Sink Flies Faster for Winter Steelheads

Sink Flies Faster for Winter Steelheads
Setting up to throw a lob cast. Notice the extra loop held in the fingers.

Sometimes a matter of inches can make all the difference. In winter steelheading, sinking a fly another foot can mean hooking a fish when the guys in front of you got blanked.

To sink our flies, winter steelhead fly fishermen use sink-tips that range from 2 to 15 feet. When the water calls for it, we add a weighted pattern. And when the run is especially fast or deep, we can slip on a cone weight to the leader. But sometimes even these tackle adjustments leave us short, or shallow as the cause may be.

//www.flyfisherman.com/files/2012/02/IMG_6024.jpg
Setting up to throw a lob cast. Notice the extra loop held in the fingers.

When I want to sink a weighted fly as deep as I can, I change the angle of my cast; instead of casting at a target on the horizon, I aim at a target about 30 degrees above the horizon. This angle change causes the fly to hinge at the end of the cast, then drop fifteen or so feet straight down into the water--where it plummets thanks to the acceleration of the drop AND the lack of tension that exists in a typical straight line cast.

To get even deeper, try making your mends in the first seconds after the cast lands; these mends will be most effective if they don't add any tension to the line. Try retaining a loop in your line during the cast (as the cast tightens and drops, you still have a big loop in your fingers); then release the loop and throw the mend.


Get Your Fish On.

Plan your next fishing and boating adventure here.

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Breaking the Surface

Breaking the Surface

Attack of the Bass continues as Breaking the Surface attacks bass with fly and lure 12:30pm ET Sunday, April 17th.

Black Beauty

Black Beauty

Master fly tier Charlie Craven discuss the tools and materials needed to tie the Black Beauty.

 Getting Started In Fly Fishing

Getting Started In Fly Fishing

Getting Started In Fly Fishing

Fly Fishing for Taimen in Mongolia

Fly Fishing for Taimen in Mongolia

Finding giant Mongolia taimen and a state of enlightenment.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

Best Panfish Flies Flies

Best Panfish Flies

Skip Morris

Best Panfish Flies

Golden riches in Wyoming's high-country heaven of the Wind River Range. United States

Wind River Range Wyoming

Greg Thomas - July 27, 2015

Golden riches in Wyoming's high-country heaven of the Wind River Range.

Fly-Fisherman Editor Ross Purnell shares his top five best trout fishing destinations in the world. Worldwide

5 Best Trout Fishing Spots in the World

Ross Purnell, Editor

Fly-Fisherman Editor Ross Purnell shares his top five best trout fishing destinations in the...

Read about Colorado's backcountry fly fishing in United States

Indian Peaks Wilderness Area Colorado

Steven B. Schweitzer - May 03, 2016

Read about Colorado's backcountry fly fishing in " Indian Peaks Wilderness Area Colorado."

See More Trending Articles

More Flies

When you spend years working in a fly shop, you become callous to the many items that surround you. But I eventually figured out that bucktail bodies would be a great option. Flies

Bucktail Bodies

Paul Weamer - May 03, 2012

When you spend years working in a fly shop, you become callous to the many items that surround...

From my perspective, any list of the Flies

World's Top 13 Pike Flies

Matt Straw - September 05, 2017

From my perspective, any list of the "Best 13" pike flies on earth has to include something...

The Bucket Buster is a favorite for probing deep lies. The rear-placement barbell eyes ensures the fly sinks rear-first, a more hydrodynamic position. Flies

Bucket Buster Fly

John Larison - September 08, 2015

The Bucket Buster is a favorite for probing deep lies. The rear-placement barbell eyes ensures...

Best Panfish Flies Flies

Best Panfish Flies

Skip Morris

Best Panfish Flies

See More Flies

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.