Sunday, March 8, 2015

Spring Trout Fishing - Drift Fishing With Meal Worms

As winter comes to an end and the spring begins to take over, for me it means one thing (other than
nicer, warmer weather of course) and that one thing is trout fishing.  After the winter where most of my "trout fishing" is done while standing on a frozen lake, I can't wait to get out on the river and do a little drift fishing.  Early in the spring, before the run off kicks into high gear, traditional drift fishing with live worms can be very productive. 

However, once the river levels begin to rise, I have found that another bait is more productive when it comes to catching spring trout, meal worms.  I would imagine that you are familiar with meal worms, but if not, they are the larval form of the meal worm beetle, which is a black beetle that you have no doubt seen before but wasn't aware of what it was.  Well these little alien looking worms are quite effective when it comes to spring trout fishing. 

Meal worms easily fit on a #10 or smaller fishing hook, are quite hearty, and are something that hungry spring trout like to gobble up when they are flowing with the current of the water in which they reside.  Most convenience stores or bait shops will have live meal worms available, but if you can't find them or are squeamish about using them, the  PowerBait Power Honey Worm is a more than viable substitute. As a matter of fact, I have a colleague who prefers the honey worm to a real meal worm anytime that he fishes for trout.

I like to utilize a basic drift fishing rig using # 10 gang hooks a barrel swivel and split shot sinkers when I am drift fishing meal worms, but a single hook can obviously be used if you prefer instead.  I rig a meal worm onto each of the hooks, cast the rig into the river, and proceed to drift fish.  I find that meal worms are most effective when the river is swollen and off color a little bit.  Once the rivers become totally muddy, it becomes harder to get trout to bite, but before and after the heavy spring flow, I'm sure you will find meal worms to be an effective spring trout bait choice.

When drift fishing with meal worms in the springtime, I like to try to use my opposite hand to feel my line as the meal worm drifts downstream.  The bite can often be hard to detect if you don't have a finger (or fingers) in contact with the line.  When a finger is touching the line however, it is much easier to feel subtle bites from hungry trout.  

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