Friday, April 8, 2011

Indicators Need To Travel With The Brakes On

Many of us are nymph fishing with the added use of indicators and weight.  I see many fly fishers incorporating this set up, yet I have never noticed one with ideal weight distribution.  I have seen the center pin boys on the Salmon River in New York using the right stuff.
First, let's understand that in any river the flow speed at the surface is very different from the flow speed at the bottom.  If you are fishing with an indicator in moderately fast water and have your first weight three to four feet from the float then you are dragging the weight.  The reason is that the surface current is faster than the bottom where the flow meets resistance from an ever changing path.   You have added weight, to get the fly down, and that causes the place on the leader where the weight is located to move slower than the bottom current.  This is a matter of physics and the energy necessary to push the added weight. Let's use the physics and understand what might happen if the heaviest weight was placed three inches below your indicator?  Then a few more, that are progressively lighter, were placed in intervals down to your fly.  Do you think that you could cause the indicator to move slower than the fly?

This is but one way you can use weight distribution to enhance a certain river situation.

Dead drift, or a drag free presentation, is considered the most appetizing to trout.  I like to call this a natural presentation.  The fly does not move faster or slower than the waters current column, nor does the fly swing and move side to side.  For me the indicator has two main purposes.  The obvious is to show a take.  The less obvious is to always have your presentation moving in straight lines down river.  The ideal situation is to feed the fly directly into the fishes mouth making sure that the leader is not in the fishes face first.  The only way this can be accomplished is to have the fly be the lightest part of the set up and moving in front of everything else.

Your weight choice should be a non toxic egg shape design without the easy removal ears.  I like the dark green color.  The added ears makes it easy to remove the weight, but will complicate your presentation because of spinning.   A well rounded collection from medium to very small sizes is desired.  You can use a small drop of Crazy Glue to make placement positions on your leader.  This will help keep the weights from slipping and not have a need to smash down the weights. 

Each situation creates a different choice you must make.  The faster the surface water the more weight that should be added just below your indicator.  Slow current might require light weight under the indicator and a long tippet from the lowest weight.   Each segment of river is totally different from another and if you want to maximize your day you will need to make choices.  The most important part of this puzzle is to equalize the speed of your indicator and fly. 

Do not confuse indicator float fishing with indicator Czech Nymph fishing.  They are completely different in structure.  I will have another post ready soon to go into that important topic. 


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