Well….it is mid-July and things here in Southern Indiana are getting tough…heat, low and clear water and very spooky fish. I have changed attack plans several times in the past several weeks and this past two weeks I have done very well by walking into the pools from below and dead drifting a bitch creek/spider combo that I tie. The fly has white rubbers legs up front and in the mid-section to look like wings. It is tied with black chenille and has a flash of yellow, black or purple hackle tied directly in behind the front bead head and rubber legs. If you are looking to tie this fly…check out my rubber spider video and then add a small bead head to a size 8, 3x hook with a pair of white rubber legs tied in directly behind the bead head to make the legs stand up.
This is patient fishing….hard for me to do as I like to strip and rip, but that isn’t productive right now as the water is way too clear and the fish are spooky…I have caught some of these big dudes more than once. Start by entering the pool as quietly as you can…treat it like your life depended on it as you don’t want the big fish to know you are there. I make long cast into the pools and mend my line with a wrap of the line with my line hand…all I am doing is taking up the slack so that when a fish hits, I can set the hook.
I have had the most fortune in casting under or directly beside deep pools with over hanging limbs as this is a natural station for these fish…they hold under the limbs waiting for something, anything, to fall out of the tree and then…wham!
The video that follows is of me catching a 16 incher in a pool that was as clear as any water anywhere. I finally landed this fish by being patient for 10 minutes and timing his looping pattern within the pool. I started to see a pattern and made a few casts ahead of him, allowing the fly to dead drift into his region. The first few times he didn’t give it a sniff….the 4th time he swam over, mouthed the fly and I set the hook…so be patient and very stealthy and you can land these big bruins that dominate the pool.
One last piece to this….I just recently purchased a TQR (Tight Quarters Rod) from Cabela’s…it was a 5 foot 6 inch rod in a 4 weight. This is the PERFECT rod for getting in and doing battle with these small creek fish. The rod allows you to cast under limbs and into spots that even my small 2 weight wouldn’t allow. I loved the fact that when I set the hook I had some power remove the fish from the hole and not mess up the other fish. Lots of luck to you…and many bent rods!