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  1. #1

    Default What type of line and flies do you use for striped bass?

    I currently have WF7F on my rod and was just wondering if I would actually be able to use that when going for stripers. I would assume I would have to use some sort of streamer so the fly gets below the surface but I wasn't sure if WF7F line would even work. Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Southern NH
    Posts
    2,705

    Default Re: What type of line and flies do you use for striped bass?

    I use a 7 wt rod often for stripers, but with a sinking line.
    Most people prefer a sinking tip rather than a whole sinking line.
    Floating lines are good for whenever there's top-water action, but most of the time everyone wants to get down in the water column partly to avoid the smaller fish that are closer to the surface.
    You could add a 10-15 foot sinking tip to your WF7F line. Your casts might need to slow down some if you did that.
    Clousers, crab imitations and deceivers are the most common flies.
    Today is always the first day of the rest of your life.
    Use it wisely.

    Paul

  3. Likes LimerickShaw, tcorfey liked this post
  4. #3

    Default Re: What type of line and flies do you use for striped bass?

    I just returned home from my 24th annual striper fishing trip to Cape Cod. Pretty much everyone I fish with uses a 9wt rod with an intermediate line. I sometimes use a "depth charge" full-sinking line and once in a while, a floating line.

    The ever-present wind at the coast pretty much makes a heavier fly rod necessary. I fished with an 8wt and sink-tip line my first couple of years. That worked just fine. If you fish an area where you can pick your fishing spots according to the wind direction, you should be able to have some fun with your 7wt. and a sink-tip or intermediate line.

    Simple streamer patterns work well on stripers, particularly patterns that imitate the sand eel (American Sand Lance). They are small, slim, and easy to cast. Clousers are also a very popular striped bass fly.

    Tight lines,
    Bob
    At the southern tip of Lake Champlain

  5. #4

    Default Re: What type of line and flies do you use for striped bass?

    I don't use sinking lines ... so I can't comment on those. Both of my 8 weights have the appropriate size line on. I have a straight piece of 14# mono for leader with no tippet. Fishing 4 inch or less streamers for largemouth bass.

  6. #5

    Default Re: What type of line and flies do you use for striped bass?

    There's another striper discussion going on right now where I listed a lot of this, as did others who are probably more knowledgeable than me. Here is the link: Chasing Freshwater Stripers

    I have used 7wts while lake fishing for striper, and they work, but I prefer an 8 or 9. As for the floating line, that depends on where the fish are in the water column. Really, it all depends on the type of water and conditions in which you are fishing. Your technique will be much different from the beach than from a boat, same with ocean vs river or lake.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Manning, S. C. (formerly MD)
    Posts
    3,164

    Default Re: What type of line and flies do you use for striped bass?

    I've caught Stripers on my 6 wt several times. What weight rod might be the best choice depends on where you're fishing, the size/weight of the flies you intend to use & the conditions you'll encounter. My 6 wt was fine in small tidal creeks, where I used simple fly patterns that could be cast 30 or 40 ft, and there was little or no wind to deal with. I use a 10 wt often too, but I like using large streamers, some being 8" long. I use a floating line often, as it works fine with weighted flies as long as the fish are no deeper than about 10'. Of course it's a good choice for topwater flies. Otherwise, I have multiple sinking lines that sink at various rates, from slow to very fast on spare spools for my reels. All this to deal with whatever situation & conditions I may find.

    As far as flies, Stripers are not often picky, but they can be selective and key on certain prey. That's often due to a single prey being prevalent. They can show preferences for prey & thus flies of certain sizes or profiles. Again, usually because they're keying on specific prey. Sand eel patterns have been mentioned, but that's not the only forage, and to be prepared flies should be in your fly box to cover whatever size or shape prey may be present. That means slim and sparse, and big & meaty. Patterns don't have to be too realistic, but should somewhat resemble the forage. However, color patterns like chartreuse & white work well. I like to have both light & dark colors.

    A good weight forward line in appropriate weight for your rod will be fine, but the bigger or more wind resistant the flies may be, you may want a line with a shorter, heavy head, like some of the "Striper" lines. I tend to buy these types of lines rather than general purpose lines, again because I like throwing the bigger flies. I don't over line my rod much, but have occasionally put 9 wt lines on 8 wt rods, and 10 wt line on my 9 wt's.
    There is no single answer to your questions. If what you have works to cast the flies in the conditions, and you can get the flies in front of some Stripers, then that's all you need.
    Remember, no one likes to be behind the big truck, but that's better than being under it!

  8. #7

    Default Re: What type of line and flies do you use for striped bass?

    Look up articles by Steve Culton. He likes to fish a floating line for stripers, has caught them on a 5 wt, and perfers not to put fish on the reel. He advocates for a longer leader, heavier fly, and more control with the floating line that gives him a "better presentation." I think a lot of it depends on where you are going to fish. I fish all three, floating, int, and sink.

    Throw a clouser on for today and see how things go.

  9. #8

    Default Re: What type of line and flies do you use for striped bass?

    I fish striper on the west coast, in big surf. I use 7-8w rods--the fish are smaller here than back east. We use sinking lines (I like Type III) to get below the whitewater and keep a tight connection to the fly. Clousers are the most effective, in the middle or top of the water column. Too deep and your fly might not be as visible to the fish. If you haven't yet, check out the fly fishing forum at stripersonline.com. if the fish are within range of your cast, a fly is more effective than a lure, IMHO... and I do cast both.
    I'd rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy.

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Manning, S. C. (formerly MD)
    Posts
    3,164

    Default Re: What type of line and flies do you use for striped bass?

    Look up articles by Steve Culton. He likes to fish a floating line for stripers, has caught them on a 5 wt, and perfers not to put fish on the reel.
    That suggestion is a good one, Steve's an excellent angler & writer, and I read his blog frequently. However, what was not mentioned is that he uses a 9 wt line on his 5 wt. Steve also ties some beautiful flatwing streamers, and uses some rather large flies. They're not appreciably heavy, but with a 5 wt line might be difficult to cast. He has some other flies that might interest anyone targeting Stripers.

    I'm in full agreement about checking out his blog, (currentseams.com) as he has some excellent information there that may help you.
    Remember, no one likes to be behind the big truck, but that's better than being under it!

  11. #10

    Default Re: What type of line and flies do you use for striped bass?

    I’m no expert chasing stripers but I know enough to make the following statements...

    Line? Completely dependent on where and how you fish. Floating lines in the surf are a PITA. intermediate or sink tip with 25’ tips make life easier. Northeast flats call for floating lines.

    7wt vs 9wt, wind will tell you what is required. Don’t go out and buy a 9 for the rare striped trip until you’ve put in a few days and know more about what you want or need.

    Hope this helps lead you to the type of info you seek. Stripers Online is a great board to visit for a wealth of info.

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