Double nymph rig

jrp11948

Active member
Messages
29
Reaction score
3
Location
Annapolis, MD
I've always set up my nymph rig by tying the bottom nymph to the hook of the top one. I always wondered if having a knot on the top fly discouraged fish to take it but wasn't smart enough to count how many hit the top fly versus the bottom. On a trip last week to the upper Delaware in NY, the guide set up the the top fly using a perfection loop and the bottom fly by tying the tippet above the top fly with a uni knot. That way there's no knot on the hook of the top fly. We caught a lot of fish and some on the top fly, some on the bottom fly.
Much cleaner rig. Guess I should have figured that one out myself!
 

trev

Well-known member
Messages
966
Reaction score
179
Location
south of Joplin

silver creek

Well-known member
Messages
7,095
Reaction score
427
Location
Rothschld, Wisconsin
I've always set up my nymph rig by tying the bottom nymph to the hook of the top one. I always wondered if having a knot on the top fly discouraged fish to take it but wasn't smart enough to count how many hit the top fly versus the bottom. On a trip last week to the upper Delaware in NY, the guide set up the the top fly using a perfection loop and the bottom fly by tying the tippet above the top fly with a uni knot. That way there's no knot on the hook of the top fly. We caught a lot of fish and some on the top fly, some on the bottom fly.
Much cleaner rig. Guess I should have figured that one out myself!
How did he attach a fly with a perfection loop?

Is the leader taken through the upper and the perfection loop tied with the fly as part of the loop? Is the top fly connected with a "loop to loop" connection with the perfection loop taken through the eye of the fly?
 
Last edited:

silver creek

Well-known member
Messages
7,095
Reaction score
427
Location
Rothschld, Wisconsin
I've never seen a "dropper" rigged that way. I most often put droppers off of tippet rings.

It seems to me that if you rig the dropper as above, you have to remove the bottom fly to switch the dropper fly.
 

jrp11948

Active member
Messages
29
Reaction score
3
Location
Annapolis, MD
How did he attach a fly with a perfection loop?

Is the leader taken through the upper and the perfection loop tied with the fly as part of the loop? Is the top fly connected with a "loop to loop" connection with the perfection loop taken through the eye of the fly?
With the perfection loop, he put the fly on the second loop, the one in front. and pulled it thru the first, larger loop.
 

jrp11948

Active member
Messages
29
Reaction score
3
Location
Annapolis, MD
I've never seen a "dropper" rigged that way. I most often put droppers off of tippet rings.

It seems to me that if you rig the dropper as above, you have to remove the bottom fly to switch the dropper fly.
Silver Creek. The dropper is on tippet tied to the main leader, above the top fly
 

mtboiler

Well-known member
Messages
575
Reaction score
110
Location
Whitefish, MT
I nymph fish probably 90% of the time and I use the tag end method very similar to what your guide use. I prefer to use a triple surgeons knot. I typically use a size 14 barrel swivel, instead of a tippet ring, when nymph fishing. it does two good things, adds weight to the leader and allows the flies to twist in the current and not get all tangled up. So, I drop a 24 inch piece of tippet off the barrel swivel, than add a tag end 15 inches above the bottom fly. I don't like the loop method because when you get a hit on the top fly, which I often do on this rig, it seems to tangle up more.
 

ottosmagic13

Well-known member
Messages
639
Reaction score
79
Location
Upstate NY
I nymph fish probably 90% of the time and I use the tag end method very similar to what your guide use. I prefer to use a triple surgeons knot. I typically use a size 14 barrel swivel, instead of a tippet ring, when nymph fishing. it does two good things, adds weight to the leader and allows the flies to twist in the current and not get all tangled up. So, I drop a 24 inch piece of tippet off the barrel swivel, than add a tag end 15 inches above the bottom fly. I don't like the loop method because when you get a hit on the top fly, which I often do on this rig, it seems to tangle up more.
I just recently picked up some barrel swivels. They really do seem to help with tangling.

My rig looks like this:

Leader (cut back) - swivel - 3x tippet* - ring - 5x tippet - fly
\5x tippet dropper - fly

The top fly is tied off a dropper (8-10") above the ring and the bottom fly is tied on below the ring. I use a UNI knot to tie on the dropper tag as it seems to help the tag stick perpendicular to the main tippet.

I've had really good luck with an unweighted fly (pheasant tail, Silly Worm, Hare's Ear, etc) on the top and a weighted fly (BH something) on the bottom.
 

proheli

Well-known member
Messages
717
Reaction score
57
I nymph fish probably 90% of the time and I use the tag end method very similar to what your guide use. I prefer to use a triple surgeons knot. I typically use a size 14 barrel swivel, instead of a tippet ring, when nymph fishing. it does two good things, adds weight to the leader and allows the flies to twist in the current and not get all tangled up. So, I drop a 24 inch piece of tippet off the barrel swivel, than add a tag end 15 inches above the bottom fly. I don't like the loop method because when you get a hit on the top fly, which I often do on this rig, it seems to tangle up more.
MT, would you be willing to throw up a picture of that. Just lay it out the rig on the kitchen table, or even just draw a picture? Actually a picture would help on a few of these. Then it might make a nice sticky somewhere too.
 

mtboiler

Well-known member
Messages
575
Reaction score
110
Location
Whitefish, MT
Much like ottosmajic I try to put the heavier fly on the bottom. Since I tied all of my own flies, it is usually a wire based fly, copper john style. Also, like ottosmajic I use a smaller fly on top, usually very little weight, or a glass bead head nymph. I use a size 14 barrel swivel or size 12 when nymph fishing. I do the same thing with streamers, but size 7 or 5 for those. Everything below the barrel swivel is 4x. 4x mono for the full length and 4x fluoro for the top fly. Typically, my portions are 1 to 3. The 'dropper' is 1/3 the length of the full piece of tippet. The tag end is done one of two ways. If I am starting from scratch, it is a triple surgeons knot with the tag end pointing up. I think it helps keep the fly from wrapping around the longer length. Sometimes after a couple hours of fishing I need to lengthen the leader because of break offs or cutting off flies. In this case I just add a length of fluoro to the end of the leader and leave 5 inches or so as a tag end.
My original leader is a 7.5 ft 3x leader. That gives me 2.5 to 3 feet of tippet, plus the 2 feet below the barrel swivel. I end up with a good 5 plus feet of tippet below the surface which means the leader sinks faster and I get much less drag from having the thicker end of the leader under water. Little side note, since I fish all year, I actually will pre-tie to bottom set of flies at home in the winter time. I might make two or three full rigs with a loop to loop connection at the top. That way if it is really cold I don't have to spend as much time tying knots and freezing my hands.
Unlike ottosmajic I don't use a tippet ring in the winter time, early spring or fall, when I am only going to be nymph fishing. I only switch to those in the summer months, it is Northern Montana, so July and august, because I might throw a dry fly from time to time and the barrel swivel will just drag the dries down. But similar set up, just replacing the barrel swivel with a tippet ring.
0721200734a.jpg
 

LePetomane

Well-known member
Messages
200
Reaction score
150
Location
Wyoming
I have always attached the tippet for the dropper to the bend of the hook on the upper fly. I have also used a blood knot to attach leader to tippet and tied the upper fly to the tag. This allows one to change the upper fly. It is a royal pain in the butt at the beginning but if you’re nymphing all day then it pays off. I do put the heavier fly on the bottom and the non weighted one on the top. When I fish the Montana section of the Bighorn my standard is a Ray Charles on the top and a Piss Willie on the bottom.
 
Last edited:

caddis75

Well-known member
Messages
213
Reaction score
17
Location
Philadelphia, PA
I've always set up my nymph rig by tying the bottom nymph to the hook of the top one. I always wondered if having a knot on the top fly discouraged fish to take it but wasn't smart enough to count how many hit the top fly versus the bottom. On a trip last week to the upper Delaware in NY, the guide set up the the top fly using a perfection loop and the bottom fly by tying the tippet above the top fly with a uni knot. That way there's no knot on the hook of the top fly. We caught a lot of fish and some on the top fly, some on the bottom fly.
Much cleaner rig. Guess I should have figured that one out myself!
I used to do that. About 6 months ago I changed. Now I tie the point fly to the main tippet and the second fly off of a tippet tag about 24 inches up. I feel like my catch rate has gone up, but it's not like I am collecting data on it or anything.
 

okaloosa

Well-known member
Messages
788
Reaction score
97
Location
CO
I used to do that. About 6 months ago I changed. Now I tie the point fly to the main tippet and the second fly off of a tippet tag about 24 inches up. I feel like my catch rate has gone up, but it's not like I am collecting data on it or anything.
every time I try that the only thing that goes up is my tangle rate especially with 6X or 7X leader......but obviously it must work since just about every competitive euro nympher uses that set up....
 

mtboiler

Well-known member
Messages
575
Reaction score
110
Location
Whitefish, MT
every time I try that the only thing that goes up is my tangle rate especially with 6X or 7X leader......but obviously it must work since just about every competitive euro nympher uses that set up....
A few things to help you tangle less with that rig. First and foremost, don't shadow cast much. Second, a barrel swivel significantly reduces the leader twist that usually starts the tangle. Third, I try to roll cast or simply pick up and put down throwing upstream without shadow casting as much as possible. I also use a mono leader to start with. I find mono twists less than fluoro. My only fluoro is the tag end at the top. A tag end that is pointing up tangles or wraps far less than a tag end that is cut to point down. Plus, it sticks out from the leader more and moves better. Finally, my trial and error has taught me that the 1 to 3 ratio tangles less. The tag end is 1/3 the length of the distance to the bottom fly.
 

caddis75

Well-known member
Messages
213
Reaction score
17
Location
Philadelphia, PA
A few things to help you tangle less with that rig. First and foremost, don't shadow cast much. Second, a barrel swivel significantly reduces the leader twist that usually starts the tangle. Third, I try to roll cast or simply pick up and put down throwing upstream without shadow casting as much as possible. I also use a mono leader to start with. I find mono twists less than fluoro. My only fluoro is the tag end at the top. A tag end that is pointing up tangles or wraps far less than a tag end that is cut to point down. Plus, it sticks out from the leader more and moves better. Finally, my trial and error has taught me that the 1 to 3 ratio tangles less. The tag end is 1/3 the length of the distance to the bottom fly.
Yes, Basically 99% of my casts are a simple flip from downstream to upstream. I have found that some weight on the tag fly helps prevent twisting. I haven't needed swivels, but they could work. I keep my tags about 12 inches or less in length.
 

bigal36

Well-known member
Messages
128
Reaction score
2
Location
Maryland - Gunpowder River
A few things to help you tangle less with that rig. First and foremost, don't shadow cast much. Second, a barrel swivel significantly reduces the leader twist that usually starts the tangle. Third, I try to roll cast or simply pick up and put down throwing upstream without shadow casting as much as possible. I also use a mono leader to start with. I find mono twists less than fluoro. My only fluoro is the tag end at the top. A tag end that is pointing up tangles or wraps far less than a tag end that is cut to point down. Plus, it sticks out from the leader more and moves better. Finally, my trial and error has taught me that the 1 to 3 ratio tangles less. The tag end is 1/3 the length of the distance to the bottom fly.

Boy I wish we had this discussion 3 years ago!! I started following Troutbitten's process of the "mono rig" shortly after I started fly fishing. It was a disaster for a number of reasons - mostly I had no concept of leader design to line weight to rod weight - its was a complete disaster when casting.

Early this year I met up with a guy who has been doing this style of fishing for decades and he cured most of my casting issue - I was doing dropper with 6x vs 4x/5x. Complete game changer...

I have watched about 5 hours of George Daniel's approach, some of the things I'm trying -

-changed my line to a competition line vs mono or dt/wf,

- adding a sighter system - mono and yarn indicators vs bobber

- adding a barrell stopper and tell-tale (Troutbitten's ideas using backing)

- experimenting using perfection loops to attach tag as described above....the barrell stopper allows you to slide the nymph up and down the water column.

- experimenting using two unweighted nymphs, attached by tags and loop to hook...add shot to bottom of rig - (George likes to add the minimum he will need for a given stretch and then add some tungsten putty as needed.

- experimenting with Davey and Clinch knots when adding droppers vs surgeons....I am also liking the Orvis tippet knot when I have room to work with.

Two other things I learned recently - the drift runs from 45 degrees to center, 20 degrees past center....the cast is just a flick. Using the heavier leader really allows you to flip it about without getting a birds nest. I am also checking the rig reguarly and have been really pleased at how well it holds up.

When I want to cast dry flies, I roll up that leader on a foam holder...adding a ready to go rig from another holder. I have several of these holder with me - a dry with no tippet ring, streamer with tippet ring, and a general purpose rig with a tippet ring for dry dry or hopper dropper.

The development of my own process has been somewhat brutal at times, but I do give thanks all those that have contributed to my success through their own experimentation.
 

mtboiler

Well-known member
Messages
575
Reaction score
110
Location
Whitefish, MT
When I want to cast dry flies, I roll up that leader on a foam holder...adding a ready to go rig from another holder. I have several of these holder with me - a dry with no tippet ring, streamer with tippet ring, and a general purpose rig with a tippet ring for dry dry or hopper dropper.
I use a piece of pool noodle in the winter for this as well. Typically, I pre-tie several set ups before I go out. If I plan on floating I also pre-tie sets of flies. I have gotten away from doing this in the summer time because, well I get lazy and don't spend the time to tie them before I go out. In the winter, it is an absolute must to make sure my hands stay warm.
My set up is a barrel swivel, size 14, with nymphs, unless I need to go deeper, than I go size 12. I use a bigger barrel swivel, size 7 or 5 for streamers and a tippet ring for dry flies.
 
Top