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I know it is a little early, but what patterns do you guys throw during the rainbow spawn? There are some places I would like to hit to try and catch some. And what months does it occur?
 

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I do plenty of spring fishing but have never actually targeted spawners in the spring. The hatches tend to get enough good fish looking up that fishing the redds seems pointless. Some stillwaters have spawners hanging out along rocky shorelines and those can be targeted with an egg sucking leech or other streamers with a bright colored head.
 

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I hit the rainbow spawn in Montana for a few years in a row in the late 90's. The rainbow spawn was end of May to the beginning of June. I am a little embarrased to say (especially in a fly fishing forum) I never did well on flies and always resorted to worms. Fly shops at the time suggested copper john's, prince nymphs and big black stoneflies - they just didn't work for me at the time.
 

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If your looking to be a lazy sob, and reap in the fish without doing any work, just throw an egg. Experiment with colors. The bow spawn is probably the biggest thing in the spring for me. 100 fish days arent uncommon where I'm going to be, but just about any inlet just about everywhere should be loaded with fish, depending on the month you are there, as higher elevation waters seem to start spawning earlier as it gets colder quicker up there. My favorite has to be throwing the biggest streamer you've got. I remember strippin' til i couldn't see last year, and even hooking up at night with some big boys... buggers, zonkers, and clousers in olive, black, brown, ginger (MY PERSONAL FAVORITE), white, etc...
 

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Bows spawn during PRIME hatch time. That time of year is the time where I'm looking for those cloudy/rainy days so I can catch the Baetis hatch. Midges are often mixed in with them, so the fish have plenty to eat. Even if you are fishing egg patterns, you should probably be trailing them with Baetis nymphs.

If you are targeting lake run rainbows, don't overlook fishing bloodworm patterns. They gorge on them in the lakes, so why wouldn't they gorge on them in the rivers? Answer... They gorge on them in the rivers. Marabou bloodworm #16-18 is my favorite.
 
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I usually hit the inlets at Jordanelle and Deer Creek in mid April to early May. I like to fish an egg pattern with a bead-head dropper like a PT or Hares Ear. San Juans are also good below an egg. I have also had great success with egg-sucking leaches during the spawn. Purple or black seem to be the best colors.
 

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We used to hit the bows in lake X with the bacon and egg combo and have caught some nice ones. Just be very carefull with how you handle the fish, and get them back in the water. Those big browns need the rainbow fry for snacks!
 

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Rainbow spawn?

I spoke with campfire about this thread recently and he made an interesting comment to the effect that there are only a handful of sustainable rainbow populations in the whole state. Also, that rainbows are essentially a put and take fish.

So my questions are:
When I catch dark colored rainbows full of sperm/eggs are they fish that are actually able to reproduce?
Why do I catch fish that fit that description (dark and fully of sperm/eggs) through the ice in December and January if the spawn is supposed to be late spring - are they just the winter spawning variety of rainbows?
 

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OK, I will give this a shot. First of all, I think it depends on where you are fishing. Some of the stocked rainbows have been sterilized to prevent hybredization and if I remember right from a past thread on this subject, the consensus was that sterilized rainbows do make sperm and eggs and do participate in a "false spawn" but the eggs are not viable. But not all stocked rainbows are sterile and can reproduce. I suspect that the reason there are not more naturally sustained rainbow populations has more to do with habitat and maybe fishing pressure than anything else. I think that most naturally sustained rainbow populations occure in relatively isolated areas with not so much fishing pressure rather than the popular "put and take" fisheries. I also wonder if the spring spawning of rainbows and cutthroats when streams can "blow out" might put them at a disadvantage compared to species like browns that spawn in the fall when there is usually more stable flows ( except for some notable tail waters). As for rainbows full of eggs and sperm in december, I really have no answer other than they are either late fall spawners, early spring spawners or just really horny :lol: .
 

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Fair enough campfire. I also remembered the other lengthy discussion about rainbow reproduction after I posted here.

So what patterns would you recommend during the spawn?
 

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scott_rn said:
Fair enough campfire. I also remembered the other lengthy discussion about rainbow reproduction after I posted here.

So what patterns would you recommend during the spawn?
Glop bug attractor with a hears ear dropper. Rational:
1) I postulate that fish on reds would be more likely to take nymphs in front of their nose than surface bugs.
2) mmmmm it is durring a spawn.....= glow bug.
3) In the early spring the caddis are starting to get ready to hatch = hares ear.
4) But then don't overlook, midge larva, scuds, sow bugs, etc. and etc.
What do I know? :?: _(O)_
 

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As for rainbows full of eggs and sperm in december, I really have no answer other than they are either late fall spawners, early spring spawners or just really horny .
When White's Trout Farm was in full swing years back, (Little Bear River) their Rainbows spawned in December. By January it was all over. I know that for a fact, because I worked for them. Is there two kinds of Rainbows?
 

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OK, I Googled Rainbow Trout and came up with this in one paper:
"In the wild, most varieties of rainbows spawn in the spring, however, spawning may occur anytime of the year. "

Here is the link: http://www.northern.edu/natsource/FISH/Rainbo1.htm

It would appear that Rainbow trout spawn whenever they please.
 

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Hatcheries can get Rainbow Trout to spawn in the spring and in the fall. Bows that come from the fall spawn will spawn in the fall.
Most of these Bows are sterial but they will go through the motions.
 

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lehi said:
Are the Rainbow trout in hyrum dam Sterile?
I don't know for sure but I would guess that they are sterile. That is one of the places I was thinking of where the fish appeared to be spawning (full of sperm and eggs) when I caught them ice fishing in the dead of the winter.

Just out of curiosity, isn't the area of the little bear that feeds Hyrum all (or mostly) private property? That place would be a blast to fish when the browns spawn :)
 

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A huge section above the dam is by permission only and then you have the hunt/fish club that is a no go without money. But that's not where you want to fish for browns anyhow on the river.
 
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