You’ll catch more trout if you keep that line nice and straight

Print Article

Keeping the fly line straight is one of the most important keys to catching fish.

When the line has curves or waves, it only makes sense that a fish could actually pick up the fly and move it without pulling the line or moving the rod tip sideways.

Case in point: On a recent fly fishing trip to one of the lakes on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation, we watched trout breaking the surface, obviously feeding on hatching insects.

We had spent most of the morning making short pulls on a sinking line while kicking back in personal pontoons. Dragging Prince Nymphs and small streamers.

Actually, for about an hour that morning we had to kick like crazy just to try to stay in one spot and not get blown towards Cut Bank!

It was when we returned to the truck for lunch that fish started rising, many within easy casting distance with waders.

My fishing partner wanted to switch to a dry fly, but when we looked closely it seemed, rather than eating flies off the surface, the trout were taking emergers just before they rose to the surface.

After tying on small emerger patterns, we began casting.

I caught fish; he didn’t.

Two reasons: He was pointing is rod up about 2 o’clock and his dry line had big curves when lying on the water.

First remedy was to lower the rod tip until it was about a foot over the water surface.

Second was to gently pull line until it was almost straight, then stop. And watch it very closely.

When the line straightened, it meant a fish had taken the fly.

Using a strip strike technique, where the non-rod hand pulls the line back sharply during strike rather than raising the rod tip, set the hook quickly and effectively.

Gotta keep the line straight when you’re fly fishing!

Jerry Smalley’s Fishful Thinking column appears weekly in the Hungry Horse News.

Print Article

Read More Outdoors

State wants a minimum of 800 grizzly bears in the region

August 15, 2018 at 7:57 am | Hungry Horse News The Montana Fish and Wildlife commissioners last week adopted a preliminary conservation plan for grizzly bears in the Northern Continental Divide Ecosystem that looks at maintaining a population of ...

Comments

Read More

Frogs, birds and bats on tap

August 08, 2018 at 8:46 am | Hungry Horse News Bird stroll Join Flathead Audubon and retired Biology Professor Jeanette Oliver 9 a.m. to noon Aug. 11 for an information-packed stroll in the portion of the Owen Sowerine Natural Area on Leisure Is...

Comments

Read More

Lake whitefish are biting on Flathead

August 08, 2018 at 8:38 am | Hungry Horse News Having grown up in the Midwest, I’m quite familiar with the question: “What do you call a dozen tractors in front of an Iowa high school?” Answer: Prom. So here’s a question for Flathead Valley ...

Comments

Read More

Hensler new FWP Region 1 fisheries manager

July 25, 2018 at 8:11 am | Hungry Horse News By SCOTT SHINDLEDECKER For the Hungry Horse News Mike Hensler, a longtime fisheries biologist for Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, is the new regional fisheries manager in Northwest Montana. Hen...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

(406) 892-2151
PO BOX 189, 926 Nucleus Avenue
Columbia Falls, MT 59912

©2018 Hungry Horse News Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X
X