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Fall Colors in the Eyes of Fishermen

by: Shane Dubois 11/1/2013


When someone says "Fall Colors", the first thing that pops in your head is probably the brilliant orange, or matte yellow color combinations  mixed in with a vibrant red, with a hint of green (still clinging to summer), fall leaves. Fall can be a great time of the year to just get out of the house and the city, and just drive. Many of us do just that, but to some of us, when the term Fall Colors is mentioned, think of something a bit more fishy! Having lived in both Wisconsin and Colorado, (which in my opinion are two of the best states to enjoy a variety of fall colors) both in the form of vibrant leave covered landscape canvasses, to the brilliance and show the fish put on during this time of year.

The beginning of the leaves changing, much like the landscapes you witness during the peak changing of the leaves in October and November, signals the change of colors for many fish species as well. The most brilliant display, that  matches the variety of colors you would see from that scenic by pass overlooking natures natural color changing spectacle, can also be seen by the fall spawning brown trout. Quite possibly one of natures freshwater works of art, brown trout get colorfully loud around fall for their spawn, (click picture to enlarge) 

brownyand generally hold on to that color for most of the first half of the ice fishing season, giving anglers a spectacle to be hold after catching one. So far this fall I have missed out on fishing for browns with the new job, but still cherish the memories and photos of ones I was lucky enough to catch.

Fall Walleyes and Smallmouth Bass can attribute to the after the peak colors, both bearing a darker bronze color, while mostly not so dazzling as the other fish, these colors are still striking and admirable in their own way. It has been an amazing fall this year both with the quality and color of the fish I have been catching, and been seeing others catch. It's hard not to notice the beauty these fish provide along with their excitement of catching them! (click on image to enlarge)

bronze2 Collage

Just like the maple tree, turning blazing red in the fall, and standing out in the crowd, the Kokeanee Salmon brings that aspect to the fall color wheel of fishing. In the summer months they are an ordinary, silver fish, just as the maple tree, but both take on their own shape and colors come fall, both turning a shade a green, and eventually bright red, before they both wither later in fall. (Click photos to Enlarge)


Sadly, the leaves do not hold their color very long, much like the above mentioned Kokeanee, the King or Chinook Salmon mark the end of the fall brilliance,

(click on image to enlarge)
Fall Salmon Collagemuch like the leaves that die, by performing the same act in turning dark in color like the last of the leaves, they too go out in style. They provide a fun fight, and are very aggressive, striking pretty much anything brightly colored tossed their way! Their fillets are perfect for the smokehouse, and will add flavor to the rest year!

This is how I see the fall colors. While the trees and scenery are definitely something worth seeing, the true excitement and beauty of fall is often an unseen one for many, as it swims just under the surface of most bodies of water. That is, my friends, the untapped beauty of fall. The leaves, however do hold their own, even for me!

Blog content © Shane Dubois
Member comments
Opry99er, CO   11/2/2013 11:10:57 AM
Excellent post. I've often thought this way as well about my beloved Brown trout. =) Beautiful pix, as well. Thank you for posting.
IceFishingFool, CO   11/2/2013 4:31:51 PM
This jars my memories of the beauty of the Wisconsin hardwoods turning along the Mississippi River counties, that was always the signal of get ready for the White tail deer hunting, followed closely by the Winter Wonderland snows, and Ice fishing.
Catman1979, CO   11/2/2013 10:42:58 PM
Well said.
opencage, CO   11/3/2013 1:18:54 PM
Fish poetry, and with pictures! I've never thought about fall colors like this before, thanks for giving me another point of view to see from and reminding me to pay more attention to other things when I fish. Great write-up Shane and amazing photos.
Shane Dubois (reconfisher), CO   11/4/2013 7:43:10 AM
Bud, this was the first year in about 5 or 6 years I was able to go home during this time and enjoy all the colors WI had to offer, along with awesome fishing! Not long before ice now! This subject has been on my mind for the past month, and I'm glad it ended up coming together like it did, and most of all I'm glad you guys enjoyed reading/sharing this experience. I found it is very easy to miss the beauty that is right in front of us, so Thanks again for the compliments, and for taking the time to read this blog.
Shane Dubois
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