I checked my blog stat section and note the overwhelming majority of visitors are searching for Czech Nymphing information. I have fished this way since 1971. I did not know what it was called. I was fishing with a friend, who had grown up in Iowa, but travelled throughout Montana as a young man. We were on a section of the Warm Springs R. in Oregon, which could be fished then. Throughout the day, I fished dry flies or nymphed. At that time corkies and other strike indicators had not risen onto my radar. I nymphed by casting out my floating line and with ten+ feet of fly line and the then standard 9′ tapered leader swing through the currents I watched for my fly line to significantly jerk…my que to set the hook. I caught maybe two fish all day and to the dry fly…to a non-insect Royal Coachman. Remember, I had used a TDC for years and knew little about fishing.
My friend fished a short line with the fly line up off the water and the leader almost straight down into the currents. He swung his rod along with ease and caught many fish. So many that my competitive streak was severly tweaked and humbled. He seemed magically gifted as he casually and literally pulled one trout after another from the river.
Now there was my template to compare to and to copy. Alas, I sometimes did and sometimes did not. Part of the problem was steelhead fishing lead to my swinging a line through the currents and even if I did fish a shorter line I later ‘evolved’ to the newer fad of using strike indicators. That seemed logical…a bobber of sorts to key upon as the line drifted beyond any tight control.
Then the Brookes method caught my attention. I saw a man on the Crooked R. standing in one of the few heavy water sections working around a bigger boulder. He was high sticking and in direct control of his line and he pulled a large trout from the river. Unfortuanately he killed the fish…well over 24″….but the technique was etched as a way to get a big payoff. I did not enjoy wading bigger water. I have never liked having water above the hips or let along to the belly push me along….scares me terribly to be stuck in mid current and no way out…been there….don’t care for the emerging panic and adrenaline dump.
Anyway, I have since used the technique and in safer water. I have been very successful with it and until a few years ago had only used our standard US nymphs. I had imagined any mayfly, caddis, stonefly etc nymph is quite appropriate to the technique of Czech Nymphing. But those Cz Nymphs do look sooooo good. I do so much lake fishing that I wish they were more transferrable to lake fishing. I don’t think they would ride true in the depths…turning this way and that. But for river/stream fishing they are exciting to use and very productive so far (last two seasons).
So enough about me….check out the below info. Use varied materials and learn the Polish/Shuttle Weave. There are other names for the weaving technique too. Realize if you weight that curved shank hook just so it will drift upside down with the point up…much like nymphs tumble about subsurface.
On March 16th, I wrote a post re Cz Nymphing and attached the below link, which describes how to do the weave. The weave is integral to the Polish Nymph and has been used for other nymph’s in the past. The material used determines how segmented or defined the body will look.