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Coldwater Fly Fishing Trout, Salmon, Steelhead, etc...

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Old 04-06-2008, 02:55 PM
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Default steelhead leader help?

I was gonna give flouro a try.. I have been searching the net and asking around here about this and had different answers from just about everyone and everywhere I read. I have read to make your leader thinner starting off with 25lb butt section so it sinks faster. sounds good. I have heard to use mono for the butt section and add flouro to it using a knot or even a barrel swivel. also sounds good. but whats a good recipe to use? I am gonna be nymphing with egg patterns next time out and wonder what leader recipe you guys recomend for a fly rod? I am gonna get some flouro today after dinner and wondered what lb I should get? I have been recomended 8lb, or 10lb and even 6lb for clear water.. I already have leader making material from rio. its regular mono in every size you need.. just need a good recipe? basically I want to start off with mono and end up with flouro. I will be using split shot and unweighted nymphs and fishing 4ft deep or less.. any reccomendations? I want a 9ft leader. should I use a micro swivel? help! remember this is for a fly rod. not spin cast. also can you connect the flouro and mono using a bloodknot if need be?
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Old 04-06-2008, 04:00 PM
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Default Re: steelhead leader help?

I just use a 9 foot leader with 4,6,or 10 lb tippet..its not that hard..what size rod and where are you going...
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Old 04-06-2008, 05:50 PM
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Default Re: steelhead leader help?

You will find as many opinions on this as there are stars in
the sky. This combo works, this one doesn't. I also have
tried different combos & finally settled on this combo. My
10' 7wt Thomas/Thomas with a Tioga Teton reel is rigged
this way (I have fought numerous fish & it has not failed me
yet, or have I failed to get a good hookset)
1. Sink tip fly line, or floating (1 reel two spools)
2. 20 or 30 lb butt section with a surgeons loop (about 12")
3. Second section of 20 or 30 lb 18"-24" (loop to loop connection)
4. Double surgeons knot connecting the butt section with 10#
Vanish fluorocarbon
5. Tie on your best Steelhead fly (tube flies are my new arsenal)
Total length of my leader depends on water depth, but normally
7' to 9' total length.

Best of luck with those Chrome Torpedos

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Old 04-06-2008, 07:07 PM
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Default Re: steelhead leader help?

Check out Maxima leader material.....

Untitled Document

Cabela's -- Maxima Leader Material

Many besides me like it for battling steel
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Old 04-07-2008, 01:05 AM
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Default Re: steelhead leader help?

a few guys on my local forum gave me a recipe. I am gonna try it. made 3 up . its 2 ft of 20 lb test. 2 ft of 15lb, 2ft of 13lb,2 feet of 10, then a micro barrel swivel (yes sounds scary!!) then add 2 to 3 feet of flourocarbon. the point being you don't lose your setup just the 2 ft of flouro and the flouro is supposedly invisable. another guy says 18 inches of 20lb, and 18in of 10 lb and then barrel swivel and 6 ft of flouro?? they said this is on a fly rod.. they say the thinner butt sections helps the leader sink quicker and since you are using a indicator and shot you can get away with it unlike dry fly delicate stuff. they said guides recommended these leaders? using it with egg patterns and maybe a dropper nymph. let ya know if it sucks. also let ya know if i catch something! will post tomorrow.
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Old 04-07-2008, 11:37 AM
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Default Re: steelhead leader help?

Back in my flyrod bait fishing days I used to tie a small barrel swivel to the leader & on the other side tie a 12" peice of' tippet to the hook. This was a pain to cast so it was "chuck & duck" but it worked & you didn't get any twisted tippets. As for flouro I picked up a couple of spools of regular Flouro spinning line & use that for tippets. Since I'm nymphing most of the time I don't worry so much about turnover & I save a little money.. Depending on what I'm fishing for & how deep the water is I determine the tippet length.
I have never tracked the difference between using flouro vs. mono so I'm
guessing & believing the adds as to whether or not fluro makes that much of a difference.
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Old 04-07-2008, 04:03 PM
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Default Re: steelhead leader help?

Hi McFly,

Your leader length is dependent on how you are fishing. I will be discussing subsurface fishing. If you are using a floating fly line then you need a longer (9') leader. This is to keep the fly line away from the fly and to get the fly deeper. Even when using weighted flies and/or shot you need to have some separation from the fly line.

If you are fishing a floating fly line with a sinking tip that is built into the fly line, or a Tenny T series line you need to shorten the leader. If you use too long of a leader the fly will not get as deep as the fly line. Of course a weighted fly will help that situation. The fly line with a built in sinking tip of about 10' is my favorite for Steelhead and Salmon in moving rivers. If you are fishing a deep pool at one end you may have to adjust your leader or fly line to accommodate the deeper water.

Some of the forum members like a floating fly line that they add a sinking section to the end of the fly line and then a leader to the sinking add on. This may work for lakes or deep pool fishing but they are a bear to cast. Not to say a sinking tip fly line is easy to cast. The sinking section that you add to a floating fly line has loops on the ends and you now have a loop to the sinking section from the fly line, then another loop to fasten a leader to the end of the sinking section. This setup has too many loops for my liking.

So here is how I like to fish for Steelhead or Salmon in a moving river environment. The water won't be too deep and you need to stay in contact with the fly. I use Climax short tapered leaders designed for Steelhead or Bass. The Steelhead leader comes in a 4' length. I carry 0X and 1X sizes. With these two sizes I can use the 4' leader as is and that works in a lot of rivers. If I want to lengthen the 0X I can add some more 0X tippet material. Or I can tie on a 24" of 2X tippet and I now have a 6' 2X leader. If I want to go down to 4X, I can cut the 2X down to 10" and add a 24" piece of 4X. The same works with the 1X. I can use the 1x, or add some 3X. So these two basic leaders gives me the option of using a 0X, 1X, 2X, 3X or 4X. This covers the 4lb to 10lb range. With two ties I can go from 4' to 8' and that is all I ever needed fishing Alaska.

If you are going to be indicator fishing then a 9' leader is needed with a floating line. If you are using a sinking fly line of some type you need a 4' to 8' leader. The trick to leaders is to be aware of the conditions and adjust the leader to fit the situation.

Frank
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Old 04-07-2008, 06:23 PM
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Default Re: steelhead leader help?

Hi McFly,
This method isn't too elaborate, but me and a few friends who fish for steelhead in the Erie area have started using the braided flouro leaders (similar to the ones we got from Joni in the fly swap except those were thread). We've been using them in the 5 1/2 to 7 ft. range, adding 3 or 4 feet of flouro tippit (usually between 3x and 5x depending on water conditions) and doing pretty well. I know I've cut way back on the number of fish that have broken off and the presentation still seems subtle enough that it doesn't bother the fish. Like I said, it's not too sophisticated but seems to work fine.
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Old 04-07-2008, 10:05 PM
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Default Re: steelhead leader help?

used the leaders I made last night today. worked pretty decent. considereing theres a splitshot and a indicator I could get some decent roll casts and great regular casts. also practiced some hauls and seen how it loaded the rod better. I tied up some pink/flame scrambled eggs and between me and my 2 cousins we caught 14 or so creek chubs. noone had any luck on steelhead tho. one guy with a spincast did. only guy I seen. other reports were slow to tho so maybe just a bad day. this is a small ustocked stream that you can fish when the rivers blown out also so there are only strays.. learned alot todayt and had a great time. 1st summer like day around here.
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