Fishing the Hang with Snowbee

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I imagine every angler  has noticed a swirl, felt a take or seen a fish flash as it attacks your fly just at the point you lift the rod to cast at the end of your retrieve. Before this you probably had an uneventful retrieve unaware that a trout had been eyeing up your nymph unsure what it was or just curiously following. In your mind you think, “What was that all about, was the fish just lurking there all the time?  The answer is actually quite logical. A couple of things happened as you lifted the rod tip ready for your next cast; Suddenly your flies changed direction & speed as they accelerated towards the surface, a bit like a catch me if you can moment! This very movement triggered the predatory instinct in the trout, its cautiousness gone it just couldn’t help but attack this escaping creature!


Understanding this predatory reaction we can take advantage of the trout’s natural response by halting our retrieve and hanging the flies before lifting the flies from the water ready to recast. When employing the hang, be aware the fish maybe just a few feet from you so use stealth and avoid any unnecessary movement.  Raise the rod slowly like when you go to re-cast while still retrieving. As the fly breaks the surface stop the rod lift & jiggle the tip of the rod if necessary to create a slight commotion around the fly or just hold the flies below the surface for as long as you can bear it & if a fish is there, it will almost invariably return then grab hold. Any fish that were tempted to take the escaping fly will now be in with a good chance of doing so as it sits in the film and near or on the surface. If you are fishing a team of flies be sure to hang each fly at the surface as you are providing more choices for any following trout. Be aware that a trout may take one of the sunken flies below the surface though & if they do, the first indication may be the movement of the surface fly. As you can envisage, this technique will benefit from a longer rod, somewhere around 10′ being the optimum, our Prestige 10′ #7wt will certainly fit the bill, or if you wanted a more allrounder the Spectre 9′ 6″ #7wt may be more suitable. Remember don’t be too hasty to re-cast some anglers hang their flies for as long as 15 seconds…