Fly Fishing for Snook - Approach and Fly Presentation
Snook fishing is quite different from fishing for fish on the flats. Snook are found on the
flats at times but they are different from bonefish, permit and tarpon. They feed more like
a freshwater largemouth bass. They are not always on the move searching for food and
casting a few feet in front of them don't always work, especially when they have a lot of
time to examine the fly. First of all, they are real skittish. You have to use stealth to catch
They often move up and examine a fly and then reject it. When you put the fly right in
front of them, they either spook or crash it. There is not much in between those two
reactions. If the fish is not moving, I like to put the fly about a foot in front of a fish in
shallow water with the quietest presentation I can make. If they are moving, I like to catch
only about two or three feet in front of them.
Often snook are not in the crystal clear water like bonefish and permit. They can be
found in off colored water, tanic acid water and even dingy water. I have found them in
water so cloudy that all I could see was their wake. Even then you have to be very careful
not to make any noise. A boat motor, a trolling motor, bumping the boat or any noise that
travels through the water can be heard from a great distance by snook.
You cannot allow them to see your fly line. If it is a clear day and you spot one, you will
often see them flee from a blind cast. You have to keep them to a bare minimum. Long
leaders are often required. You should use a shock leader of about 50 lbs. test. Their
mouth is very abrasive and they can bite through a 30 lb. test leader. Many anglers use
fluorocarbon for the shock leader. The bottom line to everything I am saying is, that
unlike what many would tend to think, snook spook very easy, even in off colored water.
You have to fish for them with a whole lot more care and precision that you would tend to
Copyright 2013 James Marsh
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