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Spring Melt and High Water

Joined:
2008/3/6 9:57
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Another newbie question:

What tactics should a beginner fly fisher follow during the spring when the water is high and fast following the winter melt?

Over the weekend I visited a stream up in New England. During the summer the depth is a lot lower and I have a better idea of how to fish the stream.

But this weekend the water was high and fast, and my casts were either pulled all over by the current, or I could not get my streamers down deep enough.

I had to try and work the water either from the bank (short roll casts because of all the trees) or wade in a few feet and cast out and across the river to try and swing a streamer.

I had a floating line on the reel, so I am sure that did not help, but what kinds of tackle (lines, flies) or casting strategies should a newbie follow when the water is high and moving?

Thanks!

Posted on: 2008/4/7 11:30


Re: Spring Melt and High Water

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2006/9/11 13:05
From Lewistown
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If it's brown I go home!

My suggestion would be to fish the edges of the banks with large streamers as deep as they go with lead on the fly or shot. (sounds like you tried this) Or look so slack water that is barely moving, like a large eddie.

If the water is too high, the fish won't leave cover for food. If the water is too high and too fast, try a different stream.

Posted on: 2008/4/7 12:58
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><(Mkern{( ‘ >


Re: Spring Melt and High Water

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Thanks for the response.

When working the bank:

Quote:

My suggestion would be to fish the edges of the banks with large streamers as deep as they go with lead on the fly or shot.


Do you cast up or down stream? With the water moving, are you stripping in as fast as you can or trying to feel a take?

Posted on: 2008/4/7 14:08


Re: Spring Melt and High Water

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From Lewistown
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I would cast up current, whether that is upsteam or downstream -- normal flow = flowing downstream; flow in an eddie = upstream.

I would dead drift a large streamer.
Although a slight stripping in an eddie would probably yield some fish.

I think in fast water, the stripping action up current would cause the fly to ride higher in the water, hence not showing itself to the undercut banks. Plus if the fly is moving too fast, a fish might not be willing to get swept away for a minnow that is able to swim upstream. I would think most minnows would be flowing down stream looking of shelter like undercut banks and eddies.

Posted on: 2008/4/7 14:35
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><(Mkern{( ‘ >


Re: Spring Melt and High Water

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Thanks again. This has been very helpful!

One final question:
Quote:
I would dead drift a large streamer.


At the moment I have Mickey Finns, Muddler Minnows and some Woolly Buggers. Are those the kind of streamers I can use?

Posted on: 2008/4/7 15:21


Re: Spring Melt and High Water

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2007/1/2 11:55
From Bozeman
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http://www.akflyfishers.com/fom_double_bunny.html

The double bunny!

If you google it, be careful if you're at work. There is some lude stuff with the same name.

Posted on: 2008/4/7 15:55


Re: Spring Melt and High Water
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I just tried to google double bunny and got a message saying "Sorry, we cannot process your request, there are too many PAFF members trying to access this page. Please try again later." Go figure.

Posted on: 2008/4/7 16:16
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I don't like spinach, and I'm glad I don't, because if I liked it I'd eat it, and I just hate it. --Clarence Darrow


Re: Spring Melt and High Water

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2006/9/11 13:05
From Lewistown
Posts: 3593
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I think fat bodied/large profiled streamers are the best.
Like: Large buggers, fish-hair streamers, Zonkers, and even double bunnies.

Posted on: 2008/4/7 16:44
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Re: Spring Melt and High Water
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2006/9/11 8:26
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In high water conditions I've found it's not so much what you fish as it is where you fish. Try the margins (along the banks) of the stream in the slower water. Many fisherman wade where they should be fishing. Also fish the current breaks caused by obstructions such as rocks, boulders, logs, wing dams, etc. A dark colored wooly bugger should work just fine. Try dead drifting as well as swimming it the current and stripping to find out what type of retrieve the fish prefer. Good luck.

Posted on: 2008/4/8 7:50






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