VIDEO | Streamers on the Mono Rig: Episode 2 — Casting

by | Mar 7, 2021 | 30 comments

Fishing streamers on the Mono Rig offers anglers ultimate control over the direction and action of their flies — all the way through the drift. And while small streamers may need nothing more than a nymphing-style cast, mid-sized and full-sized streamers require a few changes in casting to get the most from the technique.

Casting

Episode Two of Streamers on the Mono Rig is all about casting. The following elements are covered:

— The Mono Rig as a contact casting system
— Loading the rod tip before the cast
— The Circle Cast
— Line stripping and two-hand cooperation
— Water Hauling
— The Pendulum Cast

** NOTE ** Video appears at the end of this short article.

The standard Troutbitten Mono Rig is designed for power and turnover. It is designed for casting.

READ: Troutbitten | Fly Fishing the Mono Rig — It’s Casting, Not Lobbing

This tight line system has enough punch to push flies to a target, like a fly line. But it’s also light enough to be pulled to a target by heavier flies (like streamers). By using both of these principles to their fullest, fly fishing streamers on the Mono Rig is efficient and elegant.

Photo by Josh Darling

Previously

This video builds on the Mono Rig described in Episode One, which was an overview of the techniques and an exploration of what is possible when fishing streamers with tight line tactics.

The first video also covers the Troutbitten Mono Rig and the functions of its three main components. For reference, the leader formula is detailed at the end of this article.

READ: Troutbitten | Video: Fly Fishing the Mono Rig: Streamers — Episode 1

Video

Here’s the next video, Fly Fishing the Mono Rig: Streamers, Episode 2 — Casting

** Please select HD for best video quality.  **

The Formula

The Troutbitten Mono Rig is designed for power and turnover. It functions like a fly line, if you cast it that way. And from the beginning, I’ve emphasized that these rigs are designed for casting and not lobbing. This long leader is powerful enough to push flies to a target. But it’s also light enough to be pulled to a target, and this is especially useful for streamers. Long casts are achieved by maximizing these complimentary properties.

Here’s the Troutbitten Mono Rig setup for streamers:

24-30 feet — 20lb Maxima Chameleon
2 feet — 10lb or 12lb Maxima Chameleonn
24-30 inches — 12lb Red Amnesia and/or 10lb Gold Stren
4-6 feet — 1X or 2X Fluorocarbon tippet

** NOTE ** The butt section in the video is green OPST Lazar Line, used for visibility.

Importantly, the leader is long enough to keep the junction to the fly line out of the guides on all but the longest casts. This is a key design element, allowing the Mono Rig to shoot and be stripped back, gliding uninterrupted by any knots in the guides.

Next Time

Episode Three in the series will cover some of the unique presentations that are possible with the Mono Rig and tight line tactics for streamers.

Photo by Josh Darling

Photo by Josh Darling

Learn More

For a detailed breakdown of fishing streamers on the Mono Rig, find the following cornerstone Troutbitten article:

READ: Troutbitten | Fly Fishing with Streamers on the Mono Rig — More Control and More Contact

For many more articles on streamer tactics with any leader system, find the streamers category on Troutbitten.

READ: Troubitten | Category | Streamers

Lastly, be sure to subscribe to the Troutbitten YouTube channel. And turn on notifications there to be notified when each new episode in this series publishes.

Fish hard, friends.

 

** Donate ** If you enjoy this article, please consider a donation. Your support is what keeps this Troutbitten project funded. Scroll below to find the Donate Button. And thank you.

 

Enjoy the day.
Domenick Swentosky
T R O U T B I T T E N
domenick@troutbitten.com

 

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Domenick Swentosky

Central Pennsylvania

Hi. I’m a father of two young boys, a husband, author, fly fishing guide and a musician. I fish for wild brown trout in the cool limestone waters of Central Pennsylvania year round. This is my home, and I love it. Friends. Family. And the river.

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30 Comments

  1. Excellent video!

    Reply
  2. What are your thoughts on using a sink tip leader or line vs your mono system. Thanks enjoy your information

    Reply
    • Hi John. Sink tips do a whole different thing than what the Mono Rig offers. Sink tips and sinking lines don’t offer the nimble precision over the course of the fly that we have all the way through the drift with the Mono Rig. Check out some of the other articles in the Streamer series to learn more about all that. Find it under Menu > Tactics > Streamers. Email me if you need. Cheers. Dom

      Reply
  3. How is the circle cast the same or different from what Joe Humphries describes in his book, Trout Tactics?

    Reply
    • Hmmm. I don’t know that Hump does describe a cast with a Mono Rig in that book. Do you have an example?

      Dom

      Reply
      • See page 152 and 153. Yes, I know it’s not with a Mono Rig but it appears to be the same stroke.

        Reply
        • Thanks for the reference, Bill. I went back and took a look. Like you said, he’s not doing that with a Mono Rig. So I would caution, what he’s referring to as a circle cast there is with a fly line, short leader and a dry fly. It’s a great description for a very useful tactic of fishing dries in very tight quarters. But what I’m calling a circle cast is for almost the opposite scenario — with a weighted fly, on a Mono Rig and with a good bit of room for the cast. These are wide circles, with contact with the fly all the way. But what Hump is describing is kind of an extension of what I call the Pre-Cast Pickup:

          https://troutbitten.com/2020/04/22/dry-fly-fishing-the-pre-cast-pickup/

          I use that with dries. It’s a matter of getting the fly line activated and moving before you do what you actually want to with it.

          Hope that helps.

          Cheers.
          Dom

          Reply
  4. Hi Dom,

    It looks like tippet rings are excluded from this formula. Is that intentional? I’m sure you’ll say yes and have a reason, but it sure would be nice to change out the tippet section from nymphing/crossover/etc. to heavier tippet for streamers. Thanks!

    Reply
    • Hi Jason.

      Nah, it doesn’t matter. I usually have one at the end of my sighter. I don’t see tippet rings as part of a formula, per se. You just put them where you like. As long as they are no larger than 2mm, they don’t affect anything.

      Cheers.
      Dom

      Reply
  5. Great stuff as always my friend!

    Reply
  6. Nice job, excellent tips. Do you use a closed frame reel to prevent the line from squeezing out of the frame… if so, what reel brand?

    Reply
  7. duh…. I should have known… I had missed your article on the Sage Trout….

    Reply
    • Hi Ron. You got it. But these days, I like the Sage ESN even more than the TROUT. They both have the same drag and are full frame, but are designed a little differently. The ESN also has the ability to add small weights that are included with the reel. It’s a genius feature for balancing.

      Cheers
      Dom

      Reply
  8. Wonderful video. Can’t wait for the next one.

    Reply
  9. It’s nice to actually see you casting then just reading about it and then visualize of how it’s done. Nice job

    Reply
  10. What rod are you using in the video? The video was extremely informative.

    Reply
    • Hi Bill,

      Thank is a Hardy Ultralite LL, 9’9″ Four weight.

      Reply
  11. This is great. Love watching you cast while explaining in depth. This is gona help big time from the Esopus to the Upper Delaware. Thanks Dom.

    Reply
    • You can only catch fish on the D with dry flies, don’t even try euro nymphing…

      Reply
  12. Just dropped you a 10 spot. Excellent lesson video. Please keep them coming Dom.

    Reply
  13. I just watched both videos again. I agree with Louie D, to watch you on the river is helpful. I put my 36 year old son on a mono rig this winter and these videos are great. You are a better teacher. I’m tight lining with a new TFO 10’6″ 3 weight and really like the rod action. I had been using a Winston 9′ 4 weight. I haven’t been able to fish much this winter, mostly reading Troutbitten, and watching videos waiting for warmer weather.
    Thanks for all you do!
    Cheers

    Reply
  14. Great stuff. Thank you! I noticed the butt section in the video, then looked at the article – ** NOTE ** The butt section in the video is green OPST Lazar Line, used for visibility.

    The casting looks to work great in the video. Why not use the Lazar line as the butt section? (and then skip or greatly reduce the 20lb Maxima Chameleon) The Lazar line is pretty stiff stuff and seems to work well for constant tension casts. I hate the connect knots as well, but

    4 feet — 20lb Maxima Chameleon
    2 feet — 10lb or 12lb Maxima Chameleonn
    2 feet — 12lb Red Amnesia and/or 10lb Gold Stren
    4-6 feet — 1X or 2X Fluorocarbon tippet

    adds up to 16 ft that will nearly always “live” outside the rod tip.

    Reply
    • Hi Todd.
      Thanks for the question. Couple things. .
      First, the formula you listed will put a blood knot in the guides — a lot. I build my rigs with long enough, unbroken butt sections for just this reason. When shooting streamers, I don’t want knots in the guides, no matter how clean the knot.

      Second, you say the lazar line is pretty stiff stuff. I encourage you to compare it to Chameleon. It’s not as stiff or as powerful per diameter, but it does hold a coil when coming off the spool, especially in cold weather. Chameleon is pretty special material, that’s why a lot of us keep going back to it. But, like you, I’m always looking for the next leader adjustment.

      Hope that helps.

      Cheers
      Dom

      Reply
      • Dom — Thanks for the insights. I will give the Chameleon a try! Todd

        Reply
      • Dom — I tied up (something close to) your standard mono leader. I used it for three days over this past holiday weekend — mostly tightlining TH jig nymphs. It a few hours to adjust from my old (Lazar line, 30lb) leader. But after I got comfortable being tight with less tension, it was kind of amazing. The sensitivity was impressive. Since the fish were feeding, the leader got to show off what it could do. Thank you! Cheers, Todd

        Reply

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Domenick Swentosky

Central Pennsylvania

Hi. I’m a father of two young boys, a husband, author, fly fishing guide and a musician. I fish for wild brown trout in the cool limestone waters of Central Pennsylvania year round. This is my home, and I love it. Friends. Family. And the river.

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