August Fishing on Rock Creek

PRO TIP 1: qlways move upstream when fishing. Fish ALWAYS face into the current so when you move upstream they are not as likely to sense your presence.

PRO TIP 2: the fish are all over the place. There is usually no need to wade to the middle of the river. The exception to this rule is when you are hunting fish. This is my preferred method of fishing. I’ll sit and watch the river till I see a trout rise then stalk to within casting range. I only move out into the middle when necessary to reach a rising fish.

PRO TIP 3: Look for lines of bubbles on the surface. These signal the presence of a current seam and the fish will hang in the water on the slower side of the seam only moving across the seam into the faster water when food (or your fly!) drifts by. So, fish the fast water along the seam by putting your fly as close to the bubbles (on the fast side) as you can.

PRO TIP 4: ignore deep water unless you see fish rising. Instead, fish the edges of the deep water where the bottom drops off. Feeding fish like to say close to the bottom where the Osprey can’t see them. The edges of the deep water allows them to stay close to the bottom, close to the surface, with a quick escape to the deep water when you come sloshing by.

PRO TIP 5: here’s how to spot feeding trout. Look into the water and focus your eyes on the bottom. Keep staring at the bottom because sooner or later a fish will expose itself by rolling on its side to grab a fly or, more commonly, opening its mouth to suck in a nymph. In the latter case, you should see the which flash of its gums.

Rock Creek Hatch Chart courtesy of Rock Creek Trout Bums

Must have Dry Flies for August on Rock Creek


PERSONAL NOTE: of these four flies, my personal favorite (because it’s been the most productive for me) is the Purple Haze, especially in the morning before the sun hits the water. In the evening a lighter pattern is often more productive – the Spruce Moth or an Elk Hair Caddis are good flies for this time.

Of course, what’s summer fishing without a productive hopper strategy: my recommendation is to use any hopper imitation with a dropper. This is almost always a good bet midday. As for the combo pictured in this image, I would rather recommend you use size 18 bead-head copper john or bead-head pheasant tail for the trailer and any size 10 or larger hopper with a foam body and wiggly rubber legs.


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