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Fly guy

Does anyone else catch bass on fly rod?

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Hey everyone, 

I am new to this site and just wondering if any of you use a fly rod for catching bass, if so what's your favorite wt rod and what do you have the best luck catching on?

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I don’t do it as often as I used to but I’ve fished smallmouth with a fly rod for quite a few years. I think my rod is about a 7 weight rod, weight forward bass taper line and I catch most of my bass on poppers and mouse imitations. Something about a big smallie slurping up a topwater then going absolutely nuts on a fly rod that you just can’t get enough of. I’ve fished for largemouths a bit but mostly smallies. 

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Same here - not as much as a few seasons past but still like to do it.

I'm targeting smallies mostly.

My fly rod of choice to do it is a St Croix Bank Robber 7wt. 

:smiley:

A-Jay

post-13860-0-56121600-1419440884_thumb.jpg

 

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I use anywhere from a 4wt to the equivalent of a 10wt or so based on the flies and the cover i am fishing.  

As far as flies go, I use all different types depending on my mood but nothing beats fishing topwater in a lilly pad field.....

 

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I do it a lot...probably approaching half my time on the water, any given day.

 

I think an 8 wt. is the best all around bass rod, though I'll drift down to a 7 or even a 6 for some specific presentations with smaller flies.

 

I will typically have at least three fly rods rigged and ready to go:

 

  1. One with a floating line designed to turn over poppers and divers (Rio Smallmouth line here, for me).
  2. One with an intermediate sink tip line (Scientific Angler Hover is my current choice)
  3. One with a full sinking line (Rio Outbound Short is my current one).

One of my favorite flies is the Ol' Mr. Wiggley...it's really nothing more than a folded over piece of craft foam and some legs, can be fished several ways, depending on what the fish are doing.

 

Fly fishing is not hard...there's a lot of myths and nonsense floating around out there about it...but trust me: If I can do it, just about anyone can.

 

...and there are some things you can do with a fly that you can't come close to with gear...that makes me a better fisherman, overall.  It's also less tiring for a long day on the water to switch back and forth...different muscles, different casting...

 

Here's some pictures to get you thinking:

 

IMG_2764.jpg

 

IMG_2790_-_800x600.jpg

 

IMG_2762.jpg

 

Here's a yellow Ol' Mr. Wiggley gettin' it done:

 

IMG_2759.jpg

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Chasing river smallmouth with a fly rod is a blast!  I'm relatively new to the fly game (3-4 years) versus nearly 30 years with spinning and casting gear.  I love all of it, but there really is something special about having a smallie go nuts on a popper or Clouser/Deceiver stripped frantically right below the surface.  

 

For bass, I use a 9' 6wt or a 9' 8wt depending upon the presentation/conditions/etc.  This fall I started playing with sink tip streamer lines, and I'm really liking Orvis's Bank Shot (I think it's called).  I'm also becoming a huge streamer junkie, whether I'm fishing for smallmouth or trout.  Currently, I'm really digging the action/profiles of Drunk and Disorderlies, and Grumpy Muppets.  The Drunk and Disorderly moves so much like a jointed slow-rising jerk bait, only it looks alive.  As for numbers baits, for smallmouth, I've found it really hard to beat a conehead woolly bugger or variations like a tequeely.  

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I love fly fishing for bass!

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Beaded Nymphs, poppers or Hellgramite imitators work well on my home river system for anything that swims in it.  I have caught Largemouth, Smallmouth, Gills (big Gills), Pumpkinseeds, Warmouths, Rock Bass, Pickerel, water snake (don't ask) and even a 12lb catfish.  I have taken a 9wt out on a striper charter and did very well in the chum line with a streamer.  

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Yes. It's a blast.

 

6wt Echo Carbon and 8wt Echo Ion XL. Poppers, Streamers, Mice, Minnows mostly.

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Lots of good advice above.

 

@Turkey sandwich nailed it...I'd offer a refinement from my experience: A lot of fly guys tend to bias towards more traditional flies...the "Clouser/Deciever" in his example.

 

Good stuff, and they work great...here's my "refinement":

 

I tend to look at traditionally successful gear presentations...and try to tie a fly that mimics the size and color, then adds the "hang-in-the-fish's-face-and-breathe" factor.  As an example the bottom fly is a tie I use on a red 5/0 Gamakatsu EWG hook in a lake where smallies smash Rapala clown patterns.

 

5.0_EWG_Flies.jpg

 

The top fly is on the same size hook, but black, and aimed at pike and musky that can't resist blue/pink in stained water.  Neither of those flies look that nice any more...

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3 hours ago, Further North said:

Lots of good advice above.

 

@Turkey sandwich nailed it...I'd offer a refinement from my experience: A lot of fly guys tend to bias towards more traditional flies...the "Clouser/Deciever" in his example.

 

Good stuff, and they work great...here's my "refinement":

 

I tend to look at traditionally successful gear presentations...and try to tie a fly that mimics the size and color, then adds the "hang-in-the-fish's-face-and-breathe" factor.  As an example the bottom fly is a tie I use on a red 5/0 Gamakatsu EWG hook in a lake where smallies smash Rapala clown patterns.

 

5.0_EWG_Flies.jpg

 

The top fly is on the same size hook, but black, and aimed at pike and musky that can't resist blue/pink in stained water.  Neither of those flies look that nice any more...

if you're looking for a great jigging streamer that breathes: http://www.orvis.com/p/grumpy-muppet/18s7. in white, it's responsible for my PB brown, and I anticipate it crushing both, trout and smallies anywhere with alewives.

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I do on occasion for a change of pace. I'm really just throwing one whenever there's big bluegills around and I accidentally catch bass at the same time. It's always a nice surprise though. 

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Fly, the last time I remember fishing with a fly rod and a fly was when I was in high school and my cousin and I were fishing the Audubon Park Lagoon in New Orleans.

 

Trying to cast across the lagoon, I lost my balance and fell in.

 

All I remember was my cousin falling down in laughter; me being wet; and laughing all at the same time.

 

Have not fished a fly rod since.

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Thanks for all the input,

Moved to North Carolina from Northern California year and a half ago and have a lot of private ponds and lakes around me now. I have been fly fishing for about ten years but only for trout in streams and rivers, having a blast! So much so that I Just ordered my new boat last week, never in my life did I think I would buy a bass boat but I went out on lake Lure with a friend and his boat and just had a great day, plus my dog can come with me on the boat, what's better than that.

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I've caught one on a fly rod once, only because he hit a live cricket I was using to catch bream with lol. Now let me explain..I bought a fly rod, nothing fancy by most standards, just to use on our trips up to the mountains every year...and in an attempt to practice with it I took it out instead of my trusty bream buster..did well and had a blast catching blue gill, red breast, warmouth..the usual sunfish you catch on crickets here in the summer. Well as Mr Cricket scuttled his way to the shore after a particularly ugly 10 yard cast per my norm...the surface exploded and 2 1/2 lb largemouth decided he looked tasty :)

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6 hours ago, Fly guy said:

Thanks for all the input,

Moved to North Carolina from Northern California year and a half ago and have a lot of private ponds and lakes around me now. I have been fly fishing for about ten years but only for trout in streams and rivers, having a blast! So much so that I Just ordered my new boat last week, never in my life did I think I would buy a bass boat but I went out on lake Lure with a friend and his boat and just had a great day, plus my dog can come with me on the boat, what's better than that.

 

You likely have some really cool multi species options along the coast.  North Carolina will still get striper runs in the spring and redfish pretty much year round.  

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I’ve got my first fly rod when I was 16. Used it for B.A.S.S. then and still do. It’s an eight wt. I’ve added several others since. 5 wts to 10 wts. Like them all for different waters. Mostly use the 5 wt 8 wt. 

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I have a fly rod... or what's left of it anyway. A cheap Martin starter reel/rod combo. The reel and bottom section is fine... the top section was killed in an unfortunate storing accident that basically severed it in two. I tried to repair it, but it didn't work. I used it once but was only starting out with fly rods so I didn't have any luck. Not sure I have the coordination to be effective with one. The reels also kind of baffle me, how does one get a big fish in with such a tiny handle on the reel? People do it, but beats me how it's done lol.

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8 hours ago, FishDewd said:

The reels also kind of baffle me, how does one get a big fish in with such a tiny handle on the reel? People do it, but beats me how it's done lol.

 

You seldom put bass on the reel; mostly you strip them in. 

 

I like to put them in the reel sometimes, just for practice, and to keep the fly line off the deck, it's not difficult once you've done it a few times.

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I'll relay one lesson I learned the hard way...Never, never, never, palm the reel when you hook up with a striper.:lol:

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