with Oliver Edwards
not being of any traditionalist’s tendencies, what interests me most in wet fly fishing is more the style of fishing rather than the actual flies used as this method works equally well with unweighted nymphs or drowned dries (yup, put sinkant, mud or spit on it and it slowly sinks just where we want it).
active, dynamic, extremely effective and a lot of fun, the goal here is to present flies that might represent deadborns, emergers or spents just below the surface of the water column.
through time i’ve found that wet flies are so effective that i’ll almost always have one trailing behind or before the ‘main fly’, even with streamers ! a guess would be they come over to see the chunk and they take the bite-size, maybe because it looks less intimidating ? who knows.
in the beginning sequence Edwards points out an extremely obvious point that the typical method of fishing wets, ‘down and across’ just doesn’t make for a natural drift.
it does work at times but it’s clear that most salmonids will shun an insect going against or across current because it just doesn’t fit in with what insects do. with the ‘down and across’ method, there are often serious issues in hooking up. if the fish doesn’t turn around or go off at an appropriate angle it’s very easy to pull the hook out of the fish’s mouth as it’s directly inline with the angler. another common problem with this tight-line technique is the fish feels an instant resistance and spits the fly out and break-offs are common with over-excited, overly caffeinated anglers. a lot more important than losing a fly, break-offs suck because the fish ends up with a fly stuck in it’s mouth…
these problems hardly ever occur with the upstream or across stream methods shown on the video as there’s always at least some slack in the system.
(unfortunately, the longer video that demonstrated these fishing techniques with more details has been removed from the public domain but for all interested in learning more about traditional wet fly fishing i’d highly recommend buying Edward’s Essential Skills dvd #4 ‘Wet Fly Fishing on Rivers’)
here Edwards is tying the famous Waterhen Boa or large dark olive or better yet, Baetis rhodani of the ephemeroptera/mayfly family.
this nymph image explains the ‘dark’ part of ‘large dark olive’
(EDIT- THE VIDEO BELOW HAS BEEN REMOVED, I’LL TRY TO FIND ANOTHER ONE ASAP)
like most wet flies it doesn’t really look like anything at the vise but it’s for sure sexy-buggy attractive when wet and tumbling down the current !