Author Topic: Fly Line Colours Does It Matter???  (Read 1824 times)

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Vance Whitley

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Fly Line Colours Does It Matter???
« on: December 31, 2013, 10:09:41 AM »
I have the new Rio In Touch Aqualux Camolux that has been in question with regards to its visibility to fish.
I will admit that it is very strange watching it fly through the air with all its stripes and that after being badly outfished one morning by the regular Aqualux it has remained in my reel box since.
But here is the rub, I'm not convinced and plan to give it a serious work out before I give up on it.
This leaves me with the question    ""Does Line Colour Matter?""
I just can not believe it matters, seriously. I mean most floating lines are bright white or some other bright colour.
Have you ever seen Airflo six sense type five comp line. Bright blue and florescent orange colour pattern. You can see a guy from across the lake using it and yet it is a very trusted line among comp anglers.
Your turn :-\
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and I'm not to sure about you... - unknown

Gordon Kalisch

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Re: Fly Line Colours Does It Matter???
« Reply #1 on: December 31, 2013, 03:18:30 PM »
I don't think it really matters. I think we give the fish far too much credit for their supposed intelligence.

I laugh when I hear people say you need 7x flourocarbon tippet to out smart the fish. Really? Can the fish tell the difference between 5x and 7x? I thought flourcabon was invisible when wet? What about that hook hanging out of the fly's butt? If that doesn't scare the fish away how does 4x or 5x flouro tippet scare it off?

Okay....that's it for my rant.

Doug Thorpe

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Re: Fly Line Colours Does It Matter???
« Reply #2 on: December 31, 2013, 03:40:58 PM »
As was mentioned the new InTouch Camolux is not made of a monofilament core like the older camolux, but rather the braided core, and as such the colour changes are more pronounced.

I doubt line colour matters in regards to the solid sinking lines (due to light refraction at depth etc), however I wonder if the colour changes every x cm on the Intouch "spook"/alert fish that the line is there.  In this instance you might find of the x amount of trout you present the fly to, only the ones who see the fly first and not the line will take.  I do not have a theory as to why the older camolux with the changes does not act the same way, unless the changes might be taken for other fish etc.
« Last Edit: December 31, 2013, 03:52:37 PM by Doug Thorpe »
I chase the allure of standing in a river, casting dries in an attempt to watch that beast come up and take my fly.  Then I usually blow it by setting the hook to soon....

Vance Whitley

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Re: Fly Line Colours Does It Matter???
« Reply #3 on: December 31, 2013, 04:46:18 PM »
I think the reason some prefer 7x over 5x tippet has more to do with the stiffness involved. The thinner tippet may alow more movement in the fly but we digress into a whole nother topic.
Sorry to poke holes into your theory Doug but blue is one of last colours to disappear as it gets deeper in the water colum.
Now if it that above mentioned Airflo line were red you might have something as red is the first colour to disappear with depth.
Fish mostly lookup in Stillwater to feed so unless your line is a match to the water fish are gonna see it making me think it doesn't matter
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and I'm not to sure about you... - unknown

Chris Puchniak

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Re: Fly Line Colours Does It Matter???
« Reply #4 on: December 31, 2013, 09:21:51 PM »
I think it does, but like everything it is a straight black and white answer.

I thin there are certain days the fish don't give a darn.  On those days, you could literally stand on them and they won't move.  Or they will follow a fly right to the boat and strike 5' away from your gunnel.

On other days I think it may be a factor.  Not a huge factor, but still a factor.  One thing I think fish ARE good at is recognizing repeated patterns (not fly patterns, but behavior patterns).  You regularly see fish feed exclusively on a particular colour, pattern type, food source, etc... and I think they are conditioned to recognize something specific and remember it (at least for a short time).  This probably helps them be more selective in their feeding at times.  It may also explain why they ignore a fly once it has been thrown at them 1050 casts in a row.

Same goes for fly lines.  Most of the time they most likely ignore any line, but at times they may begin to associate a highly visible line with danger, especially in heavily pressured conditions. 

I think it isn't a significant factor, but it is one to consider at times.
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Don't be a Pessimist. Don't be an Optimist.  Be a Realist and change when you need to.

Bob Jurmain

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Re: Fly Line Colours Does It Matter???
« Reply #5 on: January 01, 2014, 10:42:31 AM »
This is actually an interesting question.   I get to fish with sometimes 5-8 guys on a lake sometimes so we get comparable results.  It has never come up that a brightly coloured line does any worse.  However, when the fish are fussy, a longer leader might be a factor.   The longer leader people seem to do better and I have had better luck with longer distances between double flies.  But in a lake, it all depends where the fish is coming from.   If it sees the line before the fly, perhaps it might get a bit nervous and scoot off.  When they are hungry as noted above, they bite regardless.  My dad got in the Kamloops newspaper many years ago for a rainbow jumping into his boat.

Clear lakes, streams and rivers on sunny days make all fish more edgy (likely fear of bird predators) and that is where thinner tippets might be better.  Personally, I am with Phil Rowley in using mostly 3X and 4X tippets.  I rarely use 5X unless my fly is very small (which is not often). Actually, I mostly use 4X fluro leader with no tippet until it gets too short; 3X if the likely catch are 3-5# fish.   

Todd Oishi

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Re: Fly Line Colours Does It Matter???
« Reply #6 on: January 01, 2014, 10:50:00 AM »
Great topic Vance! Thanks for starting this conversation.

I personally feel that the visibility of a sinking line becomes more of a significant factor for shallow water presentations and clear water conditions. It's important to keep in mind that the appearance of the fly line isn't nearly as important when targeting recently stocked fish, but increases as they become educated and pressured.

I always carry both slow and fast intermediate sinking lines that are coloured (they're not clear), but I will switch to my clear intermediate lines when I feel that they'll make a marked improvement in my angling results. This is due to the fact that anglers often have better results with longer leaders, which in my mind is partially due to the fact that the fish are sensitive and turned-off by the appearance of the fly line too close to the fly...

The colour of an extra-fast sinking line really doesn't matter, but I still prefer to use a fly line that won't spook fish during the descent or rise during the hang portion of the presentation...

For me, the quality of a trout is not measured in inches or pounds, but rather by the journey and circumstances that allowed our paths to cross...

Alex Berger

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Re: Fly Line Colours Does It Matter???
« Reply #7 on: January 01, 2014, 12:06:05 PM »
I don't think it really matters! having said that,  I stick with subtle colors just in case!! ;)
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Janos Boda

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Re: Fly Line Colours Does It Matter???
« Reply #8 on: January 06, 2014, 12:18:54 PM »
Todd,

I am just wondering why "the colour of an extra-fast sinking line really doesn't matter". 

Also, all of my fast sinking lines are very dark, some of them black. I read many places, trout sees black colour the most, even overnight a black woolly bugger works great for browns! If this is the case why manufacturers make fast sinking lines very dark/black. I just would like to understand this subject matter better??? Thanks, Janos

Chris Puchniak

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Re: Fly Line Colours Does It Matter???
« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2014, 12:34:24 PM »
Good question.

I don't know if this is all of the answer, but it is what I can think of right now.

Part of it I think is because for a very fast sinking line, it will quickly sink below the level of the trout's eye, and hence will less likely be visible to a trout (as opposed to the extreme case of a floating line - or a line near the surface - which will always be above the fish).  A very fast sinking line, unless you have a very short leader, will be below the level of your fly as well, most likely.  Hence, fish won't see it, and therefore it matters little the colour.  Most days.

This may be subject to some debate, but I also suspect the deeper one goes, there is less light (duh) available for a fish to see in general - making line colour less crucial.  Like us looking for something in a dark room - white or black we still can't see it.  Furthermore, the colours pretty much all go grey once you get deep enough, making the colour more of a moot point then - the further you descend, the less colour your line exhibits, till they all look pretty much the same (in the cases of extreme depths).  Since Extra Fast sinking lines usually fish the deepest, they are more subject to these conditions of lighting.


As to why most lines that sink are dark, despite the fact that under certain lighting conditions dark objects may be more visible and that colour may not matter in deep water (though this is arguable in some sense) I suspect that it is partially "marketing" (most anglers intuitively believe dark lines show up less, so buy dark lines more often, and hence manufacturers stick to making dark lines primarily for sinking rigs).

This may be debatable too, but I do suspect that dark colours are both more natural and do go unnoticed the deeper one goes (and the less light one has).  Hence, dark colours make sense for sinking lines.
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Don't be a Pessimist. Don't be an Optimist.  Be a Realist and change when you need to.

Janos Boda

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Re: Fly Line Colours Does It Matter???
« Reply #10 on: January 09, 2014, 07:42:11 AM »
Thanks Chris for the detailed explanation! I guess it makes sense when we look colours through the human eyes, I am just wondering sometimes to have a fish eyes for a minute or so :).