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Old 02-13-17, 02:11 PM   #1
DaveFrom WYO
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Default swinging soft hackles @ Chatooga DH on 2/12

I was fishing the DH yesterday, and decided to swing some soft hackles...

Usually I'm using dry/dropper, hopper/dropper, or high stick nymphing (dependant on weather/condition), but decided it would be a great time to try a new tactic...

Swinging some soft hackels


As far as bites go...

But couldn't manage to hook a single fish, which was surprising.

The line is tight, and the bites felt aggressive, and I half expected fish to hook themselves, but not a single hook-up.

The only thing I can figure is that the fish is facing up-stream, and Im pulling the line away, causing me to pull the fly, as the fish is letting go.

Any feedback/criticisms/advice would be greatly appreciated
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Old 02-13-17, 03:39 PM   #2
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While you are swinging make sure you are creating wide angle between your rod and line. In other words have your rod pointed perpindicular to the line as it travels down and accross the river.

This will put your rod tip more into play to cushion the bite. Also, you almost want to let them hook themselves. Don't set immediately when you feel the bite. You will still miss more fish than usual due to the angle that you are fishing but this has helped me in the past.

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Old 02-13-17, 05:17 PM   #3
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Also, try a strip set rather than raising the rod to set the hook.
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Old 02-13-17, 06:41 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by bonedog View Post
Also, try a strip set rather than raising the rod to set the hook.
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Old 02-13-17, 07:27 PM   #5
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Not all soft hackles are created equal, hooks need to be a wide gap, not a traditional dry fly. But YES, swinging soft hackles is a great way to catch fish

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Old 02-14-17, 08:28 AM   #6
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I appreciate the feedback. Anything new always requires adaptations...

As least I got the swings down rather

I will for sure try a strip set. I felt the flies would look more natural if I wasn't goofing around with the line.

I did tie these on a sz 16 dry.

Perhaps a scud hook???
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Old 02-14-17, 09:17 AM   #7
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I tye a lot of soft hackles in the style of North Country flies, north being the north on GB. I fish them upstream and on the swing. Using a Leiseruring lift for the most part. This time of year I may add some weight to get the fly down where the fish are. The majority of the time the fish are going to take the fly on the upswing, which imitates a bug releasing it's self from the stream bed. Fish the seams and also near the bank as the water will be softer and warmer.

For tying a traditional soft hackle I use Mustad 3906, 3906b's Daiiachi 1550 or 1560's. There also some Partridge and Gaelic Supreme that tye very nice soft hackles.
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