2019 Euro Nymphing Master Class Series with Robert Van Rensburg

2019 Euro Nymphing Master Class Series with Robert Van Rensburg

Back by popular demand, Big Sky Anglers’ Euro Nymphing Masterclass with Robert Van Rensburg.  These were a big hit among anglers last year, and Robert has added some new twists to the curriculum for 2019, including an advanced class for those who have already attended one of the earlier courses.  Read on below for details and dates.  If you are interested in signing up, stop in or call the shop at 406-646-7801.  And remember, if you have a group interested in taking one of these classes, Robert may be able to set up a class on a different date than these pre-scheduled classes, so don’t be afraid to ask.


I took Big Sky Angler’s first Euro Nymphing Fundamentals Masterclass with Robert Van Rensburg and was pleasantly surprised by the knowledge I gained that day.  Although I have been experimenting with the process, I had been struggling to improve over the past year.  After a day with Robert I was able to have a better grasp on the important “tuck cast” and how to implement your left hand during the drift.  All this took place, one on one, while standing in the Madison River. As I looked around that day almost everyone in the class was catching fish. There are a lot of great fishermen in the Yellowstone area but not a lot of good teachers. Robert seems to have achieved both.   

– Bill Ruppel, Island Park, Idaho


If you’ve been by the fly shop the past year you may have met Robert Van Rensburg.  Quiet and humble, Robert’s demeanor betrays his level of experience and knowledge when it comes to fly fishing in general, and Euro Nymphing in particular.  A native South African, Robert has traveled the world, fished in 17 countries, and guided in 4 countries, including in Chile with BSA co-owner Jonathan Heames.  He has also traveled as an instructor of both fly casting and fly tying.  Robert’s deep knowledge of Euro Nymphing stems in part from his background in competition angling.  He has represented South Africa at 13 World and Commonwealth Fly Fishing Championships, 11 times as the national team captain.  Robert held the seat of President of the National body of fly fishing in South Africa for 6 years, and has since been named as an Honorary life President.  This year, he was honored with Elite Pro status by SAGE fly rods.  Despite his background, experience, and accolades, Robert remains humble and true to the roots of fly fishing.  He loves being on the water, challenging himself to learn new things, and appreciates the beauty of an 8-inch cutthroat as much as the heft of an 8-pound brown. We are lucky to have him on the BSA staff and are thrilled to be able to share his knowledge through courses A valid Montana fishing license required.  It is recommended that you bring your own waders.  Feel free to also bring any tackle that you own that is specific to Euro Nymphing.like this one.

Please read on for more info, and don’t hesitate to call the shop for more info or to get signed up for the class.


Courses Offered in 2019

Saturday, June 8th – Euro Nymphing Fundamentals

Saturday, August 17th – Euro Nymphing Fundamentals

Saturday, October 5th – Advanced Euro Nymphing  

See below for course curricula.

All Classes run from – 8am to 5pm  

8am-Noon Off the water instruction at Big Sky Anglers fly shop, 39 Madison Ave, West Yellowstone, MT

Noon to 1 pm – Lunch is provided

1-5 pm – On the water instruction

Cost – $150 per person, lunch is included

A valid Montana fishing license required.  It is recommended that you bring your own waders.  Feel free to also bring any tackle that you own that is specific to Euro Nymphing.

Euro-Nymphing specific rods/reels/lines will be provided.

Special thanks to Kurt Kruger of Farbank for providing a selection of awesome demo SAGE ESN Rod setups for these classes!

Class size is limited to 10 students.  Spots are expected to fill up fast.

Euro Nymphing Fundamentals – Course Curriculum

The following topics will be covered in detail over the course of the day.

  1. Defined: The difference between Euro/Tight-line Nymphing and Indicator Nymphing.
  2. Essential gear for Euro Nymphing. Rods. Reels. Lines.
  3. Setting up tackle.  Balancing reel to rod.  Joining fly line to backing and leader.
  4. Leader formulas and lengths. When to use various leaders and leader formulas. Knots.
  5. Flies.  Importance of profile,  movement and trigger points. Size of fly, size of weighted beads.  Effects of colored beads on flies. Understanding UV and florescence in tying materials.  Understanding hook design and using the correct hooks for varying patterns and bead weights. Tying materials that give the best results . Weighting flies.
  6. Setting up tippets with multiple flies. Where to place and fish weighted flies on the leader.
  7. Tippet materials.  Diameter,  brand, fluorocarbon and nylon.
  8. Reading a river. Understanding water hydraulics.  Water temperature.  Fish species.  Time of year.
  9. Tuck cast. Tuck and reach.  Oval cast. Roll cast. Casting distance. Double haul . Use and importance of non-casting hand.  Casting for shallow and deep water.
  10. Presentation and Drifts.  Drag free drifts. Fishing 360′ degrees.  Line management.  Inducing takes.
  11. Fishing in the wind.
  12. Detecting takes and striking fish.
  13. Playing and landing fish. Landing nets.
  14. Practical session on the river with demonstrations plus one-on-one instruction.

 Advanced Euro Nymphing – Course Curriculum

This course is for those who have attended one of Robert’s Euro Nymphing Fundamentals courses in 2018 or earlier in 2019.  The class builds on the topics in that course and will take your Euro system presentations to the next level.  If you have not taken one of Roberts earlier classes, but have significant Euro Nymphing experience and are interested in this course, give the shop a call and talk to Robert to determine if the class will still work for you.  The following topics will be covered in detail over the course of the day.

  1. Leader design – longer French leaders
  2. Casting French leaders
  3. Fishing the Dry/Dropper with the Euro system
  4. Nymphing 360 degrees on the river – upstream, downstream, across, and at all angles in between
  5. Fly Design, hook, and material selection
  6. Fishing streamers and soft hackles on the Euro system
  7. Practical session on the river with demonstrations plus one-on-one instruction.
Back By Popular Demand:  Euro Nymphing Masterclass with Robert Van Rensburg – October 6th, 2018

Back By Popular Demand: Euro Nymphing Masterclass with Robert Van Rensburg – October 6th, 2018

Back by popular demand, Big Sky Anglers’ Euro Nymphing Masterclass with Robert Van Rensburg.  The first class was held on August 25th, and there has been enough additional interest that we are going to run another class this October.


I took Big Sky Angler’s first Euro Nymphing Masterclass with Robert Van Rensburg and was pleasantly surprised by the knowledge I gained that day.  Although I have been experimenting with the process, I had been struggling to improve over the past year.After a day with Robert I was able to have a better grasp on the important “tuck cast” and how to implement your left hand during the drift.All this took place, one on one, while standing in the Madison River. As I looked around that day almost everyone in the class was catching fish.There are a lot of great fishermen in the Yellowstone area but not a lot of good teachers. Robert seems to have achieved both.   

– Bill Ruppel, Island Park, Idaho


If you’ve been by the fly shop this summer you may have met Robert Van Rensburg.  Quiet and humble, Robert’s demeanor betrays his level of experience and knowledge when it comes to fly fishing in general, and Euro Nymphing in particular.  A native South African, Robert has traveled the world, fished in 17 countries, and guided in 4 countries, including in Chile with BSA co-owner Jonathan Heames.  He has also traveled as an instructor of both fly casting and fly tying.  Robert’s deep knowledge of Euro Nymphing stems in part from his background in competition angling.  He has represented South Africa at 13 World and Commonwealth Fly Fishing Championships, 11 times as the national team captain.  Robert held the seat of President of the National body of fly fishing in South Africa for 6 years, and has since been named as an Honorary life President.  Despite his background, experience, and accolades, Robert remains humble and true to the roots of fly fishing.  He loves being on the water, challenging himself to learn new things, and appreciates the beauty of an 8-inch cutthroat as much as the heft of an 8-pound brown. We are lucky to have him on the BSA staff and are thrilled to be able to share his knowledge through courses A valid Montana fishing license required.  It is recommended that you bring your own waders.  Feel free to also bring any tackle that you own that is specific to Euro Nymphing.like this one.

Please read on for more info, and don’t hesitate to call the shop for more info or to get signed up for the class.


Course Information  

Saturday, October 6th – 8am to 5pm  

8am-Noon Off the water instruction at Big Sky Anglers fly shop, 39 Madison Ave, West Yellowstone, MT

Noon to 1 pm – Lunch is provided

1-5 pm – On the water instruction

Cost – $150 per person, lunch is included

A valid Montana fishing license required.  It is recommended that you bring your own waders.  Feel free to also bring any tackle that you own that is specific to Euro Nymphing.

Euro-Nymphing specific rods/reels/lines will be provided.

Special thanks to Kurt Kruger of Farbank for providing a selection of awesome demo SAGE ESN Rod setups for these classes!

Class size is limited to 10 students.  Spots are expected to fill up fast.

Course Curriculum

The following topics will be covered in detail over the course of the day.

  1. Defined: The difference between Euro/Tight-line Nymphing and Indicator Nymphing.
  2. Essential gear for Euro Nymphing. Rods. Reels. Lines.
  3. Setting up tackle.  Balancing reel to rod.  Joining fly line to backing and leader.
  4. Leader formulas and lengths. When to use various leaders and leader formulas. Knots.
  5. Flies.  Importance of profile,  movement and trigger points. Size of fly, size of weighted beads.  Effects of colored beads on flies. Understanding UV and florescence in tying materials.  Understanding hook design and using the correct hooks for varying patterns and bead weights. Tying materials that give the best results . Weighting flies.
  6. Setting up tippets with multiple flies. Where to place and fish weighted flies on the leader.
  7. Tippet materials.  Diameter,  brand, fluorocarbon and nylon.
  8. Reading a river. Understanding water hydraulics.  Water temperature.  Fish species.  Time of year.
  9. Tuck cast. Tuck and reach.  Oval cast. Roll cast. Casting distance. Double haul . Use and importance of non-casting hand.  Casting for shallow and deep water.
  10. Presentation and Drifts.  Drag free drifts. Fishing 360′ degrees.  Line management.  Inducing takes.
  11. Fishing in the wind.
  12. Detecting takes and striking fish.
  13. Playing and landing fish. Landing nets.
  14. Practical session on the river with demonstrations plus one-on-one instruction.

 

Euro Nymphing Master Class with Robert Van Rensburg – August 25, 2018

Euro Nymphing Master Class with Robert Van Rensburg – August 25, 2018

If you’ve been by the fly shop this summer you may have met Robert Van Rensburg.  Quiet and humble, Robert’s demeanor betrays his level of experience and knowledge when it comes to fly fishing in general, and Euro Nymphing in particular.  A native South African, Robert has traveled the world, fished in 17 countries, and guided in 4 countries, including in Chile with BSA co-owner Jonathan Heames.  He has also traveled as an instructor of both fly casting and fly tying.  Robert’s deep knowledge of Euro Nymphing stems in part from his background in competition angling.  He has represented South Africa at 13 World and Commonwealth Fly Fishing Championships, 11 times as the national team captain.  Robert held the seat of President of the National body of fly fishing in South Africa for 6 years, and has since been named as an Honorary life President.  Despite his background, experience, and accolades, Robert remains humble and true to the roots of fly fishing.  He loves being on the water, challenging himself to learn new things, and appreciates the beauty of an 8-inch cutthroat as much as the heft of an 8-pound brown. We are lucky to have him on the BSA staff and are thrilled to be able to share his knowledge through courses like this one.

Please read on for more info, and don’t hesitate to call the shop for more info or to get signed up for the class.


Course Information  

August 25th – 8am to 5pm  

8am-Noon Off the water instruction at Big Sky Anglers fly shop, 39 Madison Ave, West Yellowstone, MT

Noon to 1 pm – Lunch is provided

1-5 pm – On the water instruction

Cost – $150 per person, lunch is included

Euro-Nymphing specific rods/reels/lines will be provided.  A valid Montana fishing license required.  It is recommended that you bring your own waders.  Feel free to also bring any tackle that you own that is specific to Euro Nymphing.

Class size is limited to 10 students.  Spots are filling up fast.

Course Curriculum

The following topics will be covered in detail over the course of the day.

  1. Defined: The difference between Euro/Tight-line Nymphing and Indicator Nymphing.
  2. Essential gear for Euro Nymphing. Rods. Reels. Lines.
  3. Setting up tackle.  Balancing reel to rod.  Joining fly line to backing and leader.
  4. Leader formulas and lengths. When to use various leaders and leader formulas. Knots.
  5. Flies.  Importance of profile,  movement and trigger points. Size of fly, size of weighted beads.  Effects of colored beads on flies. Understanding UV and florescence in tying materials.  Understanding hook design and using the correct hooks for varying patterns and bead weights. Tying materials that give the best results . Weighting flies.
  6. Setting up tippets with multiple flies. Where to place and fish weighted flies on the leader.
  7. Tippet materials.  Diameter,  brand, fluorocarbon and nylon.
  8. Reading a river. Understanding water hydraulics.  Water temperature.  Fish species.  Time of year.
  9. Tuck cast. Tuck and reach.  Oval cast. Roll cast. Casting distance. Double haul . Use and importance of non-casting hand.  Casting for shallow and deep water.
  10. Presentation and Drifts.  Drag free drifts. Fishing 360′ degrees.  Line management.  Inducing takes.
  11. Fishing in the wind.
  12. Detecting takes and striking fish.
  13. Playing and landing fish. Landing nets.
  14. Practical session on the river with demonstrations plus one-on-one instruction.

ROBERT VAN RENSBURG

ROBERT VAN RENSBURG Robert Van Rensburg has been a strong member of the BSA shop and guide staff for the past 2 years, bringing a wealth of knowledge and experience.  He is originally from South Africa and has guided in his home country, Chilean Patagonia, and the...
Euro Nymphing – Defined

Euro Nymphing – Defined

This is the first in a series of blog posts from Robert Van Rensburg on Euro Nymphing.

A native South African, Robert has traveled the world, fished in 17 countries, and guided in 4 countries, including in Chile with BSA co-owner Jonathan Heames.  Robert’s deep knowledge of Euro Nymphing stems in part from his background in competition angling.  He has represented South Africa at 13 World and Commonwealth Fly Fishing Championships, 11 times as the national team captain.  Quiet and humble, Robert’s demeanor betrays his level of experience and knowledge when it comes to fly fishing in general, and Euro Nymphing in particular.  He loves being on the water, challenging himself to learn new things, and appreciates the beauty of an 8-inch cutthroat as much as the heft of an 8-pound brown.

We are lucky to have him working in the fly shop and guiding for us again this summer.  Please stop by and chat with him about this fun and exciting style of fishing!  For those interested, he will also be conducting a series of Euro Nymphing Masterclass Clinics through the season, with three Saturday dates already set – June 8, August 17, and October 5.  More dates may be added depending on interest, so be sure to sign up for our email newsletter so you don’t miss out on that information.


Euro nymphing is a form of high sticking and tight line fishing, using longer softer action rods, leaders usually twice the length of the rod or longer and ultra-thin fly lines. The techniques of Euro nymphing allow the knowledgeable, skilled angler to fish with accuracy and control at varying distances, in all types of water ranging from fast deep runs to slow shallow glides, with heavy weighted tungsten flies, and also with small light nymphs, dries, dry/dropper rigs and even streamers. I work hard at all river and lake fishing systems, from dries to steamers, floating lines to DI 7 sinking lines but I have never fished or seen another collection of techniques that is so versatile and catches more fish than Euro nymphing. Like all fly fishing it takes practice, but the returns are more water types to fish, more fish hooked and many rewarding days on the water. Getting started need not be that expensive.

Conventional floating lines have been replaced with purpose made thin diameter, level floating lines, reducing line sag and the need to mend line when fishing at distance. No buoyant strike indictors or split shot are used. With this tight line system, the angler has complete control of the fly line, leader, flies, depth and speed of the drift. You are in constant contact with the flies through the drift. The softest of takes can be detected. It can be fished from fast deep water where floating lines, strike indicators and tapered leaders are a major disadvantage, to slow shallow water where a standard floating line can spook wary fish.

There are differences in flies, leaders, techniques and application between French, Spanish, Polish and Czech nymphing. Euro Nymphing is an amalgamation of these methods.

In my opinion short line nymphing in faster water (Czech style) is not difficult to learn. It is one of the easiest and best of the Euro nymphing methods to start with. This gives the angler the fundamentals on which to build and progress. The French and Spanish methods are more challenging. Learning to cast and manipulate very long leaders and light flies in shallow water takes persistence and educated practice.

Tight line nymphing, of course, is not new. Progressive Anglers like Joe Humphreys have been fishing and teaching the system for many years.  That said, the consistent success of the top European countries at the World and European fly-fishing Championships has led to a great increase in the popularity of these methods, and also fuelled new designs and innovations in rods, lines, leaders (35 ft plus leaders that cast like a fly line, used on shallow clear water and very wary fish), casting techniques,’ Tippet materials, sighters (coiled, bi-coloured and wax paste sighters), hook design (to me, one of the most important innovations in fly tying and fishing), weighting of flies from slotted tungsten beads to tungsten bodies, and fishing without shot on the leader.

Fly design and selection is paramount to the Euro nymphing approach.  This includes intentional selection of hooks and tying materials to create patterns with slim profiles, movement and trigger points.  Many of the fly patterns are based less on imitation (matching the hatch) and more on presentation.

Preparing tackle, leaders, flies and equipment at home, is another key aspect of Euro nymphing, making your time on the water more efficient, and potentially increasing the catch rate. As anglers we don’t have a say in the weather, water conditions, bugs, etc. but there are many aspects of fishing that we can control.  Preparing diligently and with a strategy before a fishing trip allows you to “control everything you can control”.

All the points listed above (and more) are covered during my Euro Nymphing Masterclass Clinics at Big Sky Anglers, which take place in our class room at the shop, followed by an on-the-river practical session.  In addition to these group clinics, we also offer personal instruction for those who are interested.  Big Sky Anglers has many of the fishing and tying products you need to get started available in the shop. If you have any questions on technique’s, equipment, tying materials or flies please visit, phone, or email us.

Regards,

Robert