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Does anyone fish a float n fly for bass in winter? I've heard that it can produce some real big ones if fished correctly. I tie jigs and have been fooling around with it lately, and have caught one big fish and some small ones. Any tips or discussion would be great,
thx
 

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Does anyone fish a float n fly for bass in winter? I've heard that it can produce some real big ones if fished correctly. I tie jigs and have been fooling around with it lately, and have caught one big fish and some small ones. Any tips or discussion would be great,
thx
It's a popular tactic especially in the cold. What type bass did you catch on it? In a river?


Sent from my kayak...
 

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Never heard of it until now. I'll give it a try sometime and let you know. Need to find a bobber that fits the method.
It's a good tactic for stream fishing trout with spinning gear also. I used that method for many years before I ever picked up a fly rod. The bobber is the key. Matching it to the stream you are fishing. I used various sizes and even used cork.
 

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I have used the float and fly on Fontana lake in the winter. It works well. I have never used it in a river. The reason it works so well in cold winter mountain lakes is that you can find the fish with you electronics. Then mark them. Then you back the boat away and set the fly the depth of the fish under the float. The fly may be 10-20 feet below the float. Cast it to the marker and let it set. The fly will be right in with the fish. They are lethargic from the cold. So the movement of the surface will usually give the fly all the movement it will need. When the float moves away from the marker. Pick it up and cast it back to the marker. The best rod for this is a long one. I use a nine footer for this. You will need it with the fly so far under the float. Light spinning tackle is good for small mouth. Great way to fish when the cold has them shutdown.
 

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The reason it works so well in cold winter mountain lakes is that you can find the fish with you electronics. Then mark them. Then you back the boat away and set the fly the depth of the fish under the float. The fly may be 10-20 feet below the float. Cast it to the marker and let it set. The fly will be right in with the fish. They are lethargic from the cold. So the movement of the surface will usually give the fly all the movement it will need. When the float moves away from the marker. Pick it up and cast it back to the marker.
This thread has piqued my interest in a technique I've never tried. If you find a suspended school, do you not find that the marker weight and line dropping down near them spooks them? I have tried marking fish on a way point but right now I only have the sonar on the stern and I'm fishing up front on the troller, so without a marker buoy it would be hard to stay right on top of the school. I have been curious about marking fish with a buoy but I always assumed I would run a risk of spooking them.
 
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This thread has piqued my interest in a technique I've never tried. If you find a suspended school, do you not find that the marker weight and line dropping down near them spooks them? I have tried marking fish on a way point but right now I only have the sonar on the stern and I'm fishing up front on the troller, so without a marker buoy it would be hard to stay right on top of the school. I have been curious about marking fish with a buoy but I always assumed I would run a risk of spooking them.
You don't have to mark the schools to make this work (although it certainly can't hurt to drop it on their heads!). Find suspended bait near cover with a quick depth transition, points, channel bends, bluff walls, etc. Once you have found the food set your fly up to suspend at about the same depth. This works effectively and is how I have done it in highland reservoirs. As mentioned, this technique can also be very effective on rivers in wintering holes. You'll be fishing shallower but the same technique. I've never caught any largemouth on this method but if there is sufficient water clarity then it could be very effective (it is killer on spots and smallies). I've always thought Badin and Belews Creek would be good places to try this. The other local lakes get far too muddy for this to work (I've tried).
 

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Red X Angler
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This works effectively and is how I have done it in highland reservoirs. As mentioned, this technique can also be very effective on rivers in wintering holes. You'll be fishing shallower but the same technique. I've never caught any largemouth on this method but if there is sufficient water clarity then it could be very effective (it is killer on spots and smallies). I've always thought Badin and Belews Creek would be good places to try this. The other local lakes get far too muddy for this to work (I've tried).
I saw a couple articles about the guy(s) who started this up in Eastern TN, and one specifically mentioned Dale Hollow. Badin and Belews were the ones I had in mind, with the clear water and at least at Belews the presence of spotted bass.
 
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I started doing it as kid back in the Middle Ages. It's no secret. Mr. Twister curly tail jig ( forget the Hoss Fly!) or whatever else you want like a crappie jig and set the depth. Now days a Thill slip bobber would work way better than are old red and white bobbers. Everybody that figured this out on their own was also split shotting small plastic worms 25 years before bASS Pros invented that.
 

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Actually a Mr. Twister doesn't work well in this application. In a big deep reservoir the water is not moving at all. Especially on a cold day in January. The twister just becomes a piece of plastic hanging in the water. No twisting tail. The fly needs to be small. No bigger than 1/8.They will suspend with the target species and with the slow movement they will just kind of breathe. Which is what you want. You can drop a marker right on top of them. The fish I am talking about are almost dormant. They will not scatter like summer time fish. It’s also why you have to put the fly right in their face. You have to feed them. A slip bobber will work but the old red and white type is best for this. Again you want small light flies. If they get to small they will not pull all the line needed through the bobber and will not make it down to the fish. This technique is relatively new, maybe 15 years ago I saw it for the first time, and it was developed in TN. It works on any deep mountain reservoir. Fontana where I have used it can be 400’ deep. You can be fishing for these fish in 125’ with the fish suspended at 40’. It’s not you dads float and red wiggler. It would seem you could just mark the fish and drop a fly down to them. But it puts too much movement on the lure. So, the float. It keeps the lure still, at depth. You have to float the lure right under their nose. They will not chase. It can be very technical fishing. I just can’t stand to fish on those cold January days anymore.
 

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Sorry to keep going on and on, but these fish, this time of year aren’t out targeting schools of bait. They are just holding in the water column waiting out the winter. They are the hardest fish to catch you will fish for. It is very technical. Very slow. But when you get it. It is very rewarding and productive. If you fish these mountain lakes you know. The winter time is an almost impossible time to catch fish. They are just shut down. Take a little time, idle around with a thermos of coffee and find them. Once you are on them stay with them. They will not move far. Works best on calm days. A windy daymakes it hard to keep the lure in the fish. Go get’em! Send me a pic. I’m waiting for spring.
 
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