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Flashy Streamers Worth a Try When the Water is High

Posted by 
October 16, 2014
Published in News & Tips > Fishing > Fly Fishing
3322   Comment

This autumn, your favorite trout fishing river may be faster and higher due to heavy rains. While fly fishing and wading may be difficult, you can always try swinging streamers.

Swinging a fly streamer is one of the easiest, most intuitive and effective ways of catching trout I know. Essentially, you cast slightly upstream, mend the line as required, and let the flow take the streamer until it swings in the current below you. At the end or during the swing, you can add life to the streamer by twitching a rod tip or raising and lowering it here and there.

fly fishing 400
Add flashy streamers to your bag of fly fishing tricks and catch trout even when the water is high.

You do this a few times from the position you are in and, if there are no takers, extend your cast just a foot or two and do it again.  Then repeat the process. This allows you to cover water thoroughly in ever-widening arcs.

When you can’t cast further due to space, ability or other reasons, you simply step downstream a little and repeat the process.

This technique frequently pays off. One day I was swinging a pearl chenille and white beadhead woolly bugger and caught a nice little brookie on my first swing. Although I didn’t land any more, I hooked several in ensuing casts only to lose them in the fast currents. Over the seasons, I have found this is a great fly in the tea colored waters where I fish.

You can also swing wet flies, of course, but in fast, high water, I prefer to fish a bigger fly with a lot more flash. I figure in the fast currents, fish are more likely to risk wasting energy over bigger morsels of food. The flash makes it easier for them to see it coming.

Fishermen, for fishing streamer flies, shop Bass Pro Shops for fly fishing tackle.


Tagged under Read 3322 times Last modified on September 8, 2017
Steve Galea

Steve Galea makes his living as an assistant editor for Ontario Out of Doors magazine, where he is best known for My Outdoors, his back page humor column that has run continuously since 1996. He also writes columns for five weekly newspapers across Ontario and has contributed to several books on the outdoors. When not writing, Steve spends time fly fishing and tying. He also enjoys using bow, rifle or shotgun, depending on the hunting season. His English springer spaniel Callie is an eager grouse and woodcock dog and he values time afield with her.

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