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Fly Fishing Lake TroutLake trout and fly fishing don’t always go together. Probably because lake trout spend the majority of time in the coldest and deepest parts of any lake. Trolling boats and down riggers are often required to fish for lake trout effectively. However, there is a small window of time when a shore bound fly fisherman has an opportunity to catch these typically deep dwelling trout. Just as the last chunks of ice melt into water, lake trout can sometimes be found close to the shoreline. It is often a hit or miss game and this day was like many others for me and my friend Greg Bostater (AKA Boz). Fortunately, Boz had tied up some amazing flies over the winter. Big, white, marabou and bunny strip patterns with different sink rates and sure to not foul. We got to the first spot and it just felt cold, leading us to think that it was going to be a “miss” day. We took a few half hearted casts but it wasn’t long before we were back in the car in route to the next spot. We arrived at the next spot and surprisingly things felt a little less cold and a little more fishy. The sun was shining and warming things up, the wind was over our backs and the lake was glass calm. This happens to be one of those games where distance does matter. The further you can cast the fly the better and a couple more feet can make all the difference in the world. Boz made a couple good casts and on the third cast he changed his retrieve every so slightly. Thump. That’s how it feels when the lake trout takes the fly. And, sure enough, a beautiful ‘laker’ took his fly. We were both equally as excited to see our first trout species of the season. Boz handed me the rod and said, “you’re up!” I made a few good casts, a few terrible casts and finally made the perfect cast. The fly rolled over nicely and began to sink into the zone where we typically hook fish. I made a series of short strips and pauses and sure enough, thump. The line was tight, the rod was bent and it sure felt great after a long cold winter. Lake trout are among the longest lived freshwater game fish, often living 20 years or more. I don’t get a chance to see them too often and some years not at all because they spend the majority of their time out of fly rod reach. So, when I am lucky enough to cross paths with one of these deep dwelling trout I sure do appreciate it. What is or is typically your “first fish of the season?”