Friday, May 12, 2017

Purely Effective

This is pretty obvious, but on everything but small trout streams nymphing is without question the most consistently effective way to catch trout. Many methods of presenting nymphs have come about, but I have chosen to take bits and pieces from a number of different specific methods. I think the way I nymph is very versatile, and it works brilliantly for me. I almost exclusively nymphed the last two times I visited the Salmon; in 2 hours one evening I caught 6 fish, in 7 hours the next day I caught 38. There were times I was forced to fish "b grade" water when other's were in the good spots, so if I had the river to myself that day I could easily have broken 50. 






So here is the gist of my rig and methods: 7.5 ft tapered mono leader to 3x, 8 inches of 4x to 16 inches of 5x with a 4inch dropper tag of the 4x. Obviously, heavier fly on the end and lighter one on the dropper tag. 

I fish it using techniques mostly developed by Joe Humphreys, never with an indicator or sighter. I use the end on my fly line as the primary sighter and the leader itself as a secondary sighter. I cast up and across, let the flies drift past me and almost always perform a lift or short swing before re-casting. This is a very versatile rig. You can use it one shorter rods for tight quarters, long euro-nymph type rods for big rivers, or mid length rods when both open space and tight quarters will present themselves. You can high stick it in close seems or fish it with longer casts on broad deep pools. Wind that would cripple a high sticker doesn't have to be an issue with this rig at all. Truly a great combination of versatility, simplicity and effectiveness. I can stick trout all day in most rivers with this rig and there are times on the Salmon when I have just danced around other anglers catching fish left and right while they stood in one spot, catching very little. 







I'll say this right now, as it is a prominent topic in fly tying these days. I fished two frenchies on the same rig for an hour on the second outing. Both the same size. I switched them at the half hour mark to make it fair. The only difference between the two flies was the collar. One was UV olive, the other was just plain olive. No matter which was on top and which was on bottom, the one with the UV dubbing collar out fished the other 5 to 1. Throughout the day flies with UV ice dub outfished other flies consistently with only one exception: a Sexy Walt's took more than it's fair share of fish. That is a great fly, but the outlier of the day. For everything else, UV seemed to be key. If it doesn't glow it'll blow. 








I promise you I'm making a departure from the stocked trout now. It's so hard for me to peal away from the Salmon this time of year but now the action is great for so many other species, I'll be rolling the dice on getting some really cool new species soon. Fingers crossed. 

8 comments:

  1. Good read RM. I started euro nymphin only a couple years ago. It gets flits down quick. I also quickly learned that no one rig set up is for everyone. I've tweaked leader material, dropper lengths, dropper knots. Experimenting helps. Nice job.

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    1. It is a sure bet for landing trout in rivers. Not my favorite way to fish, but it works.

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  2. Nice photo essay Rowan!! The Salmon seems to be fishing real well this year, one of the factors may be all the rain we have had, keeping it full.

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    1. It has stayed much higher and colder then the last two years, that much is true! Unfortunately no broodstock fish are being put in this year, so that 24-28 inch fih I'm always hunting for just isn't there.

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  3. YEP, UV all the way. The water looks great. Can't wait to throw a line there.
    Tie, fish, write and photo on...

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    1. It's a pretty river but leaves a LOT to be desired.

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  4. To be clear, was the second nymph, the non UV one, collared with regular olive ice dub or just plain olive dubbing?
    Some argue that the flash in ice dub is what attracts fish not the uv which they may or may not see.

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    1. Regular olive ice dub. There is no question that many fish species not only can see UV light but can see it very well, it is more a matter of how much it is involved in their feeding. I think it is very significant with some species and conditions, as I've seen a drastic difference between the performance of UV and non-UV flies in a number of cases.

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