If you experience salmon fishing in the Scottish Highlands, during your salmon fishing holiday in Scotland, you will notice that many anglers use a dropper. In essence, this is using two flies at the same time. On smaller rivers this can be a very effective method, especially from late spring onwards. Many anglers in the Scottish Highlands employ this method because it allows them to dibble the fly.
Dibbling is a very effective method of salmon fishing in low clear water. It is usually practiced during the summer months. Ideally, you are looking for a pool which has a narrow, deep, fast flowing run in which the fish regularly lie. You only use a few yards of fly line, just enough so that you can make the dropper dance on the surface of the water in the middle of the run. This is achieved by keeping the rod well up. It is a very exciting, visual method of salmon fishing. All of a sudden you will see a fish come up to the surface from the depths and engulf the fly. In many ways it is similar to dapping which is method practiced on many lochs, where bushy flies are allowed to skate over the waves created by a strong wind.
Away from dibbling, two flies are also commonly used when fishing standard tactics on smaller rivers, especially in low clear water. The dropper fly, fishes slightly higher up in the water column compared to the tail fly. Often the fish will see the dropper and come up to the surface and then take the fly on the tail.
Generally, when salmon fishing in Scotland on some of the larger rivers, only one fly is used, especially early in the season. Some of the fish on the bigger rivers are much larger in size, and so fishing with a dropper can spell disaster, as the extra knot in your line can be a point of weakness.
If you decide to use two flies, you need to carefully consider the characteristics of the pool you are fishing. If it is very rocky and there are plenty of snags, two flies might not be such a good idea. Often if you hook a salmon on the dropper, the tail fly is moving around in the water freely and can go on to get stuck on a snag. This only ever leads to an unhappy ending.
So, if are contemplating using two flies during your salmon fishing holiday in Scotland, you need to think very carefully. It does have some added advantages, especially on smaller rivers but can also be fraught with danger. It all depends on whether you are willing to take the