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Thread: Wet flies under the ice?

  1. #1
    Member JOAT's Avatar
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    Default Wet flies under the ice?

    Just curious if anyone has had any luck with using wet flies, such as pupa and midge patterns through the ice?

    I've been filling a lot of time tying flies for next summer and it occurred to me that a lot of these sinking wet bugs might do fairly well on the end of an ice line rather than off a fly line. I've never found a steel lure that seems to be very tempting to most fish under the ice. Bait always works, but there are places that don't allow bait.

    At any rate, I'm taking my wet fly box out to one of our stocked lakes this week to see what those hatchery salmon and trout think of 'em.
    Winter is Coming...

    Go GeocacheAlaska!

  2. #2
    Premium Member Wyo2AK's Avatar
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    Flies can work very well through the ice. I've had great results at times using small beadhead nymphs, usually just deadsticking it with an occasional twitch. The ubiquitous woolly bugger can also be a producer. I've never tried stuff as small as midge patterns.

    Be sure to bring some split shots along!
    Pursue happiness with diligence.

  3. #3
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    I've caught many fish, mostly bows, through the ice on a weighted purple ESL.

  4. #4
    Member FishGod's Avatar
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    I've done well with prince nymphs through the ice.
    Your bait stinks and your boat is ugly

  5. #5

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    Only done it once. Will never do it again. Too much work drilling all those holes so the fly line will lay out.

  6. #6
    Member JOAT's Avatar
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    See, I was going to take a hint from "strangerinstrangeland" and just use a chainsaw to slice out some trenches.

    Problem with that is, my fly casting aim sucks so bad that I'd have to cut out a 10-foot square at the end to be sure I can get the fly in the water. With my luck, some inattentive snowmachiner kid would drive right into it and I'd get sued for all my fishing gear.

    Those stocked salmon (we've got silvers and kings to pick from around Soldotna/Kenai) and bows are great for experimenting with different baits & lures. Punch a hole in 10 feet of water and watch them swim around and you can see their reaction to each thing you put down. That was a real eye-opening test with metal lures. They will dart right over and check out any flashy thing you put down the hole, but most of the time, they'll just take a "sniff" of a metal lure and then go away. It takes something else to entice a bite. I'd never tried using anything out of my fly box before and can't remember hearing anyone ever talk about using weighted flies under the ice.

    I think I'll be out on Island Lake Wednesday morning and we'll see what kind of results the fly box can produce.
    Winter is Coming...

    Go GeocacheAlaska!

  7. #7
    Member FishGod's Avatar
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    I've been using flies for ice fishing for almost 20 years. Some of the best rainbow and burbot fishing I've had was when I was using a cone head wooly bugger on a wind driven tip up. A lot of the times I would out fish bait using this method. Most of my grayling this year have come on beadhead princes with a piece of shrimp or egg.
    Your bait stinks and your boat is ugly

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