Fly Fishing Things

FLY FISHING STREAMERS    Back to Categories

Streamer fishing is a super effective way to catch trout.

flyfishingthings.com/platte_river_special trout flyStreamer fishing is a great way to begin fly fishing but most beginners don't do it because they want to start by casting  a dry fly. See examples of streamer flies by Orvis.

fly casting instruction. flyfishingthings.com Line control is much easier with streamer fishing than with dry fly fishing, because with streamer fishing, the caster is usually casting across stream. The current immediately takes control of the line by pulling the line (and the slack that's in it) away from the caster. To achiever line control you must immediately strip in any slack as soon as the line hits the water. Even if there is a "belly" in the line, there is enough tension in the line to hook the fish if you get a strike. Where as in dry fly fishing, the caster is usually casting upstream.  Here,  the current is moves the line slack towards the caster.  With a strong current, the line will be on top of the you before you know it.  If you haven't practiced line control, this can become very frustrating. The line can become entangle around the caster as it moves down stream. Moreover, if a fish happens to strike immediately as the fly hits the water (which they are prone to do), you may loose the fish if you don't have control of the line.

After the cast is made, control the line by traping the line against the handle with your forefinger and middle finger.  Begin to strip the line in with the left hand while using the first two fingers (of the right hand) on the handle to maintain control.  When you feel the strike, clinch down with your fingers trapping the line against the handle and move the rod up about 12 inches. This will automatically hook the fish. The elbow stays at the side as the rod is lifted.

Use a sinking line (more sinking lines) to streamer fish unless you’re fishing a real shallow stream. Choose a line that will get the fly down to the fish. To understand exactly what type of sinking line to use, you will have to know about the attributes of sinking fly lines. Check out the fly lines page for more information.

Depending on the depth of the water, the general rule for leader length is: the deeper the water the shorter the leader.  For fast currents also use a shorter leader length.  You want the fly line to land in a relatively straight line from the rod handle to the fly.  That means the rod should be pointed at the fly and stay pointed at the fly with the rod tip close to the water. Your posture should have a slight forward lean to the upper body with the arms slightly extended. Keep the rod tip pointed at the fly until the fly reaches the end of the swing then pick up and recast.

 Start with an eight-foot leader (leader and tippet length combined) and adjust from there. What I mean by adjusting the length of the leader is when the fly hits the water you don't want  slack in the leader. The goal is to “swim” the fly and not allow it to drift. If the leader is to long, it will be hard to make a cast in which the fly lands on the water with out slack. For example: if the fly hangs (for two or three seconds) in one spot after it lands on the water, and then shoots into the current, there is too much slack in the line.  The desired result is when the fly hits the water it immediately starts to swim in the current. Continue to adjust the leader about a foot at a time until you achieve the desired result.

flyfishingthings.com/great fly cast picTo fish streamers; fish across and down the current.  Cast as close as possible to the shore (if your in the middle of the stream) and allow the current to “swim” the fly.  Or, from the shore, cast to the middle or as far across the stream as desirable.  Use a slow hand twist retrieve. Allow the line to swing and straighten out downstream.  Get in the habit of  pausing a few seconds before lifting the line in preparation for another cast.  Many times a fish will follow the fly across the stream until it starts to turn upstream and then strike. As already mentioned try to keep the line as straight as possible. This will impart a more life like swimming action to the fly. 

flyfishingthings.com/good rod position for streamerThe picture on the right is a good illustration of keeping the rod pointed in a straight line to the fly.  The rod and line become an extention of the forarm and hand.  There's no slack, so you can immediately feel the strike. 

flyfishingthings.com/man w-rod down streamer styleThis picture (left)is an excellent example of line control.  You can see the line trapped against the rod with the right hand and the left hand stripping the line.

Another basic streamer fishing technique is to start moving the fly in spurts by stripping  line in steady 12 inch strips.

Another strip action is to make two or three short strips followed by a long strip and pause.

  In streamer fishing remember, strikes may occur as soon as your fly hits the water, so be ready.