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  1. #1
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    huh Match the Hatch -Presentation - or Both ???

    In some circle's of the Fly-Fishing world this may be the biggest debate of all time.

    This question only pertains to when your fishing a Tail-water, or Spring Creek. i.e. Delaware System, Missouri River, Saucon, Little Lehigh, Letort etc.

    It is also about consistency..With your method do you catch fish on a consistent basis?

    Can you catch fish on the WB throwing a perfect shot with a Turks Tarantula when the fish are locked in on Sulphurs?

    Can you cast upstream and catch fish with a Grasshopper on the Little Lehigh when they're eating Trico's ?

    This also only pertains to when fish are visibly eating off the surface in a "Rhythm". NOT BLIND CASTING IN FAST WATER.

    Similar Threads:

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    Re: Match the Hatch -Presentation - or Both ???

    In my experience you will consistently have better results on places like the Delaware if you are matching the naturals very closely and have good presentation. The patterns need to be close but presentation needs to be perfect!


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk


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    Re: Match the Hatch -Presentation - or Both ???

    I think presentation first, but of course it helps to have both. For example, this time of year I'm likely to tie on a big March Brown emerger or spinner and give it a shot. The wrong fly properly drifted over a fish is more likely to catch a fish than the perfect fly that misses the target. I think most days trout are opportunistic and hit any good meal.

    That said, I am a firm believer in "super hatches", the few prolific hatches trout see for weeks and really get locked into. You mentioned two of the best - tricos on the limestoners and sulphurs on the Upper Delaware system. BWOs are in the same boat. Trout see these hatches day after day and really concentrate on them, often even a single phase. This is where the fly has to be dead on. Of course you still need the proper presentation to catch them, but you also need the right fly. I think when there are loads of bugs on the water the trout don't move far so you need to be more accurate, often +/- 3". I think many times people aren't getting the fly right of the fish when they strike out. Especially in low clear water these "super hatches" are tough since you need the right fly, the right presentation, and you need to be especially accurate. That is the challenge of course. And the challenge gets worse with time and the fish have seen more of the hatch, and more fishermen. July 4 is typically a great day for trico fishermen. By late August it is a much tougher game. Even then, sometimes when frustrated tossing out a Royal Coachman dry will crack the code. Slapping a grasshopper behind a trico sipping brown sometimes saves the day as well. So I still give the edge to presentation.


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    Re: Match the Hatch -Presentation - or Both ???

    Count me as presentation over fly. I start with both, but feel presentation is more important than the fly more often than not. And that includes dumb stocked fish on freestoners as well.

    A sinking fly is closer to Hell - ​Unknown

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    Re: Match the Hatch -Presentation - or Both ???

    In glassy, clear water, the fly and the presentation have to be perfect. A drag-free drift will bring the trout up to the fly, but once there, he'll have the time to inspect it at his leisure, so the pattern matters a lot.

    In faster water or broken water or off-color water, or even when there's a breeze on the surface, the presentation trumps the pattern every time. JeffK put it well:

    Quote Originally Posted by JeffK View Post
    The wrong fly properly drifted over a fish is more likely to catch a fish than the perfect fly that misses the target.
    In other words, unless the trout are on Isos or other swimming nymphs, you're not going to catch anything skating a dry or wet fly across a run. Get a nice drift and you still might not catch anything. Time to switch flies.


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    Re: Match the Hatch -Presentation - or Both ???

    Presentation is a pre-requisite to catching difficult trout. That being said, I have had the most success on some of the waters you mentioned by have an imitation that can withstand a thorough inspection by a trout for 5-10 seconds. On many streams I do well with John Barr's Vis-a-dun, with splayed poly wings, and I tie quite a few of them. However, on the Letort, Little Lehigh, and lower Musky I know I will have to turn to Vince Marinaro's thorax ties, which are time consuming to tie, not very durable. but almost never fail. Not that they are exact replicas of the mayflies, but since many of the trout feeding in these waters station themselves where the floating flies come right towards them, Marinaro's theory of the trout window with the wings coming into view with minimal surface interruption is proven to me over and over.

    Marinaro's "Modern Dry Fly Code" was written in the early 1950's, and "In the Ring of the Rise" was written in the early 1970's, but areas relevant as ever. I would recommend that anyone that plans to fly fish the demanding waters mentioned read and study his works.

    NJPB

  7. #7
    TR's Avatar
    TR is offline "You can observe a lot just by watching." Y. Berra
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    Re: Match the Hatch -Presentation - or Both ???

    Quote Originally Posted by JOE.T View Post
    In some circle's of the Fly-Fishing world this may be the biggest debate of all time.
    ---

    Good morning.

    An excellent question posed by Mr. T.

    I'll refer to two anglers, Ed Van Put and Al Caucci, who are profiled in two different essays by Jim Merritt in his excellent book, "Trout Dreams: - ISBN: 1-58667-011-5

    In both instances, Mr. Merritt is writing about the Main Stem Upper Delaware River.

    To wit: {Merritt on Mr. Van Put -- Page 28/29}


    "For his fly, Ed prefers an Adams - in size fourteen in normal conditions, but size sixteen or eightteen in low water or if fish are feeding on smaller stuff. Its mottled gray dressing makes this dry fly one of the great generic patterns, or course, and Van Put believes that fish can more easily spot its dark silhouette in dim light. He likes to fish it even when it is patently the "wrong" fly, for example, during a hatch of Hendricksons or Green Drakes. While Van Put is reputed to fish the Adams exclusively, a glance though his fly box belies this. If no fish are rising, he said, he may search the water with a Chuck Caddis, a Henryville Special, or a Cream Variant. For nymphs, he favors the Zug Bug, and he occasionally fishes downstream with tradional wet flies."


    and

    {Merritt on Mr. Caucci -- page 173}

    On the surface at least, Al Caucci's hatch matching philosophy couldn't be more different from Van Put's view that presenation is everything. Yet watching Al fish, I was struck by the similarities in his style and Ed's. Like Van Put, Al fishes riffles, he spends more time looking for rises than casting. He keeps on the move, changing the angle of his eyes to the streams surface to pick up the fleeting rise forms of feeding fish. Once he finds a fish he works it hard, with patience and persistence, changing flies until he hits on the right one. 'The best gauge for whether a fly is right is to throw it out on the water', he said,' If it sticks out from the naturals, you're just asking for a refusal. Fish key into the size of the fly, its attitude or silhouette on the water, and the shade of the body, although not necessarily the color, especially at dusk.' "

    --------

    Tight lines,
    TR
    ::Fishing Report for the Upper Delaware River - Catskills - Poconos:: New York and Pennsylvania





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    Re: Match the Hatch -Presentation - or Both ???

    Presentation, Presentation, Presentation, I have found you need to be in a position to present your fly in a way to allow the inconsistencies in the current to direct your fly to a point of a drag free drift. I have seen fish wait for an insect swirl around an eddy in a particular pattern before they take it. A smart fish will behave in that manor. Your fly can be 6 to 8 inches off the mark but if the drift pattern is correct it should develop a response.

    "Hatchery fish have the same colors, but they always seem muted like bad reproductions of great art." Bill Barich

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    flyI4 is offline Fishizzle, I use worms but I'm looking to upgrade!
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    Re: Match the Hatch -Presentation - or Both ???

    It really depends on the time of year. Presentation is always important and fly selection isnt always a big deal. Early season during hendricksons- the fish are easy to fool and a decent presentation with any dark colored mayfly looking pattern will work on most fish. The presentation needs to be drag free- but even slight errors in feeding the line that cause micro drag will be ignored. This time of year- there are so many bugs hatching (march browns, olives, several caddis species, the start of sulphers, grey fox, ect) that the fish can be both picky and not picky. Some days, a march brown thrown over a fish will work great and the fish seem dumb. Other times, they key in on the less apparent bug (a masking hatch I believe its called) and matching the hatch becomes critical.

    Also- I think certain hatches demand more precision when it comes to pattern. A blue winged olive hatch is one of those. You need several patterns in different stages, colors, wing designs, and a few of those ones that you can see on the water but you hope don't seem too big to the fish. Those usually don't work- but you try them first and go from there. Sulphers also get really tough and you need finicky emerger patterns to trick the fish as they become smarter well into the hatch.

    Lastly, sometimes a hatch is so heavy that matching the hatch becomes futile. When there are millions of bugs going over a fish, sometimes its best to pick a fly that is relevent to the time of year, but not whats on the water. The fish will pick it out and sometimes take it. An Iso during a full blown sulpher hatch is an example that comes to mind. Also- an oversized ant pattern during a heavy trico hatch can work well.

    Overall- presentation is more important than fly selection in my opinion, but each hatch and time of year offers specific challenges that re-arrange whats important on the water.


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    Re: Match the Hatch -Presentation - or Both ???

    Quote Originally Posted by flyI4 View Post
    It really depends on the time of year. Presentation is always important and fly selection isnt always a big deal. Early season during hendricksons- the fish are easy to fool and a decent presentation with any dark colored mayfly looking pattern will work on most fish. The presentation needs to be drag free- but even slight errors in feeding the line that cause micro drag will be ignored. This time of year- there are so many bugs hatching (march browns, olives, several caddis species, the start of sulphers, grey fox, ect) that the fish can be both picky and not picky. Some days, a march brown thrown over a fish will work great and the fish seem dumb. Other times, they key in on the less apparent bug (a masking hatch I believe its called) and matching the hatch becomes critical.

    Also- I think certain hatches demand more precision when it comes to pattern. A blue winged olive hatch is one of those. You need several patterns in different stages, colors, wing designs, and a few of those ones that you can see on the water but you hope don't seem too big to the fish. Those usually don't work- but you try them first and go from there. Sulphers also get really tough and you need finicky emerger patterns to trick the fish as they become smarter well into the hatch.

    Lastly, sometimes a hatch is so heavy that matching the hatch becomes futile. When there are millions of bugs going over a fish, sometimes its best to pick a fly that is relevent to the time of year, but not whats on the water. The fish will pick it out and sometimes take it. An Iso during a full blown sulpher hatch is an example that comes to mind. Also- an oversized ant pattern during a heavy trico hatch can work well.

    Overall- presentation is more important than fly selection in my opinion, but each hatch and time of year offers specific challenges that re-arrange whats important on the water.
    What JC said !
    Presentation and accuracy. Just the other day, I had a fish gorging on emergers. Of course the client swore that the fly was wrong. My reply that the fish hasnt even seen his fly wasnt taken so well. Fish gorging on emergers have a window of maybe 3 to 4 inches and his closest cast was about a foot away. Nothing beats a downstream reach cast at around 45 degrees down. Give me 6-8 ft. of drag free drift and you will catch fish. If you end up with micro drag, the fish may change his feeding pattern and slide over a bit but generally will move back if you resist the urge to pummel him. Wait for him to resume and maybe you will get one or two more shots. If you drag him a second time, lift the anchor.
    Sulphers, especially the doratheas that have been on the water for a month or so get so tough that they start to key in on cripples and stillborns, then cripples whose right leg is still twitching, next day, it will be the left leg. Couple that with the damn algae that has been present the last 2 years and you want to put a rope around your neck.

    Joe T, I got it figured out. See you Thursday.


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    Re: Match the Hatch -Presentation - or Both ???

    Quote Originally Posted by brachycentrus View Post
    What JC said !

    Joe T, I got it figured out. See you Thursday.
    From what I gather, it will all change Wednesday night


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    Re: Match the Hatch -Presentation - or Both ???

    Quote Originally Posted by thrashers.wheat View Post
    From what I gather, it will all change Wednesday night


    Nah, brachy will figure it out again if that happens.

    A sinking fly is closer to Hell - ​Unknown

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