How did you learn . . .

Discussion in 'Spey Clave' started by Salmo_g, Oct 30, 2006.

  1. Salmo_g

    Salmo_g Active Member

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    to Spey cast?

    I putzed around with the long rod for 10 years with no instruction, and it showed. Not that the fish cared, but it was more novelty than function, except for roll casting when fishing along high stream banks.

    I attended the Skykomish Spey Clave a couple years ago, and that helped. Then I attended a couple Saturdays at Aaron's in Carnation, and that helped even more. Then last month I took a couple lessons from Buckner, who's a certified instructor, and that helped quite a lot more. I'm getting downright snazzy with the Spey rod now. I had my most satisfying outing yet, Friday while fishing the Cowlitz. Of course, I need a lot more practice to be really stylin'.

    Sincerely,

    Salmo g.
     
  2. Big Tuna

    Big Tuna Member

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    I watched a Simon Gawesworth video...a bunch of times. I also watched a Derek Brown video. I think lessons would definitely be the way to go. Two of my brothers took lessons and it helped considerably.
     
  3. Panhandle

    Panhandle Active Member

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    I'm certainly not one to give advice on the subject. However, learn the double and single spey and practice your ass off. People I have spent time with who are proficient- practice, practice, practice. It's probably best to get a lesson before you develop bad habits and down load muscle memory that's hard to reverse.
     
  4. Steelie Mike

    Steelie Mike Active Member

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  5. JRSly

    JRSly Oncorhynchus clarki clarki

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    Mike Kinney gave me a quick demo and some intructions back when he used to work at Creekside. It got me started, but I am not good at it. I miss that guy, I haven't talked to him for a while.

    Sly
     
  6. doublespey

    doublespey Steelhead-a-holic

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    I was lucky - I realized it would shorten the learning curve considerably, so I took a class with John Hazel and John Farrar on the NF Sky many moons ago.

    Then I was lucky enough to spend quite a bit of time fishing with some truely exceptional casters in the following years. It's a lot easier to pick up some of the refinements to the various speycasts when you're able to watch them repeated over and over when you're following a proficient caster thru a run.

    Finally, learn to be your own analyst. Taking the time to understand the fundamentals of the speycast will pay dividends when your casting goes south (and it does for everyone, even the best casters) so you can make adjustments for yourself.

    And, as SalmoG and Steve Buckner have mentioned . . . Practice!! Many seem adverse to practicing their casting, and I've also been guilty of poking a bit of fun at the wannabe "Spey Gods", but the plain and simple fact is that if you want to enjoy your fishing and not have to fight your casting all day the best way is to put in some dedicated practice time.

    My .02,

    Brian
     
  7. cnaka

    cnaka New member

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    I went out with Mike Kinney for a day about 10 years ago when he was at Creekside. I also fished alot with friend, who's very good with a double hander. Unfortunately, fishing with my friend screwed me up big time. He used a long belly and I used a WC modified into what are now called skagit heads. Neither of us knew the finer points of long belly, short belly, etc and the rationale for each system. He was by far the better caster and I tried emulating him. In short, I was a mess until more info started coming out about short, medium, long heads and the philosophies around each. I've done 1-day seminars with other notable spey casters, each one of whom can mess you up if you aren't aware that they are probably teaching you THEIR style. I think lessons are the way to go, but like consultants, they need to be managed. Beware too many teachers. Learn one style, understand it very well, then branch out.
     
  8. KerryS

    KerryS Ignored Member

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    I am fortunate to live on the Skagit and to have started with a spey rod in ‘90 or ‘91. Many of the spey notables of the area were still learning at that time and I got to fish with and learn from many of them. Although to this day I will honestly say that I have not broaden my spey horizons much beyond a few basic workable casts. I don’t have the need for much more then the basics; single spey, double spey, perry poke, I might be able to perform one or two more. Can’t do the circle spey worth beans but really never had much need to.
     
  9. Will Atlas

    Will Atlas Guest

    I just started earlier this summer, but with a clinic from mike kinney which happens every weekend free, and a few times through the rio video, plus just going fishing, my casting is coming along quite nicely. Its mostly about going fishing...
     
  10. miyawaki

    miyawaki Active Member

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    I have been speycasting for steelhead for a little over 6 years and have had the good fortune to fish with some terrific casters that are also my good friends.

    I fish mostly with Brian Lencho, "doublespey" on this board, and Ryan "Sparky" Petzold, the manager at Kaufmann's Bellevue, and Michael Mathis, a guide and absolute gonzo steelheader on the Snake and Clearwater rivers. Brian is a really good caster with a very distinctive style, that is very different from anyone else I've seen cast. Brian has most recently been working with TFO on their two-handed rods. Ryan is a left-handed caster which is something I have been trying to learn rather than reversing my casts. When I fish with the two of them, I feel like I'm on a morning radio show with "Ryan and Brian."

    I have also spent many days on the river with Juro Mukai, the first US distributor of CND rods and Nobuo Nodera, the designer and owner of CND. I have also fished with Mike Kinney and always make it a point to see him at the claves. John Farrar and I are very good friends and spend a lot of time together in the winter on the Skagit. I'm pretty much self-taught and have learned almost everything I know from these guys. I have never hesitated to ask questions and, most importantly, I don't squander their generosity by not practicing.

    Leland.
     
  11. Charles Sullivan

    Charles Sullivan dreaming through the come down

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    I gave a nice man a can of Copenhagen. He gave me a one hour tutorial. Of course, I don't cast all that well.
    Go Pats,
    cds
     
  12. Ringlee

    Ringlee Doesn't care how you fish Moderator Staff Member

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    Read Mike Maxwell's The Art and Science of Spey Fishing after I bought my 1st loomis two hander over 10 years ago. Rob Endsley helped me take my casting to actually fishing and cathing steelhead on the fly.

    I also recieved some tips from Simon Gawesworth who helped me at the fly fishing shows. I became the little kid that could cast the whole pond and hit people hanging out at the end. Kerry Burkheimer was the only person that would let me test out two handed rods. G Loomis, T&T, Sage, and others said I was too young until they saw me cast.

    Steve Buckner has helped me the last two years to get rid of my bad habits.
     
  13. Zen Piscator

    Zen Piscator Supporting wild steelhead, gravel to gravel.

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  14. Matt Burke

    Matt Burke Active Member

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    George Cook. After that it was whom ever I met at the spey claves willing to answer a question. Mostly it's been 100 plus days a year fishing for steelhead for the last five years. I'm not a demo guy, but I can swing a fly.
     
  15. Luv2flyfish

    Luv2flyfish Another Flyfisherman

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    Steve Buckner -

    Most everything I have learned about anadromous fish came from Steve. He took me under his wing shortly after I moved to WA going on 4 years ago. I started the 2-handers 3 years ago. I have spent a bit of time casting with Juro. At a few of the claves, Tyler Kushnir, Dana Sturn from the other board, Russ of Skagit fame gave me a couple additional tips as well as Way Yin. Also, Gene Oswald has been an influence as well. Its fun to watch him cast past the boats on the other side of the Cowlitz (he will deny this, but I have been witness)! Gene also helped me in my schooling path as well. But, 99% has been with Steve as with 99% of all of my fishing over the last few years (excluding guiding in alaska summer 05). I certainly spent a few mornings, afternoons, and evenings out practicing with Steve while he was preparing for the Two-Handed Certification.....Well, he was practicing and I was getting SCHOOLED! Come to think of it, Steve is usually on my case about something or another pretty much all the time! :beer2:

    Practice is KEY! PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE!!! That goes for single handed casting as well if you ever want to get "good" let alone achieve the levels of the people named in these posts! And, from personal experience if you get a job and go to school and find yourself sucked into the toilet of "responsible adulthood" your casting will leave you much much MUCH faster than it took you to gain, as well as fishing time and subsequent success while fishing.

    BOTTOM LINE: Flyfishing, steelheading and non-fishing jobs ARE NOT COMPATABLE! Slightly off subject, but relevant.

    Watch your D-Loop!
     
  16. Scott Behn

    Scott Behn Active Member

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    George Cook and his posse'...epecially the little guy they named the "wombat" after.

    :cool:
     
  17. pescador do mosca

    pescador do mosca "An under forty victim of fate..arriving too late"

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    Bought Rio's first video and my first rod and attempted to teach myself, didn't work to well. The rods sat for a bit and then attended a class by Simon G. and my whole game turned on. I am hooked and will never look back. I got the bug, I'm infected, I have been lost to the darkside!!!

    To second the other posters, practice time cannot be understated!!! You must practice the right way though and if you are getting frustrated, take a break, then hit it again.

    Remember, it's supposed to be fun, you are not supposed to get tired, you are supposed to laugh when you blow a cast, casting in itself is fun besides catching fish, the list could go on...

    :thumb:
     
  18. FlyShopKristin

    FlyShopKristin Going Online

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    Mike Kinney.

    I've been heading down to Aaron's for the last few years where i have been lucky to cast with Mike. Even better....Mike now works at AATF. :D Between Mike, Aaron and others, I have learned an amazing amount about spey casting and fishing. I've also been fortunate to have a number of people share their knowledge regarding lines, grain weights, etc... (thanks Bert!)

    Getting some basic instruction (before bad habits form) is helpful. And - practice, practice, practice.

    People in the Northwest are extremely fortunate to have great opportunities to learn to Spey cast. In this area there are so many spey events, great instructors, and weekly 'days on the river' - both in Carnation and Monroe.
     
  19. Coach Duff

    Coach Duff Banned or Parked

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    George Cook gave me a course first. I borrowed a buddy's Bruce and Walker and tried to incorporate Mike Maxwell's stuff without being smart enough to go learn from Mike Maxwell. That's probably a good thing for both of us. ;) I could have won some jousting contests in Old England with that giant piece of hickory. Plus I had no idea what I was doing. Should have listened to George a little closer huh? So that was the end for awile. I refused to drop my one handers and 7 thousand spools of lines, head and tips. When I picked one up again I had forgotten everything. (I still do that from time to time now for 20 minutes or so.:D ) I mean everything. Scott O'Donnel gave me the basic course again. This time I actually pulled my head out of my butt and kept practicing and fishing the spey. Those were Sage brown 9140 days. That was "the" rod when it came out. Then I got into Scott Arcs when they came out and windcutters. Then I got into heads, slick shooter type running lines and Mesiers MKS rods and haven't looked back since in winter. I'll stick with that setup for a few years at the very least. I don't have the money or time to stay "cutting edge" these days. I'm sure something "better" will come out tomorrow morning, but I'm passing for some years. I like the rods, style and system I've got now and will stick with it. It works well for me in winter and spring. In the summer I still prefer the smaller hike in rivers where trout and char and incidental catch stuff keeps it interesting with lighter one handers, but I'll spey a full floater or lighter tip on the Sky and the Cowlitz and all the other hatchery highways for summer runs. I caught fish before the spey, but not nowhere as many with one. That's a fact in my fishing world. Now because of coaching, I'll hit anywhere the fish are supposed to be from California to BC if the window opens. Depends on time, money, if I'm in the state, you know the factors. I even bought a C&D Tracker 5/6 for trout spey-rodding last year. I'm done, I surrendered to the spey gods with the head down and the white flag up years ago. Coach
     
  20. Ringlee

    Ringlee Doesn't care how you fish Moderator Staff Member

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    The Wombat is a bad ass Cast! I do it all the time after watching the Rio Video.
     

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