Great Article: Catching Wild vs. Stocked Trout

I’m new to the game of seeking wild and native trout in super-small streams. Yes, I’m a newbie.

I’ve caught plenty of fish in big rivers. My all time high was landing 37 trout in a day, and hooking about 50. Most of the fish I catch are stocked fish. Maybe a few holdover fish, but they are ones from a hatchery and transplanted

I long to find and land small brookies in largely unknown waters.

So, I found this article helpful. It lists ten tips for catching wild trout. Enjoy reading it.

There are many, many “blue lines” on Massachusetts maps, and so, happy hunting.

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10 thoughts on “Great Article: Catching Wild vs. Stocked Trout

  1. Good article and the points about polarized sunglasses and respecting the trout and the stream are probably the most important. The only thing I don't like is that it tells you to fish upstream. Small stream anglers are successful fishing both up and downstream. It all depends on the stream and your preference which method you choose that day. I know Brk Trt, for example, makes use of both methods. I tend to fish downstream more than up, but use both. Don't worry too much about being seen fishing downstream as long as you stay fairly stealthy and don't wear bright colors. Hope this helps.

    1. I agree about fishing downstream. I think he mentioned that in this article because it's targeted towards beginners, and its easier to be stealthy fishing upstream, so someone new to small-stream fishing could benefit.

      I also think he assumes that you'll primarily fish dries. Due to the changing currents in a small stream, fishing dries or nymphs downstream is pretty difficult, and fishing streamers upstream is equally tough.

    2. Don't underestimate crawling on your knees or hiding behind trees or rocks. I usually get on my knees for the last 10-20 feet to the stream. It both helps keep you out of sight and it softens the vibrations from your footsteps.

      And it's actually somewhat comfortable when there's snow on the ground – but not so much later in the year.

    3. Very true. Stealth for trout is often talked about for technical tailwaters, but rarely for small stream trout. Wearing dark colors helps, and I too often crawl.

      Slightly off topic from small streams, but I once brought a ghillie suit to the Swift in order to stay hidden from those picky trout!

    1. I never thought of that!

      I bet you could get away with some cheap skateboard knee pads. I have some old hockey pads that might work – I don't think they'd be particularly comfortable though.

  2. I've wanted to target native brookies on small streams ever since I started following Small Stream Reflections. Just seems so appealing to me. Thanks for the article link (very useful), and the info in your other posts about searching for small streams. I already have an area in mind for when I can finally make it out!

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