Current Reports for Western Wisconsin Spring Creeks:
8/25/2018 - Western WI report - John Goplin 8/25/2018
Western Wisconsin fishing report from John Goplin
Tricos and Terrestrials – The Tricos have been going strong. Lots of bugs and bringing up some of the larger fish. Remember the male hatches at sunset and the female at sunrise, with the spinner fall shortly after that. Air temp is crucial when the spinners fall and can be near sunrise on warm mornings and later on cooler mornings (even around noon). Remember the key temperature is 65 degrees.
When the Tricos slow down, throw some terrestrials (Beetles, Ants, and Hoppers). This can be very productive for daytime fishing and produce some nice fish!!
7/3/2018 - Western WI report - John Goplin
The Western WI Trout streams are in their Summer conditions........water is low and the weeds are high. Best action is that late evening with Caddis (size 16-18), Sulphurs (size 16-18), and a few Blue Wing Olives (size 18-20). Watch for the fish to switch over to the Spinner fall at dark. Some of the cooler, cloudy days are producing day time activity on top, but if not, fish Caddis nymphs (size 14-16) and Pheasant Tail type nymphs (size 16-20). Also, don't forget terrestrials during the heat of the day (Beetles, Ants, etc.). Fish them where they are more likely to fall in the water.......toward the banks and over hanging brush, especially where the Trout have some cover. This can be some great fishing!!
6/6/2018 - Rush and Kinni 6/5 - John Goplin
The Western WI streams are in great shape and multitude of hatches coming off. Caddis, Sulphur Duns, Cahills, and even some Blue Wings on a cold day. Remember the 65 degree air temp is a good rule of thumb for when the hatch will happen (or just at sundown). Last Sunday, with how cold it was, we hit a good Sulphur hatch at 3 pm. Great fly combo prior to the hatch is a Bead Headed Pheasant Tail (size 16-14) or Peeking Caddis (size 14) trailed with a non Bead Headed PT (size 16-18) or Zebra Midge (size 18-20). For dries, depends on where you are on the stream (or what stream). Just be observant of whats hatching and remember to fish downstream of the long stretches of riffles and rapids where most the bugs are hatching from.
Caddis - Tan Elk Hair Caddis (size 16-18),
Sulphur Dun - Lt. Yellow Parachute or Compara Dun (size 16-18)
Cahill - same as above. but size 12-14)
Remember, if you fish into the dark, the fish could switch over to Spinners of the Sulphur or Cahills
Spinner - Rusty colored body (size 14-18)
5/7/2018 - Rush and Kinni 5/5 - John Goplin
From John Goplin-
With the WI opener I thought the rivers would have been busier. Went to the Rush River on Sunday and it was not bad. The river was clear and normal flow. Midges hatched in the morning and scattered Blue Wing Olives all day long (but not enough to call it a hatch). Fishing 2 nymphs pretty much all day, the fish keyed in on the small Zebra Midge most the time (size 18 – 20). Never saw a Caddis hatch but checking the rocks in the riffles, there was quite a few Caddis….…..won’t be long.
4/30/2018 - Rush and Kinni 4/29 - John Goplin
From John Goplin-
Rush River was in perfect condition this past weekend with Midges and Blue Wing Olives hatching, The fish moved into the riffles by noon and a double nymph rig produce well (Lead fly - Blue Wing Olive - #16/#18 & Dropper - Zebra Midge #18/#20). Also, if you wanted dry fly action, throwing a #18/#20 Blue Wing Olive or a #20/#22 Griffins Gnat to risers in the riffs worked well. I heard people talk Caddis, did not see any Caddis hatching myself. Did see a few Caddis Cases by looking under the rocks in the riffles, but more Baetis nymphs than anything else.
WI general fishing Opener is this coming weekend, and with lots of the lakes still frozen, the rivers could be a little busier than normal.
4/17/2018 - Rush River and Kinni 4/15 - John Goplin
Here’s a report from the weekend from John Goplin – yes he fished in the snow storm!
With Winter returning in mid April, it effected the fisherman but didn’t seem to bother the Trout. The Rush was a little off color and a little high on Sun. Nymphing was very good with best success on Pink Squirrel (size 14-18) and with the second nymph being a Zebra Midge (size 18-20). The fish were in the riffles mid day and active. A little surface activity by mid afternoon on Griffen’s Gnat (size 18-20)
If you haven’t tried a Tenkara rod in the Winter, you should. It is the perfect tool when the temperatures drop below freezing…….no guides to freeze. And most days when the temperatures are below freezing, the rivers are void of fisherman.
4/2/2018 - Rush and Kinni 3/31- John Goplin
Rush River had a little Spring run off the last few days and Winter seemed to return (picture….look close at the far bank and you can see how high the water was a few days earlier). Water was still a little high and visibility was poor but still fishable. The water started to clear up slightly late Sat……March 31st. Fishing Wooly Buggers in the slow deep pools or edges of the deeper fast water produced fish. The next week of cold temperatures should clear up the water and Midges should be hatching mid day again. Also, try Blue Wing Olive nymphs since they were hatching a week ago.
3/27/2018 - Rush and Kinni 3/27- John Goplin
Blue Wing Olives are hatching on the Rush River and Kinni. Good Midge fishing still but on those cloudy warmer days, the fish are switching over to the Olives. Size 18 - 20
3/19/2018 - Rush and Kinni 3/18 - John Goplin
Rush and Kinni report –
Hatches – Midges (size 20) and small Black Stonefly (size 18) hatching during the nice time of the day. If it stays above freezing overnight, the Midges have been coming off mid morning. Also, try a double nymph rig with a Pink Squirrel (size 14 – 18) with a Zebra midge (size 20-22) as your second fly. Once the hatch gets going and fish are up, the slow deep pools can produce some nice fish
If it’s cold, try dead drifting a small black Wooly Bugger thru the slow deep pools.
3/18/2018 - John Goplin joins Headwaters!
Needing no introduction; longtime friend, fishing partner, mentor and fly fishing instructor John Goplin has decided to join the team at Headwaters Fly Fishing Company, guiding and instructing trout fishing trips. I am extremely excited to join up with John again!
John’s been fishing the Western WI, SE MN, and MN North Shore for over 50 years. Has fished from the High Arctic to Belize and Atlantic Salmon to the famed Bristol Bay area in Alaska.
John has been involved in the Fly Fishing industry since High School (had an Import fly tying materials business, general manager of Burger Bros., sales manager for Scientific Anglers, and most recently retired from being a sales representative for various sporting goods companies…..including ROSS reels, Scientific Anglers, Cheeky Fly Reels, Eagle Claw, Seagaur line, Frogg Toggs waders, etc.)
John ran the Burger Bros. fly fishing schools for 25 years, and introduced many people to the fly rod. He always says “Sometimes the fly rod can be the most effective method for catching fish, but it is always the most fun”. Born and raised in the Midwest, John loves the seasons of fly fishing, whether it’s winter Trout, Ice out Panfish, Summer Smallies, night time Walleyes, MT trout waters, and of course fishing the hatches on the local Trout waters.
John and his Brother developed the first emerging mayfly pattern on Armstrong Spring Creek, MT. the Goplin’s Loop Wing Emerger, back in the 70’s. And still loves changing patterns at the tying bench to see what’s more effective.