how to fish scuds

Discussion in 'Stillwater' started by sharpshooter223, Jan 17, 2009.

  1. i need some advice on how to do this for stillwater, should i use a strike indicator or just pull the fly along near the bottom? ill be heading to rocky ford this next weekend so i figure i can practice there. by the way, am i correct in my assumption that just about anywhere i can get to the water on rocky ford there should be fish?
  2. You can fish them either way, but they need to be down near the weeds. They do scoot along a bit more than say, chironomids, which just float to the surface. At RF, you can throw out you scud and let it sink until a fish comes around and then give it short tugs, or you can target a fish you see and try to watch him take it on the drift, or you can fish it under an indicator.

    At RF, you will see the fish and there are lots of them. Just don't necessarily expect to catch a lot as they are educateded.....

  3. I tie micro leeches in olive. I weight them and retrieve them slowly when fishing Rocky Ford. I believe they represent a scud. It's been very effective for me. I have also seen some fellows using a small pheasant tail with a strike indicator that worked well. I have also caught lots on size 8 and 6 leech patterns retrieved very slowly. I've had 10 - 20 fish days on Rocky Ford, I've also been skunked a few times. They can be fickle at Rocky Ford. They don't hit hard, the take is quite subtle, often times I've raised the tip of the rod and found out there was a fish on. Some of the trout there will go over seven lbs.
    Have fun.

  4. I always fish them as a dropper under a surface fly like an elk hair caddis, of course I'm not very sophisticated (and neither are our trout)
  5. Just make sure you get them down near the bottom when at Rocky Ford.
    Question: Rocky Ford is a Spring Creek with moving water, how did it get posted here on the Stillwater site?

  6. well my question was about scuds in general, i was just saying i was going to be having some practice with them at rf.
  7. Been there lately :rofl:
  8. Not to change the thread topic here but I've also heard that a mouse or lemming pattern works there as well. Can anyone confirm this for me?

  9. [Been there lately :rofl:] Wiseguy!:D

    Fishing the full moon can be quite productive. I have fished large leech patterns on the surface at twilight and in full moon. The fish really slam into them. Never tried a mouse pattern but since they are hitting anything fairly large moving on the surface I would guess it is true.
    Some guy told me to use a white wooly bugger and I tried it the last time I was there. I use a small white wooly bugger and it produce quite well.

  10. next time your in a scuddy lake wade around in the weeds and stir em up and observe how they swim.

    they swim like i dance. the humpty dance.

    i fish them on intermediates with twitchy finger twist type retrieves. but honestly i hardly fish them unless i find a situation where fish are goin ninja on em (not the best for covering water). last spring on a flat on dusty lake i was sight fishing to a bunch of feeders. at first i thought they were smashing damsel nymphs but i noticed they would speed up and dart and change directions nabbing said mystery food item.

    i let my marabou damsel damn near hit the deck and started with the crunked gilbert grape retrieve and one of those feeders darted and SMASHED my fly. puked up olive scuds and solved the mystery.

    observe them to see what im talking about. they swim kinda fast (relative to most of your fly box) and erratic as all hell.
  11. I used to wade fish lakes in southern Wyoming that were thick with scuds. Getting out of the lake my waders had a solid layer of them, especially in my boots where they would remain and grow fragrant if I didn't do a good job of rinsing off when I got home.

    I tried several different patterns and retrieves but found the best way was to hang 'em under an indicator on windy days and let the waves do the work. I'd move to a spot on the windy side of the lake and cast across and into the wind and watch my indi as it pushed back towards the shoreline with my scud hanging just at the top of the weeds. Sometimes the fish were right up in 2' of water. Had some GREAT days doing this. I tie scuds on traditional scud hooks and 2xl straight-shank nymph hooks and both work. Olive, grey, and amber are my best colors

    These days I don't fish 'em much but i have had experiences similar to Sean's on eastern WA lakes.
  12. I completely understand the 'match the hatch' advice here about trying to mimic real scuds' motion. But sometimes it can be quite productive to try a fast, jerky retrieve with long, quick pulls followed by a second or two between. I think that lake fish who spend a lot of time dining on the real thing (not just scuds, but damsels, chironomids, etc) can get really picky if they sense something isn't just right about your fly. Introducing a quick or unexpected motion to your fly can fool them into reacting instead of just looking.

  13. For me, I've had days where color of the scud can really help at RF; try one most closelly matching the bottom/weeds where you're fishing. Sometimes when they're real picky, I'll let them settle right into the bottom, then small strip them out.
  14. One of the best scud colors I've used at both RF and Lenice is what a friend calls 'trailer trash' - the sort of dirty pink shade that you might find on the thighs of a pair of stretch pants worn by a fat woman at WalMart. Don't laugh, it works!

  15. Kent,

    Is that where you harvest your "materials"?????? Yes, I am laughing <-- There
  16. Hahaha! No, no materials, just inspiration!

    Forgot to mention earlier that scud size can be a factor as well as color and motion. A friend and I once pumped a couple of big RF fish to see firsthand what they'd been eating. Yep, scuds and plenty of 'em.

    But the big surprise was how big some of 'em were. We'd been fishing these tiny size 14-16 patterns and what we found were some that were as long as 3/4". Turns out we had about 3 flies between us that were size 8 or 10 and once we switched to them, our hookup rate increased substantially.

  17. Used to fish the Colorado at Lee's Ferry. Scuds were the hit. My son would tie 100 white scuds and we would each carry a pack of different color majic markers to change up the colors that were working the days we were on the water. We could have 50 fish days each with the scuds fished with long lines and strike indicators. The fish would be tailing the surface in pods and would really go after the scuds (pink, orange, green) depending on the day. Have not fished the Colorado now for 10+ years so things have most likely changed like everthing else in life. But what a fishery it was for catch and release.
  18. Kent,
    This is a little olive mini leech tied on a size 10 jig hook. It has really produced at Rocky Ford. Probably represents those larger scuds. I tie them up just for Rocky Ford. That answers a lot of questions. Maybe that's why my friend Al does so well at Rocky Ford with his small leech patterns. Maybe they represent larger scuds.


    Attached Files:

  19. Thanks for the visual, Keith. Why do you tie it on a scud type hook?
    Looks buggy, but I would put it on a 2x hook in a size smaller. But then
    maybe that is why I never catch fish.
  20. Speaking of which, are they present in all of the basin lakes? Most of them? I've tried to find them before in lenice (kicking stuff up around the edges) but didn't have any luck. Does anyone know how widely distributed they are?

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