There are several tactics I use when fishing to get away from crowds of fly fishing anglers.
(1) When fishing rivers the size of the Beaverkill at Horse Brook Run, I wade across the river and fish up the far side. This same ploy works well on the Madison River at Slide Inn where I wade across the river.
(2) On small mountain trout streams such as the Crazy Mountains in Montana or the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia, I hike in well away from the access points before I start fishing.
(3) Get to the streams at daylight or stay until dark.
(4) Avoid streams for several years which are written up in national magazines.
(5) Do not let rain or snow stop you from fishing.
(6) Enter the large rivers at the public access points but fish upstream.
Good Nymph Fly Fisherman Blog- Murray’s Fly Shop- Edinburg, Virginia
I have a friend who is an especially good nymph fisherman. Whether we are fishing the Madison River for browns or the Blue Ridge Mountains for brook trout, he catches many nice trout. He does this by fishing nymphs upstream dead drift.
When watching him, I detect a common trait which is a landmark of many serious nymph anglers. That is, at some point in the last half of the drift he sets the hook on the majority of the casts. Does this mean he is getting this many strikes from trout? No, but when he is not getting a strike, he is bumping the streambottom with the nymph.
This tells me that we should all consider fishing out nymphs deeply with a natural drift.
Last summer a friend took two of his fishing buddies into a small remote mountain trout stream. He had fished the stream before and felt confident in taking them to the best part of the stream. Unfortunately, he forgot to take his map with him. There were many small trails leading off the main trail that he had forgotten. They hiked for three hours and never did find the stream and finally climbed back up to the top of the mountain and came home.
I have been lost twice in the mountains when I was trying to take shortcuts to the streams. Once you are on the stream you should be okay in finding your way. However, some find mountain trout streams have no trails in or out and there may be private land at the lower end of the stream where trespassing is not allowed.
I always have the map in my vest for the stream I am fishing in the back country.