Originally Posted by randyflycaster
Great advice. Thanks so much.
P.S. Would I be better off using a pile cast?
I don't think so.
Pile/wiggle/bounce casts work much better for fishing dries or emergers downstream, while tuck casts are better for nymphing upstream because it both gets the weight into the water early and with force, and helps position the indicator further upstream relative to the fly.
What I would recommend is doing your nymphing upstream and across instead of directly upstream, as it allows you to spend much less time false casting and working more line back out, which can sure cause tangles.
Ideally, you'll do a tuck cast upstream and across and follow that with a reach to position the line upstream to prevent drag. Strip to take up excess line in as your indicator gets down to where you're at, and then start throwing little stack mends or wiggling line out (without moving the indicator, of course) to extend your drag free drift on down below you. At the end of your drift, send your back cast behind you perpendicular to the current and start the process over again.
That all sounds complex and tricky, but its the best way to keep your nymph drifting drag free as long as possible, and thus you should catch the most fish if you're putting it where they live.
Keep in mind that you generally don't need to be making any casts over 40' or maybe even 30' feet to make that work.