FISHING CURRENT TONGUES

by Fly Fisherman

Let’s suppose you are fishing a pool with a tongue of current at the head, coming down from a riffle above. The temperature is in the 60°-66° range, so a dry fly is logical. The current is medium fast, so the trout below the riffle can see only five or six feet in the water, A 9 ft. leader tapered to 3X looks about right—with a No. 12 dry fly. Water is clear but you don’t see any natural rises.
In this condition trout are very likely to be lying both at the end of the tongue of current as well as along each side of this fast water.
Dry Fly for Trout at Tail and Near Side of Current-Tongue
There is a shallow, silt-bottomed bar on the right hand side of the pool (looking upstream) that doesn’t look fishy, so you wade in there and take a casting position about 35 feet below the tip of the current-tongue. False cast in the air until you have about 42 fcet of line out and make a right hand positive curve cast to a point about five feet above the tip of the current-tongue. This is to drift your fly over a fish that you hope is at the end of the current. It’s fun to see that little dry fly come bobbing down the current, whether the trout comes up to suck it in or not. Very likely he will, though. If nothing happens at the end of the current, let the fly float on down the pool taking in the slack with your left hand as it goes, until the fly is below you. Then pick it, up and repeat the cast. Give the trout a number of chances.

When you have taken this trout at the point of the current tongue—or concluded he won’t rise—then cast, as in the last sketch, to the side of the current and let your dry fly float down the side of the fast water. Here you use a less pronounced right hand positive curve cast. If this current tongue is long enough and looks good enough you can make successive casts up the right hand side of the current clear to the riffle. If the casts get beyond 50 feet, move up nearer the riffle, as there is no need in these conditions to cast over 35 feet. As a matter of fact, you can catch trout much closer to you than that in this broken-current water.

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