I was able to get in some fishing after a trip for work last week and caught several that afternoon. I was only able to fish about two hours but was able to land nine, losing two. They were all in the twelve inch range, with one I would guess around fourteen. This is a stocked stream and NC seems to be stocking some bigger trout than in past years. They were taking a #14 royal wulff with reckless abandon until one broke off with my only one in that size. I moved to a location where several were rising, casting a #12 in the same pattern and absolutely nothing would even look at it. I tied on a light Cahill in #14 and the first cast landed another solid brown, with two rainbows to follow. The more I fish the more I believe SIZE matters more than anything to trout, would you folks agree ?
Presentation is #1 IMO – but otherwise size and silhouette are far more important in a dry fly than an exact color match. I’d rather have an Adams of the right size during a sulfur hatch than a sulfur pattern that’s two sizes too large. If possible, I try to use a fly that’s close to the natural but obsessing over the precise shade is unnecessary, even on picky spring creek trout.
Presentation will always be 1st. But yes, fly size is very important. Many times I have tossed flies in vain only to change to a smaller version and find that that’s what they wanted in the first place. Color, as stated by Grsdlnr, isn’t so vital, but that doesn’t mean fishing with a dark fly when the hatch is a light color. I just try to keep it in the ball park when it comes to color.
Yes, presentation, size, then color in that order will help anyone new or old in this sport.
Glad you got out and had a good time. I tried today, but the wind consistently got stronger and stronger, and I realized I was wasting my time.