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Basic leader formula for nymphing

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2007/6/20 11:26
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I have been a ff'er for about 10 years now but I never really got past beginner skill level with nymphing. Looking to up my game and i want to tie some flouro leaders up for a couple outings i have planned.

I will be fishing these leaders on a 9' 6 wt rod. I also fish dries with this rod on tapered mono leaders. Often when nymphing i have tried to use these same tapered mono leaders and after doing some research and reading i believe this is a big part of my issue

Additional input is also always welcome, thank you!

Posted on: 4/20 13:08


Re: Basic leader formula for nymphing
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2006/9/11 8:26
From Chester County
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Quote:

timmyt wrote:
I have been a ff'er for about 10 years now but I never really got past beginner skill level with nymphing. Looking to up my game and i want to tie some flouro leaders up for a couple outings i have planned.

I will be fishing these leaders on a 9' 6 wt rod. I also fish dries with this rod on tapered mono leaders. Often when nymphing i have tried to use these same tapered mono leaders and after doing some research and reading i believe this is a big part of my issue

Additional input is also always welcome, thank you!


Buying a fluoro leader for nymphing probably isn't the answer to improve your nymphing skills. In fact, it may do more harm than good. The last thing you want is for the tapered (thicker) part of your leader to do is sink. The bigger diameter of line drifting and submerged in the water, the more drag is imparted to your fly. This is true if you fish with or even without an indicator. In Euro nymphing or high-sticking you want everything from the sighter and above to either float or not even touch the water.

My suggestion, as a beginner, is to use a floating indicator. The mistake I see most anglers make is to attach their indicator high up on a tapered leader into the thicker tapered section.

I've even seen indies placed right at the fly line / leader junction or a foot or two from the end of the fly line.

Like a stated above, the heavier line will cause your fly to drag.

Also, the indie being attached to the heavier, stiffer line will cause you indy to drag.

Plus, being attached to the heavy line will make your indy less sensitive to subtle strikes by the fish.

And finally, with the indy and fly line being so close together, both your indy and fly line will float over the fish and spook many of them.

^ All bad things.

Try using your standard mono 7.5 - 9' tapered leader. > remember, you want your leader to float to be able to mend to your indy and not cause drag.

Attach a long tippet that's about twice the depth of the water.

Using a fluoro tippet may help since it sinks a litter faster and is likely more abrasion resistant than mono, but not mandatory.

Attach your indy on the tippet or close to the end of the leader that's very thin diameter similar to your tippet.

Adjust your rig from there > 1.5 - 2x the water depth.

Having only the thin tippet material submerged with the tapered leader and fly line floating > will give you less drag on the flies > less drag on the indy > more strike-detecting ability > as well a small indy floating over the fish and not your entire fly line will spook less fish.

Oh and don't forget to mend to the indy to get a good drift and a longer drift. Give it a try.

Good luck.

Posted on: 4/20 14:10

Edited by afishinado on 2018/4/20 14:34:34


Re: Basic leader formula for nymphing

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Are you using an indicator or not

Posted on: 4/20 14:42


Re: Basic leader formula for nymphing

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There is nothing wrong with using a standard tapered leader for nymphing.

I use the same leader for dry fly fishing and nymph fishing.

Just tie on a nymph and have at it.

Throw it up and across and drift it down through good looking spots.

I don't use indicators. Even if you try indicators, I highly recommend spending at least half you time nymphing without an indicator.

Fishing without an indicator is something that flyfishers should learn. And I don't mean just short line nymph fishing, but also nymph fishing with a good bit of line out (20 or 30 feet or so).



Posted on: 4/20 16:26


Re: Basic leader formula for nymphing

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Quote:

troutbert wrote:

I don't use indicators. Even if you try indicators, I highly recommend spending at least half you time nymphing without an indicator.

Fishing without an indicator is something that flyfishers should learn. And I don't mean just short line nymph fishing, but also nymph fishing with a good bit of line out (20 or 30 feet or so).




I second this.

Posted on: 4/21 0:59


Re: Basic leader formula for nymphing
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Remember fellas, this is the "Beginner Forum" which was put here for those looking to ask questions and receive help to get them started FFing. The whole idea of this forum is to make an effort to help these beginners and not disparage or discourage them.

When someone states they are a beginner to fishing (nymphing) and want to learn to catch a few fish, I recommend starting out by learning how to fish with an indicator and gave detailed recommendations as to how to rig and fish them.

I too rarely use an Indy, but the beginners forum is not about what I like fish, it's all about helping others get started.

Learning to FF, or really learning to do anything for that matter, is often a progression. Learn and master the basics and the easier techniques, and move on to more difficult things to master.
crawl > walk > run

I do agree that many FFers that have fished for a long time still "crawl" on the streams by solely relying on fishing bobbers to nymph. But that's their choice, I guess.

There are plenty of threads and posts in the other forums that give some really good info on nymphing without indies. But again, this is beginners forum.





Posted on: 4/21 7:17

Edited by afishinado on 2018/4/21 7:34:03


Re: Basic leader formula for nymphing

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2006/9/9 11:22
From New Castle, PA
Posts: 426
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My floating indicator leaders are incredibly simple.

3-4' butt of heavy mono (Stren, Trilene, Maxima, whatever). (1/2 25or 30lb test and 1/2 20lb test) with a tippet ring attached. Next, A mid section of 2 or 3x diameter material anywhere from 4-6' in length. This varies depending on how I rig my flies to my tippet/leader, but in the most basic in-line style of rigging I would attached a foot or so of lighter tippet to the end of the 2 or 3x material and then tie on my fly. Just above the knot between the mid section and the tippet being a great place to put you split shot as it will prevent it from sliding down t your fly. The floating indicator should be placed on the heavy butt section. If this leaves the indicator too close or too far from the flies, the mid section should be lengthened or shortened accordingly.

Even this brief paragraph might make it seem more complicated than it should.

At any rate there are some key advantages to this rig:

- It's easily created with with widely available conventional mono. The butt and mid sections need not be fly fishing specific mono (or fluoro). The tippet can be conventional line also so long as it is an appropriate diameter and of decent quality.

- The long, single diameter mid section sinks rapidly compared to a conventionally tapered leader which are generally designed to turnover a weightless fly rather than a nymph rig.

- Dirt cheap. You can fish a new leader every day. Heck, you can easily carry all the materials needed to completely rebuild d a leader if the need arises. The retail cost of tippet rings is ridiculous IMO, but they can be reused once a leader butt wears out. You won't lose very many when attaching them to a butt section anyway.

- Can be chopped up and reconfigured. I use the butt section as a basis for most of my leaders including streamer and tightline leaders.

Posted on: 4/21 9:45


Re: Basic leader formula for nymphing

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Quote:

afishinado wrote:
Remember fellas, this is the "Beginner Forum" which was put here for those looking to ask questions and receive help to get them started FFing. The whole idea of this forum is to make an effort to help these beginners and not disparage or discourage them.

Learning to FF, or really learning to do anything for that matter, is often a progression. Learn and master the basics and the easier techniques, and move on to more difficult things to master.
crawl > walk > run

There are plenty of threads and posts in the other forums that give some really good info on nymphing without indies. But again, this is beginners forum.



So just because it's not "your way" that a beginner should start it's not "beginner appropriate", not helpful, and not needed. Yeah okay.

There's more than one way to skin a cat in most instances, and a beginner should be aware of that fact instead of only being taught the "easiest" way. You hit on that downfall yourself, that's why most fly fishers only "crawl" because they don't know any other way exists. I think all that was said was the mention of other options. I don't see why giving a beginner options would be discouraged. But that's the world we live in now, how dare someone think for themselves, the thought of the masses is the only accepted thought.

I've never used an indicator in my life, I don't feel I need to because of how I was taught as a beginner, so I'll tell my mentors they taught me wrong.


Posted on: 4/21 21:52


Re: Basic leader formula for nymphing

Joined:
2006/11/2 8:50
Posts: 1783
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Quote:

afishinado wrote:
Remember fellas, this is the "Beginner Forum" which was put here for those looking to ask questions and receive help to get them started FFing. The whole idea of this forum is to make an effort to help these beginners and not disparage or discourage them.

When someone states they are a beginner to fishing (nymphing) and want to learn to catch a few fish, I recommend starting out by learning how to fish with an indicator and gave detailed recommendations as to how to rig and fish them.

I too rarely use an Indy, but the beginners forum is not about what I like fish, it's all about helping others get started.

Learning to FF, or really learning to do anything for that matter, is often a progression. Learn and master the basics and the easier techniques, and move on to more difficult things to master.
crawl > walk > run

I do agree that many FFers that have fished for a long time still "crawl" on the streams by solely relying on fishing bobbers to nymph. But that's their choice, I guess.

There are plenty of threads and posts in the other forums that give some really good info on nymphing without indies. But again, this is beginners forum



There was nothing disparaging or discouraging in my post.

And you're making the assumption that beginners must/should begin with indicator nymphing.

But that's where we disagree.

Through most of the history of nymph fishing, indicators were not used. So flyfishers obviously began fishing without indicators.

The common assumption that fishing without an indicator is a difficult, high level technique is simply wrong.

In some ways it's simpler, easier than using an indicator. Because there is one less thing to fool around with. It's more stripped down.

It can be VERY simple. A fly fisher can use a very standard tapered leader, such as 9 ft long, tapered to 5x.

Then just tie on a standard, common weighted nymph, such as a beadhead Walts Worm, or a beadhead pheasant tail, and FISH.

Cast the nymph upstream at about a 45 degree angle. Follow the line with your rod tip as it drifts down. Watch for takes and when you see one, set the hook.

That's it! It is very simple.

I've showed people the basics of this in about 15 minutes, and they got the hang of it very quickly.






Posted on: 4/21 23:17


Re: Basic leader formula for nymphing
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Joined:
2006/9/11 8:26
From Chester County
Posts: 2949
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Quote:
I have been a ff'er for about 10 years now but I never really got past beginner skill level with nymphing. Looking to up my game and i want to tie some flouro leaders up for a couple outings i have planned.

I will be fishing these leaders on a 9' 6 wt rod. I also fish dries with this rod on tapered mono leaders. Often when nymphing i have tried to use these same tapered mono leaders and after doing some research and reading i believe this is a big part of my issue

Additional input is also always welcome, thank you!


Quote:

BrookieChaser wrote:
Quote:

troutbert wrote:

I don't use indicators. Even if you try indicators, I highly recommend spending at least half you time nymphing without an indicator.

Fishing without an indicator is something that flyfishers should learn. And I don't mean just short line nymph fishing, but also nymph fishing with a good bit of line out (20 or 30 feet or so).




I second this.


^In what way are these posts above answering the beginners question (using a fluoro leader) or even helpful in any way?

Giving an opinion on anything is fine, but the beginners forum is a place to help out FFers looking to learn something or improve their skills. Saying learn to fish without an indicator is fine, but giving advice on how to set up the rig, why it's better, when it most useful, etc. is helpful and is why the Beginner forum was created.

I tried to answer the OP question (below) and gave him the why and how rigging on how to help him be a better nympher.

Buying a fluoro leader for nymphing probably isn't the answer to improve your nymphing skills. In fact, it may do more harm than good. The last thing you want is for the tapered (thicker) part of your leader to do is sink. The bigger diameter of line drifting and submerged in the water, the more drag is imparted to your fly. This is true if you fish with or even without an indicator. In Euro nymphing or high-sticking you want everything from the sighter and above to either float or not even touch the water.

Try using your standard mono 7.5 - 9' tapered leader. > remember, you want your leader to float to be able to mend to your indy and not cause drag. Attach a long tippet that's about twice the depth of the water.


Anyone is welcomed to answer beginners questions to help out, PennKev gave a really good post on a leader system and rig that can be really helpful to both beginners as well as FFers looking for a simple rig to step up their game.

Maybe some on here have a case of cabin fever....the winter's over, relax, enjoy, get out and do a little fishin'...




Posted on: 4/22 8:13

Edited by afishinado on 2018/4/22 8:33:39
Edited by afishinado on 2018/4/22 8:36:36


Re: Basic leader formula for nymphing

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2016/2/7 11:59
Posts: 28
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I initially learned how to nymph using Joe Humphrey's tactics. They worked, but the were a struggle for me and I really didn't enjoy nymphing. I started trying the Euro style, which I think is a natural evolution of nymphing from Joe's style. It works pretty well for me. There are a billion different nymphing leaders you can make and they will all have their pros and cons. I saw a video the Lively Legz crew put out on a quicky leader and liked it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_c8o5JZluo0

I also suggest watching a few videos on how you successfully nymph. It will help a heck of a lot more than a text style explanation or even having someone explain it to you away from the water. I find actually seeing someone do something helps me a ton.

Tight lines!!

Posted on: 5/1 14:59


Re: Basic leader formula for nymphing

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2011/7/6 15:59
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U tube videos is an excellent suggestion. Ignore any and all Hank Patterson, Worlds Greatest Fly Fishing Guide (snap it), videos!

Posted on: 6/9 19:03


Re: Basic leader formula for nymphing

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2014/9/30 15:26
From Lehigh Gorge
Posts: 118
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Years ago I was taught to nymph by my S Platte guide. Charlie Craven of fly tying fame. The same rig is in Dave Hughes Nymphing book. ( Excellent book for beginners )

This is as simple and effective as it gets. Use a std 7.5 ft 3X tapered leader. Triple sugeon loop a 9 inch pc of 4x and tie fly #1 here. Attach a second 9 inch pc of 4X to the bend of fly #1 and attach Fly # 2 to the other end. Place 2 bb size sinkers at the knot where the 3X and 4X are Joined. You now have a 9 ft leader.

Place your indicator about 1 1/2 the depth of water you are fishing, up the leader from the sinkers. Typical nymphing water is about 3 ft so start about 41/2 ft from sinkers. If you are not seeing you indicator twitch as you tick bottom, add another sinker or move indicator up the leader. Conversely if you are hanging up to much remove one sinker or move indicator down the line.

Try to keep all line above the indicator out of the water. You line should have a little "J" where it meets the indicator.

Good luck.

If fly's start to hatch remove sinkers, and tie on a new 1 1/2 ft piece of 4x and a dry fly and you are in business. Tippet rings are an excellent modification of this rig and makes switching over much easier. It also saves your tapered leaders.

Posted on: 6/9 21:39


Re: Basic leader formula for nymphing

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Hello all. I am brand new on here. I began ff'ing last November so I am still crawling, bumping my head and outright scaring fish out of the food line.
Also, and probably to early on, I am wondering about nymphing methods.
I scoured the internet looking for nymphing rigs and recently put together a drop shot with one nymph that I took to the water for the first time this week. No catching as of yet and that's ok with me because I am aware of all the variables involved with giving a life like presentation to the fish. I am very patient and am hopeful that things will come together one day. I keep going out to experiment, notice and learn about what the water current is doing to my flies.
Honestly, I am from the school of thought where I don't want to use an indicator for nymphing. From ff'ing a short while, I could see how the subject of using indicators is a big cause for debate. We all have our reasons. I, for one, very much appreciate the advice given to fish without an indicator. As I said, I'm very new to all this and going without and indicator is just the way I would like to go about things. As frustrating as it may be to go out and not catch, it forces me to notice what is going on with my line, leader and flies. It also gives me a chance to try and hone in my techniques and properly present my flies in the purist sense.
I mean no disrespect to anyone who uses indicators. To each their own. I just wanted to throw my two cents in because I am a beginner and I do appreciate the fact that there are others out there who have never or just do not see indicator fishing as an option. I am thankful for all the advice given. We each find our own way through experience of our own and others.

Posted on: 6/14 8:46


Re: Basic leader formula for nymphing

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From Lititz, PA
Posts: 333
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I just spent a half day fishing in Colorado with a guide nymph fishing and it was indicator fishing with three flies. The one on the bottom was an emerger. What the guide stressed to me was after the roll cast to get the mend in the line just right.

This was my third time fishing with nymphs, and all with guides. The indicator was a tremendous help getting my drift just right with both the upstream and downstream mend. I would have been just guessing without an indicator. It really helped me fish for trout that see a lot of angling pressue.

The strategy was to get the drift just right and at the end of the drift let the emerger emerge to the top. Easier said than done, but it worked.

I need to improve my casting too but am now jumping into fly fishing with both feet and am determined to get better. Maybe some day I will learn enough to nymph without indicators but I know that I won't be ready on my 4th time all by myself without a guide.

Posted on: 6/19 16:58






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