My fly fishing questions and answers podcast for December will cover several topics that I have been asked over the last several months. I will cover the benefits of designing and tying your own flies, especially since the weather will be so cold in the next few days and the streams will be to cold for good fishing.
Also covered in this fly fishing podcast is a technique I use for small streamers with the bounce retrieve. I will be covering my three favorite types of popper (hard head bugs) and the best types of fishing each style covers. Lastly, I will be discussing the smallmouth skaters.
We seldom consider fishing streamers in mountain brook trout streams, but here is a technique that is very successful for me on the mountain brook trout streams as well as in our larger trout streams in the conditions we have now.
I call it a BOUNCE RETRIEVE. Wading upstream and casting straight upstream or up and across stream at a 20 degree angle I allow my streamer to sink deeply. Then I lift the fly rod and get tight to the streamer with my line hand. As the current pushed the streamer back downstream I lift the fly rod 45 degrees over the stream which cause my streamer to swim up through the current just like a natural minnow. Keeping a tight line on the fly with my line hand, I continue this lifting and dropping fly rod motion to swim the fly all the way throughout the pools. This is actually easier than nymph fishing because you will feel these strikes.
Many of our large trout streams such as Big Stoney, the Jackson River and the Bullpasture are still carrying full water levels. The fishing is good and we’re taking some of the trout on the surface, but the large trout are being caught by fishing deeply with streamers.
Due to the water volume I use what I call an “Upstream Bounce Retrieve” to help me get my streamers deeply and still impart a realistic minnow-swimming action to my fly. To use this method I wade upstream and cast upstream at no more that a 40 degree angle. I allow my streamer to sink deeply upon presentation then get tight to it with my line hand. As the current pushes my streamer downstream I produce bouncing streamer-swimming action by lifting my fly rod to a 45 degree angle then dropping it back down to a parallel to the streams surface. Keeping a tight line with my line hand and imparting this lifting and dropping action every five feet of the drift produces a teasing minnnow action that many large trout cannot resist.