Stocked Trout Streams & Delayed Harvest Areas ---Midge feeding trout often feed on the emergers as well as the adults. It is important to use an artificial fly which matches the naturals the trout are feeding upon. If you see a splashy rise form or a jumping trout he is feeding on an emerger and the inertia of his motion creates the splash. If you see a dimple rise form, the trout is sucking in the adult midge. If you see some feeders creating dimples while others close by are producing splashy rises, a good ploy is to put a Mr. Rapidan Dry Midge size 20 on your 7X leader, then attach a Brassie size 18 for Copper John Zebra size 18 to a dropper below it. Fish this upstream with a slow 6-inch lifting action every 5 seconds.
The water levels are perfect for this time of year on the stocked streams. Mill Creek in Mount Jackson was recently stocked and some areas in Winchester VA. To see the latest stocking schedule..visit the VA DWR website.
Mountain Trout Streams --Although most of the native brook trout have spawned, sometimes I will still see a few spawning beds in December. Be sure to watch where you are stepping so that we can preserve these beds for better fishing in the Spring. The water levels in the Shenandoah National Park are still higher than I am used to seeing them in December. I would assume that area is getting more rain than what I am getting in Edinburg. The water temperature was around 53 degrees earlier in the week when I went to check the stream conditions. Usually the brook trout will feed as long as the water temperature is above 45 degrees. A Murray's Flying Beetle size 16, Mr. Rapidan Ant size 18, and Mr. Rapidan Dry size 16 will work well for this time of year.
Learn To Fly Fish in our Spring 2023 Mountain Trout Schools. For more information and to register, CLICK HERE. These also make great gifts for Christmas. Gift certificates are available. Need a stocking stuffer? We have plenty of fly assortments or see my book Trout Fishing in the Shenandoah National Park.