Falcon’s Ledge is in the middle of the pheasant hunting season and guests at the lodge are enjoying the bird hunting opportunities with our world-class bird hunting guides and dogs. As the bird hunting season winds down in March the fly-fishing season really kicks off at Falcon’s Ledge. March and April are pre-runoff fishing season at Falcon’s Ledge in Utah. During the pre-runoff fishing season, the water is clear, the fish are hungry, and there is some good fishing on both the Utah rivers and lakes around Falcon’s Ledge. Here are five of our favorite flies for pre-runoff fishing in early spring.
Zebra midges are a great fly almost any time of the year, but especially effective in the winter and early spring months when the weather is chilly and there are mainly midges hatching. Black and silver zebra midges are probably our favorite color, but purple/silver and rust/silver are also very effective colors. When fish are feeding near the surface, dropping a zebra midge off a large dry fly is a great way to fish. When fish are feeding near the bottom of the river, dropping a zebra midge off a larger nymph is a great way to catch fish.
Woolly buggers are a great way to fish deeper runs or small lakes in the early spring. Fish will often hide under structure in the deeper water of a river bend or small pond in the early spring. Casting a woolly bugger up against the structure of a river bend or pond and jigging the woolly bugger along the limbs or cattails is a great way to get trout to come out of their hiding spots and strike at a bigger meal such as a woolly bugger.
Blue-winged olive mayflies hatch heavily during the early spring in Utah. When they are not actively hatching, baetis nymphs work effectively and a Juju baetis or olive micro may be two of our favorite baetis patterns for the early spring. When blue-winged olives are hatching a parachute blue-winged olive is a great dry fly for catching fish during a hatch.
Trout feed heavily on midge and baetis in the early spring. A Spanish bullet perdigon is a great pattern to imitate both olive colored midge larvae and small baetis larvae in the river. The Spanish bullet perdigon is very effective year-round due to it imitating many of the common larvae in Utah rivers. During the early spring this is a great fly to use in both shallow and deep water. In shallow water it is great to fish off a dry fly and in deeper water it is a great dropper fly off a larger nymph or woolly bugger.
In the early spring on many Utah rivers small black stoneflies hatch. These provide a great meal for trout in these rivers and trout feed on them heavily. A Quasimodo pheasant tail nymph is a great nymph for imitating black stonefly larvae and we use this effective nymph much of the early spring. When stoneflies are actively hatching a small, black-bodied stimulator or PMX are both great patterns for imitating these early stones.
We hope to see you this March and April at Falcon’s Ledge Lodge for some pre-runoff fishing!