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which waters are you talking about and what exactly do you mean by tiny impressionistic vs large realistic? I certainly will throw the biggest fly I can but often times tiny means realistic. This time of year its midges and more midges and Im sure you know natural midges don't get much bigger then a 20 and thats even pushing it. Ive heald a 22 RS2 that I was fishing as a sunken adult midge next to a natural and my fly looked like a gorrilla compared to it. Still, Im not about to go to a 24. I might get a couple more hits with it but I will cetainly get a "swing and a miss" type day with a 24. Bottom line though, I think you can go pretty tiny and still be realistic. I tie a fly called a UV midge that is a great go to fly when midges are out. If you want this pattern let me know.
 

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That could very well be....from my experience though, the closer I can get to the natural then the better and even though there might be guys lined up fishing the same midge, I really am not about to give a fishes brain enough credit to say they have the ability to "wise up" to a certain fly if it in some way resembles the real thing.
 

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Great reply Rottal.  I have a question on a dilema I've had in the past that you kinda hit on in your post.  Often times, people fish over feeding fish, but occasionally I think I am fishing under them.  If I see fish, rising not on dries but most likely emergers, at what point do I take my split & indicator off and attempt to target these fish feeding in the middle of a rivers water column? Furthermore, how many fish do I need to see tailing on emergers at the surface or slightly below to consitute a change from an indicator dead drift, to an unweighted wet fly type swing? I have become a very good split and indicator fisher as well as a dry fisher,but the inbetween kills me.  I've tried dropping an emerger behind a dry when this situation I described above occurs but Im willing to bet I would catch just as many sinking my flies. But then again, maybe if I worked at improving my unweighted swing I would catch more fish this way when fish are in the middle to surface of the water.  Also, what do you think about shortening up on my indicator to about 4 feet in the emerger situation?  I'm not sure if you completely understand this issue I have but any suggestions would be helpful.
 

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Well hey whatever works for you cut. If you can drag big unrepresentational flies through a run at a differant speed then the current is moving, then more power too ya....you're obviously onto something I haven't yet discovered.
 
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