Help! I’m Not Catching Any Fish This Summer | What To Do

Written by: Keith Passant

What To Do When You’re Not Catching Any Fish This Summer

This applies to all us fisher folk if we are honest. The fish aren’t biting. The water is too warm. They don’t want the flies I fish. They don’t fight very well. That’s along with a multitude of other reasons to quit summer fishing. The pages of “The Little Book of Fishing Excuses” get well thumbed.

So why not have a fresh look at what we all do when we think of going fishing? Or not going?

The season’s end is not far off now for the trout rivers, but the still-waters are open pretty much all year round and of course there are other areas of fishing we could look at. On the fly of course, and maybe it’s a direction you have not considered. How about coarse fish on the fly? Saltwater? And what about pike fishing on the fly? All of these areas can be tried using standard trout gear. Coarse fish on a six weight rod, bass on a seven or eight weight and if you fancy a go at the big boys and girls then a nine or ten weight from the Clearwater range will not break the bank.

If we consider going trout fishing before the rivers close however, let’s look at new fishing ideas and maybe change our expectations too.

Most of us rarely change the way in which we fish from one season to another. Whether we are summer fishing or not, we tend to stick with a tried and tested system from opening day that brings success regularly. However during the dog days do you consider new fishing ideas? A size twelve Greenwell’s may be well received early on in the year, however during the warm part of August and early September it’s shunned. As are many patterns. Keep reading for some ideas of what to do when you’re not catching any fish.

Try Some New Fishing Ideas

– What about some smaller flies? We can help you with small patterns for example down to size eighteen and twenty.

– Try lighter tackle. Instead of your usual five or six weight lines, go down a line weight or two. Our Recon and Superfine Carbon ranges have some fabulous rods for just that style of fishing.

– Travel light too. Take just the essentials with you. A lanyard with a box of flies, floatant, mud, tippet a leader or two, a pair of forceps, some nippers and you’re sorted. Also, don’t forget a landing net!

– Make your trips a little shorter and don’t tough it out for the whole day. Try fishing in the early morning and late afternoon into the evening. During the day put your feet up and build your strength for the onslaught in the evening.

– These new fishing ideas work on still waters too. Instead of your usual streamer patterns pulled at 50 mph why not change a method you may well already use? The washing line set up. Stick with that idea but reduce the fly sizes. Try a smaller buoyant pattern on the point with a couple of size sixteen buzzers or diawl bach patterns instead of the usual size tens.

– Let the wind fish the flies for you. Keep in touch with the flies and you should stay connected to the fish when it takes, as it surely will.

– One last thought. We all go out on every trip believing we will bag up with lots of fish. It would be nice if it happened but at this time of year it’s unlikely. So lower your expectations for summer fishing. If you get a couple of fish then class that as a successful session. It really is.

And should none of the above float your dry fly, why not use this time of year to brush up your casting?

Your local Orvis store should be able to put you in touch with a qualified instructor that will show you what to do when you’re not catching any fish, and a couple of hours to tweak or brush up your casting is money well spent. And you will be ready for the bank at the end of the year, chasing the lady of the stream.

Who knows, you may even get to play with Orvis’ latest wonder wand, the Helios 3!

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