Originally Posted by mac.
so today i went out and nymphed for about 2 hours. nothin... i saw about 10-15 drakes flying around so i thought id throw one on and try, well i tried a dry dropper rig or whatever its called when you put a nymph under a dry. i didnt get nothin in about an hour, i walked down the stream constantly casting trying all water. i did notice that sometimes my fly would be on its side or upside down. does this matter? if so how do i fix this? i know i suck at dry casting but i dont feel like thats the problem.
Presentation does matter with dry flies. In fact it may be the single most important aspect of dry fly fishing.
Generally, when you're fishing a dry/dropper, you're planning for the take to be on the dropper; that's why most people will use a big, meaty dry for the top fly; like a Wulff, or something like that. In some cases, it's almost like nymphing with an indicator. In others, where there's a lot of surface feeding; particularly in faster moving water, you're just as apt to get a strike on the dry as on the dropper.
A dropper on a dry fly will weight it down and make a soft presentation difficult (not impossible, but certainly more challenging). My experience is that if fish are feeding on the top, then you're very likely to get a take the minute the fly hits the water; particularly if the presentation is soft.
Try aiming your cast a foot or two above the water and let the dry "float down" onto the surface. Don't try to cast directly at the water, If you do that, then your dry will land with a "splat" and that's not the way that trout are used to seeing a fly settle on the surface.
If you're going to try to catch fish by imitating a mature insect, then take some time before you start casting; watch the water. See what happening with the insect life; what kind of flies are on the water, what size, what color, how do they land, how long do they stay on the water, are trout top-water feeding? Then, if you decide to go with a dry fly, try to cast in such a way that you present your fly the same way that the insects are landing on the water.
I agee with MJ, if you're going to be dry fly fishing, then stick with one dry. Change it out if you're continuing to sees rises, but getting no takes.