June is a great time to get out there and get to catching trout. The weather is pleasant enough for you to enjoy it without being so hot that the trout are sluggish, well, depending on exactly where you are fishing, of course!
If you want to catch as many fish as possible, you must have the right flies for the job, and what represents the right flies can change from season to season. June is right on the cusp between spring and summer proper, which means you have to be particularly careful when choosing your flies.
There are 15 Fly Fishing Flies that we recommend for the month of June:
- Lighting Bug Pearl
- Flashback Pheasant Tail-Beadhead Gold
- Prince Nymph-Beadhead
- Copper John Hot Wire-Beadhead - Red Gold
- Caddis Larva - Beaadhead - Tan
- Parachute Adams
- Hot Wing Caddis - Tan
- PMD - Pale Yellow
- Baetis Barr Emergers Plain
- RS2 Emerger - Olive
- Half Chernobyl Brown/Orange
- Fat Albert Purple
- Royal Wulff
- Green Drakes
If you're a seasoned angler, you will know that even within the classification of fly, there are many different options to choose from. It can be challenging to know which ones to choose for your next fly fishing trip, which is why we've put together this great guide of the best trout flies for June for your consideration:
- Dry flies
Of course, you could use a mixture of all five classifications if you prefer, however many fly fishers tend to stick to their favorite - the choice is entirely up to you. The main thing is to ensure that your tackle box is filled with flies that will improve your success the next time to go out on the water.
Nymphs are fly fishing 101. They are pretty much perfect for catching trout most times of the year. They are particularly good at causing trout to pounce when they are lying close to the riverbed. They enable you to attract the fish at shallower depths easily. So, it's pretty important to have a fly box dedicated to nymphs.
1. Lighting Bug Pearl
The Lightning Bug Pearl is one of those flies you learn about in fly fishing 101. It's effective in early and late seasons and is well-known as one of the most productive nymph patterns anywhere in the world. Created by Larry Graham from Kirkland, Washington, way back in 1992, it has been the trout fly fisher's constant companion ever since. Available in various trout enticing colors, it's good to have a few of these in your tackle box.
2. Flashback Pheasant Tail-Beadhead Gold
One of the most commonly used nymphs used n rivers around the globe, the Flashback Pheasant Tail-Beadhead Gold is a beautiful looking fly through human eyes, but the trout, well, they find it irresistible. What makes the Flashback one of the best fly fishing flies for trout? The gold bead helps the Flashback sink much more quickly than many other models, and the flash is very effective at attracting the trout and enticing them to come up and take a bite.
3. Prince Nymph-Beadhead
The Prince Nymph-Beadhead is an excellent steelhead and trout fly pattern. It was invented by a man called Mike Mercer, who really knows his fish, and it is one of the most innovative nymphs on the market. Available in various colors, it's great at attracting the big fish, and its beadhead is really effective at sinking the fly at a rapid speed for more efficient fly fishing.
4. Copper John Hot Wire - Beadhead - Red Gold
Great for attracting rainbow trout in particular, the Copper John Hot Wire-Beadhead in red gold is a mix between a brassie and a pheasant tail. It's perfect for use in areas where nymphs, mayflies, and stoneflies are plentiful. As well as looking great, it sinks fast, attracts the light just about as well as any nymph, and is particularly good at attracting trout in murky water. This is one nymph you'll definitely want to have in your tackle box.
5. Caddis Larva - Tan
This is another trout fly that you can easily use at any time of the year, but it is probably best used early in the morning. Using it now in June, this won't apply, but it's worth noting that, when used in the winter, the Caddis Larva - Tan generates lots of behavioral shift - just something to bear in mind should you stock up on these for later use.
Dry flies are great for catching fish atop the water, but you can also get wet mergers which work a bit more like nymphs. Why do you need dry flies and emergers in your kit? Because they are able to mimic a wide range of insects as they are emerging, which will help attract more trout.
Dry flies are particularly useful because they can mimic the adult stages of flies, which tend to be plentiful in June and the summer months.
Emergers replicate the larva stage emerging to the the surface to become an adult. These patterns are great used in tandem with both nymphs and dry flies.
6. Parachute Adams
The Parachute Adams is ideal for attracting brook trout, rainbow trout, and brown trout in particular. It imitates Calliabetis, Black Drake, Gray Drake, and Baetis very well, and is one of the most common nymphs going, so chances are you have seen more than a few of them over the years.
Right now, the Purple Haze version of the Parachute Adams is probably the most popular, but there are quite a few variations on the old design now, so be sure to take a look around and see which you like the most.
7. Hot Wing Caddis - Tan
The Hot Wing Caddis is a higher visibility version of the classic Elk Hair Caddis, which is known for being an excellent floater and a traditional fish fly design. It has incredibly bright wings, which make it ideal for use in low light conditions, so if you plan to do some late June evening fishing, you're going to want to have a couple of these in your kit.
8. PMD - Pale Yellow
The PMD is known by all experienced trout fly anglers to be among the greatest emergers of all time. So many anglers have chosen the PMD as their fly of choice for the warmer months of the year, and it is not surprising because it does an excellent job of tempting the trout from April right through the fall season.
Why is it so effective? Perhaps because its poxybacks are great at mimicking the shiny wing casings that develop on insects just before they emerge, or maybe it's because the pale yellow hue is just so irresistible to the fish. Either way, it's a winner.
9. Baetis Barr Emergers Plain
An exceptional fly that has the trout almost throwing themselves at you, the Baetis Barr Emergers are hard to beat. Created by John Barr, who is undisputedly one of the greatest fly tiers in history, they are real game-changers. Deceptively simple, they do what they are supposed to do - imitate the Baetis fly exceptionally well. So well, there is rarely a fish that is not fooled by them, which means plenty of catches for you this June.
10. RS2 Emerger - Olive
A must-have fly fish pattern for those serious about catching trout, the RS2 Emerger - Olive has been around for more than 40 years, but it is still one of the most popular. Why? Because it's a simple and effective pattern that does an excellent job of imitating a range of insects, including midges and mayflies.
It is very versatile and very slim. It has a natural body tone that enables it to trick trout into believing it's an actual insect - food, in other words. If you use this in a multi-rig setup, tie it as the last fly on the line, and you will be able to freely swing it across the river to get the trout excited.
Hoppers and stimulators are also a really important part of the June trout fishing equation, so be sure to bring a few of them along too, Why? Because hoppers and simulators are ideal for bringing fish to the surface in summer. They mimic the way grasshoppers and other similar insects skim across the top of the water, which generates a lot of interest in the trout, as I’m sure you can imagine!
11. Half Chernobyl Brown/Orange
The Half Chernobyl is undoubtedly one of the most durable fly fishing flies for trout. It's also pretty great at catching salmon, so if you like to vary your fishing, it is a good one to have in the old tackle box. It's very effective due to its hair wing, a recent but handy addition to the classic design.
12. Fat Albert Purple
The Fat Albert - Purple is a pattern that we don't understand in terms of why it is so good at catching fish, but the fact of the matter is, it is. This baby delivers, and it delivers big time, so it is not surprising that it is a massively popular choice amongst experienced anglers.
The Fat Albert can be used to imitate salmon flies, hoppers, cicadas, and skwala very effectively, which means you can use it in a wide range of environments, and it will work well.
13. Royal Wulff
The Royal Wulff is an ideal general-purpose fishing dry fly that mimics a wide range of insects of the larger, winged variety. Still, it is also perfect for generating a bee, wasp, or hornet pattern too. Ideally, you should use it to fish on the surface, but it can be adapted to your own particular fishing style pretty well.
14. Green Drakes
Perfect for the early season, Green Drakes are an extremely popular choice. They take their name from the feathers used to create the wings of the fly. The green Drake is tied like a fan, making them appear larger and more appealing to the trout. May and June are the perfect months to deploy these particular emergers, so be sure to have one in your fly box right about now.
The Adams dry fly is nothing less than iconic. Designed more than 85 years ago, it is still used by keen anglers all over the place. Its medium body size and grizzled brown hackles combine to ensure that it is effective in a range of water types when attracting trout, anyway.
Perfect for use all year round, but most effective in the spring and summer, you can achieve the ideal dead drift by casting upstream. You should always have a few Adams dry fly fishes in your tackle box, even if to show that you're a true angler and you know your stuff.
Tips for Fly Fishing in Summer
Now that you know which are the best trout flies for fly fishing n June, let's take a look at a few essential tips to help you make the most of your fly fishing efforts this summer.
Late evening or early morning
You may have the best fly fishing flies for trout this June, but if you don't head out at the right time, you may still struggle to get as many bites as you could. In summer, the weather is a lot nicer, which means more people are out on the river, fishing and canoeing, rowing, and participating in various other water sports, which, as you can imagine, can frighten the fish away.
Not only that, but big hatches often tend to take place in the evening, which means the fish are ready and waiting, and you can either make use of the hatches or use your own emergers to mimic them with great effect. That's why heading out as early as 5 am or earlier if you want to, or late in the evening when the activity has died down, is likely to pay off.
Head to the mountains
If you happen to live near a mountain range with a decent trout supply, fly fishing 101 dictates that you should head there with your fly fishing flies assortment and try your luck.
Why? Because in the summer, mountain streams are pretty much always going to be a few degrees lower than streams and rivers elsewhere, which means the trout will be less sluggish. They’ll also potentially be far hungrier because mountain trout often don’t have as plentiful a supply of food as trout located lower down.
Mimic the life cycle of your fly
In June and the rest of the summer, it is essential to mimic the life cycle of your fly as the day progresses because that is what happens in nature.
You can start in the early morning with a nymph, then move on to a dry fly in the afternoon before ending with dry flies and hatches in the early to late evening because this is what the typical life cycle of a fly looks like and what the trout will be expecting, which means you can really sneak up and catch them unawares.
That's why it always pays to have a fly fishing flies assortment in your fly box, so you can ensure that you always have the optimal fly for the job at the optimal time.
Choosing the perfect combination of flies
As you can see, there are numerous options to choose from when it comes to trout fly fishing in June. There are so many options that it can seem overwhelming, especially when you factor in the point that it is often better to choose a mixture of flies instead of sticking with one type.
However, our guide to the top 15 fly fishing flies for trout this June should make it a bit easier for you to get it right and catch a few big ones.
If you aren’t sure which flies to purchase, our fly fishing assortments can be a good choice as they take the work out of choosing the best flies for you, but whatever you choose, have fun out there!
About the Author
Matthew Bernhardt, a third-generation Coloradan, grew up at the forefront of the state’s fly-fishing revolution, enjoying time on the water, side by side with experienced guides and lifelong anglers.
By combining his passion for fly-fishing with input from other experienced fly-fishers and guides and his fine arts degree from Colorado State University, Matthew spent five years carefully developing the Drifthook Fly Fishing System, built to help every angler catch more trout.
When he’s not spending time with his wonderful family, you’ll find him out on the water catching MONSTER trout, and he anxiously looks forward to the day when his kids are old enough to join him there.