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Tied it, tried it, didn't like it.. Clouser swimming nymph

Rob G

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I tried these the past season and really didn't have much luck with them. Has anyone else used these and did you have any success and under what conditions? I probably need to give them some more water time. I think it's a neat looking fly and maybe I should experiment with it more, like tying it in a larger size or throwing a bobber (err..... I mean float indicator) above and attempting the ever popular float and fly.



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After following the instructions in B.C's book to the letter, I was pretty impressed with myself with the results, visually. I fished it for about 30 minutes up in Wisconsin did not catch squat. Tied on a Clouser Sculpin immediatley caught a a really nice smallie, actually a real nice smallie. I caught it in an eddy, a picture perfect one. I'm guessing the swimming nymph was just the wrong fly for the situation. I'm beginning to think the Clouser minnow or anything similar is really bread and butter for the smallmouth angler, kind of like a Rapala minnow and a jig in one.

What really struck me about the swimming nymph is that it was so radicallly different from the other flies in his book, many of which were just variations of the minnow. Since I've taken flyfishing seriously everthing Bob Clouser has put his name on has been positive. So in my book if he designed it I'm giving it another go.

Harry Murray has a good video about fishing flies like the swimming nymph. Bouncing them accross rifly bottoms. It's a very "home made" video, totally void of "big fish", which to me tells me it's not B.S. The scenery and structure totally remind me of he Kank and area 7.

If you are interested in fishing that fly I think you should check it out.

BTW. your fly looks kick ass. The fish you threw it to have no sense of taste.

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Rob, I've have good success over the last 2 years fishing these in local rivers. I like tying them too. However, I have noticed that spring and into early summer have undoubtly been the best times. I fished them mostly in rocky sections...up or downstream didn't seem to make a difference. I haven't used an indicator, but it's not a bad idea especially when the bite is soft. I believe they're worth another try.

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  • 2 months later...

I do pretty good with them, the only difference is I tie them in crawfish colors. I have them in other colors, but to me the craw works best. might be worth a shot its a good fly.


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I found they effective on small to moderate streams.

I don't follow the pattern to the letter. I put a mini glass rattle under the body for a enticer.

I have fished them on a droppe with a streamer 1-3 feet above. Old steelhead tactic.






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