Rod & Reel – Czech Nymphing Tips and Tricks
ON 11 JUNE 2016
Czech Nymphing Tips and Tricks – an excellent guide prepared by our friends at Rod & Reel. Have a read of this lethal technique, and learn to fish like a pro.!!
Czech Nymphing Tips and Tricks
You can trace the current Czech / Euro Nymphing craze back to it’s origins in competitive fly fishing, over 30 years ago. Over time it has emerged as a popular and very effective fishing method, not just here in New Zealand, but world wide. Those that are more traditional might look down on it as not “pure fly”, but there is no arguing that it is hugely effective and not difficult to learn to get to grips with.
So how do I fish it…..
Czech Nymphing is perfect for fast, deep runs, corner pools, shallow runs or even bow and arrow casting in to ‘hard to get at’ spots. With this style of fishing you never want to rush in to a pool or pocket, take your time and fish the water directly in front of you or the edges before charging in to the water. This is especially applicable in the winter months, when fish are regularly up in shallower areas, with the increased flows in the rivers. The advantage to this technique is that you can fish lot’s of different types of water with the same set-up. All you need to do is vary your nymph weight / size. The basics of the technique are to make a short roll cast or water loaded cast 45 degrees upstream from you. Remember there is very little drag on your Czech nymph setup, as you do not have an indicator or flyline on the water. So your flies should hit the bottom much quicker than traditional indicator nymphing.
As the fly sinks, slowly take up the slack line by lifting your rod up to a 45 degree angle out in front of you. Making sure you keep consistent contact with your nymphs. Follow your Nymphs through the drift keeping the contact consistent but making sure not to pull your nymphs in an un-natural way or pull them out of the natural drift line. This will take some practice, but keep at it.
As the nymphs continue to drift past you in the river, you can start to lift up the rod tip gradually following your nymphs through the drift. Give the nymphs a bit of a jiggle or twitch before pulling them from the water. You would be surprised how many takes you get doing this.
Hooking up fish with this technique is incredibly easy, we commonly use barbless Czech style nymphs while fishing this technique. As they provide much better penetration and far less pressure to set the hook. A simple twitch of the rod tip will generally result in a hook up with barbless hooks, keep the pressure on the fish and you wan’t loose anymore fish than you would using barbed hooks. We also use ‘jig’ style hooks on our ‘point’ or ‘bomb’ fly as these hooks ride upside down. Keeping the hook away from snags and the point more readily accessible to the fishes mouth.
When fishing this style, at the slightest tug or bump of your nymphs, lift your rod tip quickly and sharply to set the hook. In most instances all this needs is a quick flick of the wrist. It might take awhile to gauge the difference between the bottom and a fish, but persevere and you will be rewarded. If you only do a short, fast lift, your nymphs will not lift too much, so you can carry on fishing the run.
To get the most out of this technique, specific fly rods are available in longer lengths. Rods which are 9’6″ and 10’0″ are commonly used for this technique. As this allows the angler much better control and allows you to access the far side of a run much easier, without sacrificing to much line angle.
You don’t really want to go above a 6 weight rod in rod weight, with most choosing to go for a 4/5, 5 or a 6 weight rod. Anything bigger than a 6 weight rod will start to hinder your casting ability (they get too stiff and your nymphs can hit your rod tip) and you will run the risk of bending hooks putting to much muscle in to it. (www.rodandreel.co.nz/hanak/c47.aspx). Caged fly reels also make managing your mono line much easier and stop it from escaping out of the arbor, wrapping up on the reel and or rod and resulting in lost fish (www.rodandreel.co.nz/hanak/c41.aspx).
NZ Hot Nymph
Steve’s Belly Flash Bandit
R & R Hot Butt Pheasant Tail
White Epoxy Caddis
Start off with a shorter length of leader when first trying this technique. It is much easier to manage and get used to casting. Start off with around 7-8 feet or less and go from there. As your confidence grows you can start to play with leader length.
Turn fishing into catching
Jig style hooks will ride upside down when being fished, this will dramatically decrease snags and tangles.
Czech Nymphing Setups
Sam Bourne's 2016 National River Competition Czech Nymphing Setup
Peter Scott's Non-Competition Czech Nymphing Setup
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