How to target bigger Chub?


Aug 31, 2018
Hi there,

I live just outside Cambridge, so I'm trying to make the best of the waters around me and have been going fishing in the river Cam for coarse fish.
So far, that has just meant Chub.

I am new to fly fishing, but have caught a few chub, but they have been rather small.
So my question is how to target the big boys?

I have been only caught using dry flies, I think I have to use nymphs more to maybe get the bigger fish. But I am yet to get the slightest bite using a nymph.
I also caught a tiddly Chub using a size 10 daddy longlegs fly - Which I thought would help me target the larger fish.

So... do I just need to be patient? try more nymphs? (if so any advice which for Chub at this time of year? - as am having no luck), or am I fishing the wrong places? I've tried tried either aerated waters (just below a weir) or under trees/near borders.

Any help advice would be welcome.



Well-known member
May 20, 2006
West Oxfordshire
A tactic that works for small chub will also work for bigger chub. What you need to do is find the bigger fish first. Larger chub tend to favour deeper slow moving water and love back-waters and underneath trees/bushes etc. I'd suggest reccing a stretch of river on a bright day with good Polaroids to try to find the bigger fish. Chub tend not to bolt-off like trout do when spooked but rather just fade-away so stealth is just as important as trout fishing, as is getting a good dead-drift.
As far as flies go, they'll eat just about anything and a larger fish will respond to a streamer as well as the normal larger trout patterns, both nymphs and dries. Big Humpy's and GRHE's have caught me fish. Don't go to light on leaders as whilst not fast they are tenacious and powerful fighters.
One tactic useful for finding fish is to loose-feed some bread down the river and then target any feeding fish with a bread fly (put's on tin-helmet!).