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wr1nkles

stillwater questions

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Hey guys, just wanted your opinions on these questions relating to stillwater fishing.

 

 

1. Favorite damsel nymph and damsel fly pattern.

 

2. Wading back to the car after sunset, I noticed small fry jumping out of the shallow knee high water. I thought at first maybe they were jumping to get away from something, but now I wonder if they were jumping after insects?

 

3. Fishing dragonflies/hoppers. Is there success in fishing them in the middle of the pond, away from the weeds and grass. Would you use a dropper? And if so, what would you use that is not a midge/nymph.

 

4. Should I get a 3wt for panfishing around grass line with small drys? I use my 5wt and it does fine, but think a softer rod would give me a better presentation at short distances, and the 3wt would make 6" pumpkinseeds more fun.

 

 

 

I'll accept any other stillwater talk as it's all I do. Hope to fish some streams someday, but I have no say in how my vacation days are used...

 

Thanks in advance.

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Not sure where you are or what you are fishing for. First, damsels. A small olive wooly bugger would work fine. Also, look up Flicted Damsel Nymph. I think FAOL still has a link to that fly. If you are seeing "fry", I would work some streamers. Especially over open water but also around cover. I would fish hoppers near the shore and if you want to use a hopper/dropper, don't be afraid to use nymphs and midges under the hopper. Since you are talking about pumpkinseed, I assume you are a warm water fisherman. In that case, even bass, crappie, and big bluegill eat midges. As for using a 3wt, it should work fine as long as you don't face the constant wind we have here in Nebraska and if you expect pike or big bass, you're in for a fun fight if your tackle holds up. I only ever wanted to fish dry dragonflies when I fished a small canyon lake in Idaho and there were hundreds of big dragonflies ovipositing. Bass and rainbows were busting out of the water to catch them. I have never tied on a dry dragon pattern.

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While I do agree that small Sunfish are easy to catch ... larger ones are as difficult as any large predatory fish, even trout. The bigger they are, the less likely they are to chase prey. In a pond full of 6" or smaller 'gills, there ARE some bigger fish. You'll rarely catch them where the smaller fish congregate.

 

Since Sunfish are schooling fish, and the fish in a particular school tend towards the same size, once you find A larger fish, concentrate on that area for more. Once you've caught a couple or three, you'll have spooked the rest. Move on to similar locations to find more schools of similar sized fish.

 

BULL 'gills tend to stay deeper than the smaller fish, so I usually fish a size 6 through 10 sinking fly to hunt for them.

Chell's Panfish Attractor

Aug 2017 Panfish Attractors (1).JPG
Dragonfly nymph
Richmond Flies 28.JPG
Of course, if the ponds you fish get little attention, ALL the fish in there will be easier to catch ... doesn't matter what kind of fish or what type of fly.

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I believe the Everett's Bluegill Fly imitates the Dragonfly nymph and I have fished it with great sucess. Bluegill, sunfish, crappy and bass will hit it close to shore and up to 40 ft away.

Can be tied with chenille or mop material as I do.

http://www.flytyingforum.com/index.php?showtopic=86066?&page=18

 

Grasshopper imitations work good too.

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I have used grasshoppers in the middle of the pond. Wind blows them out there and wave actions moves them away from the shore.

Another damsel patterns is a olive marabou feather tied in suing the tip for a tail. Then twist the stem around the thread to form a rope and wrap forward.

 

Rick

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1. Honestly any green bugger/nymph that is sized right should do. I have never found one pattern better than others, when the fish are on them they take anything close it seems.

 

2. I think you were spooking the minnnows.

 

3. Yes. I use a dropper. Emerger or nymph, which one depends on what's happening. Could be damsel, could be chironomid.

 

4. Do you have the money to spend? Will you (and family/pets if you have them) still eat after your purchasing this rod? If yes to both, then why not? If no, then not?

 

:)

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Thanks for the responses everyone.

 

I was reading about damsels, that they crawl into the shallows and up grass to emerge and dry off. I'm assuming that means I should tie my damsels hook point up?

 

Flicted - I'm on Cape Cod, MA - didn't know bass would go after small nymphs. During the summer, I like to go to the kettle ponds for smallmouth (mostly) or panfish. What size dropper would you suggest for SMB?

 

mikechell - That panfish attractor is sweet. Looks like a bonefish pattern with a little extra flash.

 

RickZieger - I saw a damsel tied the way you suggest and it's on my to-do list.

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Damsels are probably eaten more often while swimming. I never even try adults. I use nymphs and twitch them in. Fast twitches but overall a pretty slow retrieve if that makes sense.

 

Although bass and other fish will eat nymphs, you would be best with bigger nymphs and streamers for smallmouth. So although you may get them on a hopper/dropper, it may not be the best way to target bigger bass. Montana nymph or bitch creek if unweighted might not sink your attractor. Instead, I would try crawfish patterns, clouser minnows, zonkers, maybe muddlers in shallower water since they don't sink very fast. Black nosed dace or Mickey Finn should also work.

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Wr1nkels, I'm not really a still water angler so I can't address your first 3 points. I can say that I fish both a 5wt and a 3wt and anything I catch under 14" are more fun on the 3 weight. Since most of the trout around me (I'm in central mass) are under 14" with dollar bill size brook trout being the most common, I really favor my 3 weight. You definitely get a softer presentation. Having said that, hooking a 5lb large mouth on 3 weight would be a fight to remember.

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I would look at shorter softer rods in 5-6 weight, the longer the rod the less feel it has and the stiffer the rod the less feel it will have; longer and stiffer rods are both hard on those 7x-8x tippets that stillwater trout like- at least they are in my hands. You can get softer by going to a lighter line weight rod but then you are limited by the line as to how big your fly can be. In RI ponds I caught most (lm)bass and pickerel out of the weeds or on the edge of the weeds and almost always the trout from the middle of the ponds, I found that any very small wet or dry fished in the film would take trout in those ponds with a #20-22 moose mane mosquito, Griffiths gnat, or Adams being my starting point. The weed fish liked dace and Mickey Finns and Tap's Bug, I didn't have any then but I think Gartside's Gurglers would be ideal in the lily pads too. I would wade out waist deep and fish the pads a few feet in from the edge by landing the streamer or bug on lily leaf and waiting til the tremor stopped before gently pulling it off the leaf and short stripping it back into open water. Or cast parallel to the weed line and as near as possible to it and fast strip a streamer along that edge. Orvis Full Flex in their Superfine carbon or glass would be the type of rod I'd want. Not necessarily that brand but that type. $.02

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I don't really fish my 4 at anywhere I have good chances of hooking up with a decent bass, it's just to hard to keep them out of the brush downed trees etc, I hate the idea of killing fish because they get hung up and I can't get them free. Trout are different the water is very likely to be more open and clear of debris.

 

Not a nymph but my best bluegill fly is a small clouser tied with white synthetic on the bottom and dark blue flash n slinky on the top. I usually tie them on b10s in size 6 or 8 wide gap but light wire do it's easy to get them to ride point up.

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Hey guys, just wanted your opinions on these questions relating to stillwater fishing.

 

 

1. Favorite damsel nymph and damsel fly pattern.

 

2. Wading back to the car after sunset, I noticed small fry jumping out of the shallow knee high water. I thought at first maybe they were jumping to get away from something, but now I wonder if they were jumping after insects?

 

3. Fishing dragonflies/hoppers. Is there success in fishing them in the middle of the pond, away from the weeds and grass. Would you use a dropper? And if so, what would you use that is not a midge/nymph.

 

4. Should I get a 3wt for panfishing around grass line with small drys? I use my 5wt and it does fine, but think a softer rod would give me a better presentation at short distances, and the 3wt would make 6" pumpkinseeds more fun.

 

I'll accept any other stillwater talk as it's all I do. Hope to fish some streams someday, but I have no say in how my vacation days are used...

 

Thanks in advance.

 

My opinions:

 

1. Muskrat nymph in sizes 6 - 10. I don't mimic adults.

 

2. Perhaps. Fish a streamer to catch the big ones if small fry are present.

 

3. I like hoppers but fish them right up against the bank. No reason for a hopper to be out "in the middle".

 

4. 5 wt is fine. My smallest trout/smallmouth/panfish rod is a 6 wt and my large lure bass & pike rod is a 9 wt. It's about the size of the lure. Not the size of the fish.

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