Copyright 2014 James Marsh
Fly Fishing Gear and Flies for New York's Niagara River
Steelhead and Salmon:
Fly Line:
The fly line we recommend for salmon fishing should be either an 9 or 10 weight, floating fly
line. The fly line we recommend for steelhead fishing should be a 7 or 8 weight, floating fly line.
If you prefer to use a spey rod, then the line should probably be a 9 weight line made for spey
Fly Line Weight:
Adding weight to your fly line is dependant on the flow and depth of the pools you are fishing.
You can add a sink tip line or split shot. The spin fisherman use Slinkies. They consist of
parachute cords that have been stuffed with large round lead shot. Please note that the state
of New York does not sell lead split shot. Some anglers use it. It is not illegal to use in the State
of New York, only to sell it.
Fly Rod:
The fly rod we recommend for salmon fishing should be an 9 or 10 weight, in a nine foot
length. It is probably best in a medium fast to fast action.
The fly rod we recommend for steelhead fishing is a 7 or 8 weight in a nine foot length. It is
probably best in a medium fast to fast action.
If you prefer to use a Spey Rod, then we suggest a 9 weight, 14 foot length rod. It should be a
medium to fast action rod.
You want a stiff, hard leader material like our Perfect Fly leaders. The size should range from a
minimum of ten pound test up to twelve pound test. They should be nine to fifteen feet long for
a regular fly rod and from ten and a half to fifteen feet for two handed Spey rods. If you use a
sinking fly line, you would want them only about four to six feet long. We have hand-tied
Perfect Fly steelhead leaders.
You want to carry plenty of extra tippet material for ten to twelve pound test. It too should be
hard, stiff material that is abrasive resistance.
There is little wading opportunities on the Niagara River but could be required depending on
exactly where you fish.
Landing Net:
A landing net is recommended. The main requirement is that the net should be very large. The
net area should be at least 15 inches wide by 20 inches long. A landing net for trout is optional.
We have a complete line of flies for the steelhead and brown trout. We have selected them as
the most popular flies from thousands of patterns that have been developed over the years.
They imitate the
hexigenia mayfly nymph, stonefly nymphs and fish roe or eggs that are found
in the river throughout the year. We also have a full line of popular wet flies, egg flies and
streamers that are very popular on Niagara River. We hope you will give our flies a try.

Brown Trout:
Fly Line:
The ideal all around fly line would probably be a 5 weight, floating fly line. You could get by
with just this one fly line size if you had to. Some anglers would prefer something heavier for
large nymphs and streamers. A 6 weight fly line would deliver most of the streamers and heavy
nymphs better than the 5 weight. You may also want to use a sinking tip line for the streamers.
Fly Rod:
You would want a fly rod to handle each of the above line sizes.  The five weight rod would be
ideal at a length of nine feet. We think a medium to medium fast action would be best for this
one. The six weight rod should have a slightly stiffer tip to handle larger nymphs and
streamers. It should be nine feet in length in a medium to medium fast action.
Fly Reel:
The reels for the 5 and 6 weight lines should both have good drags. The drags should be
smooth and adjust to fine increments.
You should be using at least a seven foot leader anywhere on the river. A nine foot length
would probably be the best all around length. If you fish streamers, you may want a short
leader or only 3 or 4 feet..
You should also have plenty of extra tippet in sizes ranging from 0X to 6X.

Waders are necessary just about anywhere you fish the River. We prefer the breathable type
but you may need neoprene waders if you are fishing during the winter.

Wading Boots:
Felt soles would be our choice. The new rubber soles may work well. They have at other
similar waters where we've tried them.

Wading Staff:
The use of a wading staff would be an optional accessory. The current can run strong at times
and in certain areas.

Landing Net:
You probably shouldn't be fishing the Madison River without a landing net. Some anglers do,
but you would have a better chance of landing its larger trout with one.

Trout Flies:
We always recommend our "Perfect Fly" trout flies. We have specific imitations of every
important insect that exist on the Niagara River. If you haven't already done so, we hope you
will give our Perfect Flies a try. You will be glad you did.
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Options For Selecting Flies:
1. Email us (
with the dates you will be fishing this
stream and we will send you a list of our
fly suggestions. Please allow up to 24
hours for a response.

2. Call us 800-594-4726 and we will help
you decide which flies you need.

3. Email us (
with a budget for flies and we will select
them to match the budget and get them to
you in time for your fly fishing trip.

All orders are shipped free in the
U. S. Orders over $100 are shipped via
Priority Mail.