Reach Out with a Long Handle
With a 20-foot leader, the fly line/leader linkage must be inside the rod rings to net the fish. If the fish makes a late bid for freedom, there is a real risk of this linkage jamming in the top rod ring resulting in a snapped leader. Do you have any suggestions to manage this?
Nick Hart answers: One answer is to pull the linkage (braided loop etc) right through the tip ring and if needs be end up with the leader material in your hand.
However, there is a far simpler solution, often employed by competition anglers trying to cope with ever lengthening leaders. Their answer is to use a landing net with a very long handle. With an outstretched arm and a net pole of six to ten foot it is possible to fish with leaders in excess of 20 feet and still land fish captured in the point fly position.
One word of warning, ensure your top dropper (if in use) is positioned well away from the fly line to ensure it does not jam in the tip ring while playing a fish.
Reprinted with permission of Trout Fisherman magazine.