We often get the following question from our customers: What equipement do I need when I want to start French Nymphing?
Personally, instead of the term French nymphing, I prefer to use the term modern nymphing, because today all the former nymphing directions and schools influence each other and it is already difficult to say that the French nymphing is the way the French fish, or the Czech nymphing is how they fly fish in Czech Republic. Some time ago Americans invented the term Euro nymphing (European nymphing), which quite well reflects how all the nymph schools today blend. At last but not at least I have to say that there is significant contribution to nymphing from the US as well (e.g. we all love the Squirmy Wormy patterns) so it is much better to talk about modern nymphing in my view.
Anyway, if you want to start French nymphing, then you must have the following equipment:
Nymphing Fly Rod – 10ft long, AFTMA 3 (most universal length & AFTMA nowadays)
Backing Line – just in case you catch a big one – but more importantly to create some base for your Leader (you might choose to fish without the fly line)
Large Arbor Fly Reel – size and weight corresponding to your fly rod
Nymphing Fly Line – not absolutely necessary, you can easily replace with a long nymphing leader, which you will connect directly with the backing. There are also special Nymphing Lines that can replace the classic fly line.
Special Nymphing Leader (French Leader) – the nymphing leaders is the most important element that French nymphing brought. Beginners do not have to figure out how to build a leader, because there are enough specialized products on the market. According to my experience, it is good to have the nymphing leader at least 9 meters long if you are have it on your fly line. It may be shorter if you use a special Nymphing Line.
Strike Indicator – in case the connection between French leader and tippet can not serve as a strike indicator, invest in a specially designed nymph indicator. It greatly improves the visibility of fish strikes.
Tippet – for putting your flies on it, there will be 2 to 3 tungsten beads nymphs on it
Set of tungsten flies (tungsten nymphs or tungsten jigs)
That is really all equipment you need to practice French Nymphing, Euro Nymphing, Czech Nymphing or simply modern nymphing. If you want to see some specific set, check out our eShop, where we have already selected sets for modern nymphing at different price levels.
And in case we have some readers that managed reading this text down to here and still know just a little about modern nymphing I recommend to check out our Nymphing Guide for more information about this topic.