we’re kicking off another lance egan tutorial that was a culmination of hearing about trip after trip where this technique and pattern had been just destroying the fish. from lance… the jigged streamer technique is one of those things that make me wonder why i didn’t think about it sooner, but i didn’t. for me it took a few mentions by my fly fishing team usa teammate, pat weiss, letting me know he caught some bonus fish on jigged streamers a few times in competitions before i started utilizing the technique. i started embracing the possibilities of a streamer on a euro-nymphing rig a few years ago and i’ve been steadily building confidence with it. the beat hadn’t been winning sessions but was consistently producing decent numbers of fish so i knew i’d have a chance at a top 5 finish in the session if i fished it well. i scouted the beat, decided where i’d focus my efforts and rigged the necessary rod and reels, one of which was a streamer setup on a 10 foot 3 weight. on my first cast with the streamer i landed a brown trout, followed by 3 more in the next 5 minutes.
i ended up with 15 fish, all on the little black streamer that pat weiss showed me. 15 fish was good enough for a 3rd place finish in the session and was the most fish caught on my beat of the 5 anglers that fished it. to be successful the fly needs to have a rapid sink rate, and be heavy enough to stay in contact as you animate the fly throughout the drift. i recommend you carry jigged streamers in a range of weights so you can adapt to various river conditions. build a few and fish them on your next outing. i don’t keep exact counts of fish i catch, but i’d be willing to bet that i caught more trout on a jigged streamer the last 3 months than on nymphs. see the fly in action and learn the technique below…
there’s something alluring to any fish species about a lure or fly moving vertically in the water column. it’s not surprising that jigging is so effective with this same tackle, because little or no fly line lies on top of the water, which creates less surface drag and results in the streamer dropping to the stream bottom faster. bulky flies feel like you’re pulling a wet sock through the water during the retrieve, and they are built to displace water, but that quality reduces strike detection when you’re jigging a streamer. when action slows down, the key to success is often a depth change, not a fly change. as the fly drops and drifts downstream, use your line hand to slowly strip in slack at the same speed as the descending jig.
if the water is cold, or the fish are lazy and resting on the bottom, use a shorter lift to keep the fly closer to the fish and make it easier to grab. the key to creating jigging action with a regular fly line is getting the line to pull the fly either downward or upward. then, a pause and a little slack allow the buoyant streamer to rise up toward the surface. tension between the fly and the line is the greatest at this stage. if the water is clear and the fish are feeding hard, they are more likely to chase the fly. if you are using a euro rod, the tip is soft and it’s difficult to deliver energy to that hook point.
jigged streamers need to be heavy. to be successful the fly needs to have a rapid sink rate, and be heavy enough to stay in contact as you animate the fly the word “jig” means “a lively dance,” which is fitting, since fly fishers dress up their streamer patterns and present them in a seductive and the jig is timeless. its simplicity of design inspires variations. it begs for adaptation. the heavy head provides an angler with control, and, jig sculpin, jig sculpin, jig sculpzilla, euro nymph streamer patterns, sculpin streamer.
this is my favorite pattern to fish as a streamer on a euro-nymphing leader. with this method you can dead drift, jig, horizontally jig, this streamer is a wonderful, no nonsense fish producer! a must have if you want to try jigged streamers. here’s what pat has to say: “hopping/jigging action is in this week’s “how to tie” video feature, fly fish food gives us a great tutorial on how to tie the jig streamer sculpin., croston’s euro jig, sculpin fly pattern, sculpin jig fly, bunker buster fly.
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