What Is The Best Time To Fish For Rainbow Trout

Fishing is a fun sport, and it’s also one of the most challenging. If you’re new to fishing, you’re likely aiming for easy-to-catch fish like rainbow trout. This trout species is widespread and is stocked in rivers and lakes and will probably eat different baits and lures. To make the most out of your time in the water and maximize your efforts, you must learn the other techniques to catch rainbow trout. 

The best time to fish for rainbow trout is during the warmer seasons. In California, July to September is the prime time for nailing a rainbow trout. These are the warmest months of the year. However, trout is accessible all year round, but you’re likely to catch one easily during these months. 

Experts also agree that late spring is one of the best times to fish for trout, especially when you’re after larger fish. As the water becomes warmer, the grass becomes thicker, and the brush where these fishes live has lower water levels. 

Because of this, it becomes easier to catch rainbow trout even if you’re still a beginner. There are more techniques left to uncover, so let’s find out the best ways to catch rainbow trout in this guide.

What is the Best Time of the Year to Fish for Rainbow Trout?

Takemefishing.org highlights the best time of the year to catch rainbow trout. This fish is available all year, but you should fish during the warmest months of the year if you want the best results. Late spring is the best time for trout, the vastest and bulky rainbow trout. 

As the weeks and months become warmer, trout lives become more exposed as water levels become lower. Trout becomes easier to catch during these times. However, some experts say that trout have eventually learned how to avoid lures and baits, especially during late spring. 

As a general rule, if you feel that the temperature is too cold or too hot, then rainbow trout will feel the same way. Fish are cold-blooded creatures, and their body temperatures are the same as the water they are in.

What is the Best Time of the Month to Catch Rainbow Trout?

The best time of the month to catch rainbow trout is when there are adequate cloud covers and warmer waters. Try days when water temperatures are from 34 to 67 degrees Fahrenheit. This fish feeds when water temperature increases one degree over 40 to 49 degrees Fahrenheit. If you live near the water, it’s best to check temperatures every hour daily to find the best time. 

If the days are overcast or there’s enough cloud cover, trout will surely come out to feed. Rainbow trout have no eyelids, and thus, they cannot dilate their pupils to avoid very bright lights. They are more likely to bite when the day is cloudy.  

According to Fishingduo.com, use specific fishing lines proven to snag rainbow trout. These are the braided line, fluorocarbon line, and monofilament line.

Braided lines

Braided lines are famous among anglers who fish for walleyes and bass but not as well-known for rainbow trout. Braided lines are susceptible but won’t stretch and thus, are helpful in fishing for trout in deep lakes. 

Braided lines are solid with a thin diameter which can cut through the water with minimal resistance. If you’re fishing in shallow and clear rivers or streams, braided lines will stand out and won’t be able to catch anything.

Fluorocarbon line

If you want to catch rainbow trout stealthily, then a fluorocarbon line is the best choice. It is impossible to see, and thus, it works best for line-wary rainbow trout. Fluorocarbon has reduced stretch compared to monofilament lines and therefore is more sensitive even for very subtle bites. 

In clear streams or lakes, a fluorocarbon line rules, but if you want a more robust line, add a heavier braided or monofilament line. Retain a fluorocarbon leader, so your line remains invisible. But take note, fluorocarbon is dense and, therefore, will sink faster compared to mono. Fluorocarbon is also more expensive than mono and braided lines. 

Monofilament line

Monofilament lines are standard for all types of fish and have been used in different ways. Mono lines are cheap, easy to use, and are available in different colors and weights. Consider that monofilaments have high memory that makes them harder to use with light spinners and heavyweight lines. This line is also prone to twisting and tangling.

Monofilament lines can easily break when you cast them on rigid structures and rocks. When you use this to catch rainbow trout, subject it to a 2 to 4 – to pound test for the spinner or still fishing.  

What is the Best Time to Fish for Rainbow Trout in a River?

To catch rainbow trout in a river, take note of water and air temperatures as the best time is always when the water is warmer. But before you head to the nearest river to fish for wild rainbow trout, check local regulations. In some rivers, strict rules may affect the time you can fish for rainbow trout. 

Prepare your top rainbow trout bait. Most river trout love salmon roe, earthworms, and corn kernels (in a can). If you’re fishing in a small river, use a smaller lure. For more extensive and deeper waters and for fast-moving waters, use a heavier kind. 

Cast your line slightly upstream so that the bait can drift along with the current and, thus, will look livelier. Once you catch a rainbow trout, wait at least 20 minutes to fish again. Always check the weather forecast to know the type of bait to use. 

Takemefishing.org recommends that after a rainstorm, use earthworms; during a windy day, insects are on the menu. This way, you’re recreating the natural food that rainbow trout eats in the area. 

What is the Best Time of the Year to Fish for Rainbow Trout in a Lake?

Water and air temperatures also play a considerable role when fishing for rainbow trout in a lake. During the warm summer months, lake rainbow trout feed on dawn till 11 am. This is often the case when the water is very calm, and the skies are clear.

Experts believe that lake rainbow trout remain in the deepest area of the lake during the summer and stay there. These fish suspend themselves in waters at 53-degree Fahrenheit. Use a depth finder to find out where to set your lure. 

Place the lure between the surface and 10 feet after winter. Place it from 35 to 45 feet during mid-spring and 50 to 65 feet during late spring. 

What to Bring When Catching Rainbow Trout?

The rainbow trout is abundant in wild rivers and lakes, and thus, it’s one of the easiest fish to catch. To make the most out of your fishing trip, remember to bring the following:

  • Bring a variety of lures.

Sometimes, it becomes harder to fish for rainbow trout, especially when you’ve caught a few and you’re waiting for more. Bring different kinds of lures so you can try a new one and see which ones fishes like. 

  • Use a silver or blue spoon.

Just like most fish, rainbow trout love lively bait with attractive colors. Small silver or blue spoon will do the trick. The silver color will attract light and shine brightly in the water, while blue will look like a small fish. As you place the bait in, let it move against the current to distract fish and make them bite. 

  • Use this common bait for rainbow trout.

Experts suggest baiting similar to Playdough. Mold the dough on a hook and use a lightweight. Cast the line and let the dough float from the bottom. This will instantly attract rainbow trout and even other types of wild river or lake fish. 

  • Bring a depth scanner. 

A depth scanner is one of the handiest tools to have when fishing for rainbow trout, especially in a lake. You need a scanner to check for the water depth and find out where to cast your line. 

  • Check the tide schedule and weather forecast.

If you are fishing near a beach, check for the tide schedule and fish when the tide is changing. This is because fish often move in higher numbers during tidal changes. Cancel your fishing trip during heavy rains or cold fronts. Always check the weather before you plan your trip.

Final Thoughts

Rainbow trout is best caught during warmer seasons. When selecting the best day to fish, check the air and water temperature and cloud cover. It’s also best to try different lines to find out which works best for lakes and river fishing. And if you’re selecting the best bait, choose food available for rainbow trout according to the time of day and the environment.

It’s easy to fish for rainbow trout if you know the techniques. And before you head off to fish, learn about local fishing regulations. Success lies in these factors; good luck and have fun!