The rise-and-fall retrieve differs from the lift-off-and-settle in that the rise-and-fall “s” motion is of less magnitude. It is best used to imitate insects that tire and settle back down to rest. A damselfly’s vigorous abdominal motions are energy consuming and tiring. These nymphs need frequent rest stops and during these pauses the nymphs sink. Also, scud’s and water boatmen’s motions are well mimicked by this rise-and-fall retrieve.
A slightly weighted fly paired with either a floating or a short sinking tip line is used depending upon water depth. A floating line is used for the shallower waters while sinking lines are used for deeper waters.
Simply allow the fly to sink and retrieve it toward the surface with a slow strip retrieve. Next, stop the retrieve and allow it to sink back again.