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2006/9/18 17:48
Posts: 0
anyone fly fish for shad, and if so how?

Posted on: 2007/1/30 13:15

Re: shad

2006/12/7 18:13
Posts: 271

If you are talking about American Shad not Hickory Shad...

The BEST shad fishing I ever did was with a fly rod. Once I decided to learn more about it and try spinning gear I became the World Champion Absolute Worse Shad Fisherman!

That being said, I tried to essentially replicate with a fly rod, what the spin guys were doing. I used an 9'0" 8 weight rod with a fast sinking shooting head line I made to use with a shooting basket. I tied up some weird looking flies that I tried to make look like a shad dart, (Mylar piping over lead wraps with buck-tail and a red thread head).

In most places on the Delaware you will need to get the fly down QUICKLY. So I found a spot on the Delaware where I could wade close to the channel and far enough to get off a back cast and ZZING...shoot the line quartering upstream in the channel, let it drift and feel for the strike. I actually scored 6 fish on my first try!

I'm sure there is lots of info out there on fly fishing for American Shad and I'm sure there are lots of different techniques but that's how I did it. With shad the location of the fish is everything and it really can be feast or famine depending on water levels and where the majority of the run is so check out the DRSFA Shad Hotline @ 610-954-0578 or 610-954-0577. Learn about shad too if you don't already know about their habits.

Hickory Shad on a fly rod are a totally different thing and a blast although for the most part illegal to fish for in PA. Maryland is the place to go for Hickory Shad.

Posted on: 2007/1/30 16:40

Re: shad

2006/9/12 12:07
From Berryville Virginia
Posts: 17
Here in Virginia, Sinking line and 5 to 8 weight and stripping basket. I usually fish with a 7 weight only because of current and I’ll fish for strippers at daylight and then fish for shad. If I get my digital camera work again soon I’ll photo my shad box it will hurt your eyes (bright colors). I tie several different patters my favorite for fast water and deep current is a weighted jig head yellow body/chartreuse tail and other bright color combinations. I also like a gold shank body with a wing of chartreuse and yellow, red and white, chartreuse and white (like a Dace but with gold shank and marabou wing instead of buck tail). Another good pattern is a colored bead head WB bright color combination, this I use when the current is not as fast and don’t need the additional weight of a jig head. Hope this helped.

Joe E

Posted on: 2007/2/1 10:22

Re: shad

2006/9/11 11:30
Posts: 197
The how above is all good.

I like to fly fish for them above the Water Gap (all the way up to the E Branch of the Dealware) where the river is a touch smaller and shallower. Below the gap the channels where the shad travel are too deep for me to work comfortably with fly gear. Other people handle the deeper water better and are successful, but I'm not one of them.

The shad runs the last few years seem to be very compressed, with the fish shooting through the lower river in a few big pushes - they used to trickle in over a month. In the upper river they seem to slow down as they get nearer the spawning beds, giving a little longer period to fish in IMHO. This seems to help fly guys since you are more likely to find a time when conditions are good for flies.

Posted on: 2007/2/1 11:07

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