Steelhead:Nymphing or Swinging

Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by McQ, Feb 7, 2008.

  1. gearhead

    gearhead Active Member

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    a sub title for this thread may be, how long can you actually kick a dead horse before your foot falls off.
    you have the elitists and purists who love the "art" of fly fishing or in this case swinging. the rythm of a 1-2 count, the pulse of a stream pulling their fly to the prey and the orgasm of that hard tug at the near end of a swing (which will probably never happen).
    then you have nymphos', neither elite nor pure. these guys are rebels with a cause, and its catching fish!
     
  2. KevenSamuelson

    KevenSamuelson Member

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    There is a equal amount of skill required for both techniques to be performed well. To be skilled at steelhead nymphing requires a lot of attributes the average angler does not, and may never possess. I believe performing this style of fishing is an art, tradition or not.
     
  3. djzaro

    djzaro New Member

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    gone, bs
    I think some of the replies are leading astray. I think it comes down to what's important, catching fish or how you catch them. If someone is using that amount of led I would think it is a waste and you might as well have the gear setup out to maximize your chance since that's all that matters if you are willing to fish a cannonball on a flyrod. Some have said," Who cares, let them fish how they like". I agree, but what would you say when the next thread is about tying egg loops on their flys or using scent on their flys. At what point do you become a wolf in sheeps clothing?
     
  4. HauntedByWaters

    HauntedByWaters Active Member

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    Hey I NEVER said nymphing was easy!

    I just think it is funny when I see fly guys chucking tons of lead on a fly rod 20 feet and getting a 30 foot drift with hardly a true dead drift.

    I think this is funny because with a float setup you can cover 100 feet easily all with a perfect dead drift.

    I have personally nymphed with a fly rod A LOT for trout in the Montana winters when I lived there and I have caught a few steelhead doing it around here and I know it takes skill.

    I wasn't talking about skill though.

    I was talking about how you can cover SO SO much more water better nymphing with float and spinning rod and how you can tie your own jigs up to make it kind of like fly fishing (stretching things but you know what I mean).

    Just trying to inform some guys of the possibility.

    Anyway, it takes skill to catch a steelhead no matter what you do.

    I also think that in good riffles where a swing is possible, the swing out fishes the dead drift nymph 3:1 or more.

    I actually think the wet fly swing is the most effective method to hook steelhead, as long as the water is condusive to it. This is the only way I can explain myself outfishing my buddy who uses floats exclusively on the Skagit all the time.

    And I have my fly rod and swing 90% of the time so it isn't like I am a float junkie.


    iagreeiagreeiagreeThis is essentially what I am saying, just worded WAY WAY better.

    Do not fear the gear fly junkies......
     
  5. Salmo_g

    Salmo_g Active Member

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    If the amount of lead being used to "nymph" for steelhead is 1/8 oz. or more, and an indicator is employed, I think it's an effective arguement that the technique is the functional equivalent of spin fishing with a jig and bobber. It appears that some would say, "so what?" So is it still fly fishing when the only significant difference is the type of guides and reel that are on the rod? Then some would say, "who cares?" Traditionalists, that's who.

    Last June I was in Utah and fished on the Provo and Green Rivers. It was the first time I ever seriously nymphed for trout using a floating line, with split shot and small nymphs on my leader. In hindsight, I think the technique could be made more efficient if not effective by simply substituting the fly rod with a light spinning outfit. Everyone I saw was using a fly rod, and maybe that's just out of tradition. But I would be hard pressed to argue that a fly rod is as good a fit to the purpose as a spinning rod would be.

    So even if nymphing for steelhead takes skill, is there any attribute that makes the fly rod a tool better suited to the function and technique than a spinning rod is? Asked by a guy who has caught steelhead on casting and spinning rods, but who has caught way over 90% of my lifetime steelheaad on the wet fly swing.

    Sg
     
  6. HauntedByWaters

    HauntedByWaters Active Member

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    Salmo G, you couldn't have said it better.
     
  7. Dave Hartman

    Dave Hartman Strip'n Flywear

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    I can only speak for myself, but I've never used spinning gear. I simply don't own any spin gear, never have, and don't know how to use it. So I just figure out how to catch fish on the only rods I know how: fly rods. I've just never made a conversion.
    I'm not a snob about it. I don't think one is better than the other. However, I'm not necessarily yearning for my fishing to be any easier. Just because I could use equipment that makes things easier, or more efficient, doesn't mean I want to do it that way.

    So there's the advantage in attributes for me: it's easier because I don't have to learn, and buy, all that new and strange equipment.
    I'd be surprised if there weren't many others in the same boat.
     
  8. HauntedByWaters

    HauntedByWaters Active Member

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    Yeah, that makes sense.

    Maybe we should get a program going called "Take A Fly Fisher Gear Fishing/ Take A Gear Fisher Fly Fishing"

    Maybe that would bring our fishing communties together under one umbrella.
     
  9. chadk

    chadk Be the guide...

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    Why did you show up ready for nymphing with shot and a flaoting line?
    WHen you realized that you might be able to do the same presentation, or better with a spinning rod (I doubt it, but let's go with it), why didn't you grab a spinning rod and have at it?
     
  10. Dave Hartman

    Dave Hartman Strip'n Flywear

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    :rofl: We could host a dance! And invite the dudes from gamefishin.com :rofl:
     
  11. HauntedByWaters

    HauntedByWaters Active Member

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    LOL

    OMG

    Somebody make a fake flyer for a dance and say it is from the WFF BOYZ.

    Now that would get something crazy going!
     
  12. Salmo_g

    Salmo_g Active Member

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    Chad,

    Like I said, I realized it in hindsight. At the I only had a fly rod with me. I fished with a guide who supplied the split shot and nymphs. I don't think I even have the right spinning equipment for it. And for all I know the regulations might be restricted to fly only. And besides, we switched from nymphing to dries after noon, and it was a blast.

    One reason I will nymph for steelhead with my fly rod is to fish slots and pockets that aren't suited to the wet fly swing and not have to pack a spinning rod along. Carrying two rods is a hassle.

    Sg
     
  13. greyghost

    greyghost Member

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    So, if nymphing with a spinning rod is easier and allows someone to cover more water, hook more fish, and have a greater impact on the resource; why would anyone care if someone was making it tougher on themselves by using a fly rod. Is this a genuine plea to help everyone catch more fish? I mean I can cast a spoon farther and get a better controlled swing on a gear rod and likely catch more fish, but I enjoy swinging flies and casting a fly rod much better. I let the water dictate my techniques...... not some dude on the internet.

    Pete
     
  14. Patrick L

    Patrick L New Member

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    I just can't resist jumping in.

    First, I'm just starting to swing for steelhead, and I've never fished from a boat for steelhead. So I have a little bit different perspective. When I nymph for steelhead, I use very small weights, small enough that I'm still using the line to cast the fly. Since the weight is small, that requires a lot of mending to get a drag free drift. There are two reasons I use a fly rod for this instead of a spinning reel. First, it is way more fun to catch a steelhead using the fly rod. Just the challenge of getting a large fish on the reel without letting it race downstream is a blast, requiring the use of your hand on the line as your drag for that first explosive run. Second, I've only used gear a couple of times, but with my flyrod I feel I can cover an area faster and more thorough. If I'm working an area, I cast directly upstream (12 o'clock), then 11, 10, and 9 o'clock, using spey casting for the 9 o'clock. When the line reaches the end of the drag free drift, I let is swing, then cast it upstream. After 9 o'clock, I take 5 to 10 steps upstream (depending on how far I can cast that day with the wind) and do it again. My line is rarely out of the water, increasing my odds of catching a fish.

    Basically, it boils down to 'the reason I use a flyrod is because it's fun'.
     
  15. djzaro

    djzaro New Member

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    gone, bs
    I let the water dictate my techniques...... not some dude on the internet.

    Pete

    I didn't think anyone was telling you how to fish, only asking the opinion of lobing a huge hunk of lead from a flyrod. I don't think it would qualify as nymphing either, probly closer to jigging. A really really heavy jigg. Who the hell knows.