A simple piece of colored monofilament might be the most important element in a tight line nymphing rig. The sighter, placed just above the tippet section of the leader, shows us everything about the drift. When fished well, a Mono Rig or a euro nymphing setup provides the angler with amazing control over the course of the flies. So it’s important to use it to our advantage.
Reading the sighter is an unending education. Like so many interesting pursuits in life, tight lining is something you can refine to no end.
Everything we read from the sighter follows from first gaining contact. Learning to make that contact happen, and learning to see whether we are in touch with the flies, is the primary skill. Everything else follows from there.
In a future article, I’ll break down all the elements of reading a sighter, but for now, let’s focus on just one important aspect — keeping the sighter stable . . .
All long term anglers find a set of files to believe in. We attach a confidence to these patterns that carries over from the moment we form the knot to the hook eye. We fish better with these flies. We make them work. With more focus, we refine each drift with our best patterns. But there’s also something special about a great fly to begin with . . .
The set of flies below are built and carried as a system. There is very little overlap. Each fly does a specific job or offers the trout a certain look. I could tie a Hare’s Ear in five different colors, but I don’t. Instead, I see the flies in my box as pieces of a puzzle that lock together and fill out a whole . . .
It’s the effectiveness of a nymphing rig and the excitement of a dry fly rig, with boosted catch rates.
In this four part series covering dry dropper styles, I’ve saved the best for last.
I prefer methods that lend excellent control to the angler. And tight line rigs, with direct contact as the primary feature, are built for just that. Add a dry fly to the rig and tight line dry dropper is the best of all possible worlds . . .
This simple nymph is a winner. The Bread-n-Butter looks enough like a mayfly nymph, enough like a caddis, or enough like a small stonefly to be a very productive pattern. Whatever trout take it for, it gets attention and seals the deal frequently. It’s on my short list of confidence flies.
Yes. It looks like a Hare’s Ear nymph. Half the stuff in my box looks like a Hare’s Ear or a Pheasant Tail. When you turn over rocks to see what kind of bugs trout are eating, most of what you find fits under the category of “little brown things with some moving parts.”
My theory of fly selection is based in simplicity. I don’t carry hundreds of patterns, because I’ve found that I don’t need to. And carrying fewer flies forces me to adjust my presentation — to fish harder — instead of blaming the fly and changing what’s on the end of my line.
The terms euro nymphing, tight line nymphing, contact nymphing and Mono Rig are often intertwined. For certain, there is much crossover and overlap. But there are also major distinctions. This article addresses some of that confusion. It reveals and highlights all that is truly possible with a contact system . . .
A good sighter is highly visible and responsive. We use it not just for strike detection. It also tells us how and where the flies are drifting under the surface. But how high should it be off the water?
The dark truth is that upgrading your fly fishing gear rarely catches you more fish. Rods, reels, fly lines, expensive tippet and overpriced hooks hardly improve your catch rate. And the marginal improvement you might see is probably a result of confidence and concentration rather than the performance of new gear.
Why so much hate for the split shot? Guys grumble about attaching it to the line, bitch about removing it and snarl when it slides. That's too much hate for such a timeless and effective tool. Sometimes, using split shot just makes the most sense. In a variety of...
Sometimes trout are feeding so aggressively that the particular intricacies of how nymphs are attached to the line seem like a trivial waste of time. Those are rare, memorable days with wet hands that never dry out between fish releases. More often than not, though, trout make us work to catch them. And those same particulars about where and how the flies are attached can make all the difference in delivering a convincing presentation to a lazy trout.
Two nymphs can double your chances of fooling a trout. But there are downsides. Here are some strategies for rigging and getting the most from two fly rigs.