What Flies Work Well On Droppers

Almost any fly can be put on a dropper, however, you must understand that the fly will affect your casting and leader turnover. For example a large, bulky, wind-resistant fly on the dropper will mean that distance is lost and the leader tippet is difficult to turn over.

As a general rule, smaller patterns should be fished on droppers, with the largest heaviest fly on the point. It’s then just a case of working out combinations of patterns that complement each other and match the method of retrieve you're employing. For example, you don’t really want to be fishing a Yellow May CdC dry on the dropper and a Goldhead Damsel on the point and stripping it back.

Top Lures When Fishing Droppers
Popular dropper patterns when fishing slowly are usually general-purpose flies, such as Crunchers, Hare’s Ears and Cormorants. These are natural looking patterns that can replicate a multitude of food sources. Takes are usually positive and unmissable.

Dropper Flies for Slow Retrieve
When fishing lures, it is common to fish a Tequila Blob on the top dropper. This bright, bulky fly causes a disturbance in the water and acts as an attractor, literally pulling fish to the cast. Behind it, use more natural coloured lures such as Cormorants, Black Tadpoles, Cat’s Whiskers, Goldhead Damsels or Black Boobies.

Fishing Boobies on the droppers is possible (when fishing the washing-line method). However, you must accept that by doing so it will cause your leader to spin and tangle. In this situation, you will need to completely change your leader every couple of hours as a result.

FAB Sunburst Fire Tail
Small FABS on the droppers are an excellent alternative. They still create disturbance and provide an instant attraction, but tend not to spin up the leader.

So once you are aware of how certain types of fly affect turnover, and your leader, it will be easier to make effective fly choices for your droppers.

This article was brought you in association with Trout Fisherman Magazine.