fishing pocket water with a sinktip??

Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by sandspanker, Feb 25, 2013.

  1. sandspanker Member

    Posts: 314
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    Hello was on a small river this weekend and was fishing fast pocket water with a sink tip kind of like drifting geawr threw a hole. Its kind of a dead drift without the indicator. anyone ever fish like this?? I watched a video from jim teeny where he was fishing pocket water like this with a split shot as well as a sink tip. Im thinking in deep pockets behind boulders. any thoughts??? Thanks
  2. JesseC Active Member

    Posts: 1,989
    seattle, wa
    Ratings: +765 / 0
    I've caught two steelhead like this.

    1- On the (K-RIVER ;))I was fishing a jig under a bobber..... oops, I mean thingamabobber. Well, the damn thingamabobber broke off. I was rigging them wrong with the line wrapped around the plastic base and it cut right through. I was sick of messing with my line so I decided to just dead drift that jig bouncing on the bottom. I thought I got hung up but kept pulling up only to see a bright steelhead wigging out on the end of my line. It shook it's head 5 or 6 times, tossed the hook, and slipped back into the green water. I about shit my pants as this was the first fish I had hooked on my own.

    2- on the (SD-RIVER ;) There's a great hike in spot with an awesome run... most guys just fish the run... you know, cause it's a run. Well, I am greedy, so I started working the area just above the run. There was a big bouldery section and thought man, if I was a steelhead, that's where I'd want to get it on. So I used just the tip.... of my spey rod and t14. I cast upstream and let that son of a bitch drift way down.... then i'd let it swing up. Well, except for one pass where something was jerking back.... WTH!? Steelhead man...straight up steelhead on my line. I touched with my finger tips and then that little bastard headed for the hills... popped the hook. I got back out, layed in the grass, and wondered how I was going to hike back with my waders filled with shit.

    3- on the (C-RIVER ;) - Oh man this is a good one. There's this massive run that ends in a tight little armpit. Everyone is all over that arm pit like stink on shit. I'm like man, why? Why are you so in to that pit? There's this sexy as hell deep green slick just below the pit. I'm thinking to myself. Man, if I was a steelhead, no way would I be picking up ladied in that pit. I'd be all in that deep dark green canyon of piscatorial glory. So I waded in.... I tossed my line way the hell up stream and then I mended up. Man alive I walked that line down about 15 feet. I thought for sure - shit, there's no way I'm not snagging up. I start stripping in and holy mother of god there's something ON THERE. It was a steelhead. It was a real life bright chrome native steelhead. I shit my pants man.

    Come to think of it. I think i've caught a large number of my fish doing weird stuff rather than the old fella cast step swing shuffle. Maybe I ought to get into that again....
    Dehlan G likes this.
  3. Steve Call Active Member

    Posts: 1,566
    Wetside, WA
    Ratings: +188 / 0
    Sounds to like you need to start wearing diapers when fishing because you're always shitting your pants.
  4. Evan Virnoche Guest

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    Mr Dave here on the forums who showed me what's up on the Walla Walla dishes a big ass wieght and swings bright ass beads with succes
  5. David Dalan 69°19'15.35" N 18°44'22.74" E

    Posts: 1,976
    Walla Walla, WA
    Ratings: +775 / 0
    Like Mr. Turds says, I have made frequent use of splits for small water, and for Steel. Recent dry spell aside, it can be very effective. If I need to get down quick and there is a small slot to hit, traditional, slower sink rate lines are hard to use effectively (for me). My local waters fish a lot like the small Great Lakes tribs (from what I have read)...short pockets, with TINY (under 4' long") slots/holes holding fish.

    In the fall when the fish are frisky, and again briefly in the spring, I still swing flies on the dryline. Big bastards too, when I feel like it. But when things get cold, and the fish get less active, I generally use one of two setups on the local small water...

    - Dave's random setup #1: Dry line with a long leader (under 8') and a fly/bead + splitshot. I cast with a 5wt scandi short on an 8wt single hander, and the leader is 3/4 "butt" and 1/4 "tip." I put the splitshot above the knot in the leader to keep it from sliding right on top of the fly. Effectively this is a "micro drift fishing" setup. But it's lighter, uses my flyrods which I am fond of and way less hasle than a level wind reel and rod when I'm only casting 20-30' tops. Often much less (like Euronymphing short). A single Size 4 split shot will get me rolling in the rocks most of the time, and is almost unnoticed when I cast it. I do some kind of skagit/spey/roll cast. I don't really overhand cast anything anymore. If a #4 won't do it, the water is probably to fast anyway. If I really want to hit a bit of water and #4 wont do, I can add a bobber and then use a strong up stream mend. Too much mending with splitshot only often means re-rigging every 10 minutes.

    - Dave's random setup #2: Same rod as above, but a short chunk of what can be described as "T-OMFG" tip. It's probably something like T-20, lead core in any event. About 4' of it. Leader is less than 24" (often shorter, but is +/- 12") and similar ratio to what I use above. Advantage is that with mending I can get down pretty quick and can also rocket one out and swing without being to shallow for sluggish fish.

    I'm eventually going to get a 270gr scandi short and try it our on my 6wt Ion. I think it will handle the overload (about a weight heavy), and still let me employ the same techniques with a lighter rod. But one thing at a time :)

    The flip side of this for larger water is that I think this setup is less effective. Well, it's less fun. I feel like I present to way fewer fishy lies on bigger water. It's just one way of doing things, for a particular set of conditions.
  6. Jason Rolfe Wanderer

    Posts: 1,178
    the beach
    Ratings: +373 / 0
    This is one of my favorite posts in a while.
  7. Abomb Active Member

    Posts: 403
    In the skinny
    Ratings: +30 / 0
    A little info for you. I have a Echo Ion 10'6wt that I put a custom line on by Godshall. It is 385grn, 30' Nympher Supreme head to a Mend Master running line, line was built for a diff. rod but threw it on this one, one day just for fun. It performs awesome. Can roll cast forever as well as single spey. Will more than do the cast/lob/slop thing you mention with plenty of junk tied on your tippet. Can overhead cast the whole lot well into the backing.
  8. David Dalan 69°19'15.35" N 18°44'22.74" E

    Posts: 1,976
    Walla Walla, WA
    Ratings: +775 / 0
    Interesting. I think the Scandi I am using on my 8 wt (also a 10'6" Ion) is 320gr (24' I think), seems perfect. It's the best setup for my style I have ever fished, but I'm not much of a gear whore if I am honest. I know there are a ton of variables, but 385g 30' on a 6 wt. single handed rod seems like overloaded madness. Could be fun.

    I did a half ass web search on Godschall lines, but didn't come up with much more than internet discussions. Do you have info on tapers, etc?
  9. Abomb Active Member

    Posts: 403
    In the skinny
    Ratings: +30 / 0
    I thought the 385 would be overkill as well but that rod really should be classified a 7.465wt:) . God that thing is a club without the right line. Panhandle on here turned me onto Steve. His company is Spey Works. Sorry but I do not have info on tapers and such. I just called him and discussed what I was looking for and BAM, he built it. They line really does kick serious ass for what I wanted.
    David Dalan likes this.
  10. speyfisher Active Member

    Posts: 1,067
    State of Jefferson U.S.A.
    Ratings: +139 / 3
    Steve Godshall. SpeyWerks. Ballistic lines. (541) 840-2594
    David Dalan likes this.
  11. David Dalan 69°19'15.35" N 18°44'22.74" E

    Posts: 1,976
    Walla Walla, WA
    Ratings: +775 / 0
    I hear you. The 6 wt Ion was an "upgrade" to my 9'6" Lamiglas. A rio 6wt. nymph line seemed about all the Lami could handle (fished it well) and the longer and faster Ion seemed to say "Bitch please, is that it?"

    FWIW I am finding that the scandi setup is far superior (IMO) as a nymph setup (indicator or not) then the full nymphing lines on the Ion. I just need too much line to load the Ion with a comparably weighted Rio Nymph line. Hard to manage 15' casts when I need 30' of line to load the rod. But I am talking skinny water here.

    In any event, seems lIke I should give Spey works a call :)
  12. Salmo_g Active Member

    Posts: 7,557
    Your City ,State
    Ratings: +1,688 / 0

    Yes, I've done it. I don't think it makes a very good presentation in pocket water. Now I'd use a floating line and regular leader, except add one or two BB split shot above the fly. Much better dead drift or swing presentation through the pockets.

    Chris Johnson and JS like this.
  13. JS Active Member

    Posts: 862
    Ratings: +47 / 0
    I'm with Salmo. I fish boulder filled pocket water with a floating line, heavy (ish) fly, and a grease line approach; almost like guiding the fly without line tension throughout the swing (to be perfectly clear, this is NOT truly grease lining, it is mearly a similar approach to mending/line control).
    Chris Bentsen likes this.
  14. Chris Johnson Member: Native Fish Society

    Posts: 1,792
    Bellingham Wa.
    Ratings: +316 / 1
    I used to fish a run that saw alot of pressure from guys with sink tips, I would often pick up fish behind them because they couldn't or wouldn't make the right presentation. There was a big submerged rock @ the head of the run where fish would lay. It had faster water on the outside and slow on the inside, I could never get a sink tip to tuck in behind that rock. I used a floater and long leader and would cast upstream and mend so that the fly would swing right in behind that rock with a broadside presentation and the fish would pick it up. It never was a solid hit, usually a pluck or I would see the end of my line move, lift the rod and "there he is".
  15. Gray Ghost Member

    Posts: 136
    Flowing Waters
    Ratings: +20 / 0
    Pocket water sink tip setup:

    Floating MOW with 5' or 2 1/2' sink tip.

    5'-8' 8lb.-12lb. level leader.

    Heavy weighted fly (preferably weighted to turn the hook point upright) and sometimes added extra, metal cone or small lead bullet weight slid over leader loop knot tag end.

  16. EJO Member

    Posts: 31
    Mount Vernon, WA
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Rio's MOW tips work great for this.