Editor’s note: The following is exerpted from TU’s book, “Trout Tips,” available for online purchase and overnight delivery.
I recently took a long drive through Kootenay, Banff and Jasper national parks along the border with British Columbia and Alberta. Throughout the entire drive, delicious, glacial-tinged trout water paralleled my path. Trouble was, save for the lower Bow River in Alberta, most of that water isn’t worth more than a cast or two. A lot of high-country rivers are the same way—the environment is so austere (rock and ice do not make for good habitat for bugs and, therefore, for trout) that fishing really isn’t an option.
But when I finally arrived in the high-country resort town of Jasper, I knew I was back in trout country. Within miles of town, my windshield became a crime scene for green drakes and some smallish caddis. As I drove west out of town, I found myself spraying down my windshield every few minutes to wipe off the remnants of the hatch I just passed.
If you’re not sure you’re in trout country, check your windshield. If you never run out of wiper fluid, chances are, you’re not in a great place to fish.
— Chris Hunt