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Old 02-22-2019, 07:21 PM
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lostdutchman lostdutchman is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: tempe
Posts: 1,268
Originally Posted by jimc View Post
I appreciate the advice to use soft hackles in the slower water above the bridge.
To my surprise, I had a trout in the net after my 3rd cast. This seems to be the exception because I have not had any sustained success since.
I am still perfecting my technique - retrieval, drift, choice of sinking line, etc.
However, I am still trying to figure out which fly to tie below the soft hackle to make it sink. I have been using smaller beaded nymphs, but they don't sink quickly enough and they start to buoy on retrieval.
So far, I have tried wollybuggers and SSL. The SSL seems to be the perfect weight, but I am only getting takes on a faster retrieval and only on the SSL.
So basically, I am streaming an SSL with a soft hackle doing nothing.
Any advice would be appreciated.
put the soft hackle behind the SSL..

usually a good rule of thumb when running 2 flies.. the smaller fly should be the 2nd.. theres always exceptions of course. ( euro nymphing)

swinging soft hackles will work best in the riffles and tailouts ( if and when the water is actually moving at the salt hah.

play with size.. somedays they wanted TINY ones ( 18-20) .. somedays they
would eat bigger ones ( 12-14) i would usually use a sink tip, something mid sink rate like around 3-4 inches per second. ( heavier for getting down to the suckers if you wanna play that game) but you don't need to.. the sink tip and shorter leader ( don't need a lonnnng leader with sink tips. ( 4 feet is plenty especially when swinging for trout) ) ensure less of a bow, and a more controlled swing meaning you know exactly when you're getting a grab. if you are fishing with the leech.. strip/ fish your way back to you.

soft hackles will work best when the bugs are moving. aka during a hatch.. most hatches on the salt this time of year are dawn and dusk, unless its cloudy, then you can have a hatch all day.

work backwards than you would fishing dries or bobber fishing.. start at the tops of runs and work you way down. casting 45 degrees downstream. step every couple casts, or if you're consistently picking up fish, or know the bucket, spend more time there.. but cover some water until you find willing fish....swinging is a good way to search for fish.

just like anything else, it won't work EVERY TIME, but its a really successful tool to have in the arsenal, especially out there as noone else does it, and there are tons of nymphs in the water.

goodluck, glad to hear its worked for you thus far!
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