We are on a steady uphill climb to the peak of one of the best times of year to catch big fish. November is notorious for producing some of the largest fish of he season, but there will be a few hurdles in the path to trophy trout heaven. The first and largest hurdle is the lake "turning over". To anyone unfamiliar with the term this scenario happens when surface temperatures become colder after summer. These top layers of cold water become more dense as they cool causing them to sink down to the bottom pushing the warm layers up to the surface and with that comes the turning over of the layers of the lake. Hence why we are currently in the midst of another battle with algae on the surface. Don't let this deter you from fishing, there a many ways to combat the pea soup with the help of nature. Strong winds and current will push the algal layers from one end of the lake to the other and so forth creating pockets of cleaner water to fish. So paying even more attention to weather and particularly wind will be very beneficial. If there are winds coming from the north we can assume that the north end of the lake will be more clear than the south end and so on. You might have to put a few more miles on the fishing rig when searching for the clear pockets of water but when you do it can be very good fishing this time of year. Also look at the water carefully and you might realize that the layer of gunk might only be in the top few inches of foot of water and clear underneath.
On the bright side a lake turn over indicates the lake is cooling down and fish will be starting to frequent the shallows more often. And this year we are a little ahead of schedule and that means more good fishing. There are reports of some of our first winter storms in the near future which will give us our some real hard freezes and that's what will instigate a push of fish coming in, especially the big Pilot Peak we are all after. As far as tactics go your baitfish patterns will still be the ticket either stripping or under an indicator. The boobies and popcorn beetles of all colors have been top producers, followed closely by the wooly buggers and clousers. Again varying your cadence in your retrieve will be beneficial on finding fish and how active they are that day. When the wind comes in it doesn't hurt to try an indicator rig with a balanced leech or baitfish. Fly colors for both techniques should also be interchanged through the day. Good starting points will be black olive and white. So all in all your best weapon to finding fish will be the weather and finding the areas where the water is more clear during the turn over. Fish hard and don't let the strange conditions put you down. The big fish will be lurking.
Hope to see you on the water,
Casey Anderson - President/Head Guide