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Brook Trout Flies for the U.P.
Weather and water conditions change, thus any list of flies will tend to be long. Under each category I’ve listed flies I would start with, and what I would switch to in descending order. Depending on weather, cloud conditions, water level, water type, water temp, etc. If there is a hatch on, you’ll want to try to match it, especially with fly size. But most of the summer in the Yoop you’ll do just fine with a selection of hopper and ant flies fished tight to the banks. Most U.P. rivers with brook trout have rocky bottoms with tag alder banks. Fish close to the banks — under the tag alder cover. There are also a few small streams that are more like spring creeks. Fish the grass banks and six inches off the grass might as well be a mile away. These fish will come up, but rarely come out far for a fly. Make it easy for them. Brookies will set up in pockets of fast skinny water if they have cover. Also fish the runs and holes below riffles, starting with the bottom of the hole and methodically working your way upstream. Finding water will be difficult in a UP summer. You can find lots of cold water 50s, but too skinny and fish are concentrated in holes and pockets, often under heavy over-stream tag alder cover. If the river temp is mid-60s or above, start looking for feeder streams and look for temps in low to mid-50s. That’s where the trout will be. In fall they will return to their main river habitats in prep for spawning. The flies are presented in the following categories:
Attractor Dry Flies; Match the Hatch – Dry Flies; Streamers; Wet Flies; and Nymphs & Terrestrials.