Fly Fishing Tackle & Equipment
SOME OPINIONS ON FLY FISHING EQUIPMENT AND FLIES SUPPLIED TO US BY OUR GUESTS
A member of Trout Unlimited for 20 years and he became very active 6 years ago when he became the president of the local chapter. He has since moved up in the organization and is currently the Vice-President of a State Board (representing about 12,000+ active members statewide).
Ben’s Recommendation For Incoming Flyfishers
7-8 weight rods/reels for God’s River
8-10 weight rods/reels for God’s Lake/Siemen’s Lake (10-wt recommended)
Fly-line for river – Intermediate to full-sinking line (trout, walleye, and pike)
Floating line (for mousing or during hatches)
Fly-line for lakes – Intermediate (e.g. Rio Pike/Musky)
Leaders – 0-1 for trout (will require smaller for dry fly hatches – to match fly size)
20-30# tapered leaders for pike (e.g. pike or “toothy critter”)
Optional: Self-made pike leaders with 5’-6’ section of 30# monofilament and 18” 30# wire bite tippet using perfection loops for line-to-leader and leader-to-tippet connections (or double surgeon’s knot for the latter) and a uni-knot for the clip (assure before arrival that eyes of your fly hooks will fit onto clip).
For trout/walleye: Streamers - any large (size 2-6), fast-sinking, articulated flies – good colors: white, white/red, tan, black, yellow, olive
Examples: Any sculpins (fish-skull weighted heads best), Sex Dungeon, Coffey’s Articulated Sparkle Minnow, Hare Sculpin, Trophy Dungeon, Trophy Peanut, Zoo Cougar, Wooly Tips Up, Clousers
Dry fly: Match the hatch (best hatches late June through July), sizes 12-16– Goddard’s Caddis, Elk Hair Caddis, Humpys, Adams, Black Gnats, mosquitoes, Chernobyl ants, hoppers.
Mouse: Morrish Mouse or Less Mess version in 6-2/0
For pike – smaller river pike will hit anything. These recommendations are for big lake pike:
Sized 2/0 to 4/0 (if tying use Gamakatsu or other very sharp hook – e.g. SL12S)
Monster Magic, Northern Magic, Northern Magic Lite – in back/red, black/purple
Also baitfish patterns like articulated minnows or Clousers.
JIM & MIKE
While some of the spots have to be fished from a boat, there are many places where you can beach the boat and fly cast from large rocks. We did this a lot. The most consistent fishing is with large weighted streamers, such as Clausers, and with dry-dropper rigs, such as a wooly bugger fished beneath a large dry fly. Occasionally, you can fish dry flies to rising fish. It would be nice if this happened routinely, but we have not found this to be true. However, when a hatch happens, it can be pretty special.
For pike fishing, a 9wt or 10wt fly rod is perfect. When it is windy, heavier is better, especially for large pike flies.You could use a 9wt for brook trout, but I think that is a little heavy, especially for dry fly fishing. I used a 7wt, but anything from a 6wt to an 8wt would be fine. I brought both floating and sinking lines to Gods River, and I used both, depending on the conditions. We have fished there multiple times in July. When there are hatches and the brook trout are rising, it is wonderful. Glorious. Praise the fishing gods and go home happy. But the hatches are sporadic and you can't depend on them. So you need an alternate strategy in case you run into this. You need to be prepared to get streamers and nymphs down deep in the heavy current.
Mike Playing a Brookie on a Bamboo Fly Rod from the Shore at the Lodge on a #16 Elk Hair Caddi
JOHN , SCOTT, BARRY & SEAN
Information Courtesy of Scott
We only fished streamers - it appeared we were just about to get a hatch, but we saw minimal action on the surface of the river, so no help for you regarding dry fly fishing. My general concern regarding the dry flies we did bring was that the hooks were mighty small for the size of the fish we were catching. Additionally, we only fished the river - we did not target anything but Brook Trout during our trip, so our observations regarding fishing the river are limited to the use of streamers on the river.
The trout were typically caught in the fast current - we think they stay behind rocks when its feeding time and ambush the flies in the fastest currents in the river.
Sean and I used large streamers in ALL colours - Sean had good luck with articulated, 2-hook streamers.
Neither one of us used Woolly Buggers successfully - and most of the streamers we used were NOT coneheads or beadheads, just soft material. Sculpins, leaches and minnow patterns were most successful for us.
I personally think the 7 wt was perfect for the size of the fish and the strength of the current - and I would say 6,7, and 8 wt. rods are ideal, I believe Sean would say 7,8 and 9 wt were ideal.
At a minimum, when fishing the streamers, a sink tip line should be used - we don't think that tie-on sink tips or sinking leaders would be effective - the current is too fast. I had a 15 ft. sink tip that I lost for my 7 wt - I don't think it got me down enough - I had more success with a full sink line, but I believe a 24 ft sink tip would have been ideal for the 7 wt . We used the 24 ft sink tip that we used on the 8 and 9 wt successfully.
The conditions can be challenging with streamers - bring an extra fly line for each weight rod - I lost one to the boat motor - fortunately had another.
After the trip, Sean and I concluded that we would use Pike/Musky leaders if we went back for streamer fishing - we both lost several flies to pike and spent a fair amount of time replacing frayed leaders due to the rocks. At a bare minimum, use flourocarbon leaders and bring reels of 8-12 wt flourocarbon tippet material.