Dapping rests the arm

Short lining demands almost continuous casting and can eventually be very tiring. For variety it is useful to change over to dapping for a spell. This is best carried out with a long dapping rod fitted with a nylon or floss silk dapping line, but it can be done with light fly lines if the wind is brisk. The technique is to get the fly hovering a few inches above the surface, at intervals dropping it on the top to float or simply touch. Fish can often be seen following the fly before it alights, and they frequently take with a thump the moment it touches down. It requires considerable control not to strike such a fish too soon and the golden rule is to see it turn first.

If the wind dies off altogether, fish will often refuse the fly that accurately covers them, especially when it is towed across them with a great wake which, in the clear undisturbed water, makes the cast look like a wire hawser. In these conditions it is often profitable to switch to the dry fly, fishing a line greased to within an inch of the fly, which is positioned and left to simulate the natural insect. Takes can be sudden and powerful, and if your rod is inadvertently pointed towards the fly, you risk being smashed on the take.

When the boat fisherman really needs to fish the bottom, he must almost invariably anchor. Then fishing a sinker and making fairly lengthy casts may pay off, a method similar to that adopted by bank anglers fishing the bottom. Perhaps the greatest danger for the boat angler is his tendency to create powerful rocking movements of the boat which send out shock waves and put down fish. If you cannot make lengthy casts without this, you would do better to fish a medium or shortish line.

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