Fly Fishing for Smallmouth During the 4th of July Week


Here in Indiana we have to play the water game…much like our trout friends do as well. My summers usually revolve around the weather that is on the way and the current USGS readings on various streams. Such was the case of the 4th of July week. My window came on Monday, July 2nd as the water and weather were in harmony; Frank and I jumped in the truck and drove north whereby Frank dropped me off on a four hour excursion to find a few nice smallmouth.

The first half hour was slim…in fact, I didn’t even have a nibble. When this happens I immediately start to try and unlock the many puzzle pieces and figure out what is going on with the fish? This is a hard and sometimes difficult meandering to describe to others who may not have had as much experience on the water…let’s just say that a huge ridge of high pressure was definitely causing a change in the behavior of the smallmouth I was pursuing. After trying a couple of different sizes and weights of a crayfish pattern I finally settled on a tie of mine that I had finished just a couple of days prior…and as you can see from the video I finally hooked into and landed a nice smallie.

Here is the other factor with smallmouth; water temps. Smallmouth aren’t fond or very active early and as the day progresses and the temps start to rise with the overhead sun, the fish will almost always pick up their search for food. About an hour into my trip I could start to see fish up in the shallows chasing baitfish and this was my signal to tie on a smaller, white fly and see if I could indeed find fish willing to give chase to my pattern…which is without question my favorite way to fly fish.

The rest of the day was exciting…well, it was active for sure. I landed a few nice smallmouth and lost a few more, but all in all it was just a spectacular day to be out on the water in pursuit of my favorite game fish, the smallmouth bass. So, watch the video and I hope you can enjoy the scenery while I land a few more nice fish, the largest being an 18 incher that swamped my baitfish pattern in a deeper hole. If you have any questions regarding this video or a general fly fishing question, you can contact me via email at and I will do my best to give you an honest response.

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