Fishing Information

Lake Trout On The Fly

The name Lake Trout lends a slight misnomer to the actual species of this incredible fish that is actually not a trout at all, but a char. The Lake Trout resides in some of the most spectacular places on earth and the trip that spurred this article is no exception.

The Newhalen River, near Iliamna Alaska, is where this trip took place and the intention was to land some nice early season Rainbows. Although Rainbows were indeed landed the Lake trout took center stage as they fed in frenzies on the tiny smolt that were venturing out into the currents for the first time.

The first feeding frenzy we spotted drew much attention as we expected huge Rainbows were cruising the shallows. Not one person expected what happened next. Wham! The Marabou Muddler was engulfed as it was stripped quickly through the rising pod of what turned out to be Lake Trout.

Lake Trout, for the most part, tend to elude most fly-fishing lore and go unnoticed. The depth at which they dwell and the difficulty in locating a group of fish to target within the parameters of the fly angler all contribute to its lack of attention, however; there is an exception and that is early spring just after break-up when Lake trout, usually in the 20 to 30 inch range, journey from the big lakes and cruise the shallows of the rivers that enter and exit them. So while Rainbows, Dollies, Coho and Kings steal the lime light, the Lake Trout still continue, unmolested, gorging on the many salmon fry that struggle in the currents as they begin to learn the perils of life as a salmon.

It is during this time that fly anglers can easily locate and entice Lakers into taking their fly, even on top. The Lakers can be located by the many swirls and splashes as they travel in schools. They remind me of my younger days when we used to go to the lake before school in hopes of catching rockfish "in the jumps" and hopefully catch one without being too late for class.

Once the frenzy is located the angler must quickly introduce their fly into the frenzy and utilize a fast strip-stop retrieve to get the Lakers attention. The takes are no joke and I have found the quicker you retrieve the more attention you get. One may want to hesitate for just a second after a few feet of retrieve before resuming the fast strip technique.

Any fly pattern that imitates a small fish should do the trick but I can only speak for the Maribou Muddler as I found no reason to change while the Lakers continued to slam them with reckless abandon. There is one note of interest you might want to know. Just because of the hard takes don't think the Lakers are a pushover. For some reason the Lakers are hard to hook. It seems they strike haphazardly at the fly but I think nerves played a huge part of the misses I encountered.

If you have ever had the opportunity to fish Northerns or Musky on top water you are familiar with the torpedo wake as the fish ambushes your fly or lure from behind. With Lake Trout you get the same visible approach which can unnerve an angler as they try to predict when the strike will occur as the Laker dips under the fly before coming from under for the take. Often times I would set the hook too soon, missing the fish entirely and sending him searching for a new prey as I duck to miss my fly.

The Lake Trout may not get too much attention but that is quite all right with me. I will be glad to have these dwellers of the deep to myself and will also enjoy the Rainbows, Dollies and Grayling in between. If you are like myself and prefer less crowded angling you should try early spring in Alaska and remember the Lake Trout. The forgotten Lake Trout just might be an added species found in your journals of your trip of a lifetime whether you expect it or not.

Visit Rambling Angler Outfitters for more information. Also order you custom fly rod for your trip of a lifetime. We at Rambling Angler Outfitters can also put together a fly box specifically for your trip. Give us a try. Thanks.

This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at

FOX 7 Austin

Host of national fishing show visits Austin to film
FOX 7 Austin
Mike is a competitive fisherman that fishes in professional bass competitions. On his show, he challenges himself to capture 3 different species of fish each time he visits a city. In the capital city of Texas, he's urban fishing, city fishing, and ...


Beast Coast Fishing Giveaway
Beast Coast Fishing worked with ELITE Series / MLF Bass Pro Tour Pro Gerald Spohrer over the course of 6 months to build the best bush & heavy cover flippin' jig out: it all started with the weedguard. "We were on the same page," remarks Spohrer, "We ...

The Advocate

Report: Father and son found dead in Lake Pontchartrain after fishing trip
The Advocate
A father and son were found dead in Lake Pontchartrain Saturday night after a fishing trip, according to a report from WWLTV. Story Continued Below. The boat was found unmanned Saturday afternoon and the men's bodies were found around 8 p.m. They ...

Panama, Namibia plan to reveal fishing fleet data via online map
NUSA DUA, Indonesia — In a bid to beef up fisheries security, Panama and Namibia have announced their intentions to make information on the location of fishing boats in their waters publicly available via the open-access platform Global Fishing Watch ...

Chinese fishing boat sinks off Japan's coast; 5 crew missing
Minneapolis Star Tribune
TOKYO — Japan's coast guard said Monday that a Chinese fishing boat sank off a southern Japanese island and five of its crewmembers were missing. Three others were rescued. The coast guard said it received a distress call earlier Monday and was later ...

and more »


This NYC restaurant lets you fish for your own meal
At Japanese fishing restaurant Zauo, customers use baited hooks to fish for their own dinner. Fish varieties range from rainbow trout ($38) to salmon trout ($158), and preparation options include sashimi, salt-grilled, simmered in soy sauce or tempura ...

Trout fishing destinations offer more than just fishing
The state's six winter trout areas managed by the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation are now open for business. Whether you are an avid or just casual angler, all of them are worth a visit, and the trip can provide more than just fishing ...
North Alabama holiday trout fishing
Henrys Lake is freezing over and the fishing is goodEast Idaho News
North Iowa fishing report for Nov. 16Mason City Globe Gazette

all 12 news articles »

Akron Beacon Journal

Nordonia Hills brothers finish ninth in bass fishing tournament
Akron Beacon Journal
Despite cold weather and poor largemouth bass fishing conditions, two students from the Nordonia Hills City Schools placed ninth in a fishing tournament last month. Brothers Justin and Tyler Lewis, ages 16 and 13, respectively, also caught the largest ...

Fishing Boat Carrying Unknown Number Overturns, Body Found
U.S. News & World Report
DOWNSVILLE, Md. (AP) — A woman's body has been found by search crews following the discovery of a wrecked boat. But The Herald-Mail reports rescue workers don't know how many people were on the Bass Tracker fiberglass boat found overturned ...

and more »

Orlando Sentinel

Central Florida fishing forecast: Nov. 19
Orlando Sentinel
Bass fishing has been good throughout the day. Rat-L-Traps, Bass Assassin jerkbaits and swimbaits work well in open waters. Try Senkos and Texas-rigged plastic worms and flukes in deeper, grassy waters. Drift open water with minnows for crappie.

Google News

home | site map | Ocean Photography
© 2006