Primetime for Trout

By James Bradley

May is an outstanding time to be up in the North Georgia Mountains. Signs of life are everywhere from the opening of apple houses to seeing lawn keepers weed eating. Being a guide, I have always loved the month of May. It is perhaps the best fly-fishing month on the calendar. Many may argue otherwise, but it’s hard to beat this month with its ideal water temperatures. Having prime water temperatures allows trout to become super active eating and chasing food items to eat.

Don’t forget that it will not be too much longer until the water gets to a comfortable temperature for us to wet-wade most mountain streams. Retiring those old worn heavy waders for nothing more than nylon fishing pants is a delight. I’m looking forward to this as much as the trout are to looking up for some of their daily meals!

Although, I am not a dry fly purist, May is an outstanding month for the surface bite. Trout only take about 10 percent of their diet from the surface. The remaining balance is taken subsurface. But, the excitement of this time of year is having trout rise to dry flies. To see a large trout come from the depths to inspect a fly is undeniably an adrenaline rush! It could be a huge 20-inch trout appearing to slowly take your fly or sadly, even turn away. Or what if it’s one of those feisty little, wild rainbows that come up from the depths like a rocket heading to Mars to smash the hair right off the fly? Yes, this is right around the corner in just a matter of days, and counting.

Your setup can be from a dry fly to a hopper. Even using search patterns like a dry/dropper combination will work well. Dry fly search patterns are more commonly Stimulators. Dropper flies can be small caddis flies, mayflies, stoneflies, or even wets or emergers. Dry fly time in the mountains has sprung, so get out there and tie one on!

If you are a beginner wanting to learn how to fly fish, we have a great staff of instructors who have been schooled in the art of fly fishing. One of the best ways to learn about fly fishing is to spend time with those of us who are professional full-time guides. Don’t forget to ask us about our float trips! Currently, we are doing floats on the Toccoa Tailwater and on the upper river as well. Give us a call to book your amazing trip on the water and don’t forget that we offer gift certificates!

James Bradley is an Orvis Endorsed Fly Fishing Guide. Call him at (706) 273-0764 or look him up at Reel ‘Em In Guide Service operates as an Orvis Endorsed Fly Fishing Outfitter in North Georgia’s Historic High-Country region. They have permits for guiding in North Georgia and North Carolina, offer over 7 miles of private trophy waters across Georgia, and operate float trips on the Toccoa River in GA and the Tuckasegee River in NC.

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