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Tips for fishing small flies

Joined:
2012/12/9 15:03
From Lewistown, PA
Posts: 396
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I recently stocked my fly box with some small midge patterns - sizes 20 to 24. I tied one on the other day because fish were rising to midges, but as soon as I cast it I lost sight of it.

I thought about just setting the hook whenever a fish rose anywhere close to where I thought the fly was, but they were rising frequently and all over the place, so that plan didn't work well. I ended up just tying a larger parachute adams that I could see. I did catch a few fish, but saw at least two refusals that probably wouldn't have happened if I had had the midge pattern on.

Any advice?

Posted on: 2013/3/18 18:09


Re: Tips for fishing small flies

Joined:
2011/8/16 7:41
From Tyrone
Posts: 215
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Tie the midge as a dropper about 15" behind the adams. Watch for rise forms close to the adams or watch for the adams to move (like an indicator) set the hook.

Posted on: 2013/3/18 18:38


Re: Tips for fishing small flies

Joined:
2012/12/9 15:03
From Lewistown, PA
Posts: 396
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Why didn't I think of that? Lol. Thanks!

Posted on: 2013/3/19 8:11


Re: Tips for fishing small flies

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2008/1/31 17:19
From Pretty much everywhere at some point, Thorndale today.
Posts: 13424
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Yeah, seeing small patterns, especially in broken water, is tough. Can try the adams thing. You can also shift positions, often a slight change in angle gives you a better view with glare situations and such. If you aren't already, polarized sunglasses help with this as well.

Otherwise it's mostly about getting a better feeling for where your fly is at. When you can know more exactly, the window you are focusing on gets smaller, and the number of rises in that window isn't quite as frequent. That comes with practice. I prescribe for you to spend much more time on these fish that rise so consistently!!!!

Posted on: 2013/3/19 8:31


Re: Tips for fishing small flies

Joined:
2009/7/28 19:49
From Shrewsbury, PA
Posts: 202
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I agree that it can be a bit difficult to see small midges on the surface. I agree that fishing a midge behind a dry can be productive. When I fish a two midge rig on the surface, I will coat the tippet with a floatant before the lead fly and I watch this section for movement. I also don't fish this rig at great distances. Lastly, I've found it to be productive to cast the rig slightly across and downstream so the that midges "arrive" first and not the tippet.

I do a lot of midge fishing and have been very successful with fishing pupas and emergers below the surface. I will weight a midge with a small tungsten midge bead or use a non-weighted pupa with split shot and fish an emerger pattern (I use a tuft of CDC behind the head) about 16 to 20 inches behind the weighted pupa. I either high stick (fishing close) or use a small indicator when fishing far. I've also found it to be productive to add a little movement to the rig (a slight up and down movement) especially during hatches.

Posted on: 2013/3/19 9:05


Re: Tips for fishing small flies
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Joined:
2006/9/11 8:26
From Chester County
Posts: 8965
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The main problem I've had with two flies is they often end up in two different current lanes the flies pull against each other, causing unnatural drag.

Try rubbing a small amount of bright colored strike putty on the tippet knot. You can spot the SP on the water and usually follow it back to the fly. Even if you can't see the fly, you can watch the SP.

Often, when fishing midges, there are a lot of bugs and fish rising in a small area and you end up setting the hook when the fish are actually taking a natural. With the SP on your tippet, you set only when you see the it move.

A small speck of SP really doesn't seem spook the fish, in fact the fish often strike the putty rather than my fly.

Posted on: 2013/3/20 7:59


Re: Tips for fishing small flies

Joined:
2012/12/9 15:03
From Lewistown, PA
Posts: 396
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I like the strike putty idea too. I'll have to give it a try.

Posted on: 2013/3/20 8:18


Re: Tips for fishing small flies

Joined:
2011/7/6 13:48
From Philadelphia PA
Posts: 1496
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Can we put a hook where the Strike Putty is?

Posted on: 2013/3/20 16:58
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Re: Tips for fishing small flies

Joined:
2012/9/30 21:12
Posts: 137
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I guess these tiny visual indicators (the tippet itself, the tippet knot with a small glob of strike putty) work in spots that are different from where I would usually try to fish using them. I guess that's a clue right there

I have a hard enough time seeing a size 16 dry amidst the foam bubbles and such at 25' distance.... can't imagine doing a midge.

But hanging a midge off a para adams will work.


Posted on: 2013/3/20 17:12


Re: Tips for fishing small flies

Joined:
2012/3/14 6:23
From Lancaster
Posts: 983
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For the past few seasons I have been dropping my trico spinners off the bend of a size 18 Griffiths Gnat. I do the same thing sometimes when fishing Zebra midges. I tie the GG's with a bit of oversize hackle so I can see them better. I usually don't have too much trouble keying on the GG. Have caught lots of fish on both the trico and GG. I usually try to put enough tippet between them so that it is longer than most of the fish that I would normally catch in the given stream. This is to minimize the chance of ending up with two hooks in the fish if you catch one on the top fly.

Afish makes a very good point, having two flies riding in different current seams generally always results in a fishless drift.

Posted on: 2013/3/20 17:33


Re: Tips for fishing small flies

Joined:
2009/5/26 8:36
From York & Starlight, PA
Posts: 581
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This might sound very unorthodox but sometimes when the lighting is really poor I just put one of those chartruese, or flourescent red Palsa stick-on indicators about 18" back on the tippet. It is so light that casting is only affected a bit in that you have to slow the casting motion a liitle bit but when fish are gorging on Tricos I don't even look where the fly might be - I just keep my eye on the little Palsa tab and when it jerks, or goes under, I know I have a fish on the Trico of midge.

Posted on: 2013/3/23 21:57
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Re: Tips for fishing small flies

Joined:
2009/4/1 21:52
From Johnstown, PA
Posts: 4469
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In my experience with midge fishing , if you can catch the "impact" where the fly hits the water it's fairly easy to follow , so i usually bang the fly down on the forward "impact" cast and follow if i can. If you do lose sight a little extra hard mend , causing the fly to move a little will put it back in view. I'm mainly dry flies when it come to midges.......spotting a midging trout is fairly easy with a little practice , but catching them can be very difficult. But man it's so much FUN!!!!

Posted on: 2013/3/24 6:12






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