The fly fishing leader and tippet are what provides a nearly invisible transition from the fly line to the fly. Fly fishing leader and tippet comes in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, materials, and even colors. The first main purpose of the leader and tippet is to connect your thick, colored fly line used for casting to the flies that you are trying to present to the fish, with a material that won’t scare them away. The second main purpose of the leader and tippet is to complete the transfer of energy built up in the fly line through the casting stroke through the line and down to the fly so that your line rolls over and straightens itself out if a fairly straight line. If you cast and your fly and line lands in a giant birds nest of line on the water, you won’t have much luck enticing those fish to take your fly.
One of your first questions is probably what is the difference between a fly fishing leader and tippet. In the simplest terms, the leader is the main clear material that is connected to the end of your fly line. This will be a material that is usually a fairly heavy weight where it attaches to your fly line (the butt section) and will taper down in weight/thickness to the point where the tippet attaches. If you are familiar with conventional fishing methods, the leader is pretty much the same as the fishing monofilament used on your spinning or casting reel.
Fly Fishing Leaders, their construction and formulas for trout, steelhead and salmon.
One of the many items you probably have seen while browsing online or local fly shops is a great wall of leader and tippet material. There’s a lot of it out there. Just what is a leader and how does tippet come into the equation though. In this post I’m here to answer your questions and concerns about fly fishing leader and tippet materials.
The materials that fly fishing leader and tippet are made of are of two main types: monofilament and fluorocarbon. These two types of materials coincide primarily with the type of fishing you are doing. I won’t get into all of the technical details between what monofilament is and what fluorocarbon is. There are a few main differences between the two.