Catch a Trout on a Homemade Fly

Tie your own

Tie your own. Via Shutterstock     Photo: justine olson

Some refer to fly tying as arts and crafts for grown men, but according to Squaw Valley, California fishing guide Matt Heron, knowing how to tie flies makes for better fishermen. “If you know the bugs, you are going to know the fish,” he says. “There are four stages of the blue wing gull,” he says, referring to an insect popular with wild Tahoe-area brown and rainbow trout, “and if you know how to tie each stage—nymph, emerger, dun, and spinner—then you are way ahead of the game.” Studying the insect, you’ll understand how the fish preys upon it. From May through October, Heron combines fly tying classes with guided fishing on the rivers near Lake Tahoe—known for monster trout 14 to 21 inches long. They got that way by being picky, but with Heron guiding your movements, you should be able to land one of the leviathans on a fly you hand-tied that morning.

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