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What to use/ When to use it?

2009/4/17 12:06
From South Hills Pgh.
Posts: 0
I am relatively new at fly fishing and I am catching fish but not consistently. It seems more like luck. I have had good luck with the basic nymphs woolys, caddis larvae, midge larvae and mayfly larvae. But I seem to just be guessing all the time and am wondering if anyone has early season or late season specific flies. I have studied the hatch patterns but if nothing is rising then this seems to be futile. I know there is no perfect answer and this is our consistent battle but any pointers on productive nymph patterns would help. I fish Neshannock, Loyalhanna, Dunbar, Little Mahoning, and any other good stream in the southwest region.

Posted on: 2009/4/18 10:18

Re: What to use/ When to use it?

2007/4/25 10:02
Posts: 837
On those particular streams you mentioned- stocked waters for the most part- you could use, sucker spawn, bugger's all colors deaddrifted and on the swing,general nymphs- beaded and unbeaded like haresear,pheasent tails,greenweenies,san juan worms.

Work them with shot and adjust the depths of the them- add and subtract weight and flies till you find something the'll take. (especially if you know there are trout lying where your casting)

Another real help is to see what bugs are hatching or in the water or air and try to identify them or at least match it as best you can.

You could try a strike indicator and adjust that up and down to vary depth of your drift too if you have'nt yet.

In general, this should help.

Posted on: 2009/4/18 11:28
I flyfish because I enjoy it.

Re: What to use/ When to use it?

2009/1/24 15:19
From Butler
Posts: 10
good advice is to check to the hatch charts before you go to the stream , and even if there is a mayfly hatch that day (BWO or something), you always know that you are going to be looking for mayflys, so you could use an attractor (Adams, etc)

Posted on: 2009/4/18 17:47
Eat a Peach.

Re: What to use/ When to use it?

2008/11/4 15:20
From Upper Saucon, PA
Posts: 2
Here is how I was taught to read the water and pick my starting flies. Upon arrival, I take a peek in the stream, by turning over a few rocks to see whats crawling on them. then compare whats there to your fly box. Get something close and start with that.

Posted on: 2009/4/19 13:38
Tight Lines......

Re: What to use/ When to use it?

2006/9/12 21:16
From Suburban Pittsburgh
Posts: 9
Great advice given so far. Looking at rocks is also what I was taught as to first fly selection, but also be sure to look on overhanging tree limbs and insect activity in the air. I've caught my fair share of trout using a green weenie after seeing inch worms in the woods.

Look at the hatch charts for the stream you're fishing, insect activity varies from stream to stream. Then ID what the insect looks like before going. There are also books that ID insects, I'm sure you could find one to fit your pocket.

Caddis patterns and BWO's should always be in your fly box. They're two of the most abundant insects on a trout stream--get to know these insects well. If nothing is rising from a hatch and you want top water action, try an adams, beetle, ant, griffith's gnat, stimulator or some other attractor pattern. You'll likely get a few strikes on any of those.

Couple of other suggestions. If you fish Neshannock, make it a point to go in to the fly shop and talk to Bob. Buy a few flies or make a purchase. He'll put you on the right flys and will share a wealth of knowledge.

Also, they offer 1/2 day lessons which may be a big help to you getting started. It definately made me more aware of how much I didn't know and also was one of my best fly fishing investments. Learned a lot from it and had a good day of fishing.

Posted on: 2009/4/19 13:56

Re: What to use/ When to use it?

2006/9/9 19:37
From aliquippa
Posts: 20
i strongly recommend taking the lessons, especially when your time on the stream is limited due to a busy schedule, you will be fishing with more confidence and not wondering " i`m i doing this right "

Posted on: 2009/4/20 11:16
just when i think i have the key to success, someone changes the lock

Re: What to use/ When to use it?

2006/10/18 15:46
From Patterson twp, Pa (Beaver Falls)
Posts: 364
If I don't know of any specific bug activity before coming to the stream, I sit on on the bank for a good 5 min and watch. You'll see bug activity, or fish feeding. If I don't see anything in particular, I tie on some searching patterns... a dry dropper combo like a grass hopper or wulff, and nymph... PT, prince or HE... or just a tandem nymph combo. I usually tie on a generic nymph on top, and change up my bottom fly throughout the day to keep it simple. Also, learn to read the water. Fish will often feed in the riffles, or tops and bottoms of pools. Slow pools may have midges, or strip a streamer through it. Just get out and get experience. The more you fish, the more you'll learn... and don't be afraid to ask questions in here. Guys (and girls) are more than happy to help out.

Posted on: 2009/4/20 12:31
Owner of Risen Fly

Re: What to use/ When to use it?

2008/1/31 17:19
From Pretty much everywhere at some point, Thorndale today.
Posts: 2370
All the info so far is good. On stockie streams dont' be afraid to throw "junk" flies.

But as far as insect nymphs, the nymphs get active a week or so before a hatch starts. Also, if the hatch will happen say only from 6-8 p.m., the nymphs may be successful all day. So its kind of nice, you don't have to actually hit the emergence (though its usually faster fishing if you do).

So look at hatch charts. On the streams I'm familiar with, its pretty simple.

March: BWO's
April: Grannom caddis
Early May-mid May: March Browns first, then MB + sulfurs
mid-late May: Sulfurs and caddis (tan, green, etc.)
Late May-early June: Green Drakes + sulfurs + caddis
mid June: More sulfurs (light cahill variety) + caddis
July: Tricos

Midges: All the time.

Timing will vary by stream, farther north its a week later than expected. Each stream may not have all types of bugs, this is learned through experience. But generally, if a stream has them, the nymphs of all of those will work during the appropriate hatch period, as well as the weeks leading up to it.

Posted on: 2009/4/20 13:07

Re: What to use/ When to use it?

2009/4/1 21:52
From Johnstown, PA
Posts: 5
Don't forget terrestrials ants, beetles, hoppers, crickets etc. etc.

Posted on: 2009/4/21 12:10

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