How to Fish for Polish Nymphs

by Zach Lazzari
Fishing the Polish system requires an upstream presentation.

Fishing the Polish system requires an upstream presentation.

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Polish, or "Czech" nymphs, are large-weighted flies. The fly fishing nymphs are not designed to imitate a specific insect but the weighted design allows multiple flies on a single rig. Fishing the Polish nymph system uses three total flies and places one fly in each level of the water column. The system presents the flies to fish in every level of the water and increases the overall visibility of your rig. The system is effective when properly fished.

Step 1

Tie three flies in tandem with a clinch knot and two feet of tippet between each fly. Shorten the distance for shallower water to ensure all three flies are in the water. Place the largest and heaviest fly on the bottom and smallest on the top of the rig.

Step 2

Cast the flies upstream and wait several seconds as the flies sink in the water column. Lift the rod tip slightly to make contact and feel the weight of the flies.

Step 3

Maintain contact with the flies and feel the bottom of the river with the heaviest nymph. Lift the rod tip slightly when the nymph touches bottom to prevent snagging on rocks and sticks.

Step 4

Move the rod tip downstream to follow the flies and maintain a vertical position with the line. Stop the rod tip once it points downstream and hold the position until the flies swing upward in the water column.

Step 5

Flip the flies back upstream and repeat the process until you catch a fish. Continue moving upstream after each cast to cover new water.

Tips & Warnings

  • Use a leader more than 20-feet long for Polish nymph fishing. The long leader is sensitive and provides more feeling than a fly line.
  • Check local regulations to ensure three fly rigs are legal in your area. Some states and regions limit anglers to one or two fly rigs.

Photo Credits

  • Jupiterimages/liquidlibrary/Getty Images