Brown trout and my go-to fly

Posted by Steve Galea at

Yesterday, members of the Haliburton Highlands Fly Fishing Club, of which I am a proud co-founder and current President, visited a trout farm and fly fished as a group.

A trout farm like the one we visited is great fun because it allows a group to fish together, have a laugh or two and learn from each other. We went there knowing they are not wild fish. But we looked upon it as a great opportunity to teach new members and try out different techniques. Oh, and scout it out.

You see, the place we visited has not been open as a trout farm for a few years but is about to reopen. It has not been stocked since closure either, so this was sort of an exploratory expedition to see what remained in the three ponds. We knew a remnant population of rainbows and fallfish exist, an ice fishing trip proved that. And in winter, the owner's sons caught a nice brown trout too. 

This trip, however, reinforced the idea that at least one pond is stocked with a remnant population of nice browns. I hooked 6 and landed three (The other three slipped off my barbless hooks.) Every one was this size -- roughly between two and three pounds..

Each hit my go-to fly, the olive beadhead woolly bugger. I suspect those trout took them to be tadpoles of which there were many. Wild trout or not, we had fun.

The place has three ponds, nice lawns, picnic tables and a generally serene setting where a bunch of anglers can kick back and enjoy a summer day. And the owners are excellent people. I think we'll be seeing more of this place in the future.

Thanks for club member and friend Rusty R. for the photos.


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