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What Is the Best Water Temperature for Trout Fishing?

Trout are cold-blooded animals. Which means their body temperature is the same or close to the temp of their water/environment.  This particularity makes them more susceptible to temperature changes. Trout, like any other cold-blooded aquatic species, can die or experience slow growth if the water gets too cold. Warm water temperatures can cause stress.

Why is water temperature important for anglers? You need to check the water temperature before fishing because it can affect how the fish behave.  If you don’t know what type of water temperature trout are most active at, then it won’t be as much fun for you or the fish when they start biting!


trout fishing colder water


The Best Water Temperatures for Trout

What is the best water temperature for trout fishing? The ideal range for trout fishing is 45 to 65°F. Trout feel comfortable and feed in this temperature range.

As you approach the 65°F limit, fish can become stressed. Trout will seek cool areas and hide instead of feeding.

If the water temperature exceeds 66°F, you should stop fishing for them and target a different species like bass. Trout can die from exhaustion if you play them for too long in this temperature range, even if you intend on releasing them.

What is the best water temperature for trout fishing? There are some variations from one species to another. Rainbow trout are more resistant and can do well in colder or warmer water. Brook trout are more fragile and get stressed at 64°F.


Final Thoughts

Bring a stream thermometer on your next fishing trip. You can find cooler spots by looking for shade or fishing early in the day. If you see the water temperature go up, catch fish as quickly as possible to reduce stress. It’s safer to stop fishing or fish for another species once the water temperature reaches 65 or 66°F.

Trout prefer cold water temperatures, with many preferring a consistent temperature between 48 and 54 degrees Fahrenheit (8-12 degrees Celsius). 



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