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  1. #1

    Default Slow Water Streamer Flies?

    I have noticed on the river where I am learning to fly fish that everyone fishes the swifter water and the accompanying eddies, small pools and such. But I never see anybody fishing the long pools of very slow water, typically these pools will have weeds all the way to surface out to 3 feet in depth.

    Since ALL of this is new to me and fly tying has become a real hoot, why not learn how to do something that no one else is going after. I certainly can't catch any less fish than what I am now and I won't have to rub elbows with the rest of the herd. (Ard, you helped me notice this trend)

    So let me get to my question:

    We have a healthy spawning brown population and lots of stocker rainbows, it is the browns I wish to concentrate on. I know that every area is different, but could you folks recommend a few good streamers to start with? Not interested in streamers for the monsters (gotta learn to walk first..right) Also would rather start with the easier patterns.

    PS: Any hints on how to fish streamers would be most appreciated.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Jackson Hole, WY
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: Slow Water Streamer Flies?


    A patternI used to use on a small slow creek outside Reading, PA might work for you. It is easy to tie. Small browns liked it. Sorry I don't have any pics.

    Take a 8 or 10 streamer hook and tie on a sparse tail of maraboo or hair in olive or black. Then for the body just wrap 3 to 4 peacock herl strands and palmer a grizzly hackle. You can add small lead eyes if you want depth. It was my first nothing fancy streamer and it did catch fish.

    Good luck!!
    My worst day on the water beats my best day anywhere else hands down!!

    Upstream Anglers and Outdoor Adventures

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Springfield, MO

    Default Re: Slow Water Streamer Flies?

    Mickey Finns, Small clousers, just browse some sights like charlie cravens and see what your capable of tying.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Slow Water Streamer Flies?

    Being in Alaska, we dont have browns...with that being said the concepts are very similar or the same. By the description provided I would throw a woolly bugger, egg sucking leech, or any of the small minnow patters that exist that are mentioned earlier.

    As for presentation, which really is the key to this game. I would cast upstream to the head of the pool and drift it through the pool while putting a little life into the fly. A slight twitch or effort against the current helps a bunch.

    Forgive my ignorance but does anybody use flesh flies for browns?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    sycamore, illinois
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: Slow Water Streamer Flies?

    try a clouser minnow in a white/charteause color scheme. also try any zoo cougar pattern.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    quiet corner, ct

    Default Re: Slow Water Streamer Flies?

    The difference between a fast current pattern and one for a slower current should be the stiffness of the material that they're tied from.
    With a fast water pattern you want your fly tied from stiffer material that won't collapse in the current like deer hair and rooster hackle.
    Slow current flies need to have softer material that responds to the action of the current. Think marabou and hen and game bird hackle.
    An excellent example would be the Gartside soft hackle streamer

    Last edited by Rip Tide; 02-07-2011 at 08:19 AM. Reason: Disrespectfully spelled Jack's name wrong
    The simpler the outfit, the more skill it takes to manage it, and the more pleasure one gets in his achievements.” --- Horace Kephart

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Northern California
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: Slow Water Streamer Flies?

    I fished this fly in slower water with success last fall. It can be fished effectively on the swing, but feeling the take on a fast strip is awesome.


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2008

    Default Re: Slow Water Streamer Flies?

    You've got some great suggestions. And Riptide brings up a great point-- for slow water, flies with soft material that keeps its shape and waves around in slow currents like marabou or rabbit strips are a good choice--. Having some streamers that are unweighted and some with weights to fish different layers of the water column would be a good idea.

    You could try a simple unweighted marabou wing streamer with an easy to wrap body using something like body braid:

    Hook: any 3xl or 4xl streamer
    Tail: none
    Body: Gold body braid
    Wing: Black marabou
    Flash: (Optional) a couple strands of pearl Krystal Flash along each side of wing
    Topping: (Optional) a couple strands of peacock herl
    Another variation for bright days: use silver body braid and white marabou

    For weighted streamers, in addition to woolly buggers, and the leech that Mosca posted, you could tie something like a Barr's Slumpbuster a simple tie using body braid and thin "Zonker" strips of pine squirrel-- Slumpbuster

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Languedoc/near montpellier
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: Slow Water Streamer Flies?

    Already got great advice...I only fish still waters with streamers....(can't find slowest waters)and I use fur ones .
    here's the simplest to tie I know(with olive,white,black or orange rabbit strips)
    Try's a killer.

    I'm very surprised nobody mentionned the world famous Mc Nerney's minnow(with nutria fur)

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Truckee, CA.
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: Slow Water Streamer Flies?

    LD123, you seem to be on the look and learn program, as opposed to classes or guide influence. I think this is a great way to go.
    Anything you learn on your own will be yours to keep.
    I suggest capturing a minnow, or fry, to copy at home.
    Put it in a vial next to the vise and dream about it a bit.
    Hold it up to light to see profile/shape. Then look at color/reflectivity.
    Spend some time watching them swim around too.
    Put it all together and you will tye your own version of the "best streamer" ever.
    Good luck, and post the outcome, we all want a new killer pattern!

    Fishing is just about fish to me, it's about connections beyond counting.
    The fish and I are connected by more than a line........


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