Brown Trout

The Brown Trout is a popular table fair and one of the most popular cold-water game fish in North America. The best techniques for catching Brown trout include bait casting and fly fishing using a dry fly or crawfish imitation.

Brown Trout

Region: Northeast, South, Midwest, West
Habitat: Ocean, River, Stream

How to identify Brown Trout

The brown trout looks much like its relative, the Atlantic salmon. Both have black spots on their backs, upper sides, and gill covers. Sometimes they have red spots. In fresh water, usually near spawning time, both are bronze to dark brown with black and red spots on the body and head. In salt water, both fish can become silvery with fewer black spots and no red spots.

Brown trout and Atlantic salmon live in the same areas; however, they do have differences that can be seen without laboratory inspection. In fresh water, brown trout are usually more spotted than Atlantic salmon and many of these spots have lighter halos. Brown trout also have dark spots on the upper fins and lighter spots on their squarish tail. The Atlantic salmon has no spots on their fins and their tail is slightly forked or indented. Also, brown trout have a double zigzag row of well-developed teeth, while the Atlantic salmon have only a single row of poorly developed teeth.

Where to catch Brown Trout

The brown trout is a freshwater fish that is highly sought after by anglers. It lives in streams and lakes worldwide. Native to Europe and parts of Asia, the brown trout is also found in Newfoundland, Canada, U.S., South America, New Zealand, and Africa. In the U.S., it lives in the Great Lakes area, the southern Appalachians, northern Georgia, southern Mississippi River outlets, Nebraska, and in every state west of Texas.

Range: Northeast, South, Midwest, West
Brook Trout Fishing Map

The following are habitats where you can catch Brown Trout:

How to catch Brown Trout

The brown trout is highly admired and one of the most difficult types of trout to catch. These fish head to freshwater streams to spawn in the fall and early winter. During the fall, it’s advisable to head out at night when they are known to feed aggressively. Look for them near rocks, overgrown vegetation and in deep pools.

Many anglers enjoy fly fishing for brown trout, although these fish will sometimes ignore or be spooked by the bait or fly. If fishing for them in the Great Lakes, trolling works well, as do baits used under a floater.

The following are effective fishing methods and techniques for catching Brown Trout:

Best Lures, Bait & Tackle to catch Brown Trout

Those who prefer to fly fish for brown trout should use a dry fly or imitation crawfish. Anglers who prefer lake fishing should opt for streamers, wooly buggers, green caddis, crayfish, and pheasant tail nymphs.

The following are fishing lures, bait and tackle that can be used to catch Brown Trout: