Fly Fishing with Streamers

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Technique for Streamers

Streamer fishing is often referred to as the forgotten child of fly fishing. Most fly anglers when asked how many forms of fly fishing there are here in the west they answer dry fly and nymph (sub-surface) fly fishing. That may be true for some fly anglers but the reality is there are three; dry fly, nymph (sub-surface) and streamer fishing. Streamer fishing is truly a forgotten skill. Why have a bucket that’s only ¾’s full when you can have a full bucket. Streamer fishing is unlike any other type of fly fishing and the logic of why and how we streamer fish must be understood before you can effectively use streamer fishing as a weapon in catching both trout and bass.

Here in SW Idaho we have many rivers where trout will actively pursue and strike streamers fly fished in front on them. That alone may cause some anglers to look into streamer fishing. However if that’s not enough to pique your interest then please continue to read on. The Owyhee River on the Idaho/Oregon border is considered by many experienced streamer fly anglers to be the best streamer fishing river in America. Some fly fishing studies conclude that when brown trout reach the size of 18 inches they will become aggressively carnivorous. Brown trout will actively pursue larger prey before feeding on aquatic insects. Brown trout make up over 95% of the trout population in the Owyhee River. So for you fly anglers who need an excuse to learn streamer fishing there’s your reason.

Most if not all spin fishermen know how to use a lure such as Mepps or Panther Martins. They have little doubt the effectiveness of the spinning lure to catch trout. The same logic holds true for streamer fly fishing. The aggressive strike a trout makes on a streamer is the same aggressive strike that a trout uses for attacking a spinning lure. The point is it’s a no brainer for a spin fisherman to use spinning lures for catching trout and it should be a no brainer for the fly angler to perfect the art of streamer fishing.