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Winter fly selections

Joined:
2013/6/7 9:31
Posts: 324
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I plan on fishing all winter locally, even if most of the time I get skunked, I still want to make it a point to try. What flies do you suggest would work to produce the best results? Let me start by saying that I am a terrible nymph fisherman. I feel like when I am watching it drift (and I do use an indicator), that is like watching a bobber float when I was 3 and fishing with my dad. It deters me because it seems like I don't know what a strike should look like aside from the slight movement of the indicator. But for low water, I feel that an indicator will spook fish and hurt chances even further. Midges seem even more difficult to fish because they are so tiny and seem like I would have to really weight them to get them into a feeding zone. I am good with streamers and dries, but does anyone have any help for winter nymphing and midge fishing. Or should I just stick with streamers and call it winter? Thanks for any and all help.

Posted on: 12/11 9:55


Re: Winter fly selections

Joined:
2006/9/13 22:36
From Tioga co. formerly of bucks co.
Posts: 5569
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fish without an indicator, or fish streamers slooooow and deep

Posted on: 12/11 10:03
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Re: Winter fly selections

Joined:
2011/7/6 12:30
From Ephrata, PA
Posts: 6444
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I don't like to nymph either, but in the winter I can't deny the effectiveness of it. Try weighted wooly buggers if you don't want to nymph.

I use indie rigs in the winter when I nymph. I usually go with a weighted stone fly, and drop a zebra midge or something off it.

On the spring creeks though, there are BWO hatches going on as early as January (at least the ones I fish), which can be fun!

Posted on: 12/11 10:07


Re: Winter fly selections

Joined:
2013/5/15 10:50
From PA
Posts: 55
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Try an egg pattern also. These work all winter in the areas I fish.

Don't worry about getting skunked, if your fishing decent quality streams, you will catch trout all winter.

Posted on: 12/11 10:29


Re: Winter fly selections

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2006/11/20 10:08
Posts: 1209
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B71 is right. You can catch trout all winter. Just about any of your favorite nymphs should work. Use smaller nymphs when the water is lower. I have found that fishing is respectable down to water temps of 35 degrees, when the fish seem to shut down, at least for me. I don't like cold weather, so I generally fish afternoons when the temp exceeds 35 degrees. If you don't like to use regular indicators, you could drop a nymph a couple feet off a dry fly to help detect strikes, too.

Posted on: 12/11 10:47


Re: Winter fly selections

Joined:
2010/8/2 14:13
From Wayne County
Posts: 383
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My most productive winter flies are sizes 18 & 20 hares ear and pheasant tail, size 18 winter caddis (Aaron Jasper pattern), size 18 pumpkinhead midge(Tightline), size 20 griffiths gnat.

Posted on: 12/11 20:00


Re: Winter fly selections

Joined:
2012/12/23 5:30
From Erie, PA
Posts: 126
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Dry fly dropper, fish small nymphs and midges, if you tie your own, tungsten beads and varnish the midges, they should sink just fine.

Posted on: 12/11 20:28


Re: Winter fly selections

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2009/2/13 4:12
From West Chester,PA
Posts: 151
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I was deer hunting near Benton,PA earlier this week and a size 18 black stone fly flew buy at 2PM.Go figure

Posted on: 12/12 13:39
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Re: Winter fly selections

Joined:
2009/4/21 16:39
From G-side AKA GLENSIDE
Posts: 706
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winter is the season of the midge fishing. I love winter because its easy to pick flies. never go to the stream in the winter without a zebra midge. I fish size 18 to a 22 usually.

another great pattern that I use is what I call a herl midge. I am not sure if it a pattern that someone already made up but I saw it in a tying video for a march brown. you take a singe herl and use a pencil eraser to take the greenish blue fuzzy part off. then you wrap it around the hook. add a little black dubbing for a thorax. keep it small size 20 to 24.

you want to put the flies right in the fishes face. they will eat its just a matter of making it easy for them.

Posted on: 12/12 15:29


Re: Winter fly selections

Joined:
2012/2/15 16:35
From Butler, Pa
Posts: 570
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I like frenchies in winter. Small though size 16 and a natural egg pattern with it. I like to keep indicator on but I won't use thingamabobber if it's brutal cold, styrofoam balls with a bit of grease or wd40 will keep that puppy a float and prevent a build up of ice.

Posted on: 12/12 20:35


Re: Winter fly selections

Joined:
2009/6/17 21:49
From United States
Posts: 262
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I can tell the type of streams and even a little about the trout that are in them by the flies listed in these replies. To answer your question. What type of body of water do you plan to fish. The fly I would choose to fish in the winter would vary greatly. We can simplify but you just can't overgeneralize here. I wouldn't want you to take my advice to fish a midge and go to Penns Creek, Big Spring, yeah, okay. The streams I fish most often in Winter are freestone in nature and have wild trout that never saw a hatchery. The reason I mention the trout is because that is another factor. I wouldn't want you to throw a cherise egg at them on my advice either.
Winter is the time of the Stonefly nymph for me. Mayflies hatch every year and therefore many are very small in winter. Several common species of Stonefly are prevalent and sizable during the winter months. I prefer the Golden Stone. I tie it with rubber legs that can trigger strikes in flatter water and when stripped as you would a streamer. I saw someone mention A. Jasper earlier. I believe he has a pattern called a Drone Stone. Don't be afraid to strip it after a long drift. The longer the drift and the slower the drift the better. If you are fishing over fresh stocked trout throw whatever they don't make sense.

Posted on: 12/12 21:20
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Re: Winter fly selections

Joined:
2012/1/13 15:28
From Ferguson Twp.
Posts: 2522
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Stenonema is right on coarse. Many stonefly have a two year some even a three year life cycle so they are prevalent in good sizes through the year.

Posted on: 12/12 21:29
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Re: Winter fly selections

Joined:
2010/6/26 11:19
From Along the Lehigh Above the Gap
Posts: 7133
Online
Quote:

Stenonema wrote: I prefer the Golden Stone. I tie it with rubber legs that can trigger strikes in flatter water and when stripped as you would a streamer. I saw someone mention A. Jasper earlier. I believe he has a pattern called a Drone Stone. Don't be afraid to strip it after a long drift. The longer the drift and the slower the drift the better. If you are fishing over stocked trout throw whatever they don't make sense.


Yea just to give credit where credit is due....the Dronestone is a Loren Williams Pattern actually called the LW Frontliner who aknowlwdges it is a spin off of Chauncey Lively's Woven Body Perla Stonefly. Here is a link that actually shows how to tie it. It is a very effective pattern in pockwt water. LW Frontliner

Posted on: 12/12 21:29
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Re: Winter fly selections

Joined:
2009/6/17 21:49
From United States
Posts: 262
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Thanks becker, I never got into the weaving thing. Wanted to. Just never did. The pattern I tie is very much like that. A beleiver in simplicity, I use med ginger chenille for the underbody and thin skin overbody rib it with some fancy wire and after you whip finish and cement flip the remaining thin skin back over and trim for a nice wing case. REally simple and quick, like a nymph fished deep and slow should be.

Posted on: 12/12 21:41


Re: Winter fly selections

Joined:
2010/6/26 11:19
From Along the Lehigh Above the Gap
Posts: 7133
Online
Yep, I use thin skin as well or brown swiss straw and dot it with a black permanent marker.

Posted on: 12/12 21:53
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"Four of us wolves, running around the desert together, in Las Vegas, looking for strippers and cocaine. So tonight, I make a toast!"

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