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> > Using a droper nymph

StokesFebruary 12th, 2014, 4:41 pm
Columbia county,NY

Posts: 76
When using a nymph on a dropper line tied to the bend of a hook on a dry,is there some formula or such to determine the size of the nymph in relation to the size of the dry?Does it matter which one is bigger?
WbranchFebruary 12th, 2014, 4:57 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733
Yep, it matters because if the nymph is very much bigger than the dry it is going to cause the dry fly to probably sink. I would never use a hook size any larger than the dry fly that is acting as the indicator. For example if my dry fly was a #16 then my nymph would be #16 or smaller, not bigger. That's my opinion.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
StokesFebruary 12th, 2014, 5:10 pm
Columbia county,NY

Posts: 76
Thanks,I kind of figured that would be one issue,but what about casting consideration,is there some balance to consider for proper turnover?
PaulRobertsFebruary 12th, 2014, 7:56 pm

Posts: 1776
Not that I can think of... Beyond basic line weight considerations against the addition of mass or air resistance in the flies, weight of the point fly would be the major issue in terms of not sinking the dry, as Matt says, and in casting; Keeping a more open loop is pretty important with such a rig regardless. Keeping a short dropper helps a lot.

To help with dry fly buoyancy I found that making a good tail helps a lot bc the tail is the first to be pulled through surface film by the dropper. I started making "indicator" dry fly versions using double, splayed, fibettes and a central tail of Antron-esqe (water resistant) material. I also slide the dropper knot up high on the dry’s bend, snugged right under the tail and grease the first few inches of the dropper. I think there’s a thread somewhere in which I posted an indicator dry.

In general, I found that while dryfly-n-dropper certainly has places where it works great, it is NOT a good GENERAL nymphing rig as each fly is forced to operate in different, often opposing, forces –certainly the rig does not offer the best of both worlds.
WbranchFebruary 12th, 2014, 8:27 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733
Paul wrote;

"Keeping a more open loop is pretty important with such a rig regardless. Keeping a short dropper helps a lot"

Yep, I agree 100%. An open loop will allow the two fly rig to straighten out better to minimize tangles. Ditto for a short dropper. I know this might be weird but often, on some waters, I'll use two dry flies. Maybe because I can't see the point fly or sometimes both flies are the same but one or two sizes apart.

When I use two dries I usually use a about a 24" tippet between the flies. You pretty much have to slow down the casting stroke or you are gonna get a nice tangle with this rig. Sometimes I get dizzy watching two flies but it helps me to hook up fish that might eat a #22 fly that I can't see - when the upper fly dips I strike.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
PaulRobertsFebruary 12th, 2014, 10:37 pm

Posts: 1776
I've done that too -the two dries, for visibility. I also may use a dry as an indicator for near-surface nymphs. I've had times when trout take the nymph so imperceptibly that I had to watch for added tension on the dropper line itself. A fresh dry dropper was needed, and it a bit kinked or coiled so that some of it stuck above the surface. That way I could see it tense. When the material was soaked, or was pulled straight, it would lay too low on the surface and I couldn’t see some of the takes. This strike detection "technique" was on flat water and couldn’t be used in any turbulence.

In general, droppers off dries work best when the point fly is fished close to the surface. The deeper it goes the more likely the disparate current speeds are going to cause drag at either end -often both. If you aren't catching, look at drag/fly speed -a lot of ills lie there, and they are not readily apparent unless you know how the rig configuration operates in various current. This is why I use my "indicators" as much as "drift indicators" as "strike indicators", and why I suggest that a dry as a dropper is not the best of both worlds, often the worst of both worlds.
StokesFebruary 13th, 2014, 12:12 pm
Columbia county,NY

Posts: 76
Thanks guys.Most of the streams I will be fishing this year are smaller tributaries and headwaters so I will be using a dropper tippet of 24" or less,with either my 2 or 3wt.Casts are typically within 15-30ft.

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