Trout are selective to the depth at which they are searching for food.  If trout are chasing shad at the surface and you are trolling 60 feet down you will not catch many fish.  The correct depth is more important than boat speed or fly color.  Below are some of the line options I use, to go down the water column, seeking the proper depth.

The Redesigned "TOP-LINE" trolling line.

Based on the fly trolling lines developed in the 1980's at Eagle Lake CA by Jay Fair, my lines have been upgraded, replacing fly line backing with thinner braided line to increase backing length without needing a larger reel.   The bulk of the line is a “Jim Teeny” 100 foot long "Floating - Shooting" line (diameter .029”).  The sinking portion of the line is 1/2 color (approximately 15') of 18# lead-core between the floating line and the leader. I have also changed to a two step leader, 20' of 10# connected to 5' of 8# leader with a mini #14 stainless steel swivel.  The 8# mono terminates with a small hook clip to quickly change through fly colors. Note: The half color of lead-core can be cut down for a shallower presentation.

NOW in STOCK, ready to ship.

Jay Fair Top-Line


100 yards 20# Braid

100 feet .029" Floating Running Line

1/2 Color 18# Lead-Core Line

20 Feet 10# Mono Leader

5 Feet 8# Mono Leader

"Top-Line" Trolling line: $54.50 each [free shipping in USA]
TOP Line MID Line Illustraton (1).png


The Mid-Line is used as a complimentary line to the “Top-Line”. The Jay Fair trolling method involves constant course changes and occasional “U” turns. This can cause tangles if both lines are identical. By fishing the “Top-Line” and “Mid-Line” as a team you can present two flies at the same depth but different distances behind the boat [see illustration]. The “Mid-Line offers the option of variable depth control. By putting only 1/2 color in the water it will match the “Top-Line” for depth. You can increase the depth by letting out more lead-core. For those who do not want to build their own Mid-Line I offer them here assembled by Val Aubrey at Eagle Lake CA.


MID-LINE, Trolling Line


100 Yards 20# Mono Backing

2 Colors 18# Lead-Core

65 Feet 12# Mono Leader

5 Feet 8# Mono Leader

Mid-Line, $37.50 each free shipping in USA

This kit contains 30 feet of LC-13 Lead Core line (LC-13 weighs 13 grains per foot). When stopped this lead-core sinks at the rate of 9 inches per second. The coating on this line is smooth so it will not abrade fly rod snake guides the way standard lead core does. It comes with 4 leader loops and shrink tubing to create two custom length heads. I recommend a 3' head and a 27' head. The short 3' will just get your fly below the surface at 2 MPH. Depending on factors such as backing line diameter and boat speed the 27 foot pieces can fish down below the 20' range. The loops allow for quick change of the heads. Instructions included. $18.95 per kit. I recommend backing this lead core head with braided line to minimize lift and get your fly as deep as possible at any given speed.

LC-13 Head Building Kit. $18.95

I have been asked for reasonably priced Fluorocarbon leader material. I found this from a salt water manufacturer/supplier. I tested this product and it is strong and supple for tying knots. 50 yards per spool, spool large enough to slide on to wrist when rigging multiple rods, great line diameter to break strength ratio. $8.95 per 50 yard spool. Choice of 4#, 6#, 8#, 10# & 12#. If you want stronger leaders contact me. I can add more options.

Pound Test
Fluoro 50 yard leader spool $8.95 each