Another Dry Fly Fishing

by Fly Fisherman

Here’s another procedure in dry fly fishing that is easy to do and will, many times, turn an otherwise mediocre fishing occasion into one more successful. It is that of dapping your fly on the surface in likely spots and, providing you are comparatively out of sight, working the edge of the water near you. An extremely short leader (3 or 4 feet or less) is necessary if you’re going to indulge in this practice to any extent. Some line must extend out from your rod tip to prevent the lack of any weight at that point, which being the case, the leader would slide back through the guides, pulling the fly right to the rod tip-top. The bit of added line weight will tend to prevent that action. Hovering the fly straight down from the tip of the rod, you lower it so that the fly touches the surface where you’re going to dap it. Raise and lower the rod giving the fly the motion of flying near the surface, dropping down to touch the water then up into the air again a few inches. Performing this dapping operation is “dynamite” when the angler is safely hidden behind a bush, a rock or lying flat on his bread basket on the bank.

The greatest satisfaction that a dry fly fisherman can experience is that of carefully securing, on his leader, a well tied fly of his own fashioning and choice and deliberately and accurately presenting this feathered lure repeatedly over a hiding lair of a known sizable trout and inducing him to eventually rise to the fly in this false “hatch” created by the fisherman himself.
Your fly cast skillfully and repeatedly over a contrary, apathetic, inactive trout who is apparently abstaining from all food will, if he isn’t scared, ultimately motivate him into an interest in your lure and a highly probable hook-up.

This supreme method of dry fly fishing was perhaps used by many early dry fly enthusiasts, either consciously or unconsciously, but it remained for H. G. McClelland, a noted English fisherman, writer, fly tier and sportsman before the turn of the century, to recognize that the action was, to all purposes, creating an artificial “hatch.” Since that time a number of authors have described it in their writings. George M. LaBranche, the No. 2 dean of dry fly men in this country (no one can take “No. 1″ from Theodore Gordon), the angler who created the famous “Pink Lady” patterns, and one of a few known, outstanding sportsmen of all time, made much of this method of fine dry fly fishing. He described it as the ultimate in skill and deception. At this moment I know of no other thrill that is so satisfying as the successful accomplishment of this fishing performance.

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