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Thread: A Dilemma I've Dreamed About

  1. Default A Dilemma I've Dreamed About

    I went to the PM River the other day to play around with the small browns.

    I got a couple short strikes under overhangs, but couldn't hook anything. Maybe my reaction is a little slow.

    When fishing the same stretch with spinning gear the fish would almost always come out from under submerged dead-fall to hit.

    This part might make the purists cringe (remember, I'm a newbie): I pulled out the smallest split shot I had, and after a minute or 2 with a lighter made it even smaller. Clamped it on right in front of the fly (instant sinking fly?) and started working the deadfall. It seemed to work, caught a few small browns.

    Now for the dilemma: I worked my way to a serious deadfall and was working under the fringes and something really big hit. Maybe a big brown, or an early salmon. The reports still show the salmon about 15 miles down stream from where I was.

    I had to override the drag several times to keep the fish out from under the deadfall (this was a big, twisted, mess of a deadfall). He wasn't much interested in running, just trying to go deep under the wood. I tried a little too hard to get him up and ended up breaking a 5/6 leader.

    I retied everything with a heavy leader but had nothing else hit.


    Is weighting a floating fly taboo? if not is there some "proper" way to do it?

    When is a heavy leader too heavy, and what are the downsides of using too heavy a leader?

    Thanks in advance,


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Central Florida

    Default Re: A Dilemma I've Dreamed About

    Hi Dan,

    Well this is a dilemma that most fishers face. If you are fishing in water with the potential of hooking a big fish, your better off to be set up for the bigger fish in the first place. I am not sure about your 5/6 leader. Do you mean your tipped was 5X or 6X or do you mean something else?

    It is not uncommon to be fishing dry flies and then to switch to a subsurface fly. You can add split shot but in most cases the shot is several inches from the fly. It sounds like a weighted fly would have been your best choice here. Maybe a bead-head fly.

    A leader is too heavy when the targeted fish is shying away from the leader. Larger flies need heavier tippets and tiny flies need very light tippets. When fishing subsurface you can use a much heavier tippet than you can on a surface fly.

    I think you would benefit from studying the following table.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    South Texas

    Default Re: A Dilemma I've Dreamed About

    Weight in front of a floating fly isn't taboo, and in fact doing so can be quite helpful. If you're wanting to fish a fly near the bottom but don't want the fly to hang up, the shot/floating fly combo can be very effective. Think of it as a very light weight Carolina rig.

    The down side to this is it makes your connection to the fly and/or strike less direct. The weight goes down, and the fly goes up, putting sort of a "Z" pattern at the end of your line. Any reduction in "straightness" interferes with your ability to feel strikes.

    An alternative is a method Kelly Galloup esposes is to fish an unweighted fly on a short leader on a sinking line. Its outlined here A streamer retrieve that triggers explosive strikes, By Kelly Galloup and Bob Linsenman I think he grew up in Michigan and has used the methods there as well. Pretty sure this one is on netflix as well Streamer Fishing For Trophy Trout with Kelly Galloup: DVD: Kelly Galloup,Gene Hering

    I'd rather hunt fish than bait deer any day.

  4. Default Re: A Dilemma I've Dreamed About

    Quote Originally Posted by BigCliff View Post
    An alternative is a method Kelly Galloup esposes is to fish an unweighted fly on a short leader on a sinking line. Its outlined here A streamer retrieve that triggers explosive strikes, By Kelly Galloup and Bob Linsenman
    love it!
    Quote Originally Posted by TFA
    Make the fly smack the water hard as close to the bank as possible. It has been said that this style of fishing is to dry-fly fishing what rock-and-roll is to the symphony.
    long live rock n roll! i have instictively picked up much of what he says in the article over the years, but i will have to try the whole thing soon.

    the article says Galloup owns the slide inn fly shop in montana. i think i have been there, but i cant think of where it is. on the maddy down near quake lake i think.

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