Our Spring trip took us out West, where we had two days to fly fish one of the rivers out in the Rockies, as well as scout for our eight day trip later in May. We already had some solid info on some 30+ inch rainbows from Jason, who had been out there earlier in the month. However, conditions had changed as we found ourselves on the water with high water and increasing flows. The river was clear enough to see some of the gigantic trout feeding, but would require some different tactics to catch them. With only two days to fish and three of us fishing, so we decided to each use different flies to figure out what would work the best. We each have our favorites, but generally a size 20 or 22 black midge is one of our go-to flies for situations like this. After about five minutes of fishing, we were hooked up with one of the monsters.

The game was on for Jeff, as a nice 26 inch male rainbow was on the line and soon in the net. The first day continued with multiple 25 plus inch fish for each of us, mostly rainbows. The majority of the fish were taking red midges in size 18 and we were able to get away with 5x tippet due to the high water. The higher water had also disbursed the fish throughout the river, so we were at times able to get away from the crowds.

The second day brought us even better fishing. We were able to dial in the right flies, and our team of three was on fire catching big fish. About midday, Matt located a large rainbow trout holding on the in-side edge of a large boulder. It was feeding every now and then, as evidenced by the flash of the white in its mouth and occasional movement to the sides to pick off food floating by. After drifting flies over the fish for around five minutes, he got the perfect drift and the fight was on. The fish took off downstream, using the current to its advantage, and was able to wrap itself around rock. The rock instantly snapped his 5x tippet, leaving Matt stunned. This was possibly the largest trout of Matt’s life and he was determined to catch it. He was able to remain visual contact of the fish as it eventually returned to feeding.

After about 20 minutes of letting the fish settle and get back into a feeding pattern, Matt was able to start fishing for the trout again. It had taken him around ten of the twenty minutes to re-rig due to shaking hands. He hooked it again on the third cast and the game was on. He followed the fish downstream, got it out from around a log, two boulders, and finally coaxed it to a shallow gravel area. After a three minute fight, he got the fish in the net. It was a 28.5 inch monster hook-jaw rainbow, his new personal best rainbow. Overall, it was the best two days of trout fishing ever in our lives. Check out the gallery: