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Wisconsin Fly Fishing

Wisconsin is a great place for fly fishing, as many experienced anglers can tell you. Much of the state of Wisconsin was formed by glaciers passing through the area hundreds and hundreds of years ago. The best result from this glacial activity was the formation of many rivers and tributaries from the nearby Great Lakes. That’s what makes fly fishing in Wisconsin so wonderful! Wisconsin fly fishing provides the most diverse trout fishing in the Midwest. The northeastern Wisconsin streams provide challenges in fly fishing that require the angler to wade for fish hidden behind big boulders. Southwestern Wisconsin streams provide a challenge for fly fishermen who have a lot of patience.

Streams in southwestern Wisconsin include Castle Rock Creek and Timber Coulee that support excellent fly fishing, natural reproduction, and mayfly and caddis hatches galore. The streams in this part of the state are spring creeks which support large numbers of fish, mostly Brown Trout, but they don't come easily. Dry fly fishing can be excellent but on heavily fished streams, emergers and lesser used flies can be more productive than standard dry flies. For most streams in this area, anglers need to use light tackle, long leaders, and stealthy approaches. The streams tend to be narrow which makes casting accuracy much more important than casting distance.

Central Wisconsin is home to gin clear streams where you can see fish from where you stand. This area is known as “Sand Counties” because the landscape is extremely flat to gently rolling with very sandy soil. The streams run deep with little fish holding structures. To the untrained fly fisher, this might seem like a place where you wouldn’t want to fish. Nothing could be more wrong! Stream structures are heavily used and deep holes are common particularly along the outside of a bend, and deadfalls and root wads can hold a lot of fish. This area is where stream structures were first devised. The water quality of these streams is excellent and helps support incredible natural reproduction. Wild Brook Trout are the most common fish but natural reproducing browns and even some rainbows can be found. The freestone streams of Northern Wisconsin tumble violently over bedrock. The freestone rivers are home to the best pocket water fly fishing in Wisconsin.

Casting a nymph or a dry fly attractor around the boulders is often a way to catch large numbers of fish. The meadow streams are favored by fishermen who enjoy fishing light leaders and small flies. There are some amazing places you can fly fish in the great state of Wisconsin. You’ll be surrounded by rolling hills and grazing cattle as you try to land your next big fish. When you are an avid fly fisherman, you’ll find a wealth of fun and enjoyment in the streams of Wisconsin! .


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