Wet Fly Fishing Tips & Techniques | Guide Tips

Jan 5, 2023

So i'm in northern ontario on a little trout stream and i'm swinging soft tackle wet flies what's a soft tackle wet fly it can be any of the more traditional uh british and scottish patterns from the turn of the century like various high country spiders or partridge in orange but it's basically a fly that sinks and the materials provide some animation to it so it makes it look like a living insect why am i swinging soft tackles as opposed to dry fly fishing i'm seeing some bug activity in the air not a lot but i know that there's fish in here i'm not seeing much surface activity so right now i'm just searching and this is a terrific way to probe for trout so typically what i do is i start with a fairly short line and then after each cast after i swing the fly through after each cast i add a couple feet depending on the size of the of the run just to show my fly to a new fish i'm going to cast slow the fly down and let it swing through various likely looking spots where a fish might hold and i'll let that swing through once i've covered the this run either by lengthening my cast or stepping down and showing my fly to new fish i'll move on find another pocket or a little run and complete that process.


You can see simply by doing that you're showing your fly to a lot of fish and for beginners this is a really good way to cut your teeth because it's not as tactile although it can be it's not as tactile as say euro nymphing or nymphing with a strike indicator or dry fly fishing especially so to recap the two things i want to do is cover the water to show my fly to new fish and make my fly look as naturally as possible what do you do with this line under your hand it's very important that we manage the line it doesn't matter what you're fishing for whether you're swinging flies wet flies fishing atlantic salmon or or dry fly fishing it's very important to manage this line between your finger and the reel too much line could lead to a big mess up factor and what i mean by that is if i've got a lot of line between my reel and my index finger on my handle hand and a good fish takes that if he takes that and turns and just blows out of the pool this good odds are good that this this line is going to shoot up and could very easily get wrapped around the handle or behind the reel that once that comes tight it's game over.


So the two most accepted styles of holding the line is what we what we refer to as a soft loop after my cast i'm simply going to bring the fly line under my index finger and drop about 18 to 24 inches of loop behind my index finger in between the reel this way when a fish hits he has the opportunity to take the line through that that soft loop and then game on the other method is directly off the reel and this is how i prefer to fish and to teach this presentation when i make my cast and set the fly up for where i want it to swing i bring the fly line or allow the fly line to go directly to the reel why do i do this i learned many years ago guiding that the tendency especially for for new fly fishers the tendency is when that fish hits to clamp down and if you clamp down on on 4x tip it with a small fly odds are pretty good that fly is going to part and end up staying in the fish's mouth so what i'm going to do is before i head out i'm going to make my make sure that my drag is not too prohibitive but not to the point where it's going to overspool if a fish hits when i'm direct to the reel it allows the fish to take the fly turn with it you'll feel the line come off the reel and then it's simply a matter of lifting the rod and fighting the fish there's no line to get tangled and you're going to eliminate that that that tendency to clamp down and hold the line and restrict the fish i hope these tips were helpful to you and until next time have fun in the water you

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