Euro nymphing with a short rod

madison320

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I fish small southern Appalachian creeks, where there's not much room and I'm still searching for a nymphing technique that I like, although I'm hoping I finally found it. My latest attempt is using a little dacron sighter attached directly to my fly line, followed by 5' of 5X and a single beadhead nymph. I'm using a 7'6" 3wt. One thing I didn't realize is that you can cast up and across, not just cast straight upstream like most of the Czech nymphing examples I've seen (I have noticed however a lot more examples of casting up and across lately). This allows you to cover a lot more water than just casting straight upstream. I've been catching more fish this way than any other technique so far. One reason it took me so long to really try this was that so many of the articles I read said it doesn't work with a short rod. I even bought a 9'6" nymphing rod but it was virtually impossible to use it on the brushy stream I fish. Now that I've been using it for awhile I don't see the big deal of using a shorter rod. It might be less efficient than a longer rod but a longer rod on a tight stream is impossible.

Here is the sighter I've been using although I think there's probably a bunch of different sighters you can use.

Euro Indicator | Czech Nymph Indicator

The next thing I'm going to test is substituting either nylon or braided superline for the fly line. The biggest problem I have now is when I want to make a slightly longer cast. The weight of the fly line starts to get too heavy when you get too much of it out over the water. The fly will start dragging towards you.
 

Rip Tide

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It's called 'high sticking". Not new.
Been doing it since I was a kid when I learned how to drift 'garden hackle" through pocket water
 
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madison320

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It's called 'high sticking". Not new.
Been doing it since I was a kid when I learned how to drift 'garden hackle" through pocket water
That's true but I think some of the details have changed enough that it went from a technique I didn't like to one that I did. For example using a sighter, using only thin 5x tippet underwater, putting all the weight in the fly instead of split shot and using a jig hook. And although I haven't tried it yet I think using mono instead of fly line will make it even better.
 

dillon

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That's true but I think some of the details have changed enough that it went from a technique I didn't like to one that I did. For example using a sighter, using only thin 5x tippet underwater, putting all the weight in the fly instead of split shot and using a jig hook. And although I haven't tried it yet I think using mono instead of fly line will make it even better.
Interesting, what reel Will you use for casting the mono line?
 

WNCtroutstalker

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Here is the sighter I've been using although I think there's probably a bunch of different sighters you can use.

Euro Indicator | Czech Nymph Indicator

The biggest problem I have now is when I want to make a slightly longer cast. The weight of the fly line starts to get too heavy when you get too much of it out over the water. The fly will start dragging towards you.
Interesting that the sighter attaches to the fly line. I generally think of it being in the middle of the leader. Not sure I follow the part about the line being heavy if over the water. What I could see dragging the fly is if the end of the line is inside the tip of the rod--to maintain tight contact, you want the line outside the tip or entirely on the reel, if inside the tip it'll slide back toward the reel. Doesn't sound like that's what you're describing though. Anyways, you might consider using a longer leader with a built in sighter and just casting that. There are pre-tied ones or you could just build one yourself. There should be lots of formulas on the internet. One easy way is to start with a tapered leader and tie on some sighter material (you could tie a tippet ring to the end of the tapered leader and then tie the sighter piece onto the same tippet ring), then tie a tippet ring onto the other other end of the sighter material and then attach your tippet to that same tippet ring. With your short rod, I'd think you'd be casting just the leader. Good luck to you.
 

sab_0010

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For highsticking, I use leaders made from about 20' of 20lb Maxima Chameleon, 4' of 15lb Maxima Chameleon, 2' of 12lb Maxima Chameleon, a short section of cortland bicolor indicator mono in yellow/orange (.012), followed by a tippet ring and a couple feet of 5x flourocarbon. The first section of mono is long because I attach it to my normal floating line and you don't want that on the water while highsticking, obviously.
 

madison320

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Interesting that the sighter attaches to the fly line. I generally think of it being in the middle of the leader. Not sure I follow the part about the line being heavy if over the water. What I could see dragging the fly is if the end of the line is inside the tip of the rod--to maintain tight contact, you want the line outside the tip or entirely on the reel, if inside the tip it'll slide back toward the reel. Doesn't sound like that's what you're describing though. Anyways, you might consider using a longer leader with a built in sighter and just casting that. There are pre-tied ones or you could just build one yourself. There should be lots of formulas on the internet. One easy way is to start with a tapered leader and tie on some sighter material (you could tie a tippet ring to the end of the tapered leader and then tie the sighter piece onto the same tippet ring), then tie a tippet ring onto the other other end of the sighter material and then attach your tippet to that same tippet ring. With your short rod, I'd think you'd be casting just the leader. Good luck to you.
I tied it straight to the line after I saw it in a video that went with the sighter. That's a really good idea to build the sighter into the leader! I have an idea that may work, I'm using a funky leader for my dries, made out of braided spectre line. I think I could tie one or two uni knots with yellow dacron backing at the end of the leader right before the tippet ring.

The "drag" I'm talking about is from the weight of the fly line suspended over the water. One way to visualize it is to imagine casting some floating fly line with a dry fly on still water where you have maybe 10 feet of fly line out past the tip. If you tried to high stick and lift all the line out of the water the fly would start dragging towards you as the line started to sag until it hits the water. The idea is that if you have lighter line you can high stick at a farther distance with the fly dragging back towards you.
 

madison320

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For highsticking, I use leaders made from about 20' of 20lb Maxima Chameleon, 4' of 15lb Maxima Chameleon, 2' of 12lb Maxima Chameleon, a short section of cortland bicolor indicator mono in yellow/orange (.012), followed by a tippet ring and a couple feet of 5x flourocarbon. The first section of mono is long because I attach it to my normal floating line and you don't want that on the water while highsticking, obviously.
That sounds like a good setup. I'm first going to try basically a shorter version of that to see if I can use it for both dries and highsticking. Since I'm only using a 7'6" rod I think my 6' leader might work. I'm usually on very small streams and usually only have about 4 feet of fly line past the tip.

Thanks!
 

sab_0010

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I tied it straight to the line after I saw it in a video that went with the sighter. That's a really good idea to build the sighter into the leader! I have an idea that may work, I'm using a funky leader for my dries, made out of braided spectre line. I think I could tie one or two uni knots with yellow dacron backing at the end of the leader right before the tippet ring.

The "drag" I'm talking about is from the weight of the fly line suspended over the water. One way to visualize it is to imagine casting some floating fly line with a dry fly on still water where you have maybe 10 feet of fly line out past the tip. If you tried to high stick and lift all the line out of the water the fly would start dragging towards you as the line started to sag until it hits the water. The idea is that if you have lighter line you can high stick at a farther distance with the fly dragging back towards you.
This is why the butt section of my leader is very long.
 

wf0

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I like to long-line nymph creeks with a 8' 0wt SPL, using 15-18' leaders.

I start with a tapered 9' 1x leader, add a sighter tapering from 2x to 4x (8-12" ea, blood-knot beads, 2-3' total), tippet ring, then 6' of 5-7x tippet to single #16-20 perdigon, occasionally adding a soft hackle. Grease sighter. Hold it off when you can. Float it when you can't. I feel more confident in detecting takes when it's tight. Using a 0wt line helps with droop and drag at a distance. I connect the leader to line via a knotless zap-a-gap splice for a smooth connection - I do the same for my long french leaders on my longer euro-nymph rods. I'll even use this set up honing my nymphing skills to target super-picky lighting-spitting bluegill in the winter.
 

stimulator2

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I know guys been doing that for 40 yrs here in WNC and they will use an old automatic fly reel and just spool it with 8lbs mono,big heavy nymphs and 2 or 3 split shot, hold rod high and keep nymphs in touch with bottom.Been effective along time .
 

madison320

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I like to long-line nymph creeks with a 8' 0wt SPL, using 15-18' leaders.

I start with a tapered 9' 1x leader, add a sighter tapering from 2x to 4x (8-12" ea, blood-knot beads, 2-3' total), tippet ring, then 6' of 5-7x tippet to single #16-20 perdigon, occasionally adding a soft hackle. Grease sighter. Hold it off when you can. Float it when you can't. I feel more confident in detecting takes when it's tight. Using a 0wt line helps with droop and drag at a distance. I connect the leader to line via a knotless zap-a-gap splice for a smooth connection - I do the same for my long french leaders on my longer euro-nymph rods. I'll even use this set up honing my nymphing skills to target super-picky lighting-spitting bluegill in the winter.
Do you fish dries with that? I've thought about the knotless splice if I could get a multi-purpose system I was happy with. I hate dealing with the loop to loop connection getting stuck in the tip.
 

wf0

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I fish just about everything with it. I'll shorten the sighter and tippet (and usually up a size to 4x) for bigger dries. I also use this setup with pine squirrel leech jigs for big bluegills and bass.
 

bigspencer

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I tied it straight to the line after I saw it in a video that went with the sighter. That's a really good idea to build the sighter into the leader! I have an idea that may work, I'm using a funky leader for my dries, made out of braided spectre line. I think I could tie one or two uni knots with yellow dacron backing at the end of the leader right before the tippet ring.

The "drag" I'm talking about is from the weight of the fly line suspended over the water. One way to visualize it is to imagine casting some floating fly line with a dry fly on still water where you have maybe 10 feet of fly line out past the tip. If you tried to high stick and lift all the line out of the water the fly would start dragging towards you as the line started to sag until it hits the water. The idea is that if you have lighter line you can high stick at a farther distance with the fly dragging back towards you.
The idea is to tune up one's casts other than a straight line cast......thus having the rod already positioned at a high-stick position as the fly hits the water...without the need to do as little mending as possible, regardless of rod length...
Leave to the unskilled authors to award a basic casting/mending skill to the anglers across the pond...:rolleyes:
 

jangles

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You are correct Madison .
It doesn't matter what the rod angle is , if you have regular fly line out past the end of your rod the weight will pull the lighter weight mono towards it thus using mono for the line is the sensible thing to do . I use 30 feet of mono when nymphing and my fly line never gets past the tip .

The reason you see some people fishing straight upstream is because they are fishing one particular seam at a time . When you fish across you are fishing many seams and none for a long time but you do sometimes pick up a strike on the downstream swing . Regards

The Mono Rig | Troutbitten
 

Bigfly

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I think that the rod length is relative to your water.....I think you need a bigger stream......

Jim
 

bigspencer

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Madison320,
Just because many of these newly named fishing techniques are said to be the holy grails....doesn't mean that we don't have to MEND our line anymore!
 

sparsegraystubble

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You might want to check out troutbitten.com for a ton of information on fishing streams using a mono rig instead of fly line. There is such a wealth of material there that you might get lost but look for an article titled “Why fly line sucks” and then go from there.

Dom, the guy who writes the content, is located in central Pennsylvania, but his stuff translates into almost any stream situation.

It is really worth putting some time in on that site, especially for someone just getting into using running line instead of fly line for subsurface fishing in streams.

Don
 

roadkill1948

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I tied it straight to the line after I saw it in a video that went with the sighter. That's a really good idea to build the sighter into the leader! I have an idea that may work, I'm using a funky leader for my dries, made out of braided spectre line. I think I could tie one or two uni knots with yellow dacron backing at the end of the leader right before the tippet ring.
Yes, that will work. A short piece of backing/dental floss/? uni knotted on the leader can be a good indicator. It can be adjusted up and down the leader as needed. If a suspension indicator (bobber) is needed, it can be attached to the uni-knotted indicator tags. Locally it is known as the Jack Miller leader/indicator.
 
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