Trouting advice.... [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Trouting advice....

08-19-2008, 08:42 PM
Hi everyone,

I am about to ask some questions that I am sure will be seemingly obvious to you all. I have been saltwater flyfishing in FL for about 2 years. I just moved back home to NY and I am trying to break into freshwater flyfishing. I am having a few problems and any help would be appreciated...(My first two attempts at freshwater flyfishing have been on the Housatonic in CT)

1) During my false casts, I often get the fly wrapped around the fly line. I never had this happen to me when I was flyfishing in saltwater with bigger leader and fly....Any thoughts?

2) I am having trouble determining how fast I should be stripping the line once i get it out into the stream.

3) What part of a stream do I want to be fishing? Calm water or light rapids? Does it matter? As a beginner should I setick with calm?

4) I feel as though when i fish "upstream" my fly line would be spooking the fish...But if I fish downstream, they can see me( I think)....Thoughts? My Orvis "Ultimate Guide to Fly Fishing" says to fish upstream. Both trout I have caught so far were caught casting across the river and drifting down.

5) Any recommendation on fly line? I have floating weight-forward.

6) Is there a particular spot in a river that trout will generally be? i.e. behind a rock in a rapid? I know a good "hole" when i see one, but what about a typical stretch of the river, with rocky bottom and moderate rapids. What should I be looking for?

Any help would be appreciated. Thank you and I look forward to your responses!

08-19-2008, 09:45 PM
Here are some thoughts that may help.. after casting large flies on a 9 or 10Wt....
For # 1, try slowing things down and be more gentle with the false casts, and turn around on your back cast by rotating yoiur shoulders to see the line stretch out, this will help slow things down
For #2, there is no magic solution, too many "it depends" just try various speeds of retrieve (presumably for streamers)
For #3, No magic solutions here as well, fish where you think the fish are lying. more importatnt is the fly selection e.g. dry fly Vs. streamer Vs nymph,
For #4, Upstream presentation requires that your leader only gets past the rising fish, otherwise if blind casting, the line may not spook a good lie. Downstream presentation with a dry, make a "puddle" cast where your line falls on the water and has several small loops in it so that the dry can float freely for 2 to 4 feet, then cast again. Nymph are cast upstream and followed down and streamers are usually down and across.
For #5, a WF line will work just fine for dries & nymphs, for streamers consider either a second line with a sink tip, OR buy a sink tip and loop to loop it onto your dry line. Usually a type 3 sink rate will work for most small streams and for very large rivers and deep pools a type 6 may be better
For # 6, if you find the answer... patent it and make millions

Overall, keep reading books etc but spend more time fishing Vs. reading. Fly fishing is like ballet, you cant take a correspondence course to learn from books.

Hopefully others will chime in with more advice! Just make sure you remember that any free advise is worth excatly what you pay for it, unless you use it YOUR way, and time on the water is still the best teacher.

08-30-2008, 08:42 PM
For stripping line back, I use a 4 inch strip with a 4 to 5 second pause in between each strip. I usually don't start to strip the line back until it is almost at the end of the drift, or just as it starts to curve towards the bank.

The absolute best place to fish is usually in the water where the seam is (the transition between slow water and faster water). Bigger fish and brown trout are lazy by nature so they like to sit in this part of the slower current and wait for a meal to come floating by.

Another tip is to use a dropper nymph about 18 inches below your streamer while using your sink tip to double your pleasure in getting strikes. tie the line right onto the shank of the streamer hook.

Good Luck,

01-19-2009, 08:47 PM
Can't help you a lot on the casting - I still have this problem occasionally myself. It's just gotten less and less frequent with experience.

As far as how fast to strip, that completely depends on conditions and the fish. There will be days when a dead drift (i.e. not stripping at all) will produce the best results, other times a fast strip will cause them to take a fly when nothing else will.

As for questions 3 & 6, there are entire books and seminars dedicated to the art of reading trout water. I've read one or two, and been to one or two myself - here's what I've taken away in a nutshell: any water that provides an opportunity to ambush prey without making the trout exert too much energy fighting the current is a good place to drop a fly. In my experience, the best spot on any stream is a pool below a riffle. Often one can catch several trout in one such pool. As Bow mentions, a seam, where faster flowing water and slower flowing water create an edge or seam is a great place to target trout. Also, the slack water in front of and behind rocks or other obstacles to the flow of water can be a trout hangout.

I normally cast up and across stream, at about a 45 angle and drift downstream. I start close, and work a few feet further from me every cast or two or three depending on how fast I'm working the water. That way the fly line isn't floating over likely fish holding water until after a fly has been through it. Sometimes I'll let the line swing until it's straight downstream from me, other times I'll pick it up and make another upstream cast earlier. This depends on the probability that the water below me may hold trout, and the possibility that water may be better fished from another angle.

As far as line goes, I use WFF for most everything. I seldom find a pool or hole so deep that I can get a fly to where it needs to be with a floating line and a 9' leader.

As French mentions, there's no substitute for time on the river. Good thing that's the fun part:hihi: .

Hope this helps you out a little - if you've taken the time to read all this you've obviously got the patience to catch fish.

01-22-2009, 06:34 AM
I would suggest that you hire a guide who will help you with some of your questions. Check with your local flyshop they will get you a guide who likes to teach and will help you out. It will be money well spent. FishHawk

01-31-2009, 11:53 AM
Fly fishing for trout with a light rod is completely different than heavy saltwater fishing. You need to slow down your cast and let your line unroll. Keep your cast overhead and keep short strokes, 10 to 1 or 2 o'clock. Tie some yarn on your tippet and watch your cast and adjust accordingly.
I like to fish the faster water. Nymphing - dead drift on the bottom when no flys are hatching is best. Otherwise match the hatch w/ a dry or emerger. Most all casts quartering upstream, lift when drift is down stream.
Streamers - strip short 3-4 ", pause, lift tip, drop tip, pause, strip. Try different speeds, keep fly close to the bottom. Cast quartering upstream, let swing down stream, strip.

I live in the Pocono Mts Pa. there are some beautiful & productive streams here.
Most of all have fun!!!