For the average, weekend trout fishermen, learning the various tips and tricks of trout fishing will help them to catch more, and larger, trout. The first thing to learn is that there are different species of trout, and they all taste slightly different, and will also fight differently when on the line. The speckled, or brook trout is the king of trout (well, Arctic Char is the true trout, since all trout are sub-species of the Char species, but they are found mostly in chilly Arctic waters), and is the most sought-after pf the sports fish.
After the speckled trout, in order of pound-for-pound fighting ability, are the brown trout, bull trout, rainbow trout, steelhead trout, lake trout and splake trout (a cross between lake trout and speckled trout, and stocked in many Ontario, Canada lakes). There are also regional (geographical) crosses of trout that are usually named after where they reside. However, the truer, or, more specifically, the most pure trout that you will fish without traveling to the Arctic would be the speckled trout.
One very good tip for fishing speckled trout is that they are a very smart fish, and need to be fooled. The line must be as thin and transparent as possible, using a tiny hook or lure, no swivels or heavy weights, and presenting the bait as injured will cause a series of 3 to 5 nibbles before they strike. Be patient with speckles, and do not pull back on the rod to set the hook when you get the first little bite. With the drag set loose enough for a small fish to take some line, wait for the trout to take the bait, you will know the difference between a nibble and a strike if they are over a pound (one year old).
Other tips and tricks for fishing trout include, but in no way are limited to;
* Space. As in leave space on the shoreline and in the water. If you are fishing a popular spot, possibly near the first day of the season, there will likely be a lot of people there, Spots on the shoreline become hard to get, as the trout are all visible, and people fish where the schools of them are. Whenever there is a crowd, move downstream about 200 metros. The trout will eventually be spooked by the crowds and too many lines in the water, and swim on downstream to you.
* Camouflage. Trout will see you if you are on the shore or in the water, as long as they are in about the same depth of water as you are. Be very still in the water when fishing trout, and when on the shoreline, be stealthful, making as little noise as possible. Try to wear clothing near to the color of the sky, with dark pants to imitate the soil and rocks around rivers and lakes. When you see trout, do not jump up and down yelling “woo-hoo”. They will be long gone before your baited hook is in the water.
* The Picture Perfect Jump. We have all seen it on fishing shows, in magazines, on the Internet and maybe even in person. The trout, majestically leaping out of the water, doing a back flip or violently twisting to and fro, and landing in a crash of waves. They do this to try and lose the hook, and with an inexperienced trout fisherman they usually succeed. Make sure to keep the line taught by slowly pulling back on the rod, all the while slowly reeling in, if possible. In order to get them to leap, when they are about 2 to 3 feet from the surface, slowly start lifting your rod up higher and higher. When you see the trout at the surface, pull a little harder, and they should leap for you if they have any fight left in them.
* Bait. Trout love worms. They also can be caught on hundreds of different lures, grubs, crayfish, frogs, mice, leeches, minnows, flies and kernels of corn. Of course, when the trout season opens, just after the spawn is finished, using egg sacks works very well. Wrap about 20 to 30 eggs around a #16 to #24 barbless bait hook. Always use smaller. barbless hooks when fishing trout. Tie a weight about 3 feet from the end of the line, and the hook at the end. The weight will stay on the bottom, and the eggs will float, just off of the bottom, in the current. Males go crazy and strike hard when they strike.
* Locations. Trout will congregate near the shorelines of rivers and lakes in the spring, right after ice-out. Trout are a cold water fish, and will be found where the water is the coldest. If you are not having any luck near the shoreline, try near the bottom of the water, at the center of the water body. If they are still not biting, start bringing your bait up about 10 to 15 feet at a time, giving at least 20 to 30 minutes per level.
* Trout are finicky. When you get a bite, be patient. Trout will check out bait, and give it a nudge or a nibble before they strike. If you try to set the hook on a nibble or nudge, the trout will be spooked and probably won’t go for any bait for at least 30 to 60 minutes. Speckled trout are especially finicky, usually taking between 3 and 6 nibbles before striking.
* Trout Can Be Very Territorial. Always fish an area that looks good for the signs of trout in rivers and streams for at least 5 to 10 minutes with each of your favorite offerings. These spots include before and at the bottom of rapids, waterfalls and culverts, long and deep running pools, under overhangs like trees and bridges, along the edges of weed beds and along the edge of deep drop-offs. If the trout thinks that they are being infringed upon, they may strike violently.
* Depth. In early spring and late fall, trout can be found near shorelines. During the warmer weather, fish near the bottom, between 5 and 50 feet from the bottom, depending on how deep the water is. In creeks, you can usually see where the fish are. In this case, fish downstream if possible, so that no debris from your walking in the water, or soil and rocks tumbling into the water from your shoreline approach will spook the fish.