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Old 03-14-2017, 02:30 PM   #1
goodnuff
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Fly Fishing Ponds For Brookies

I know these types of questions have been asked here because I've spent some time searching this site, but, I'm going to raise the subject again! Forgive me.

I just want to make sure I'm on the right path. I'm pretty new to fly fishing. I have done some (very little) dry fly fishing on small rivers with limited success. I'm also fairly new to pond fishing, but I've been absolutely loving carrying my boat back to a beautiful pond and trolling around with a spinning rod/worm/wabbler. I have had some success with this setup, but, I want to try fly fishing now. I'm hoping to troll for now without it being too complicated. Here are my questions:

1) First step, is to buy a rod and reel. From what I've gathered, I'm thinking I'll probably go with either 8'6"ft/6wt or 9ft/6wt?
2) Type of line? Seems like clear intermediate would be a good place to start?
3) What's it like trolling with a fly rod and sinking line? Much different than with spinning rod/worm/wabbler? Just a matter of sinking speed?
4) Any suggestions on somewhere to go and buy a setup? I'd prefer to talk with someone in person and hopefully establish some relationship so I can bug them in the future. Especially since I'll be teaching myself really. I'm in the Glens Falls area.

Thanks all for any help you can provide.
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Old 03-14-2017, 04:16 PM   #2
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Some good info on YouTube.
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Old 03-14-2017, 05:19 PM   #3
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Unless you're trolling for landlocks, you will troll slowly. Very slowly.

For pond fishing we all have our preferences but honestly any rod between 8 and 9 feet will work. A 5 or 6 weight is adequate. 3 or 4 pieces make packing easier. It's a good idea to buy a reel where spools are cheap and easily switched. That way you can have a full sinking and an intermediate ready if needed. Both are necessary depending on the conditions and the level of the fish. A large arbor reel will make line management and retrieval much easier. It need not have a fancy drag or be expensive. Check ebay for rods and reels. If you ever think you might move into a float tube, then get a 9' rod. It will give more clearance between the line and the water. Any decent modern graphite rod will throw a ton of line (with a bit of practice).

Feel free to PM me for more info.
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Old 03-14-2017, 05:52 PM   #4
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I mainly use a full sink and just crawl along very slow using my own Dragon Muddler which is a killing fly. I fish the transition where shallow drops to deep. I'm not a camper so I'm not on the water during peak am and pm periods.
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Old 03-14-2017, 07:03 PM   #5
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What Glen and Gman said. At some point you will figure out where the fish are and give up trolling so much. That's when a float tube comes into its own. At some point you'll also figure out what depths the fish are and will want to add lines to your arsenal. That said, my Type 2 Airflo clear intermediate is my go-to line.

I like longer rods when fishing ponds. Note that they're also an advantage for euro-nymphing on rivers and streams. My current fave is a Hook & Hackle 10 foot Xi 5 wt. They primarily sell kits and rods are not hard to build. Consider it a fun way to get started with a high probability of success and a low expenditure.

I like the Hardy cassette style large arbor reels. A bit pricey but the cassettes that hold your line are dirt cheap.

Get a good book or two on lake/pond fishing. There's a thread on this forum exploring that subject. I like Bob Sheedy's book best although you have to order it directly from him. His top fifty stillwater fly patterns book is worth having as well.

Finally, consider learning to tie your own flies. This is a quick way to learn an awful lot.

Good luck and may you soon experience the thrill of a large brookie trying to remove your rod from your hands.
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Old 03-14-2017, 09:21 PM   #6
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I was in your shoes a year ago. Lugging my canoe through the woods and trolling with lead core line and Wabblers. Many fond memories resulted. On one trip I didn't catch a thing and there were fish rising all around me like a boiling pot of water. That got me thinking about bugs and other types of forage in the water. The old Wabbler and worm didn't work that weekend. Those fish were onto something else and I learned what "selective feeding" meant. I decided to delve into the world of stillwater fly fishing.

The members on this forum helped me greatly. The suggestions above were taken and many hours were spent reading books and studying the stillwater pond life cycle. Bob Sheedy's books are great and the video he sells is good for learning where to find fish and how to emulate forage. I learned to tie all 50 of his flies and have caught fish with some of them. I'm still working on my presentations but that's half the fun.

Search the threads as suggested. There's a bunch of stuff on here. Some nice photos of flies too.

I found this video helpful too. You can watch most of it for free on YouTube. It helps me visualize what's going on underwater. Best of luck!

http://www.flyline.com/shop/bugs_of_the_underworld/
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Old 03-15-2017, 09:28 AM   #7
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Thank you all for the valuable information. This is definitely a complicated sport with a lot to digest and learn. In searching the forum yesterday, I came across a suggestion for the book "Strategies for Stillwater" which I ordered. I will consider emailing Bob Sheedy as well, but at this point Fly Fishing for Dummies is probably most appropriate for me.

One thing you guys have suggested that I hadn't really thought of was the ability to change lines, so I'll have to do some more research on that. I've already realized that the Cabelas RLS+ package I was considering doesn't quite fit that suggestion. I'd really rather find a shop to purchase from anyway provided they don't break the bank. Perhaps taking a ride up to Ausable River Two Fly Shop or Hungry Trout. Does anyone have experience with them or a preference of the two? Any other fly shop suggestions?

Pauly D's story is similar to mine. I was fishing a pond last year for quite some time by myself and caught nothing. A fly fisherman showed up and showed me up by catching several fish quickly. Jealousy ensued and has led me here...

Thanks again all. Much appreciated.
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Old 03-15-2017, 09:57 AM   #8
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goodnuff,

Can't argue with any of the advice given so far. My $0.02:
-Keep it simple. Starting out you don't need a box full of flies. If brook trout are biting, they are not fussy. I use 1 fly in the vast majority of my pond fishing. It looks like nothing in nature but it resembles many things. In my experience, every ADK trout pond has midges and dragonflies so you might want to have some of those in your box.
-Find some good ponds. Your success in pond fishing will have less to do with equipment and more to do with the quality of pond you're fishing. Generally speaking, the amount of effort to reach a pond is proportional to the quality of fishing to be had. This is why pond fishing information is so guarded, it is probably the most important factor.
-If you are new to flyfishing, casting a full sink line is considerably more difficult than a standard floating line you'd use for stream fishing. An intermediate line might be a better option to start out.
-Trolling flyline is no different than a spinning rod but even with full sink line you probably won't go as deep as with a wabbler/worm rig. In that case, depth can be adjusted by adding weight. Long leaders are recommended so the fish can't see your fly line as readily (12 ft. or longer). I like fluorocarbon for leader material.
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Old 03-15-2017, 10:23 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goodnuff View Post

One thing you guys have suggested that I hadn't really thought of was the ability to change lines, so I'll have to do some more research on that. I've already realized that the Cabelas RLS+ package I was considering doesn't quite fit that suggestion. I'd really rather find a shop to purchase from anyway provided they don't break the bank. Perhaps taking a ride up to Ausable River Two Fly Shop or Hungry Trout. Does anyone have experience with them or a preference of the two? Any other fly shop suggestions?

If starting out, why would you buy new?

http://www.ebay.com/sch/Fishing/1492...p2045573.m1684


http://www.ebay.com/sch/Fishing/1492...p2045573.m1684
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“Once there were brook trout in the streams in the mountains. They smelled of moss in your hand. On their backs were vermiculate patterns that were maps of the world in its becoming. Maps and mazes. Of a thing which could not be put back. Not be made right again. In the deep glens where they lived all things were older than man and they hummed of mystery.”
― Cormac McCarthy
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Old 03-15-2017, 10:46 AM   #10
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Two things you will quickly learn about fly shops: they are expensive and most are not very knowledgeable about stillwaters. You have two logical choices. Follow Glen's suggestion and buy used. Alternatively go to the Hook & Hackle website and buy their Xi rod or kit. Several of us on the forum have built these. I like mine as much as my expensive RL Winston.
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Old 03-15-2017, 11:35 AM   #11
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Or give Vince a call @ Wiley's Flies in Ray Brook, between Saranac Lake and Lake Placid
www.wileysflies.com
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Old 03-15-2017, 02:11 PM   #12
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Or give Vince a call @ Wiley's Flies in Ray Brook, between Saranac Lake and Lake Placid
www.wileysflies.com
Great suggestion. Probably the best fly shop in the Adirondacks and Vince fishes the ponds.
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Old 03-17-2017, 04:22 PM   #13
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Thanks again all. Frankly not sure what I'm going to do to move forward quite yet, but your input is appreciated.
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