Side Sweepin’ to Land Big Trout

Landing big trout on light tippet can be tricky. The above 18″ and fat rainbow took a dry fly attached to 9x tippet.

I’ve learned through trial and error how to do it (more here). A key technique for me has been to use “sideways” rod pressure when fighting a big fish. It doesn’t always work, but it really helps me control a fish.

That is because fish hate being pulled up. I find that keeping the rod tip parallel to the water, or sometimes, even in it, helps me better guide the trout to the net. In particular, if a fish jumps into a fast current, side pressure helps me glide the fish to a slower current, where I don’t have to fight the trout and the current.

Here is a great video demonstrating why side sweepin’ really works.


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8 thoughts on “Side Sweepin’ to Land Big Trout

  1. Lol at Ken's post; almost seemed he was taking a hit at this! Side pressure is 100% the way to go, you can still horse them in that way. I've fished with and talked to at trade shows a lot of the top guides out there, and you wouldn't catch any of them fighting trout straight overhead. Good post!


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