Late afternoon into early summer evenings can be a highly productive time to fish wet flies, especially if you have a strong hatch and active feeders. Of course, it’s a good idea to fish a team of three (give the trout a choice) and match the hatch (you can match multiple hatches with a team of three wets). If you hit it right, you’ll be the angler that everyone wants to quiz in the parking lot.
Wets will often out-fish dries during the early and mid-stages of a hatch. But there comes a time when you should stop fishing wets and switch to dries. Some of the cues are visual: you begin to see trout taking insects off the top of the water, or the rises leave a bubble (indicating the fish has broken the surface while eating). Others are self-evident: you’ve been pounding up fish on wets for an hour, the feed is still in full swing, but you’re no longer getting hits. Learn to find this moment in time consistently, and you’ll be on your way to catching more fish. Keep a dry fly leader in a handy pocket so you can make the switch even faster.
I have not been fishing Stewart’s Dun Spider nearly enough this summer. This soft hackle has sulphurs written all over it. Change the silk to a light olive for Attenuata? Hmmm…
You’ve probably done this before, but what’s your wet fly leader rig look like? Two droppers and a bottom fly off a 9-10 foot leader? How long are your droppers and hoe do you avoid tangles?
Hi Bob, you can find a diagram of my leader here: https://currentseams.com/2015/08/27/how-to-built-a-wet-fly-leader-for-a-team-of-three-flies/. I’m using 4-pound Maxima Ultragreen. You avoid tangles with a three fly team by avoiding excessive false casting, slowing down your casting stroke, making sure your leader lays out flat on the water at the completion of your cast — no pile casts or dumpy casts! — and eyeballing the leader to make sure there are no issues (tangles get exponentially worse if you don’t address them fast). Hope that helps! Steve