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Thread: NYMPH FISHING WITHOUT AN INDICATOR "101" - Readers cast (Warren Patterson) - Dec 19

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    Default NYMPH FISHING WITHOUT AN INDICATOR "101" - Readers cast (Warren Patterson) - Dec 19

    NYMPH FISHING WITHOUT AN INDICATOR "101"


    I have read several "posts" on FAOL from members who have tried nymph fishing and feel it's too difficult and "dead drifting" nymphs is the only way I fish and I feel it is not that difficult. I will not say that it is easy, but, it is not hard either. Once you learn the technique, I feel most will find it, like me, to be a very enjoyable way to fish. What follows is how I nymph fish without an indicator but this is not meant to be the only way. It is just how I do it and maybe using some of my techniques will help those who are having problems.

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    Warren:

    Nymph Fishing Wiehtout An Indicator "101", is a excellent article on nymphing without using indicators.

    What many anglers fail to understand that the speed of the water in the stream, varies with the depth and currents. Many time the indicator on the surface will not give you the "heads-up" that there is a fish interested in you fly pattern...

    Well Done! ~Parnelli
    "Everyone you meet in life, give you happiness! Some by their arrival, others by their departure!" ~Parnelli

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    Parnelli,

    A "well done" coming from you means alot to me! Thank you....

    What I described is the way I fish 99% of the time and enjoy every second of it and I hope others give it a try.
    Warren
    Fly fishing and fly tying are two things that I do, and when I am doing them, they are the only 2 things I think about. They clear my mind.

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    Most of my 30+ years of nymphing has been without an indicator aswell. Depth does not dictate whether I will use an indicator. How far the cast is, and how many conflicting currents my fly line will be crossing to get to the holding area does. The biggest problem that i have noticed with beginners, and veteran nymph fishers alike is, most become fixated on their bobber. Yes, it's a bobber, and I use it aswell. Warren you mentioned watching your line when not using an indicator. I submit that you still watch your line even if you have an indicator on. The indicator is normally placed on the heavyest part of the leader. The butt section. I have yet to see where the line runs directly under the indicator. Normally it juts out in the direction of the nymph (s). that little section of line is what I watch when ever possible. Barring 40 to 50 foot casts in heavy water, thats practically 99% of the time. In my opinion, and thats all it is an opinion, if I am relying on an indicator to move, I feel I have probably been missing 75% of my strikes. By missing I mean not even realizing that the fish was on my fly at all. I have taught a few people to nymph fish over the years. The easyest for me to teach were a couple bass fishermen from Kansas. After an hour or so I told them think of it as hooking a bass on a plastic worm , but the bass will only take the worm as its dropping. A light turned on over their heads and they did pretty darn good the rest of the day. Once they started concentrating on line movement where it enters the water, they did well.
    With or without an indicator, it will pay divedends to learn both methods, and know when to apply one method over the other.

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    Excellent article and very informative. I use indicators most of the time but after reading this I will definitely try this technique. Explains allot of lost fish!

    Thx's
    Mike
    "The charm of fishing is that it is the pursuit of that which is elusive but attainable, a perpetual series of occasions for hope" -John Buchan

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    I also am a dedicated line watcher. As I fish on ponds most of the time I keep the line perpendicular to the rod. Lets me see the movment better.

    Great Article.

    Rick

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    One thing I did not mention is how the furled leader I use helps with nymph fishing without an indicator. I have made many furled leaders since purchasing Kathy Scott's furled leader DVD and have tweaked her formula so that I have my leader board set up to create a 5', 6' or 7' leaders just my moving the pegs. I find that I like a 6' leader the most. I have made my furled leaders from just about every material out there and have not found anything that works as well as one made from Berkley Vanish Transition Gold fluorocarbon. What I like about it is that it sinks faster than any other material I have tried. Most of the time, I cannot see the end of my fly line unless the water is very clear. Using the Vanish Transition Gold furled leader is a lot like using a mini sink tip fly line. In my opinion, this fast sinking furled leader also helps with getting my fly down deeper and quickly.

    DUB - I liked your reference to the bass fishermen to pretend they are fishing a plastic worm on a tight line. I have told people to pretend they are tight line fishing for cat fish which seems to help them to understand the technique. I feel the most important part is to maintain as straight a line to the fly as they can and keep the rod tip down close to the water. If the rod is held up, it allows a belly in the fly line and you will not see or feel the "take".

    Just to throw a little humor in, I was working with a young man on the river one day and as I stood beside him I saw his fly line heading upstream and he never set the hook. I told him that I know that I tie some "great" flies, but, they do not know how to swim and when his fly line is heading upstream, he really should set the hook!

    There are several fly fishing techniques out there and they are all good and it would be wise to know how to use all of them well enough to be successful.

    Tight lines......
    Warren
    Fly fishing and fly tying are two things that I do, and when I am doing them, they are the only 2 things I think about. They clear my mind.

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    Warren, great article, very well explained. I've always nymphed without an indicator myself and I feel I catch my fair share of fish. Many times, too many times, I get too focused and forget about the upstream mend at the beginning of my drift. Those are times, I'm sure, that I miss opportunities on hooking fish. The article is an excellent tutorial for beginners and a reminder for us verteran nymphers.
    Bruce

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    Good article. I'm confused about making continual upstream mends instead of just retrieving on tight line. By making upstreams mends are we adding slack to the leader?

    Are the techniques you are describing meant for slower water, unlike Joe Humphrey's upstream techniques?

    Randy

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    Thanks for the kind words, Bruce. The mending is a very important part of this technique. Without mending, your fly is not drifting down close to the bottom and you will be fishing above the fish.

    Here is another tip you can try the next time you are out that has caught me many fish I would have missed:

    I was fishing a pretty fast current and when the fly was down and away from me, I just knew there had to be fish holding down close to the bottom at the end of drift and the fast current was lifting my fly line, leader and fly which was not good. As an experiment, I lowered my rod tip down into the water and could feel the bottom with the rod tip. I noticed that doing this caused the fast moving water to "crash" down on the fly line and this drove the rest of the fly line down which would take the leader and fly down with it. I could not see any of my fly line and was really just "tight line" fishing. I would just do some short strips, while holding the rod tip down under the water, and could actually feel the fly "ticking" on the bottom as I was stripping it back. This technique has caught me many fish. The most important thing to remember when doing this is do not set the hook with the rod when you feel the strike! Do a strip set and slowly raise the rod tip out of the water and fight the fish as you normanly would. If you attempt to set the hook while the rod is under water, you could possibly break your rod because the water on top of the rod is heavy. Try this some time and see how it works for you. After lowering the rod tip down into the water and holding it there, it is fun to watch the fly line go down and just disappear. It really works to get the fly down and is a lot like using a full sinking fly line. It only works on fast moving water after your fly has drifted down and straight away from you.

    Just another technique I have discovered and use which really works.....
    Warren
    Fly fishing and fly tying are two things that I do, and when I am doing them, they are the only 2 things I think about. They clear my mind.

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