Euro Nymphing for Beginners

euro nymphing for beginners

I have no business writing about euro nymphing for beginners, other than I tried the technique. And I liked it. I’m an old school fly fisher – I fish nymphs with a strike indicator and two flies, the last fly tied on the bend of the hook of the first. I might add a split shot above the first fly if I need to get the nymph into the hot zone.

However, at the urging of our one listeners, I decided to give euro-nymphing a try. At the end of this post, I offer up a three resources, including a four-minute overview video that I found on the technique.

I thought you might benefit from five basics that I’ve learned from my short journey.

1. Start out using your existing rod.

With euro nymphing, the recommendation is to purchase a longer rod. And for sure, you need to purchase one if you plan to get serious about the technique. Euro-nymphing rods are longer, between 10 to 11 feet, and you generally purchase the rods in a 2 or 3 weight.

Initially, I thought, “Hey, my 9 foot, 6 weight should work. Why don’t I try euro nymphing first? One or two feet can’t make that much difference, right? If I like it, then I’ll purchase a new rod.”

Now that I own a euro-nymphing rod (10 foot, 3 weight), I realize how lousy my regular rod was for this technique.

However, I caught quite a few fish on my regular rod using the euro technique. One day in Montana, I caught eight browns in about 45 minutes while Steve and a friend sat along the bank and ate lunch.

So you may want to try out euro nymphing with your main rod, just to see if you think you’ll like the different way of nymph fishing. Once you’re all in, though, you definitely need to pick up a euro rod.

Just so you know: I picked up an “Echo” euro nymphing rod for about $250. One of the top rods on the market (at least by way of reviews) is the Sage ESN at around $900. I’m too lousy of a euro-nympher to appreciate the nuance of a $900 rod, so I went with the Echo at the recommendation of a friend.

2. You’ll need a different kind of leader.

With euro-nymphing, not only is the rod different, the tackle is different.

I purchased a Rio, 11-foot leader, but frankly, any brand works. Don’t get side-tracked by which is the better brand. The euro leader is longer than a traditional leader. The 11-foot leader is basically 9 feet of a tapered leader with two feet of “indicator material” or “sighter” – which is different in color than the opaque white, so you can see it in the water.

At the end is a tippet ring. You will tie on additional tippet (and then your flies) on the end of it.

3. You will need a “sighter” at the end of the leader.

A sighter is simply colored material at the end of the leader to which you tie your tippet. You can buy leaders that already have the sighter material attached to it. That’s what I prefer. Other fly fishers purchase the leader and the sighter separately – and then tie the two together.

I buy the full euro leader with the sighter material. Life is too short for one more knot to tie.

4. You need weighted nymphs.

With euro nymphing, you do not add split shot or weight to get the nymph down into the hot zone or near the bottom of the river. The nymphs themselves are weighted. They are called “tungsten weighted nymphs.” The eyelet is to the side and looks like an old fashioned jig.

In fact, they are called “jig nymphs.”

I purchased four standard nymphs to start: the rainbow warrior, the pheasant tail, the gold-ribbed hair’s ear, and the prince nymph.

5. I use double-tapered fly line.

Many euro nymphers use “level line,” because, frankly, you’re only casting out about as far as the leader, maybe a little farther. I’ve found that euro nymphing works best in smaller rivers with well-defined runs that I can get up on. I’m sure the professionals would mock my lack of expertise, but my longest casts tend to be fifteen, maybe twenty feet.

In general, the fly line takes on a lesser role in euro nymphing.

The one tip I took away from a book I read (the one listed below) is to use double-tapered line. That way, I can switch to a dry fly rig without having to carry two rods or having to run back to the truck to grab my regular rod. You can’t sling dry flies with level line.

Three resources

The videos, books, and articles on euro-nymphing for beginners are legion. Here are just three:

    Overview of Euro Nymphing

    Explanation of the Euro Leader

    Nymphing – the New Way: French Leader Fishing for Trout

S5:E6 Fly Fishing Trips – Planning vs. Flexibility

fly fishing

Fly fishing trips are not easy to plan well, especially if you are heading to a new place. Two factors unravel the best laid plans: weather and whether there is a bite on. Through the years, we’ve had to fight against the tyranny of Steve’s hyper-planning and the chaos of Dave’s “Let’s just see what happens.” In this episode, we discuss the importance of creating a plan for the fly fishing trip that includes space for flexibility.

LISTEN NOW TO “FLY FISHING TRIPS – PLANNING VS FLEXIBILITY”

Great Stuff from Our Listeners. At the of every episode, we reflect on a comment from one of our listeners. We’ve learned so much through the years from the insights and stories of our listeners.

What are the best kept secrets of how you plan for your fly fishing trips? How do you ensure that the experience is one to remember?

Please post your comments and stories below, and we’ll consider them for our Great Stuff from Our Listener’s segment.

The Fly Fisher’s Book of Lists – The Perfect Book for a New Fly Fisher

This book is a must-read for folks who like to scan lists and discover helpful hacks and tips.

Fly fishing is a wisdom sport. The more you fish, the more you accumulate tips and ideas and hacks – that make you more proficient and increase your enjoyment of the sport.

This book is just that – lists of wisdom that we’ve accumulated through the years. It has come from guides, fly fisher friends, from our reading, and from watching videos.

This book is like a plate of hors d’oeuvres. You simply can’t have one. Read one list, and you’ll read the next. Visit Amazon to buy your copy today!

WOULD YOU REFER OUR PODCAST?

We would love a referral from you.

Simply mention our podcast to your TU chapter or fly fishing club or even local fly shop.

If you are a nonprofit, serving the outdoors community, you have our permission to reprint our content in your online or print newsletter with the appropriate credit and links. Thank you for your trust.

S5:E5 Fishing Rocky Mountain National Park

fly fishing

Fishing Rocky Mountain National Park is a different experience than is fishing the national parks in Montana for several reasons. One is that there are no grizzlies. Another is elevation: Fishing Rocky Mountain National Park is more demanding physically, simply because the lowest elevation to start hiking is around 7,800 feet. In this episode, we give you an overview of fishing Rocky Mountain National Park, discuss a few of its streams and high mountain lakes, and, hopefully, inspire you to carve out some time to fish this gorgeous place.

LISTEN NOW TO “FISHING ROCKY MOUNTAIN NATIONAL PARK”

Great Stuff from Our Listeners. At the of every episode, we reflect on a comment from one of our listeners. We’ve learned so much through the years from the insights and stories of our listeners.

Have you ever fished Rocky Mountain National Park? If so, we’d love to hear your stories.

Please post your comments and stories below, and we’ll consider them for our Great Stuff from Our Listener’s segment.

The Fly Fisher’s Book of Lists – The Perfect Book for a New Fly Fisher

This book is a must-read for folks who like to scan lists and discover helpful hacks and tips.

Fly fishing is a wisdom sport. The more you fish, the more you accumulate tips and ideas and hacks – that make you more proficient and increase your enjoyment of the sport.

This book is just that – lists of wisdom that we’ve accumulated through the years. It has come from guides, fly fisher friends, from our reading, and from watching videos.

This book is like a plate of hors d’oeuvres. You simply can’t have one. Read one list, and you’ll read the next. Visit Amazon to buy your copy today!

WOULD YOU REFER OUR PODCAST?

We would love a referral from you.

Simply mention our podcast to your TU chapter or fly fishing club or even local fly shop.

If you are a nonprofit, serving the outdoors community, you have our permission to reprint our content in your online or print newsletter with the appropriate credit and links. Thank you for your trust.

S5:E4 Legends of Fly Fishing: Lefty Kreh

fly fishing

Lefty Kreh was actually both a lefty and a righty. One of the most beloved and popular American fly fishers, Lefty cast right handed, because he felt it was easier for the majority of folks (who were right handed) to watch him and learn. Lefty was an original. He was a World War 2 veteran and fought in the Battle of the Bulge; fished with Ernest Hemingway; and was a close friend of Joe Brooks, another fly fishing legend. In this episode, we attempt to give an overview of this amazing fly fisher’s life and discuss Lefty’s significant contribution not only to fly fishing but to what it means to be an American.

LISTEN NOW TO “LEGENDS OF FLY FISHING: LEFTY KREH”

Great Stuff from Our Listeners. At the of every episode, we reflect on a comment from one of our listeners. We’ve learned so much through the years from the insights and stories of our listeners.

Do you have any stories from meeting Lefty Kreh at a fly fishing show or watching him cast? We’d love to hear your stories.

Please post your comments and stories below, and we’ll consider them for our Great Stuff from Our Listener’s segment.

The Fly Fisher’s Book of Lists – The Perfect Book for a New Fly Fisher

This book is a must-read for folks who like to scan lists and discover helpful hacks and tips.

Fly fishing is a wisdom sport. The more you fish, the more you accumulate tips and ideas and hacks – that make you more proficient and increase your enjoyment of the sport.

This book is just that – lists of wisdom that we’ve accumulated through the years. It has come from guides, fly fisher friends, from our reading, and from watching videos.

This book is like a plate of hors d’oeuvres. You simply can’t have one. Read one list, and you’ll read the next. Visit Amazon to buy your copy today!

WOULD YOU REFER OUR PODCAST?

We would love a referral from you.

Simply mention our podcast to your TU chapter or fly fishing club or even local fly shop.

If you are a nonprofit, serving the outdoors community, you have our permission to reprint our content in your online or print newsletter with the appropriate credit and links. Thank you for your trust.

S5:E3 Surprising Things Trout Eat

fly fishing

Trout eat pretty much anything put in front of them, including their young. Much of fly fishing is focused on the insects, such mayflies, caddisflies, and stoneflies. But often trout are looking to consume a bigger chunk of calories. In this episode, we regale each other with stories of things we’ve heard trout eat. One such story comes from Craig Mathews, who founded Blue Ribbon Flies in West Yellowstone. After this episode, you’ll renew your commitment to fish more streamers.

LISTEN NOW TO “SURPRISING THINGS TROUT EAT”

Great Stuff from Our Listeners. At the of every episode, we reflect on a comment from one of our listeners. We’ve learned so much through the years from the insights and stories of our listeners.

Anything unusual that you’ve seen trout eat? We’d love to hear from you.

Please post your comments and stories below, and we’ll consider them for our Great Stuff from Our Listener’s segment.

The Fly Fisher’s Book of Lists – The Perfect Book for a New Fly Fisher

This book is a must-read for folks who like to scan lists and discover helpful hacks and tips.

Fly fishing is a wisdom sport. The more you fish, the more you accumulate tips and ideas and hacks – that make you more proficient and increase your enjoyment of the sport.

This book is just that – lists of wisdom that we’ve accumulated through the years. It has come from guides, fly fisher friends, from our reading, and from watching videos.

This book is like a plate of hors d’oeuvres. You simply can’t have one. Read one list, and you’ll read the next. Visit Amazon to buy your copy today!

WOULD YOU REFER OUR PODCAST?

We would love a referral from you.

Simply mention our podcast to your TU chapter or fly fishing club or even local fly shop.

If you are a nonprofit, serving the outdoors community, you have our permission to reprint our content in your online or print newsletter with the appropriate credit and links. Thank you for your trust.

S5:E2 Fishing Yellowstone National Park

fly fishing

Fishing Yellowstone National Park is a one of life’s great thrills. There’s nothing like hearing the shrill bugle of an elk in the fall while casting a hopper into the Yellowstone in early September. In his book on great fishing spots in Yellowstone, Richard Parks, founder and owner of Parks Fly Shop in Gardiner, Montana, identifies more than a hundred places to fish. And thus the challenge. In this episode, we provide an overview on fishing in Yellowstone National Park and offer a few ideas on when and where to fish.

LISTEN NOW TO “FISHING IN YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK”

Great Stuff from Our Listeners. At the of every episode, we reflect on a comment from one of our listeners. We’ve learned so much through the years from the insights and stories of our listeners.

Which rivers or creeks have you found productive when fishing Yellowstone National Park? We’d love to hear any stories you have about fishing in any of our national parks!

Please post your comments and stories below, and we’ll consider them for our Great Stuff from Our Listener’s segment.

To purchase Richard Parks’ book on Yellowstone, visit Amazon.

The Fly Fisher’s Book of Lists – The Perfect Book for a New Fly Fisher

This book is a must-read for folks who like to scan lists and discover helpful hacks and tips.

Fly fishing is a wisdom sport. The more you fish, the more you accumulate tips and ideas and hacks – that make you more proficient and increase your enjoyment of the sport.

This book is just that – lists of wisdom that we’ve accumulated through the years. It has come from guides, fly fisher friends, from our reading, and from watching videos.

This book is like a plate of hors d’oeuvres. You simply can’t have one. Read one list, and you’ll read the next. Visit Amazon to buy your copy today!

WOULD YOU REFER OUR PODCAST?

We would love a referral from you.

Simply mention our podcast to your TU chapter or fly fishing club or even local fly shop.

If you are a nonprofit, serving the outdoors community, you have our permission to reprint our content in your online or print newsletter with the appropriate credit and links. Thank you for your trust.

S5:E1 Memorable Traditions in the Great Outdoors

fly fishing

Traditions in the great outdoors are routines with meaning. It’s one thing to make a single memory with a fly fishing or hunting trip. But traditions in the great outdoors create multiple layers of memories that enrich and give joy to life. In this episode, Steve and Dave interview Dave’s father on his family’s traditions – and what they means to the family.

LISTEN NOW TO “TRADITIONS IN THE GREAT OUTDOORS”

Great Stuff from Our Listeners. At the of every episode, we reflect on a comment from one of our listeners. We’ve learned so much through the years from the insights and stories of our listeners.

What are your favorite or most memorable traditions in the great outdoors? We’d love to hear your stories.

Please post your comments and stories below, and we’ll consider them for our Great Stuff from Our Listener’s segment.

WOULD YOU REFER OUR PODCAST?

We would love a referral from you.

Simply mention our podcast to your TU chapter or fly fishing club or even local fly shop.

If you are a nonprofit, serving the outdoors community, you have our permission to reprint our content in your online or print newsletter with the appropriate credit and links. Thank you for your trust.

The Fly Fisher’s Book of Lists – The Perfect Book for a New Fly Fisher

Fly fishing is a wisdom sport. The more you fish, the more you accumulate tips and ideas and hacks – that make you more proficient and increase your enjoyment of the sport.

This book is just that – lists of wisdom that we’ve accumulated through the years. It has come from guides, fly fisher friends, from our reading, and from watching videos.

This book is like a plate of hors d’oeuvres. You simply can’t have one. Read one list, and you’ll read the next. Visit Amazon to buy your copy today!

S4:E52 One Fine Day on One Fine Run

fly fishing

Steve is the restless wanderer when he is out on the water. He makes a few casts in a run and then skips ahead to the next. He moves on. On a recent trip to the Minnesota Driftless, Steve spent almost the entire two days of fishing in one fine run. In this final episode of Season 4, we continue our “One Fine Day” series about one fine run, certainly a day to remember.

ONE FINE DAY ON ONE FINE RUN

Great Stuff from Our Listeners. At the of every episode, we reflect on a comment from one of our listeners. We’ve learned so much through the years from the insights and stories of our listeners.

Have you ever had a day where you stayed in one run for most of the day? We’d love to hear your stories.

Please post your comments and stories below, and we’ll consider them for our Great Stuff from Our Listener’s segment.

WOULD YOU REFER OUR PODCAST?

We would love a referral from you.

Simply mention our podcast to your TU chapter or fly fishing club or even local fly shop.

If you are a nonprofit, serving the outdoors community, you have our permission to reprint our content in your online or print newsletter with the appropriate credit and links. Thank you for your trust.

The Fly Fisher’s Book of Lists – The Perfect Book for a New Fly Fisher

Fly fishing is a wisdom sport. The more you fish, the more you accumulate tips and ideas and hacks – that make you more proficient and increase your enjoyment of the sport.

This book is just that – lists of wisdom that we’ve accumulated through the years. It has come from guides, fly fisher friends, from our reading, and from watching videos.

This book is like a plate of hors d’oeuvres. You simply can’t have one. Read one list, and you’ll read the next. Visit Amazon to buy your copy today!

S4:E51 Crazy Moments from a Recent Fly Fishing Trip

fly fishing

You can’t make this stuff up – that’s a common expression after seeing or experiencing something unusual. On a recent fly fishing trip, we collected several strange moments that in aggregate made the trip one to remember. Steve had some apologizing to do after this trip.

LISTEN NOW TO CRAZY MOMENTS FROM A RECENT FLY FISHING TRIP

Great Stuff from Our Listeners. At the of every episode, we reflect on a comment from one of our listeners. We’ve learned so much through the years from the insights and stories of our listeners.

We’d love to hear from you a few crazy moments from a recent fly fishing trip.

Please post your comments and stories below, and we’ll consider them for our Great Stuff from Our Listener’s segment.

WOULD YOU REFER OUR PODCAST?

We would love a referral from you.

Simply mention our podcast to your TU chapter or fly fishing club or even local fly shop.

If you are a nonprofit, serving the outdoors community, you have our permission to reprint our content in your online or print newsletter with the appropriate credit and links. Thank you for your trust.

The Fly Fisher’s Book of Lists – The Perfect Book for a New Fly Fisher

Fly fishing is a wisdom sport. The more you fish, the more you accumulate tips and ideas and hacks – that make you more proficient and increase your enjoyment of the sport.

This book is just that – lists of wisdom that we’ve accumulated through the years. It has come from guides, fly fisher friends, from our reading, and from watching videos.

This book is like a plate of hors d’oeuvres. You simply can’t have one. Read one list, and you’ll read the next. Visit Amazon to buy your copy today!