I wanted to share a few stories I've heard as of late in the shop. First I was talking to a guy that lived in New Zealand and the curious creature that I am I asked about the fishing when he was there. The guy had joined a fishing club there and the club every weekend would go hit a different location. I kept drilling him with questions and we came to flies and what he told me about surprised me. He told me that as long as their nymphs \" didn't look like a stick they'd eat it\". I've always kind of thought that flies selection wasn't as key as we as fisherman make it, I've believed that is more presentation and having a close silhouette to what they are eating ( with the exception of some of the more technical spring creeks).A theory tested by many poor ties and patterns that I have come up with and caught fish on that did not resemble the hatch or what fish should of been eating. That conversation was more of a confirmation. I asked the gentlemen about leaders assuming as most do that they would be fishing fourteen foot six and seven x because that is what the magazines and movies lead you to believe. I was wrong he told me they fished 12lb leaders and tippet, following up saying that fish worry more about eating bugs than searching through the water for leaders. The info he relayed to me about the fishing was a simplified view, don't smack the water with your cast, stay on your mends and don't let your flies drag and find your depth at which the fish are eating. I was told that they rarely changed flies and changed depth twice as often until they started getting fish and if they stopped getting fish they started adjusting depths again.
They next story where it be myth or true was about Bud Lilly He had run out of five and six x during the Trico hatch and couldn't get anyone to listen to him to fish larger tippet because the general rule of thumb is that you shouldn't slash can't fish larger tippet. To prove a point Bud went out and took a Trico and super glued zero x to it and went to a section with a crowd and proceeded to pound fish in the middle on a Trico and zero x.
It gets me thinking I fish mice with a one or two foot leader of twenty five pound test and get fish, I fish four feet of leader and twenty pound to my streamers and get fish, I do fish twelve pound to my Chubby's and hooper. Our guides use two and 3 x to our clients flies and do well. How smart and weary are trout after all as Kris likes to say they have a brain about the size of a peanut. It makes me start thinking of what am I doing wrong rather than what can I change with my rig. I've had times where I couldn't touch a fish and wasn't paying attention to my drifts with a nymph rig and my flies started swinging all of a sudden I starting getting eats. So I started purposely swinging flies and a slow day turned around and I caught a good amount of fish. I've had days that were exactly the opposite where my drift wasn't quite good enough and I really had to work at it to get my fish. It's all a matter of what the fish want that day and our ability to find out what he trout are wanting in that given day and us being able to do to duplicate it. I guess the lesson from this blog is maybe we as fisherman should look more to ourselves with why we aren't catching fish and not at our gear, after all trout always have to eat.
Your local shop bum, James
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