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Saltwater & dead-drifting?

Joined:
2009/8/12 11:55
From chester county
Posts: 1040
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Last year in Chincoteague Va I spent a few evenings fishing a spot on the bay where the incoming tide rips under an old bridge and small (6-10") blues and shad chase baitfish on the downcurrent side. Despite the active feeding I was only getting one or two tugs every night resulting in a total of one shad landed. I think my biggest problem was not having a fly small enough to match the baitfish, but I'm wondering what kind of presentation would work best here.

The fish weren't in an all-out blitz, more like 2-3 boils/splashes every minute. I've never heard of dead drifting flies for this type of feeding activity, but I'm curious if I'd have better luck doing just that with a small streamer. Of course I never thought to do this last year while I was there. I'd like to hear some of your thoughts before I go back down there next week. Have any of you guys tried dead drifting flies in a rip?

Posted on: 2012/7/2 21:20


Re: Saltwater & dead-drifting?
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Joined:
2006/9/9 17:32
From Gettysburg
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Yes, it works.
keep in mind, saltwater game fish will lay up in current just like trout and pick prey right out of the drift. Oftentimes, this happens at the outflow of a tidal choke point when water is sped up to force through a narrow spot like a bay inlet or bridge channel...and this can stun prey species like crabs, shrimp, marine worms, spearing, etc and these stunned critters often drift helplessly or struggle to swim - perfect scenario for predators to wait for dinner. Try the small streamer fly under a big strike indicator or even drop it tandem below a big popper.

Posted on: 2012/7/2 21:53


Re: Saltwater & dead-drifting?

Joined:
2009/4/21 16:39
From G-side AKA GLENSIDE
Posts: 713
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This is actually a common way guys in the surf fish. When I was in Martha's last year a guide taught me how to do it. I would compair it to nymphing but theres a lot more line out and you want to stay in contact with your fly. If that means striping to stay tight then do so. I think small epoxies would work well it the situation you are in.

Marc

Posted on: 2012/7/3 0:11


Re: Saltwater & dead-drifting?

Joined:
2009/8/12 11:55
From chester county
Posts: 1040
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Thanks guys, great stuff. FI, I'm guessing they don't really need a current break to sit behind like trout do? maybe larger fish prefer some kind of ambush point but I get the sense schools of smaller fish will just set up shop wherever food is. Please correct me if this line of thinking is wrong!

Loaded up on small minnow-type flies. Can't wait to get another crack at shad and snapper blues!! Hopefully will get a flounder on the fly as well, never found the time for a serious attempt last year but the area is loaded with them.

Posted on: 2012/7/3 20:24
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Re: Saltwater & dead-drifting?
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Joined:
2006/9/9 17:32
From Gettysburg
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PSU,
Actually, they'll utilize current breaks just like trout.
Big stripers or blues will lay up in front of bridge pilings in the "cushion" directly in front. Or they will lay behind the piling or rock in the eddy and move out to grab food. Just like freshwater game fish. You will often see small bluefish right out in the open in the middle of the current, usually just below the surface. Bigger fish tend to be deeper and tighter to obstacles however. Fluke (summer flounder) are likely to be right on the bottom. They're aggressive and will rise for a fly in the water column but you'll be much more likely to get flukies if you get your fly right on the bottom. They love a white Clouser Minnow.

Good luck with your next crack at these guys - let us know how you made out.

Posted on: 2012/7/3 21:30


Re: Saltwater & dead-drifting?

Joined:
2009/8/12 11:55
From chester county
Posts: 1040
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Thanks FI and I will certainly report back!

I did think that the big predators would know to save energy in eddies, there just wont be any around so far south at this time of year. Based on my experience last year, seems like fluke will be the biggest game in town aside from sharks and rays. theres no way to get a fly to the bottom at this particular spot (MAYBE with a brick for a weight lol) but the fluke are everywhere in the bays which means plenty of other spots where I can target them specifically :)

Posted on: 2012/7/3 22:25
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PA stream miles fished: 69.0
Miles of stream in PA: Roughly 40,000
Percent Complete: 0.173%


Re: Saltwater & dead-drifting?

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2006/9/9 22:43
From Delaware Co.
Posts: 3476
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Try using a small popper

Posted on: 2012/7/4 9:04
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Re: Saltwater & dead-drifting?

Joined:
2006/9/9 20:09
From Harrisburg
Posts: 2194
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Dear FishMenace,

Don't discount the idea of wade fishing in the bays provided the bottom is stable enough for it. One of the nice things about inland saltwater fishing is that twice daily you get to see a relief map of the bottom and any structure or depressions.

Scout an area at low tide and look for depressions and channels that are holding deeper water and then go back on the rising tide and work around the places where you found the pocket water. Likewise you might see old pilings or shell beds or other rubble that will attract and hold smaller fish and fish food as the tide rises.

Just be sure to pay attention to the water rising around you and make sure you get out before you find yourself in trouble. And don't just wear flip flops, wear some type of proper footwear that offers more protection for your feet.

Good luck!

Regards,

Tim Murphy

Posted on: 2012/7/4 10:02
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Re: Saltwater & dead-drifting?

Joined:
2011/9/13 11:13
From Flourtown, PA
Posts: 202
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Dead drift is a go. Let it drift through rips and over sandbars with the littoral current. If you find them holding steady, change tactics and use a wet-fly style swing, directing the fly along the length of the rip on a tight line.

Posted on: 2012/7/4 10:28


Re: Saltwater & dead-drifting?

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2007/7/2 19:40
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suggest strip,pause,strip,pause retrieve with fly weighted enough to sink on the pause.

Posted on: 2012/7/5 14:49
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Re: Saltwater & dead-drifting?

Joined:
2009/8/12 11:55
From chester county
Posts: 1040
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Pete, tried that last year, no luck but my size 6 clouser (smallest I had) was twice as big as the baitfish. Loaded up on smaller flies for this year so I will give that a try again.

Greatly appreciate the advice everyone! Looking at the tide charts, I doubt I will be able to catch an incoming tide at this same location. Hopefully the fish feed every evening regardless of the tide

Posted on: 2012/7/5 18:21
_________________
PA stream miles fished: 69.0
Miles of stream in PA: Roughly 40,000
Percent Complete: 0.173%


Re: Saltwater & dead-drifting?

Joined:
2006/9/9 22:43
From Delaware Co.
Posts: 3476
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I have had a similar experience if they are popping baitfish on top use a small popper and enjoy. Just make sure you are popping you fly when they are casing the bait . Small flies work also I catch stripers like this all the time on the D by my house .

Notice exhibit A with popper in mouth

Resized Image



Posted on: 2012/7/5 18:28
_________________
There is no disadvantage in being able to cast far"
- Lefty Kreh -


Re: Saltwater & dead-drifting?

Joined:
2009/8/12 11:55
From chester county
Posts: 1040
Offline
Sweet fish Fred and I'm absolutely going to try poppers now. Getting a saltwater fish on top would make the trip. Bought a few poppers the other day along with epoxies, clousers, and crazy charlies. Think I've covered all the bases this time. Leaving for VA tomorrow, not sure I will be able to get to sleep tonight!

Posted on: 2012/7/6 19:13
_________________
PA stream miles fished: 69.0
Miles of stream in PA: Roughly 40,000
Percent Complete: 0.173%


Re: Saltwater & dead-drifting?

Joined:
2009/8/12 11:55
From chester county
Posts: 1040
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Quick update on my trip. Fishing is just not good right now. Flounder bite in the bays has been off and the hickory shad appear to be long gone. Water temps are 8-10 deg above normal so I can throw almost everything I learned last year out the window (water was colder than normal last year). I have spin fished with live minnows every day and have two fish to show for it, a 10" puppy drum (nice surprise!) and a 4" bluefish, and about a dozen crabs. Flyfishing has not produced anything yet. Wind has been ripping out of the east which would make kayaking miserable, but it is forecast to calm down tomorrow and friday. That might make a rental worthwhile so I may still have a decent shot at finding the flounder and maybe another puppy drum.

I can't complain about the rest of the vacation, it's been great, but still I hope things turn around on the fishing front.

Posted on: 2012/7/11 10:25
_________________
PA stream miles fished: 69.0
Miles of stream in PA: Roughly 40,000
Percent Complete: 0.173%


Re: Saltwater & dead-drifting?

Joined:
2006/9/13 22:36
From Tioga co. formerly of bucks co.
Posts: 5600
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if there are bluefish of any size around then strip your flies FAST, FAST ,and FASTER...can't go fast enough for those little guys might produce a better bite for you. blues do not like slow flies...try some anchovy flies in a white/silver color around an inch long.....

Attach file:



jpg  anchovies 2012-07-11 001 (400x300).jpg (66.17 KB)
112_4ffdee1a2ac5e.jpg 400X300 px

Posted on: 2012/7/11 17:10
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