It seems like every where I look, I see blog posts all over the place chastising and bad mouthing nymph fishing.
I hear comments claiming nymph fishing is nothing more than mindless fly fishing. That watching indicators floating down the river all day is boring. So let me ask you this, does it make since to instead fish a dry fly if your chances of catching fish are slim to none? To me, that’s what’s boring and ridiculous. My objective on the water is always to decipher what the fish are predominantly feeding on, and then fish the appropriate rig and fly that allows me to imitate it to my best ability. Whether or not the fly pattern is a wet or dry fly has no bearing to me at all. All that matters is that it’s the right choice for the moment. To frown upon nymph fishing and purposely avoid it, even when it’s obvious it’s an anglers best bet for success, is like a golfer choosing to putt with a driver instead of a putter. It will work but it’s obviously not the best gear choice.
We don’t go through life purposely choosing to take the most difficult path in the off chance we’ll find success. Just as in fly fishing, it doesn’t make any sense to fish one method of fly fishing over another just because it feels more pleasing to the soul. I can stomach doing it every now and then, but to ignore fish behavior and throw away my adaptive fishing tactics, just because I dislike nymph fishing or any other method, seems to go against all the teachings that our fly fishing pioneers have worked so hard to pass down to all of us.
It doesn’t matter what type of fly pattern your fishing, whether it sinks or floats, they all predominantly are designed to imitate various stages of aquatic insects or other food that’s preyed upon by fish in the ecosystem. Nine times out of ten, fish will prefer to forage on the easiest and most abundant food source available to them at any given time. Fish aren’t prejudice towards their food or flies we throw at them. All they care about is eating enough for survival and reproducing. I believe all forms of fly fishing and fly patterns are created equal.
Here’s another thing about nymph fishing that I find hilarious about the critics. A nymph rig, specifically a tandem nymph rig, is much harder to cast than a single dry fly or streamer rig. It takes more casting skills to pull off presentations without getting tangles. For anyone that wants to argue with me on this, hand a first-time fly fisherman a dry fly rig, and a nymph rig, and see which one they cast more efficiently. And if nymph fishing isn’t harder and more technical, than why is it that more often than not, nymph fishing is the last fly fishing method novice fly fisherman learn? And if trout feed below the surface on average 75% of the time, then why shouldn’t we be fishing subsurface for them?
There’s nothing wrong with having a favorite way to fly fish and catch fish, just don’t claim one way is purer or more worthy over the other. All flies are created equal, and they all begin with a hook.
Keep it Reel,Kent Klewein Gink & Gasoline www.ginkandgasoline.com firstname.lastname@example.org Sign Up For Our Weekly Newsletter!