The Riffle Hitch
by Paul Prentiss

A couple of years ago while fishing on the Elk Trout property the guide I was with suggested using the riffle hitch. I hadn't though about this knot in years so I gave it a try and the trout were all over the caddis pattern as it skittered across the surface. While generally used to Steelhead and salmon it can be highly effective for trout.

It's simply a knot that forces a fly to skim across the surface of a river or stream to attract fish feeding near the surface.

After attaching the fly to the leader with the familiar improved clinch knot, put a half-hitch behind the eye and then a second half-hitch ahead of that (see illustration on the right). After each half-hitch, the leader should be adjusted to come straight down, perpendicular to the bottom of the hook shank. In the end, the line will be under the eye as it pulls the fly through the water.