Luderick on Fly: Weed Flies and Getting Started

Fly fishing for Luderick is a bit like indicator nymphing for Trout.  Both have flowing water and require you to get the fly depth close to where the fish are holding and you use an indicator to help detect takes.  It's also a relaxing way to spend a few hours around the change of tide when you're short on time and need to recharge the batteries.

Before I started chasing Luderick on Fly I spent a lot of time learning the how, when and why using conventional gear and talking to other fishermen that had been targeting them for decades.  So the best advice I can give is to spend some time and learn the movements of the fish in your local estuary and the types of weed they bite on. This will help you find locations and times to fish as well as getting the colour of local baits to match your fly.

This post isn't going to be a comprehensive "How To", but hopefully it will help you on your journey and give you a few ideas or some inspiration to try something new.

Tackle and Setting up

Float fishing techniques generally use rods that range from 10'6" through to 13' and longer.  The length helps you control both the float and the line while presenting the bait with a natural drift.  A longer fly rod also helps achieve this and I've experimented with rods ranging from 10' through to the 11'6" switch rod I'm currently using.

For now I've settled on;

  • 11'6" Switch 6 Weight
  • WF Switch float
  • Thingamabobber for deeper water or a large yarn indicator for the shallows
  • Split shot (bb) 
  • Small swivel
  • Weed fly (or two!)
This setup covers me for the estuary and targeting the bigger 'bronzies' around the ocean ledges.

Leader Setup

It's best to keep leaders simple and the taper to a minimum.  Thicker line will take longer to sink and cause a bow in the line between your indicator and fly which will cause delays for your indicator to register a take.

Try running a short taper from the fly line down to a swivel and level fluorocarbon tippet to match the depth from there.

Fly line -|----------(3ft 30lb)----------|----(1.5ft 20lb)----| Swivel

On the fluorocarbon tippet position your split shot evenly to help your fly sink and hang correctly in front of the fish. Unfortunately this is something you will have to learn and experiment with rather than being told ;) It varies a lot from each tide and the depth the fish are holding.

Where to look

Rocky ledges, points and bommies where you can see plenty of bait at low tide are a good starting point.  Look for other fishermen drifting floats and take note of the time of the tides and seasons they fish different locations.

I'm planning on writing a few more posts and going into more technical detail, so stay tuned.

Thanks for taking some time to read my post and as always please let me know if you have any questions and I'll do my best to answer them.