19 Ways To Catch More Fish Than Your Buddies

You’ve been here before. You’re out with one of your fishing buddies. It’s a gorgeous day, the flows are perfect, and the breeze is light and refreshing.

You’re knee deep in 45 degree water with the warm sun shining down on the back of your neck.

Staring at your fly box, you wonder what the trout are eating today. And then your buddy erupts with excitement. “FISH ON!!!”, he exclaims, with a big bend in his rod, and a huge smile on his face.

You set down your rod by the side of the river, and walk upstream to help your buddy land and net his fish. Then you snap a picture of him and the trout so he can post it on Facebook and Instagram for bragging rights.

You give your buddy a high five and then walk back down stream to where you set your rod down. And you still haven’t rigged up…

So what did you do wrong? Nothing, but one can always improve.

I’ve made all these mistakes and many more over the course of 15 years in pursuit of monster trout. As a result, I’ve created the “Catch More Fish Than Your Buddies” list.

  • Research the flows before you head to the water.
  • Read up on the latest guide reports for the water.
  • Find out what the latest successful fly patterns and sizes are right now.
  • Stop in to the local fly shop and ask how they would rig up BEFORE approaching the water.
  • Choose the right rod for the water. Taking your 7.5 foot 3 weight rod won’t likely land you a 5 lb trout.
  • Choose the right leader at the right length, and be sure to straighten it!
  • Choose the right tippet size.
  • Rig your rod before you hit the water. Worst case scenario, you have to re-rig if it isn’t working.
  • Wear polarized sunglasses and learn how to spot fish in the current.
  • Keep your flies organized so you can find the right fly when you need it.
  • Get fast at tying good, clean knots. You may miss the hatch completely if you can’t re-rig fast enough to match it.
  • Be stealthy and aware of the shadow your casting on the water, Then grid the water with a plan of attack.
  • Unless you’re stripping streamers, move upstream, not down. Sneaking up behind fish will increase your trout bounty!
  • Change up your rig, or even throw on a streamer if what you’re presenting isn’t working.
  • Cover a lot of water. Standing at the same honey hole for hours on end is a surefire way to have a zero fish day.
  • Be the first person to cast into a run that day.
  • Fish upstream of your buddy!
  • If you’re on a boat, insist on sitting on the front of the boat.
  • Don’t forget that your first cast is oftentimes your deadliest cast. Be ready for the strike on your first cast!

Following the list above will bring more trout to your net, and an even bigger smile to your face. Then your buddies will admire you for the trout master you are.

To learn more about the essentials for a good fly fishing trip click the link below: