Backcast: 2019, the beginning

Species list and memorable trips

Looking back on it now, my first (half) year fly fishing was incredibly productive. Aided by several trips to Colorado, a trip to Vancouver BC, and some trips to coastal Louisiana I managed to catch 12 different species: rainbow trout, brown trout, brook trout, cutthroat trout, cutbow trout, largemouth bass, bluegill, red ear sunfish, crappie, speckled trout, ladyfish, and pink salmon!

The largemouth I caught that year is probably still my personal best, and was caught with a foam stimulator trout dry fly on my 4 weight! I couldn’t manage that again if I tried!


My wife was still living in Colorado in 2019, so in addition to my first time fly fishing in May 2019, I was able to go back in both early and late July. The trip in early July was tough because the run-off was still on, and I wasn’t yet experienced enough to know how to fish those conditions better. In late July the runoff was over, and we made it up to the high county, allowing me to complete the Colorado grand slam for the year! I made another trip in October, where I picked up a cutbow from a small foothills tailwater.

Brown Trout
Brook trout
Greenback cutthroat

Vancouver BC

An already planned visit to Vancouver happened to coincide with the 2019 pink salmon run. I brought my newly acquired 8-weight and some pink wooly buggers up there with me and was able to land a few. The scenery was amazing and the fishing was good to match.

Pink Salmon


Back home in Louisiana, I was trying to absorb as much information as possible, mostly related to trout fishing in Colorado. I was hitting the local bass ponds, but mostly using small terrestrials and small poppers. I didn’t initially embrace big foam bugs and poppers to target bass, but I also hadn’t started tying flies yet, so I was working from a selection of store bought flies. Regardless of fly selection, I had a great time catching blue gill and largemouth bass, including some of my personal best bass. I was also trying out some saltwater fishing with my 8-weight, with my best success fishing at night under dock lights for speckled trout. I did make a few trips down to Pointe Au Chenes to rent a kayak to chase redfish, but didn’t have much success in 2019. Fly fishing out of a kayak in a new area comes with a very steep learning curve.

Speckled trout
Largemouth bass
Red ear sunfish

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