smallmouth on the fly

Kyle

Kyle

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Joined
Oct 21, 2022
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605
Location
western jersey
since i wasnt a member here this past summer. i would like to share some photos of the smallmouth i caught these this past summer. i caught countless dinks. but these were some of the better ones. all caught on clousers, crayfish patterns, and olive or brown woolley buggers.
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Sounds like my experience Kyle. Sift through a lot of small ones for an occasional bigger fish. IMO lower water this summer made it difficult to find the bigger ones in my local waterway.
 
Congratulations on some great fish! Nothing better then hooking into smallmouth on the fly rod in my opinion.
 
Nice fish! Smallmouth on the fly is a lot of fun!

Steve
 
since i wasnt a member here this past summer. i would like to share some photos of the smallmouth i caught these this past summer. i caught countless dinks. but these were some of the better ones. all caught on clousers, crayfish patterns, and olive or brown woolley buggers.
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Are you fishing in a south central pa creek that flows into the susky? Looks like one of the creeks I fish that has good numbers and smallies up to 20 inches. One of my favorite places to fresh water fish. Everytime I go there I second guess passing up the susky and Juniata until I start smacking big smallies in a trout stream sized creek. Buggle bugs work great too!
 
Those are some great smallmouth @Kyle! I am going to target Smallmouth more this year, or at least try to. I recently got my favorite saltwater 7wt back from my friend in a gear trade so I am more inclined to pursue them now. The jolt for the strike and subsequent head thrashing of even a 12 inch smallmouth is invigorating and highly addictive. I think pursuing smallmouth on a fly rod is more exciting than trout on the fly and I need to do it more. Sadly, one of my favorite smallmouth fisheries near me has declined over the years. 7 years ago it was not uncommon to pull 18-20 inch smallmouth out of this river. Now I catch my 12 inchers and am content with that.
 
Are you fishing in a south central pa creek that flows into the susky? Looks like one of the creeks I fish that has good numbers and smallies up to 20 inches. One of my favorite places to fresh water fish. Everytime I go there I second guess passing up the susky and Juniata until I start smacking big smallies in a trout stream sized creek. Buggle bugs work great too!
those were jersey smallmouths.
 
Those are some great smallmouth @Kyle! I am going to target Smallmouth more this year, or at least try to. I recently got my favorite saltwater 7wt back from my friend in a gear trade so I am more inclined to pursue them now. The jolt for the strike and subsequent head thrashing of even a 12 inch smallmouth is invigorating and highly addictive. I think pursuing smallmouth on a fly rod is more exciting than trout on the fly and I need to do it more. Sadly, one of my favorite smallmouth fisheries near me has declined over the years. 7 years ago it was not uncommon to pull 18-20 inch smallmouth out of this river. Now I catch my 12 inchers and am content with that.
much more fun on 5 or 6 weights. i save my 7 and 8 weights for carp.
 
More fun sure, I just prefer my Salt 7wt as it has the properties I like (good torsional rigidity, the ability to dump large amounts of line, and handle sink lines, intermediate lines, and poly leaders with ease). I also like how the SALT HD is designed for fighting fish, so combatting fish is really easy if I put the rod to them. I am all about fighting the fish as fast as possible as I have less of a chance to lose the fish and that I can release the fish in a timely fashion. My 6wt, an Orvis H3F 9ft. rod is not suitable for my smallmouth fishing as it is just too dainty. I would not employ that H3 as I have seen and felt it struggle on heavier indicator rigs. Felt like I was going to break it on one particular outing with heavy nymphs and a large indicator. My 5wts aren't particularly enticing rods for how I fish smallmouth. My 4wts being a SAGE Bolt and Method would be good tools, but a poly leader definitely stresses out the lighter rods so I opted for a heavier wt rod. I may consider purchasing a Helios H3D 9ft. 6wt as a step-down from the SALT HD, but am not that motivated to seek one out and it is a current production rod so I know there will be some available for the time being. My main motivation to buy the H3D 9ft. 6wt is that it would be a great pairing for my older style electric blue Tibor Backcountry, a reel I definitely need to fish more.


When it comes to fishing, I look at the number of rods I have and choose the best rod or multiple rods for how I intend to fish.

As for carp I'd probably be reaching for my Helios H3F 9ft. 6wt for presentation purposes. My H3D 9ft. 8wt would be a candidate too. I'd decide the day before the trip which rod to take based on a variety of conditions.
 
More fun sure, I just prefer my Salt 7wt as it has the properties I like (good torsional rigidity, the ability to dump large amounts of line, and handle sink lines, intermediate lines, and poly leaders with ease). I also like how the SALT HD is designed for fighting fish, so combatting fish is really easy if I put the rod to them. I am all about fighting the fish as fast as possible as I have less of a chance to lose the fish and that I can release the fish in a timely fashion. My 6wt, an Orvis H3F 9ft. rod is not suitable for my smallmouth fishing as it is just too dainty. I would not employ that H3 as I have seen and felt it struggle on heavier indicator rigs. Felt like I was going to break it on one particular outing with heavy nymphs and a large indicator. My 5wts aren't particularly enticing rods for how I fish smallmouth. My 4wts being a SAGE Bolt and Method would be good tools, but a poly leader definitely stresses out the lighter rods so I opted for a heavier wt rod. I may consider purchasing a Helios H3D 9ft. 6wt as a step-down from the SALT HD, but am not that motivated to seek one out and it is a current production rod so I know there will be some available for the time being. My main motivation to buy the H3D 9ft. 6wt is that it would be a great pairing for my older style electric blue Tibor Backcountry, a reel I definitely need to fish more.


When it comes to fishing, I look at the number of rods I have and choose the best rod or multiple rods for how I intend to fish.

As for carp I'd probably be reaching for my Helios H3F 9ft. 6wt for presentation purposes. My H3D 9ft. 8wt would be a candidate too. I'd decide the day before the trip which rod to take based on a variety of conditions.
IMO you are way over thinking fly fishing. just go have some fun out there.
 
My go to smallmouth is a 9' 6 wgt I built on a slow to moderate action Loomis blank. It handles all three types of line without any problem and can turn over any fly I'm going to throw with it. Like you I prefer to get the fish in as quickly as possible. I've noticed that either type of bass aren't leader shy, so I use either a 20 or 25 pound fluorocarbon tippet, which also helps with fly turnover. I have an 9' 8 wgt that I use if I'm fishing weeds or lily pads for largemouth. I've caught a couple of 17-18 inch smallmouth on my 5 wgt. They were definitely more fun than I needed and certainly wouldn't recommend anything smaller than a 6 wgt for bass.
 
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