June 13, 2018 3 min read

Or at least that's what they say.

There is nothing subtle about chucking big streamers and cone-heads, it’s time to forget about delicate presentations and bring out the big gear.

Whether you are using a single or a two handed rod here are a few tips to help launch and fish those big streamers.

Streamer wallet - 5 tips for Fishing Streamers

Go Big
Big flies call for bigger gear, a more powerful rod, heavier fly line and stronger leaders.

Loose that delicate presentation taper you’ve been fishing all summer, time to go for an aggressive weight forward fly line, shorten your leader and tie on that 8 or 10lb tippet hiding in your vest. It takes mass to cast mass, a heaver line and leader are going to help pick up those heavy flies and turn them over.

On the single handed rod - Go oval before it all goes pear shaped.
Big flies kill fly rods - (Unless they are Fiberglass fly rods

We’ve all heard that sickening “clunk” bought about by a cone-head streamer connecting with your fly rod. This impact causes stress fractures that inevitably result in broken fly rods. In order to reduce the chances of a fly collecting your rod, tilt your cast out to the side a little and cast in an oval path.  Back-cast underneath the rod tip, forward cast over the top.

Big Flies Big Fish - 5 tips for Fishing StreamersCasting slightly off shoulder and in an oval motion can really save your bacon when casting big heavy flies - most salt water fly casters do this out of necessity. 

It’s all about the retrieve.
If you’re not having much joy but there are fish around make sure you mix things up and vary your retrieve.

The Swing. 
Swinging flies across and down is the single most effective way to cover a great deal of water - it's one clear advantage of swung flies. Cast across and slightly down stream, make a mend, it’s this first mend that will help get your fly down. Make sure to allow the fly to swing all the way through before retrieving. Often, a trout following a swung fly won’t hit until the first strip or two on the retrieve.

Banging the Banks. 
Casting a streamer to the opposite bank and immediately retrieving using short quick strips can be very effective. You can control the distance of your cast by pinching off the line on the shoot. Take a couple of "measure up casts" pinch the line off and then you're good to go knowing the length on your cast is just about spot on.

Drift and Jig. 
Cast out and upstream, then mend to allow your fly to get deep. As the fly drifts below you, make a series of quick lifts of the rod tip. Doing so creates a realistic jigging action imitating a struggling baitfish. Once the fly line hangs straight downstream (the Dangle), make a few strips back and repeat. 

The Jerk & Twitch. 
Rather than sticking to long regular strips, mix it up by using short quick strips. Add some life to the retrieve by using quick downstream twitches of the rod tip, followed by a slow strip of the line hand to take up the slack created by the ‘twitch.’

Vary the Speed.
Again - mix it up, fast retrieves, then slow. Strip stop, drift strip. 

Make sure you’re wearing a lid and shades -  Big flies in the back of the head or in the face can really wreck a day on the river. 


1 Response

Shaun Ash
Shaun Ash

June 13, 2018

Nice short sharp and packed full of good info

Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in The Drift - Fly Fishing, Fly Casting and Fly Rod Building

How to Clean a Fly Line
How & Why You Should Clean Your Fly Line

July 29, 2020 3 min read

Why clean your fly line? Fly lines are expensive and there's more than one reason a little cleaning, care and maintenance will pay dividends. As you'll see in a moment there are a couple of very good reasons to regularly clean your fly lines - and keep them clean. Fly lines pick up and hold a film of dirt, grime ...
Read More
Atlantic Salmon
AIDING AND ABETTING THE EXTINCTION OF WILD ATLANTIC SALMON, A SHAMEFUL ENVIRONMENTAL BLUNDER

June 18, 2020 16 min read

Read More
Fly Rod Building how to videos
Fly Rod Building Videos - Guide wraps, Epoxy and Fly Rod Grips

June 12, 2020 3 min read

How to build a fly rod. A collection of fly rod building videos intended to help explain some of the processes required when putting together one of our Ready To Wrap Fly Rod Building Kits
Read More

Join Us