not even a subtle drag. The highly visible indicator should float at the exact speed as a floating foam or bubble on the surface so fly-rodders know the fly is drifting naturally with the flow. When a fish strikes, the indicator telegraphs the strike to the angler.

Second, a Pheasant Tail (PT) imitates swimming nymphs such as ones in the Baetis and Acerpenna genera, a perfect fly for casting downstream at a quartering angle. Then, casters allow the PT to swing in an arc, before inching it upstream like a swimming bug by rolling the line over the fingers.

In March, the warmest time of day often occurs from 10 a.m. to early afternoon, when cold winds pick up. Those sunny, late mornings create fond memories for those of us who tromp through snow to a river, hoping our timing coincides with trout lethargically feeding in 39-degree Fahrenheit water, a common temperature now -- give or take a few degrees.

A trout on a rod feels good now and offers definite promises of what's to come in six or eight weeks, when that viridescent explosion screams "spring" and fishing action gets as good as it ever gets in Maine.

Ken Allen, of Belgrade Lakes, a writer, editor and photographer, may be reached at:


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