Stillwaters are truly 'on song' right now with insect hatches in full flow and the fish gorging themselves at every opportunity. But it's best to make the most of this situation before the summer heat warms the water and slows sport. Inevitably, when the temperature rises, it reduces oxygen levels in the water and fish become less active so having a few leader set-ups at your disposal will ensure that you can fish with maximum effect when conditions are favourable.
Therefore with a focus on mid-summer fly fishing, here are a few leader set-ups for large and small stillwaters for you to try, so make sure you have these patterns in your fly box!
Set-up 1: Kingfisher Damsel
At this time of the year, with climbing temperatures, abundant weed growth and long sunny days, damsels are out in force! Fishing this fly on its own in water from five to twelve feet deep would be an ideal choice. Use a long leader keeping the fly well away from the fly line (if possible, try to use 14 feet minimum). If you feel a single length of tippet is too much, then use a tapered leader to aid your turnover.
|Set-up 1: Kingfisher Damsel|
Set-up: 2 UV Crunchers and Boobies
A team of three will often score highly on venues. You're giving the fish various choices, and often this can be more fruitful than the single fly approach.
|Set-up: 2 UV Crunchers and Boobies|
|Tequila Booby Blob|
Often when there is a bit of heat in the water, the fish may not want to chase, and in this instance, focus on fishing your flies on the drop. Two of the best are an Egg Fly and a Snake. Why are they so effective? They just look different!
|Set-up 3: Egg and Snake|
|Snake Booby Viva|
|Stillwater Egg Flies|
You may feel plenty of knocks and taps, but don't do anything. Keep up the slow retrieve until the line locks up solid.
Set-up 4: Klinkhammer and Buzzer These flies can be fished to great eff ect in both flat calm and on waters with reeds and weed beds. Quite often when the water is calm with no ripple, repeated casting can ruin the swim. A better option is to cast only occasionally, and this set-up allows you to do just that. It's an ambush set-up but one that is often very good in these types of conditions.
|Set-up 4: Klinkhammer and Buzzer|
|3D Glass Buzzer|
When it comes to fishing dry flies, a lot of anglers don't have a lot of confidence, however, they are essential patterns that do work so you must persevere. You just need to know what to do! Here are two proven fish-catchers that work well together on the same cast.
|Set-up 5: Shipman's and Midas|
This article was brought to you in association with Trout Fisherman Magazine.