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Old 01-29-2013, 11:00 PM
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Default Re: Fishing Midge Nymphs.... Need some help!

A good year round set up I almost always have good luck with is a Czech nymph with a silver zebra midge as a trailer. I'm a huge fan of the zebra midge. It catches fish when used in the right situation.

Its actually my go to set up. I usually start the day with it and switch it pretty quick if its not producing.
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Old 01-30-2013, 08:55 AM
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Default Re: Fishing Midge Nymphs.... Need some help!

I probably fish Midges more than any other patterns, They account for most of the larger fish I catch on Eastern Sierra tailwaters. I fish them deep, with twist-ons, bounced off the bottom with a flashy attractor as my lead fly...this is where they are most effective:

Click the image to open in full size.

My son Michael working some heavy water just below the dam in the "Miracle Mile" stretch of the East Walker River...

These are some of the Midges I use for this river...

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

...occasionally, I will use dries...the fish in this river are generally NOT looking up...and they range in size from #18 - #24


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Old 01-30-2013, 09:06 AM
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Default Re: Fishing Midge Nymphs.... Need some help!

Quote:
Originally Posted by nrp5087 View Post
1) about 2 feet of tippet between the flies
2) not sure the weight or # of the shot. I usually use tungsten heads on the flies but the shot was above the highest fly and I was catching bottom
3) the leader was about 12-13 foot didnt measure it out
Sounds like you had a good setup going. Try removing the thingamabobber and tighten up the line so you have no fly line going on the water. Run your drift just with your leader. Maybe you're just using the wrong flies? When you're fishing there with nymphs are you getting any takes?
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Old 01-30-2013, 09:12 AM
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Default Re: Fishing Midge Nymphs.... Need some help!

Quote:
Originally Posted by planettrout View Post
I probably fish Midges more than any other patterns, They account for most of the larger fish I catch on Eastern Sierra tailwaters. I fish them deep, with twist-ons, bounced off the bottom with a flashy attractor as my lead fly...this is where they are most effective:

Click the image to open in full size.

My son Michael working some heavy water just below the dam in the "Miracle Mile" stretch of the East Walker River...

These are some of the Midges I use for this river...

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

...occasionally, I will use dries...the fish in this river are generally NOT looking up...and they range in size from #18 - #24


PT/TB
Thats alot of flies! Im going to tie up some midges this weekend and wont stop using them until i get a fish on them! Yesterday the water temps dropped from snow melt. My friend was catching them on a spinner (cheating).

---------- Post added at 10:12 AM ---------- Previous post was at 10:07 AM ----------

I found your website thing with all your attractor midge pattern PT
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Old 01-30-2013, 09:26 AM
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Default Re: Fishing Midge Nymphs.... Need some help!

I've had quite a lot of success on spring creeks in SE Minnesota with 22-24 black-bodied beadhead midges. In the winter when midges are hatching, you have to practically bounce the things off the trouts' noses. It helps to sight-fish and target specific fish if you can.

I trail them behind a size 12 scud to get them down deep and ticking the bottom.
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Old 01-30-2013, 10:23 AM
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Default Re: Fishing Midge Nymphs.... Need some help!

A lot of different opinions and answers. That's the beauty of fly fishing - no two of us do it the same way. That being said, I will offer my opinion and explain how I do it. It must work because we catch a lot of fish doing it this way.

The setup I use is my typical nymphing rig, whether fishing with mayfly, caddis, stonefly or midge imitations I usually use this method on most moving water. The only exception would be on shallow streams and creeks.

I start with a twisted mono leader of about 9.5-feet for larger rivers and 6.5-feet for smaller streams. I usually attach my indicator where the fly line and leader meet. I prefer the small or extra-small Thingamabobbers in the glow-in-the-dark color - no, I don't fish them at night, but the smoky gray color seems less obtrusive than the brighter colors fish see all the time.

Next, I will usually tie on my favorite searching bug, an orange/yellow variegated Big Ugly Rubberlegs stonefly nymph (color to match season and prevalent colored bugs in waters I'm fishing). I tie this to the 2X tippet at the end of my leader. This fly is usually weighted thus I don't normally use any other weight such as split-shot or tungsten putty.

I then tie on about 18-inches of 5X tippet to the bend of the hook and attach a bead-head nymph usually in a mayfly or caddis pattern. My favorites are either a flashback Pheasant-tail nymph or an Improved Shop-Vac.

I then tie another 18-inch piece of 5X tippet to the bend of this hook and then attach my midge offering by using a non-slip mono loop. The knot is used often with larger flies such as streamers, but I have found it allows smaller flies to move rather than look like they are attached to a two-by-four, which gives a more natural look during the drift.

The key, like most have stated here, is to get your rig down to the bottom of the stream/river - this is especially important in the colder weather.

Some states only allow two flies and a few only one. While I use the rubberlegs fly for my weight, it would also work on a two-fly rig. If fishing only one fly, then I would recommend split shot or putty about 8-inches above your fly.

Cast up and across, mend at least once upstream and follow that indicator for any movement or hesitation. Set lightly if it stops or hesitates. If it pulls back, set again and have fun with your catch. If not, mend again and follow the drift.

If 12-o'clock were directly in front of me and the current is moving right-to-left, then I would cast to about the 2 or 3-o'clock position upstream, mend immediately, let it drift to about the 12-o'clock position, mend again, and then pay close attention, because I get most of my takes and hookups at about the 11 or 10-o'clock position downstream from my position.

I hope this helps. Correct mending will allow your flies to get the maximum dead-drift as well as allow them to get as close to the bottom as possible. If you're not hanging up on a fair amount of the drifts, then you're not on the bottom. Expect to lose some rigs, but that is the price we pay to get down to where the fish are. If the weighted top fly is not enough to get the rig down, add some shot above that fly. There is a great method of weighting nymph rigs developed by guides on the Green River in Utah that uses a drop-shot method of hanging the shot off of the bottom fly. I like any weight at the top of my rigs so all of my flies are at or near the bottom of the river.

Conventional wisdom says that we should set our indicators about 1.5 to 2-times the depth of the water we are fishing, which usually works just fine, but when fishing fairly slow currents it may pay to adjust your indicator to just a little bit deeper than the water you are fishing. Faster water requires a longer leader between indicator and flies.

Lots of different ideas. Experiment with a few and see what works best for you on the waters where you fish. Most of all, don't over think it or become discouraged. Nymphing, like any other aspects of the sport takes practice and time on the water. Have fun with it.

Here are a few of my favorite flies for the rig I explained above:

This is my favorite rubberlegs fly to use as my weighted top fly:
The Big Ugly Rubberlegs:
Click the image to open in full size.

Bead-head, flashback Pheasant-tail nymph:
Click the image to open in full size.

Another 2nd-fly favorite is the Improved Shop-Vac (the improved part is that I added the peacock collar at the thorax, and ribbed it with chartreuse wire):
Click the image to open in full size.

My favorite midge pattern - KG's Deep Purple Peril Midge:
Click the image to open in full size.

Another favorite midge pattern - Zebra midge (I also like this in brown with a gold bead and gold rib):
Click the image to open in full size.

While the traditional Brassie is a great fly, I prefer the bead-head version in very small sizes:
Click the image to open in full size.

Rainbow Warrior - always a good choice:
Click the image to open in full size.

A sample of one of my boxes:
Click the image to open in full size.

A midge 'cluster' on Montana's Big Horn River:
Click the image to open in full size.

There is my take on your challenge, hope it helps some.

Best Fishes,

Kelly.
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Old 01-30-2013, 10:32 AM
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Default Re: Fishing Midge Nymphs.... Need some help!

I've always had trouble fishing midge nymphs unless I could spot the fish, as Only Adipose said these fish aren't moving so knowing exactly where its sitting is a big bonus. If you can't spot them then you really have to pound a spot to cover all the water. Sometimes a small zebra midge trailed behind a heavy bugger works pretty good. The bugger gets them looking and then they see a little morsel behind it they know isn't going to run away. If you can spot the fish then I fish one pattern 8" below the smallest shot that will get me in the fishes zone and no indicator and just watch the fish when it moves or flashes its trap open set the hook! Also just because its a food source that's always around doesn't always mean that's what they want to eat. This time of year in your area as well as mine the early black stones are around. Look for shucks along the banks and high rocks and log jams. This time of year I love to fish a #16 or even an 18 black softhackle swung in tight to the bank. I'm sure you know this but fishing Spring Creek means fishing close to the bank first, especially when the little black stoneflies are around. Its way mre fun than dead drifting the tiny stuff and the takes can be pretty exciting even in the cold water.
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Old 01-30-2013, 04:51 PM
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Default Re: Fishing Midge Nymphs.... Need some help!

So I rarely have a situation when I need twelve feet of leader, so my experience might not be helpful...

I would get rid of the thingamabobber and use a very light indicator like a small yarn. Something just large enough to float the rig. My experience is that a midge take by a trout is VERY light. So a smaller indicator allows me to detect it better.

my vote for a pattern is a zebra midge with a little antron coming out the front for gills.

I also do my best to target fish. If I can't see them then I cast to where they should be... searching with a midge is hard.
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Old 01-30-2013, 06:56 PM
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Default Re: Fishing Midge Nymphs.... Need some help!

Just like many of the others have said, when I fish midges, I usually have a heavy nymph as my lead fly (like a scud). that usually takes the place of my split shot. its also important to use small tippet. here's a good midge pattern.


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