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  1. #1

    Default Fish up or down stream?

    I ask this because i've read both. I usually fish down stream as was the case this last weekend on the Current River in MO. I started at the trout park and wanted to fish away from some of the crowd as the water is low. I focused on the browns that wanted to come up to the cooler water in the park. I had good success, but on the way up not so much. I figured because I was mostly fishing a wolly, not sure. Any suggestions on some good reads as there are many out there.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Fish up or down stream?

    I usually fish up. Find it easier to get a good drift. For streamers I'll fish down though.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    On a trout stream/Suburban Pittsburgh
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: Fish up or down stream?

    I prefer to walk upstream, though I'll sometimes hit a spot or two on the way back down.

    As for actually fishing, cover it all but cast upstream of where you suspect the fish to be. Stripping streamers might be an exception to this.
    ~*~Leave only your footprints~*~

  4. Default Re: Fish up or down stream?

    For streamers i fish down stream. For nymphs i usually fish on the side of the stream. For dries i usually fish up stream.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Fish up or down stream?

    As previously stated it depends on the fly, the lie, and what you want to do.


    "Discovery consists of seeing what everybody has seen and thinking what nobody has thought"..........Szent-Gyorgy

  6. #6

    Default Re: Fish up or down stream?

    I fish upstream with nymphs and dries along with the rest.

    I find I can make better driftless casts when focusing on the fish upstream. The line will just come back at me and i dont need to worry about feeding line downstream. Also if i make a bad first cast if its short i still get another cast without the fish spooking. the fish is also facing upstream from me and wont spook as easily when I approach it.

    I'm not much of a streamer fisherman so I cant say much on that topic.

    "I have a river runs through it on blue ray, so yeah, I guess you could say I know a thing or two about fly fishing."

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  8. Default Re: Fish up or down stream?

    I wade upstream but, fish the clock.

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Northern California
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: Fish up or down stream?

    Quote Originally Posted by silver creek View Post
    As previously stated it depends on the fly, the lie, and what you want to do.
    Every piece of water will dictate which presentation to use, so what he said.

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    quiet corner, ct

    Default Re: Fish up or down stream?

    Earlier in the season, I was mentoring a guy from our club's beginners class and this same same question came up.
    What I told him was once you decide to limit yourself to doing something one way or another, that's going to bite you in the arse every time.
    You need to adjust to the situation and sometimes that means doing the opposite of what everyone else does.
    For example on heavily fished water, trout potentially can witness hundred of casts a week. Often they're the same fly. Much of the time the angler casts from around the same position and the fly even drags in a similar manner. It doesn't take long before the fish become "educated" to this.
    Showing the fish a different cast, perhaps from the "wrong" direction or the "wrong" side of the river can be just what you need fool a trout that's seen it all.
    The simpler the outfit, the more skill it takes to manage it, and the more pleasure one gets in his achievements. --- Horace Kephart

  11. #10

    Default Re: Fish up or down stream?

    Quote Originally Posted by MoscaPescador View Post
    Every piece of water will dictate which presentation to use, so what he said.
    Exactly. The longer you fly fish the more you learn and adaptability is one trait which separates the greats from the goods and mediocres.

    For example, in freestone streams I generally fish dries upstream but when fishing to very spooky trout with a lots of time to inspect a fly, as often occurs in spring creek situations, a downstream presentation may be the ONLY way to catch fish. This is the favored method in Henry's Fork, for example. That is if you believe the 3 greats of Earnest Shweibert, Andre Puyans and Rene Harrop. It was true in 1975 and it is even more true 37 years later.

    "... a downstream cast is best. "Exactly," Rene Harrop went on. Up stream presentation usually spooks these Henrys Fork rainbows no matter what tippet diameter you use."

    "My favorite technique this time of year is one that I developed over the years I fondly call my pontoon boat downstream drag free drift. My good friend Mike Lawson made this technique popular back in the late seventies and early eighties on the fabled waters of the Railroad Ranch section of the Henrys Fork River in Idaho. Mike discovered that the super selective rainbows of the Ranch had become so conditioned to seeing leaders in the gin clear water that they were virtually impossible to catch from a "below the fish approach". The conventional technique of casting upstream to feeding fish and letting the fly drift back downstream to obtain a drag free drift would render nothing but rejections. The fish on the Henrys Fork actually became so leader shy they would even spook and leave at the sight of a leader."


    Or The Fall River in California, one of the most difficult trout streams in the West.

    "In order to present the fly so that it comes into the view of the fish before the line, you point the rod downstream, and then wiggle the tip while at the same time feed the line through the guides at a rate that is equal to the river’s flow. The fly will then drift downstream, hopefully in a dead drift. Wiggling the tip to feed the line has worked well on other spring creeks that I’ve fished such as Hot Creek, where drifts are relatively short and the weeds are often on the surface, but as long time guide Carl Jaeger explained to me “on the Fall River you are trying to effect drifts of twenty feet or more and each wiggle has the potential to create hesitation in the fly’s drift which will eliminate its chances of it being grabbed.” He showed me a better way to feed the line that was specifically suited for attaining the desired longer drifts. He explained that rather than wiggle the rod tip to help feed the line, you should roll the tip which will allow you to feed two to three feet of line each time and for fishing dry flies, this was the most important technique that I learned."

    and rigging techniques specifically suited to the Fall

    California's Best Fly Fishing: Premier Streams and Rivers from Northern ... - Chip O'Brien - Google Books

    The downstream approach is the single best way to catch these super spooky fish. It is the method of choice in my namesake, Silver Creek.

    Flyfisher's Guide to Idaho - Ken Retallic, Rocky Barker - Google Books

    Here's a reply I wrote on another BB on how to do a parachute cast, my favorite method for delivering a fly absolutely drag free from the upstream approach.

    "If microdrag is the problem, the goal is to remove all drag. The easiest way to remove drag and place the fly accurately into the feeding lane of the fish is with a parachute cast from the upstream position. It is also the easiest way to time a fly so that it reaches a rhythmically feeding fish.

    You must be able to get upstream of the fish and into casting position without spooking it. This can be directly upstream of the fish but more often it is upstream and across so that you can stay out of the direct feeding lane but still do a reach mend to place the cast into the feeding lane.

    From the upstream position cast downstream to the feeding fish so that the fly lands upstream and outside the window of the feeding fish. Stop the rod high so that the line drapes down to the water like a parachute cord (this is where the name of the cast comes from). You can jerk back on the rod tip as the leader unfolds to give you more slack line and leader and place the rod in a more vertical position at the end of the cast.

    If you are a little off in your cast, you can skate the fly directly into the feeding lane because the fly, line and leader are still outside the window of the feeding fish. When the fly is in the right place and at the right time (for a rhythmically feeder), lower the rod tip as the current takes the fly to the fish and the fly will enter the fish's window before the leader and without drag. If you time it right, the fly will arrive just as the fish is rising to feed again, and the fish will choose your fly from amongst the others because yours is arriving at the right time. If you need more slack than just lowering the rod will provide, pop the rod tip up and down while releasing line to stack mend line into the drift.

    When the fish takes, delay just a bit until the mouth closes and the head goes down before you lift the rod to set the hook. If you set too fast. you will actually pull the fly out of the fishes mouth before it closes. The hook set is delayed a bit when you are upstream of the fish compared to a downstream position.

    If the fish does not take, gently move the rod to the side so that the leader goes to your side of the fish without disturbing the surface too much. Gently pick up and do your false cast to the other side of the river so that you don't spray the water over the fish and then try again.

    For fish that are feeding selectively and rhythmically by holding close to the surface there is no better method. They have a small window so you can get closer than a fish that is holding deeper. Trying to remove all drag with a slack line, being highly accurate, and timing the fly for a rhythmical feeder is nearly impossible when casting from below the fish.

    [ame=]How to Fly Fish: The Parachute and Pile Casts - YouTube[/ame]

    Nymphing - Gary A. Borger - Google Books


    "Discovery consists of seeing what everybody has seen and thinking what nobody has thought"..........Szent-Gyorgy

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