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Thread: Midges

  1. Default Midges

    I am going to fish some still water this winter. They stock trout in the lakes at Busch Wildlife by me in St. Charles Missouri.

    How should I Fish midges? Should I use my 7 weight tog et out far or my 5 weight? Should I use floating or sinking line?

    I am used to fishing streamers and normally seeing the strike.
    I have not fished for still water trout or ever used a midge. What should I do?
    How will the strike be? Should just look for a "twitch" in my line?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2008

    Default Re: Midges

    Midwest fly fish kid-

    You'll be throwing small flies and using light tippets with midges, so go with the 5 weight.

    Joni could probably give you better advice about midge fishing in still water, so you might want to send her a PM if she doesn't pop into this thread. She fishes midges a lot and is very successful with them.

    But here's my 2 cents. If you're fishing from shore, I would keep it simple. You could use a poly indicator as a 'bobber" and fish something like a Zebra Midge under it anywhere from 2-5 feet if you don't see fish rising. Cast it out and let it sit as log as you can stand it, then veeeerrrrrrryyyy slowly, like 3 Mississipppi's per inch, wait 10 Mississippi's, then another inch. repeat. and repeat. and repeat. You'll cover a lot of water that way, but it might make you nuts.

    If you see rising or cruising fish, again to keep it simple, you could use a size 16 or 18 Griffiths Gnat (instead of an indicator) and hang an 18 or 20 Zebra Midge off the bend of it on 2 feet of tippet. (you don't want to use too long a tippet or you'll get tangles casting). This will hang the pupa right near the surface where trout can pick it off, and you may get something to whack the dry. If you see cruising or rising fish, the odds off catching go up, try and anticipate where they'll be and cast ahead of them to intercept them.

    If you're fishing from a boat or float tube you can use a much longer tippet, say 20 feet with a floating line to get much deeper by tossing stuff over the side and feeding fly line out as you drift until you've got some fly line out, and do that same slow retrieve while drifting.

    As far as detecting strikes, you want to keep a tight line, with no slack so you can feel fish hit.

    If it's legal and you'll be fishing at the same spot without moving around too much, or are in a boat and can easily bring two rods, you might want to bring the 7 weight along too with a sink tip (or a full sink and short leader if you're in a boat or tube) and a big ugly black marabou muddler. Cast it out, let it sink by counting 10 Mississippi's and strip in like crazy. It's a good antidote to fishing midges which can be nerve wracking.

    Hope this helps.


  3. #3

    Default Re: Midges

    Try this article. If you're allowed to use more than one hook at a time, use a pupa pattern on the point then two feet below that add a bloodworm as a dropper. If you find the trout are higher in the water column, remove the bloodworm and replace with another pupa pattern. You can change depth by moving your indicator down your leader in one foot increments until you find where in the water column the trout are holding.

    Overlooking Midge Larva?

    If you tie and need a couple of easy chironomid (midge) patterns, check out the link here. You prob want to tie them in smaller sizes from #22-#16
    Stillwater Fly Patterns

    "What a tourist terms a plague of insects, the fly angler calls a great hatch".
    Doc's Ol' Blog House

  4. Default Re: Midges

    Thanks everyone for the help. Everything you said is all legal. I will bring both rods fro sure.

    I think fishing a midge might drive me carzy on such slow retrives but this is a good kind of crazy and using a wooly bugger will help.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Midges

    Glad to hear of another Missourian taking advantage of our Urban Trout program.. Please help out as much as you can. Support your local TU they helped pay for some of these fish in our urban lakes.

    I agree Perigrin about the slooowww strip. It works well with these fish. On the day's movement isn't happening like they will not hit streamers if you baited them. Then your Nymphs and Midges work like a champ.

    I will tie on a Beadhead Glo-Ball or Beadhead San Juan. And below it I will tie on a #18 zebra midge or any flashback hair's ear or white wrap. Toss it out about 20' under a indicator (4 to 5 feet just above the moss) and let sit. If it is windy then let it drift. On your 1 mississsipppppiiii strip watch your indicator. If it reacts differently then pick up you just got a hit. Don't wait for the indicator to go below the water. These takes are more subtle than nymphing a stream. Sometimes your indicator will not want to move forward or it will bobble twice. Both times those are hits.

    Read up on everything you can find about nymph fishing. It is an art form that can be purely addictive because for some reason you think you have a fish and you do. Matter of fact I believe the younger you are the easier it will be for you to master nymph fishing. Old people like me get tainted on moss and other things and don't see the subtle hits (unless we have a lot of coffee. :^)

    Enjoy and good luck.


  6. #6

    Default Re: Midges

    PS... sorry "peregrines" I messed up your name...

  7. Default Re: Midges

    Thanks for that info. 20' down! wow i have not ever gone that deep.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Midges

    :^).... No 20' out and 4 to 6' down. This is the column that seams to be the best at this lake. Long casts and short casts are not working

  9. Default Re: Midges

    THanks that is some great info. I can't wait to go. NOw i need to convince me mom to take me.

    What things would I need in terms of being legal to fish?

    I am out of state and 15 whats the age when i need to buy a license? I belive it is 15

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2008

    Default Re: Midges

    Midwest Flyfish Kid-

    Your excitement is contagious! Hope you catch 'em up.

    My reading of the regs is that you wonít need a fishing license in MO until youíre 16, but you will need a trout permit to fish or possess trout (7 bucks), OR if you fish in a Trout Park you pay a daily fee of 3 bucks. It doesnít look like you need a trout permit if you fish in the Trout Parks and pay the daily fee. But itís always a good idea to check with the Park Office to make sure on the way in, or stop in a local fly shop to get some advice, pick up a few flies and get squared away on regs.

    Trout Fishing in Missouri | Permits and Regulations

    Hereís a link from the MO Dept of Conservation on winter trout fishing . It has links to some fly fishing events coming up this weekend (click on the upcoming events link) so tell mom to gas up the car. Thereís also a link to a Winter Fishing Lesson with some helpful info.
    Trout Fishing in Missouri | Winter Trout Fishing

    Good luck and let us know how you do!

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