Problem with my Swing?

Discussion in 'Spey Clave' started by jcalderon, Jun 8, 2009.

  1. jcalderon

    jcalderon Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2007
    Messages:
    995
    Media:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    A JUNGLE NEAR YOU
    I fished some excellent water this weekend and I must say, I spent more time with my fly in the water than ever before. My casting is getting to the point where I can comfortably, and effectively fish all day without driving myself mad. However, I had an occurrence that leads me to believe that something is wrong with my swing. When Swinging a type three tip, I did not notice, but once I put the type 6 on and began swinging over the rocks, I noticed my line went tight from being hung up on rocks. Obviously, my fly was getting down, but something tells me that if my fly was "in line' with the tip of my rod and got hung up, there wouldn't be the amount of tension that I was feeling. My thinking is that the fly was not been completely "turned" with the tip and fly inline with the rod. Hopefully this makes sense to you guys. It has been haunting my mind all morning.

    That said, How do you guys effectively "turn" your flies to align with the tip, then the head, then the rod???
     
  2. herl

    herl Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2004
    Messages:
    877
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    the other washington
    sup Jesse - I probably can't answer your question, but I do want to know if I'm reading it right. Are you essentially saying there is too much belly in your line?

    If that's the issue, in some water - it is unavoidable. You are probably already doing the stuff I do to deal with it, but in case you are not.. A big upstream mend right after the cast will help, and keeping your rod extended high over the water until the line and leader straighten out - then let the fly and rod tip slowly swing across the current. The consensus seems to be that a slight belly in the line is a good thing - so that your fly is a little bit sideways to the current and able to 'move' a bit more freely.

    I can still count my landed steelhead on one hand so take this all with a chunk of salt.
    Eric
     
  3. jcalderon

    jcalderon Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2007
    Messages:
    995
    Media:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    A JUNGLE NEAR YOU
    Thanks herl. That's essentially what I was trying to say. Clearly I am no writer. I think that there may be too much belly in my line which is causing a "parachute effect" when the line stops in the rocks.
     
  4. bhudda

    bhudda heffe'

    Joined:
    May 20, 2004
    Messages:
    2,001
    Media:
    180
    Likes Received:
    128
    Location:
    basement
    what Eric said, a good mend will alleviate that, if you have found bottom by your method, it is always good to go back upstream and fish that structure again with a slightly different presentation or fly. a tight swing will usually collapse your fly materiel as oppose to a just slower then water speed swing that makes the fly flutter. i try to have straight lines when i am at 45 degrees to swing across the run rather then tight all the way thru, lead with your tip. hope it helps, good luck out there
    jeffrey
     
  5. jcalderon

    jcalderon Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2007
    Messages:
    995
    Media:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    A JUNGLE NEAR YOU
    Thanks. Does this mean that you dont effectively mend the line untill it is 45 degrees? Or do you give an initial mend, and then let the line come tight at 45?
     
  6. HauntedByWaters

    HauntedByWaters Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2006
    Messages:
    2,793
    Likes Received:
    145
    Location:
    Bellingham
    Exactly! iagree

    Remember the most important thing is to slow the fly down! Not necessarily get deep! As in, it is better to be swinging slow and shallow than slow and on the rocks, especially this time of year. I like to be deep but not always on the bottom.

    Don't worry about the technical bullshit, just figure out how to slow that fly down and have it still be "swimming". And most importantly, what is needed to slow the fly down varies from run to run so experiment out there and pay attention!
     
  7. jcalderon

    jcalderon Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2007
    Messages:
    995
    Media:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    A JUNGLE NEAR YOU
    Thats the answer I was looking for. Straightforward and no BS. Love it. Thanks.
     
  8. KerryS

    KerryS Ignored Member

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2001
    Messages:
    6,921
    Media:
    8
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    1,957
    Location:
    Sedro Woolley, WA, USA.
    Here's straight forward. Huck your fly out there throw a mend in the line and check out the scenery. Don't worry about the fly or a little belly in the line, just leave it alone. If a fish likes what it sees it will follow and eventually strike if it doesn't it will or will not follow and it won't strike. It is as simple as that.
     
  9. Jeremy Floyd

    Jeremy Floyd fly fishing my way through life

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2006
    Messages:
    2,628
    Media:
    176
    Likes Received:
    378
    Location:
    Quesnel, BC
    My 2 cents is if you are having troubles with too much belly would be to "follow" the fly with the rod tip instead of "leading" it. Keep it a few inches on the upstream side, in relation to where your gear is at in the water.

    Following slows down the presentation and keeps you straighter on the fly from leader to rod tip. The more you lead it with the rod tip the faster it swings across. It also gets down a lot farther with less weight when the leader/sink tip/line are in line vs looking like a huge J or being across the current at an angle. Having a straighter line drastically increases sensitivity, and also makes those subtle strikes that we all had when we were learning to swing turn into fish on the bank more often.

    Generally in slow water I lead to keep the tip off of the bottom, and in fast water I follow to keep the tip down as far as possible.
     
  10. James Mello

    James Mello Inventor of the "closed eye conjecture"

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2003
    Messages:
    2,805
    Media:
    8
    Likes Received:
    85
    Location:
    Tacoma
    Interesting.... interesting.... I'd suggest looking into greased line stuff by Jock Scott. As far as I'm concerned, your swing is 90% of where it needs to be. Refining line control is the next part. My opinion is that I want a broadside presentation as much as possible. A bit of belly in the line accomplishes this. Doing a straight line presentations puts the ass end of the fly to the fish, so the profile is much smaller. Of course all of this is with a cavaet based on water speed.....
     
  11. SpeySpaz

    SpeySpaz still an authority on nothing

    Joined:
    May 30, 2008
    Messages:
    1,855
    Media:
    8
    Likes Received:
    19
    Location:
    Roy, WA
    when fishing with sinktips, a "j" in your tip can be very beneficial for hooking fish once the fly enters shallower, slower water. The downstream slack helps the fly find the corner of the mouth rather than hooking the fish at the tip of the nose, where you're likely to lose him.

    For this reason, I like to start with a nice straight cast, throw an upstream mend in to buy sink time, and stay in touch with the fly, swimming it through the swing till the J forms, at which time I begin to lead the fly rather than following it, till it finally lies in the hangdown or "dangle" position.
     
  12. Jeremy Floyd

    Jeremy Floyd fly fishing my way through life

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2006
    Messages:
    2,628
    Media:
    176
    Likes Received:
    378
    Location:
    Quesnel, BC
    The presentation I generally use will give them three different profile views every cast. Tail view, an angle, and broadside. It just takes a step down or two and you will eventually get the fish to see it every way, regardless. (Just in case I am showing my fly to a fish that likes things different than a fly at a 45 degree angle)

    Also, it is impossible to get rid of all of the J (until the hangdown) due to water dynamics. I was just referring to an oversized one earlier, which rips the fly through the presentation zone too fast for all but the most aggressive fish. It catches the current like a kite and pulls hard against the fisherman which lifts the sink tip and fly towards the path of least resistance (the surface).

    Also concerning lining things up; One of the ways most folks get everything to line up is by throwing across, mending big (everything but the sink tip gets moved to upstream of the sink tip) with no tension on the fly, and waiting until the corner where the line pulls tight and the fly gets lift and starts to swing. You will find then it is like driving a car. Depending on which side of the line you move your rod tip to during the swing, you can and will affect; the speed of your swing, the depth of your presentation, the smoothness of your swing (not jumping the fly at current lines and subtle water speed changes), and how long you can leave the fly in the hangdown, and at all points how fast the fly is presented.

    All of these are huge fundamental things when someone is beginning to learn to swing. The funny thing, and I just had this conversation last season with my brother, is that swinging will eventually get boring because you can only do it so many times in so many different circumstances until there isn't much challenging about it. Once you get to that point you get to enjoy everything around you vs spending 150% of your attention casting, mending, and controlling your swing.

    Another good method to see how much your swing is affected by this stuff is to get out there with a floater and a skated fly and see how it is presented differently by these factors. That is the real proof, when you see how things are affected with your own eyes.
     
  13. Jake Bannon

    Jake Bannon nymphs for steelhead....

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2007
    Messages:
    667
    Media:
    36
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    puget sound
    I am in the exact same boat as you jcalderon, I feel like my swings are good because Im able to find lots of willing cutties that grab my fly between mid swing and the hang down, is this a good indication that Im doing it right, its just a matter of putting my fly infront of a willing steelhead?
     
  14. Jeremy Floyd

    Jeremy Floyd fly fishing my way through life

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2006
    Messages:
    2,628
    Media:
    176
    Likes Received:
    378
    Location:
    Quesnel, BC
    You guys are disadvantaged in your learning because there are so few of them left. It is hard to get positive feedback even if you are doing everything perfect because (unlike the old guys that get way too much credit for their fishing skills) you can't fall in a coastal river and land on a Steelhead every time, like they could.
     
  15. HauntedByWaters

    HauntedByWaters Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2006
    Messages:
    2,793
    Likes Received:
    145
    Location:
    Bellingham
    Don't think of it like that.

    I fished with KerryS and he is a VERY good fisherman and knowledgeable enough to know what he is saying. Read his post about the straight forwardness of it.

    I personally don't keep things as simple as him but I know what he means, a hot fish will hit your fly if it sees it.

    Now the caveat is that depending on the temps, and conditions, getting the fish to see your fly may only happen if you slow it down as much as you can.

    So, slowing down the fly is important but only to get the fish to notice it.

    Most of the time, the fish will see your fly regardless and if he is a "player" he will take it, but why take the chance of missing a fish because the swing is too fast? You might as well try and slow it waaaaay down.

    The greatest problem is what Jeremy said, "player" steelhead are an endangered species; at least where some of us fish. Finding "player" SRCs is still very doable and yes they are excellent fish to fill the the years between summer runs......:eek:
     
  16. Panhandle

    Panhandle Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2005
    Messages:
    4,103
    Media:
    50
    Likes Received:
    20
    Location:
    Selkirk Mountains, Idaho Panhandle
    Your rod tip shouldn't "turn" or move the fly. Your rod shouldn't dictate the lines/flies swing aside from mending. You're trying to achieve a swing where the tip is aligned with the line and fly, but you are allowing the water's natural speed and flow to sway the speed of the swing--- the rod just follows the waters motion. In other words, everything is moving at the same speed, resulting in slight tension and just a little give. A good way to practice this is to start the tip high after the initial mend, then slowly drop the tip as you follow the course of the swing. If you're hanging up and you think everything is lined up, you're fishing too fast a tip for the water you're fishing. Remember, Fish will not move down to chase a fly and steelhead don't always sit on the bottom. To know you swinging well, you learn to feel that everything is moving at the same pace; you can feel it in your mind's eye. I don't think there’s any way to shorten the learning curve of this feeling aside from swinging your ass off. You'll know when you're doing it right when one of those bastards pulls back. :thumb: I hope that gibberish makes sense. :D
     
  17. KerryS

    KerryS Ignored Member

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2001
    Messages:
    6,921
    Media:
    8
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    1,957
    Location:
    Sedro Woolley, WA, USA.
    Thanks for the compliment Jason.

    Let me clarify a bit. The deal is to be on the water. Fish as much as you can and keep your fly in the water. Time will bring fish. As you put in the time and start to catch fish you will start to learn where to fish which in my opinion is more important than how you swing the fly. The more casts you make the more you will learn on how to swim a fly. Notice I said swim this time not swing. You will learn what I mean by that as you spend more time fishing. But remember what I said first. The perfect swing in water that does not hold fish will not catch fish. If you want to shorten the learning curve quit posting questions on the internet and go fishing with someone that has been doing this for awhile. Serveral posted on this topic. Watch everything they do. Watch what water they spend the most time fishing. Ask why they use a certain tip on certain runs. Ask questions about everything you can think of. Lots of them. When I first started fishing for steelhead with a fly I bugged the living shit out of my mentors. I asked questions about everything, most probably dumb but they all got answered and after time I learned a little bit. There is no way to describe the perfect swing on the internet because every cast is in different water. You have to be there to make the perfect swing.

    You got some good advice on here from some good fishermen, get out there.

    And if you are catching cutthroat on the swing it is only a matter of time 'til you reel gets smoked.
     
  18. jcalderon

    jcalderon Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2007
    Messages:
    995
    Media:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    A JUNGLE NEAR YOU
    Thanks you guys for your info. My plan of attack was ultimately improve my swing by time on the water. I have seen way too many people write off swinging because they "never catch anything" but they literally spend 3-4 days a year on the water. My plan is to stay local on the sky 3 times a week after work and one weekend day. Hopefully, I will be able to figure it out, and maintain a marriage!
     
  19. Brian Thomas

    Brian Thomas Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2005
    Messages:
    821
    Likes Received:
    129
    Location:
    Kamloops B.C
    Don`t be afraid to try a downstream mend . I like to do this to speed the fly up , especially in froggy water , but I`ll do it pretty much anywhere , thus , helping to keep the fly off the bottom .

    An added benefit is that a downstream mend will give the fish more of a broadside view of the fly .
     
  20. HauntedByWaters

    HauntedByWaters Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2006
    Messages:
    2,793
    Likes Received:
    145
    Location:
    Bellingham
    HEHE.

    Welcome to the party!
     

Share This Page