Discussion in 'Saltwater' started by newbie_fish, Aug 21, 2006.
what is the average casting distance while fishing the salt? Also what weight line?
Rod weight will be dependent upon what species you're pursuing. For SRC's, I would suggest #4-#6 weight rods, for salmon, depending upon the species, you may need to go up to a #9 or #10, as in the case of Chinook. I use #7 weight rod for Pinks and Silvers.
As for distance, the more water you can cover and the more effectively that you can cover it, the more chances you'll have for success. I would suggest that you should be able to cast at least 50' as a minimum. A 50' cast that may be far if you haven't spent time improving your distance casting, and with practice, you should be able to do considerably better than that. If you don't already know how to haul or double-haul you'd be doing yourself a favor by learning those techniques.
Best of luck!
Newbie Fish, you should disregard Bob's comment; everyone knows he is a fish whisperer, so he only has to cast 12 feet as the fish willingly come nearly to his boots. Its part of his secret fly fishing techniques. He could teach you the secret, but then he'd have to kill you, or charge$$ you, which ever appeared most appropriate after his instruction. :clown:
Hook-ups frequently happen very close to you, especially in low light. I would bet more fish are lost by bad wading than caught from long distance casting. Knowledge of the habits of your quarry, stealth in your approach and presentation, and awareness are part of the whole thing, along with solid casting. 50' or better will put you into fish more consistently. But don't over-stress one aspect at the expense of the others.
The largest silver I ever hooked struck while my fly dangled from my rod tip while standing in knee deep water. No cast required.
I'm trying to figure out how your post relates to the question . . . Is the moral 'just dangle your fly out of your rod tip and fish knee deep water'?
Generally speaking, the further you can cast, the more water you cover, the longer your fly is in the water and, all other items being equal, this theoretically should transfer in to more fish being caught.
If you can cast 65-70'+, which is a reasonably attainable distance for most fly fishers using good rods and fly lines, you should do just fine. If you can cast further, even better, but those distances should suffice.
IMHO, a fast action 6 weight, equipped with a quality reel with a good drag, will work for 90+% of the fishing you can do in the Sound. A 7 weight is considered by some to be a good choice, because it casts better in windy conditions and can also work for the larger salmon that are available in the fall (though it's still on the small side), but the 7 weight is a little too much rod (again, in my opinion) for resident coho and searun cutts. A buddy of mine was a 7 weight advocate, but he moved down to a 6 weight. I have several 6 weights that are my salt only sticks, with the 8 weights used in the fall.
There are many other factors that affect your fishing success, like good hooks, good hook setting abilities, etc. But those are other topics.
And a stripping basket will help too ...provided you are beach fishing which I assumed you were asking about. The stripping basket will allow you to shoot much more line than line laying in water trying to overcome the surface friction/current/seaweed/your legs, etc. You can make your own or buy inexpensive ones...you'll be glad you did!!!
For salmon fishing distance is king. That said most strikes happen close to shore. Silvers tend to follow a while before they take. I use a 10' 7 wt for most fishing but pull out the 9 wt in October for the bigger ocean silvers and chum. Often times I find the need for the 9 wt when the cursed winds are blowing.
I use a 6wt for searun cutthroat and a 8wt for salmon.
For cutthroat you don't really need big distance beacause most of them are within 20 to 30 feet from the shore.
However for salmon you want as much distance as you can possible get. With this in mind, my 8wt is setup with a shooting head line to maximze the distance. I can get 60 to 70 feet with this setup which works pretty well. I wish I could get it out further, but I probably need to take a lesson to get there.
distance is a very good thing so long as you have learned how to stay in 'touch' with your fly.
slack, bellies, wave action, current flows will all interact with your fly. you should be tempering your casting distance with your ability to control your presentations. big distance casters are using a short, heavy shooting head with a running line made for this purpose. 100-150' casts are not that uncommon.
BUTT, ask yourself if the areas you fish warrant this sort of distance and then think about how you might be able to stay in touch with that fly.
you can't have one without the other and be successful.
Yup, that's all I ever do.
The MORAL...if there is one...is that SRC are most always (and salmon quite often) very close to the beach. While longer casts will do all of the things you mentioned, they usually aren't needed to actually reach water that holds fish.
Porter speaks the truth. A stripping basket is invaluable.
LL Bean offers one for $20 that is an incredible value.
On that note... I have the LL Bean stripping basket and think it's great. It's contoured, has a nice belt, great tits. However it seems to me that there is something else at work here. Numerous posts and books seem to indicate that the "real man" builds his own and if you spent more than a buck doing so, you're a loser. Just my perspective but I thought $20 was a decent price. Something like the $15 golf umbrella, one of the only bargains out there. Flame on!
I built my own but it cost a whole $5.00, so I can't figure out if I'm a loser or not? :rofl: .
By the way, iagree the LL Bean basket is a great value.
Brian - I think you're still a winner at $5.
Actually, I think I paid around $30 for the basket locally. I justified the extra $10 as instant gratification and local shop support.
If in a pinch or a mighty penny pincher a baseball cap with bell tucked in belt is a doable basket....not as practical but can be helpful.
I'm not a "real man"
I have the $20 LL Bean and it is a good deal and works well.....however I'm intrigued with that newer one that unfolds/zips into a little pouch that you can attach to a wader belt/or maybe it comes with a belt. I'm not sure of it's frame strength? ...might be a glorified baseball cap thing. I have only seen pictures not an actual one....just another little toy I probably don't need. :clown:
PS ..a stripping basket is also useful as a rod holder when in water while you change your fly or untangle those nasty wind knots
I went to Fred Meyer and bought a 'Rubbermaid' dish pan (12"x13" or so) and cut 2 vertical slots in one side at the corners to fit my wader belt. It works great! $3.99
I think everybody starts with one of those.....then sooner or later get tired of the bullshit and buys an Orvis or LLBean variety.
I rest my case!