How to Catch Rainbow Trout with a Fly
To learn how to catch rainbow trout with a fly we need to
look beyond the fly rod, reel, lines and the different flies. On this page we
will look at the different fly fishing tips and techniques used to catch
Fly fishing flies are made up of three types.
- Dry flies
float on the surface and imitate flies that are laying eggs or have died.
- Nymphs imitate insects that have been swept away by the current or that are
still in their immature stages.
- Streamers imitate minnows or other swimming
aquatic life. In all cases you are trying to make the fly look natural.
Let's see how to catch rainbow trout using these different
I would like to thank Ken Evoy and the staff at SBI for giving me the tools to build this site.
Tips and Techniques for Rivers
can be fished below an indicator. The indicator helps you see the strike
and it also helps keep your fly off the bottom. They are made of yarn,
foam or plastic. Sometimes a dry fly is used. A good rule of thumb is put
them above the fly about one and a half times the water depth.
line nymph fly fishing calls for about fifteen feet of line past your rod
tip. Your goal here is to maintain a tight line from your rod tip to the
nymph. You do not use an indicator. You cast upstream and as soon as the
fly hits the water you mend (flip) the line so that it is upstream of the
fly. After you have cast three or four times, take a few steps upstream
and start again.
you want to imitate an emerging nymph. To do this you need your fly to
rise to the surface. You can do this by casting across and slightly
downstream and giving it slack, allowing the fly to sink. After it is near
the bottom you lift your rod tip or give it tension, which will cause the
fly to rise to the surface. This tactic works well when the water is
moving slow or in spring creeks.
flies are fished both upstream and downstream. Either way you need to get them to drift naturally. If the fly starts to drag it will alert the trout
that it is not food. There are several tricks you can use to extend a
natural drift. These corrections involve using a wiggle cast, a reach cast
or a mend (flip of the line). There are many ways to mend the line to
avoid an unnatural drift. See Fly Fishing Casting
your fly across and slightly downstream (or slightly upstream in faster
water). Mend the line so that it moves across the river at the same speed
it moves down the river. At first, start near the shore and add two or
three feet of line after each cast. After you have cast across the stream,
take three steps downstream and keep casting out as far as you can. This
is the best way to cover the water.
How to Catch Rainbow Trout in Lakes
A countdown and retrieve presentation is the most common
technique used on lakes. You use either a sink-tip or full sinking line.
After casting, you count (the number will vary) then start retrieving the line
at differing speeds.
This is where the guessing begins. You start guessing
which depth, which speed and how much you should strip in each time.
A slow retrieve of a nymph just below the surface can
sometimes imitate emerging insects. Retrieve the fly about two inches a second. This slow retrieve can drive you crazy after a while.
If it is, you are doing
Knowing how to catch rainbow trout with a fly will require
some study. The rewards will be a fun day on the water whether it is on a lake
or near a small stream.
Whatever you do, get out there and enjoy the water.
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