While guiding, I get a lot of questions regarding what type of tippet I’m using. Some anglers question the brand of tippet I prefer, but most want to know whether I use Fluoro or Nylon tippet.
The truth is, I use both Fluoro and Nylon tippet. If you have spent a day with me on the water, I’m sure you’ve heard me say that “fly fishing is situational”. Selecting tippet is just another area of fly fishing that the correct choice depends on the situation.
Dry Flies- When it comes to fishing dry flies I always use nylon tippet and leaders for that matter. Fluoro sinks, and under most circumstances I do not want my leader or tippet to sink while fishing dry flies.
Nymphs- While nymphing for trout in our streams I also lean on nylon tippet under most circumstances. Fluoro is stiffer than nylon. Under most circumstances on our smaller streams of Pennsylvania, I prefer a softer, nylon tippet that will drift a little more naturally. Sharp boulders and rocks are at a minimum, so I do not usually worry about abrasion.
Streamers- While streamer fishing I am no longer looking for the “softer” more natural drifts that nylon tippet produces. Abrasion becomes a larger factor while pulling streamers along the bottom, so I almost always fish my streamers on Fluoro tippet. Flouro, sinking faster, can also help the larger streamers reach the bottom easier.
Steelhead- Nymphing for steelhead usually requires large indicators, large spit shot, and fishing to hard fighting fish in an environment where sharp slate rocks are everywhere. I feel as though the abrasion resistant properties of Fluoro tippet are an advantage for steelhead fishing.
Smallmouth Bass- I also prefer Fluoro Tippet while floating the river for smallmouth bass while fishing poppers and streamers. The abrasive resistant properties of Fluoro are also an advantage while fly fishing for bass for the same reasons mentioned above for streamers and nymphing for steelhead.
These are generalized guidelines for situations where I choose between Fluoro and Nylon tippet. As always, there can be exceptions. These guidelines will help give you a starting point when deciding whether to use either Flouro or Nylon tippet.
If you need to add some tippet to your arsenal, the fly shop is full of Orvis Superstrong Plus and Orvis Mirage tippet.
All of the trout water at the club is fishing really well this spring, and it’s also definitely not too early to start planning your summer float trips for smallmouth bass. If it’s time for you to put some tippet to use, talk to Joel to set up your next day on the water!