It's exactly that what happened to me during the past weekend. I went south for a fly casting weekend. Besides teaching fly casting during the day my host Matthias Brauch, his friend Roy and I went fishing for asp after the lesson. Matthias is a true expert for asp and was fishing a wobbler. I have to admit, it was a truly effective one. I was of course casting my fly (better a lot of different flies) to the asp. We saw a proper number of fine fish.
Fair to summarize a lot of fine asp looked for my fly and run at them. It's just that they refused in the very last moment before touching it. Instead Matthias and his friend Roy nailed down 4 fine asp within their first 4 casts. Well done, mates. Completely outfished me! That didn't happen to me in a long time! To be outfished felt really great to me, because I knew there would be a huge lesson to be learnt afterwards.
Finally after a lot of tests and thinking + rethinking + rerethinking it was clear: Those asp were not eating. Instead they were attacking baitfish crossing their living room. BUT the baitfish had to make a huge wave by cruising in a strong action just below the surface, subsurface though.
The only strike I got ( I missed that one), came on a popper fly moving above the surface.
Back home I spent the whole next day shaping popper flies out of Balsa wood offering exactly the same kind of dramatic subsurface action, that Matthias his wobbler had. Lots of trials before I managed to have made one doing the job - I hope - perfectly!
Now I have to wait before going back south to test it. That is because we are on our way to Norway hosting some fly fishing trips there during the next weeks.
But hey, I am not giving up before I can make sure to have solved the puzzle (the causes) for have gotten outfished in such an impressive way. We'll see what happenes in July back south though. Another date is already set of course. Can't wait (to maybe get another lesson)! ;)
Congrats Matthias, you are an outstanding allround angler. That's for sure!
I hope you all can learn something about fishing this week as well!? I love these moments when I get pushed to improve!
All my best