"The Fish of the Thousand Casts" - If you've ever researched fishing for “Sea Trout”, then you’ve probably come across this saying more than once. While it may seem intimidating to catch Sea Trout on the fly, this saying really only means one thing: Sea Trout fishing on the Baltic Sea - whether on the German, Danish or Swedish coast - is not a walk in the park. To be successful on the Baltic Coast, you will need to be well prepared! Part of that preparation includes putting together a fly box with patterns that have been proven to work. To make your pursuit of “Silver Bars” a bit easier, we are happy to present our personal Top 10 Sea Trout fly patterns.
However, the fly pattern is just one piece of the puzzle, so we also provided 5 major tips for Sea Trout fly fishing, which are relevant all year, anywhere on the Baltic Sea.
- Cast From the Beach First!
The break zone, where waves are crashing near the shore often provides good cover for fish because the water is slightly off-color, so Sea Trout like to hide in this area. Additionally, the waves kick up food sources from the sand and vegetation in the water, giving Sea Trout another reason to like the break zone. So: when you approach the beach don’t step into the water right away. Instead, make a few casts to cover the break zone, where you might find a nice surprise!
- Land a Straight Leader!
Not infrequently, a Sea Trout will attack your fly shortly after it lands on the water. Especially when the fish are the most active. While Sea Trout fishing, it’s important that your leader lands straight and fully stretched so that you have direct contact with your fly when it hits the water. You don’t want to miss a bite, right?
- Fish at the Right Time!
Regardless of the season, light change (whether in the evening or in the morning) has a noticeable effect on the biting behavior of Sea Trout. So it pays to get to your spot early in the morning and stay one hour longer in the evening, that way your fly is in the water when the fish are actively biting. In between, you’ll have more time for relaxing breaks to enjoy the scenery :)
- The Day After!
It always pays to incorporate the conditions of the previous day into your strategy for choosing a spot to fish the next day. True to the motto, "old waves fish well", beaches that have been hit by head-on winds and waves will be very promising the following day. Why? Because the wind and waves bring food closer to the shore, and the Sea Trout follow!
- Variation is Everything!
No matter which of the top 10 flies you decide on: The presentation is enormously important and should be varied. Sea Trout are not always responsive to long strips or short strips, and the length of pauses between strips can create different responses. But one thing is for sure: After a missed bite, you should certainly imitate the escape reflex of their prey. In other words: full throttle!
For more information and many more valuable tips on the topic, see our Guide to Sea Trout Fishing.
Our TOP 10 Patterns for Sea Trout:
Pattegrisen Magenta Hotspot (#8) - You simply can never forget the Pattegrisen! If we were to limit ourselves to a single pattern, the Pattegrisen would be the first choice. It simply catches fish year after year on almost all types of Baltic beaches. The special action this fly achieves is due to the long, flowing Spey Hackle. You should have a variety of Pattegrisen patterns in different colors (and sizes) in your fly box. This Magenta Hotspot version is one of our favorites. Based on the original with some added UV-active dubbing (Ahrex NS156 hook).
- Vaskebjornen (Raccoon) UV (#4 or #6) - The Vaskebjornen (Danish for Raccoon) has a very bristly, diffused shape. An all-around pattern that imitates many Sea Trout food sources: shrimp, sandworms, and even small fish. The Vaskebjornen simply covers everything. Due to the bead-chain eyes being tied into the back of the fly, it has an erratic action. It is also tied with UV-active dubbing, which is very appealing to Sea Trout.
- Jiggy Fly Pink/White (#6) - Do you enjoy fishing the south coast of Sweden? Then this classic saltwater pattern, by Bob Popovics is a must-have for you. In particular, if you fish areas with deeper water, this little streamer achieves big results with its attractive jigging action.
- Polar Magnus UV (#4 or #6) - Like the Pattegrisen, the Polar Magnus is one of the absolute classics and must not be missing from any Sea Trout fly box. Especially in cold water, this pattern exploits its full potential. It is weighted with bead-chain eyes and tied with a body of UV Ice Dub. The pink front hackle gives the fly a stark contrast and nice volume in the water.
- Pattegrisen Salmon Pink (#4) - The Pattegrisen in one of the most popular color combinations: Salmon Pink. This variant has an even longer Spey Hackle and more volume. If the Sea Trout are attacking larger patterns, you will be hard-pressed to beat this shrimp imitation by Guideline.
- Rusty Magnus (#8) - If you're looking for Sea Trout in shallower fjords, then the Rusty Magnus should not be left out. The Rusty Magnus color scheme also makes it an excellent pattern for the fall season.
- Juletraet (#6) - This pattern from Denmark, whose name translates to "Christmas tree" in Danish, offers more of a unique tying method than a specific fly pattern. It is made entirely of Flashabou and has a body made of Mylar. Since the 80s this fly has caught the attention of fish and anglers alike.
- Tangloppen (#4 - #8) - This is not a proven pattern for the winter, but if the water is warmer on the coast, then these small scuds (Tangloppen) are active. This can lead to a real Sea Trout feeding frenzy and with this pattern you are set to succeed! In the spring, we like to fish the slightly brighter varieties, while the subtle colors achieve the best results in the summer months and into late autumn. Just have a few variations in your box and you’ll be on the safe side.
- Stickleback Zonker (#4) - A Zonker pattern perfect for imitating Stickleback and other small baitfish. This pattern can work anytime, but when the Sea Trout are in a feeding frenzy, you can get in on some seriously fun action with this streamer! Thanks to the orange hotspot on the front, you can be confident this pattern will be attacked even in murky waters. Many large Sea Trout have fallen for a Zonker like this one.
- Night Skater (#4) - Skaters and Gurglers are special surface flies for night fishing. In winter, these patterns are usually left in the fly box, but in summer they are much more important. Due to their high contrast and the water movement generated by them breaking through the surface, they quickly attract the attention of Sea Trout. Fishing with these surface patterns promises a pure adrenaline rush!