Riffling hitch for trout? - Spey Pages
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 06:01 PM Thread Starter
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Riffling hitch for trout?

Just curious if anyone uses successfully a riffling hitch (Atlantic salmon surface tactic) to swing for trout? I'm thinking it could be fun, in the same way soft hackles are.

Any input?
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-14-2019, 11:45 AM
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Years ago I did fish for trout using a riffling hitch on Bombers and Muddlers. It was a 'special' situation, though, where large browns would predictably start showing up in certain runs a month or two before spawning in the Fall, and tended to be concentrated around specific structural features in the run as they waited for the spawn. And a riffled fly that covered those fish could elicit some very splashy attacks, and some exciting 'chases' from fish whose dorsals were out of the water. The excitement was even greater, of course, if the commotion occurred while fishing at night!

But my hookup rate on the riffled flies was pretty low. If I missed a fish, then following up with a wet fly would sometimes promptly yield a solid hit and hookup. But the use of riffled flies didn't seem to improve my overall success, and after several years I mostly stopped using them.
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-14-2019, 08:39 PM
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I would think it worth a try. I've had more than a few instances of success where I was "accidentally" riffling a fly - mostly involving the inevitable drag that pulls a hopper or caddis across the current after completing an up and across presentation - to think it a fluke. Probably not the most effective way to get loads of hook ups, but it could sure as heck be the most fun way to get a few!
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-15-2019, 12:49 PM
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I get lots of trout grabs while riffle hitching for steelhead. Lots of misses, but I hook enough to make it viable.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-16-2019, 01:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyfisher231 View Post
I get lots of trout grabs while riffle hitching for steelhead. Lots of misses, but I hook enough to make it viable.
Same here. If I targeted the trout and smolt that whacked my steelhead skater, I'd catch a bunch.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-16-2019, 07:10 PM Thread Starter
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Alright, you've convinced me to give it a try. At worst, it will be exciting to see the fly skate around.

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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-17-2019, 12:29 PM
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In some of the salmon rivers I fish in Iceland there are also trout (brown trout, sea trout, and char). When using a riffle hitch in these rivers for salmon I will also catch trout on the hitch fly as well as have them chase and grab the hitch fly. So it is viable for trout, these trout are pretty aggressive and go after salmon flies. So not sure how successful it is on trout which are more selective feeders and where you are matching the hatch. But I would definitely hitch a caddis type fly as caddis often skate or move erratically on the surface if you are going to go after trout with a hitch fly. Good luck either way it is fun.
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