Bedding bluegills are a prime target for float tubers, but they spook easily. Here’s how to catch them.

Step 1: Enter the water with the wind blowing toward the bedding area. This will help push you into position about a cast’s distance away from the deep-water beds on the outer edge of the zone.

Step 2: Ripples created by vigorous kicking can shut the deep-water beds off—not to mention the sudden appearance of a large dark object (that would be your tube) overhead. Kick gently and keep your knees in the water. Carefully drop an anchor when you’re 30 feet from the edge of the fish beds.

Step 3: Use a wiggle cast to put a few S-curves in the fly line as it rests on the water. It’s easy: On the final forward cast, stop the rod and wait for the line to flatten. Then lower the rod tip, while wiggling it from side to side. With extra slack line on the water, the wind can push your popping bug over beds without a plop to disturb them.

For more, check out the Ultimate Float Tube.

Illustration by Jason Schneider