So how do you get down in winter?

Discussion in 'Spey Clave' started by James Waggoner, Dec 21, 2009.

  1. Salmo_g Active Member

    Posts: 7,483
    Your City ,State
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    James W.,

    Another thought on gear and fly line technology. If you're willing to attach it and try to cast it, you can fish most any steelhead holding water. What we used to say is, not all steelhead water is fly water. Part of the choice of deciding to fly fish for steelhead involves giving up some of the water you'd fish with conventional drift fishing gear. The gear available to us now certainly expands the range of fly fishable water. I find that I haven't changed all that much though because if I can't fly fish it the way I want, then I might just as well get a spinning or drift rod. It kinda' comes back to why one chooses to fly fish for winter steelhead. It ain't because it's a practical choice.

    Sg
  2. Charles Sullivan dreaming through the come down

    Posts: 2,289
    bellingham wa
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    Can I get an amen?

    Go Sox,
    cds
  3. Ed Call Mumbling Moderator

    Posts: 17,400
    Kitsap Peninsula
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    Charles, I'm not qualified to toss you an amen or not. Does that mono section between the fat floater and the sinking tip allow for better sink due to the thin profile vs the ongoing hydrodymanic properties of the water on the line? That seems to be logical due to the small diameter of that mono. How does a rig like that cast and turn over? I think it was FAE that mentioned a similar approach. Interesting. Thanks in advance for any further clarification for my dumb ass. Go Sox, love the new skull logo. Ed
  4. Charles Sullivan dreaming through the come down

    Posts: 2,289
    bellingham wa
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    Fred uses a similar deal. Casts like shit. It works due to the difference in diameter and sinking properties. I don't use it anymore, on account of what SalmoG said.

    It's a sox steal your face. Not an ordinary skull.

    Go Sox,
    cds
  5. Ed Call Mumbling Moderator

    Posts: 17,400
    Kitsap Peninsula
    Ratings: +1,357 / 9
    Thanks Charles. If it casts like shit then I'll stay away. I cast like shit already.
  6. ak_powder_monkey Proud to Be Alaskan

    Posts: 3,209
    Eagle River, Alaska
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    I throw slack into my swings I also keep doing big upstream mends and cast upstream rather than across, this is for kings in the summer mind you but it seems to work ok
  7. DocDoc Member

    Posts: 121
    Walla Walla, WA, United States.
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    Those that suggest a sinking line have made an important point. Getting below the surface slows down the swing markedly, and that may be as important as depth, except in the coldest water. Last time I was out I was learning to use a PT S1/2. I was impressed by how much the swing was slowed compared to a sink tip. Also, I found that the line got down and continued to get down so that it was necessary to add a little tension nearing the hang down or I was into the rocks and losing flies. I am just learning the sinking head game, but it seems to offer a lot of advantages.

    I am familiar with HSHD from long ago with a single had rod. I still have some of the stuff, and I assure you it is much faster than type 3. It is not as good as T14, but it does get down and turns over big uglies well.
  8. chromeseeker Where's the Bucket?

    Posts: 132
    Your City ,State Vancouver, WA
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    You can fish pretty much all good winter fly water with a type 6 or occasionally a T-8 sinktip. The key is knowing how your line/fly respond in different current speeds/depths and one of the best ways to figure this out is to use a dry line as much as possible during the rest of the year. It's all about LINE CONTROL. Sure, you can chuck a boat anchor out there and fish the heaviest, deepest water possible but then why not just pick up a drift rod?

    It's much, much more useful in the long run to be able to read water and control your line speed with appropriate mends than it is to put more weight on your line.

    C
  9. shotgunner Anywhere ~ Anytime

    Posts: 481
    45th Parallel NW Michigan
    Ratings: +23 / 1
    These are words to live by, and I agree whole heartedly: "What we used to say is, not all steelhead water is fly water. Part of the choice of deciding to fly fish for steelhead involves giving up some of the water you'd fish with conventional drift fishing gear. The gear available to us now certainly expands the range of fly fishable water. I find that I haven't changed all that much though because if I can't fly fish it the way I want, then I might just as well get a spinning or drift rod." Salmo G

    However post #35 describes a very specific run. Exactly the kind that a full sink shooting head excells on. Sometimes due to low water, high angler pressure, both, or maybe I simply want to fish that run I can do a passable job of it.

    It allows presentation in the zone @ conducive speed a 36' head weighing approximate 470 grain. Hardly a boat anchor.. merely an option.
  10. James Waggoner Active Member

    Posts: 776
    wa
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    Thanks shotgunner, thats the information I was looking for! Not I'd fish that way all the time I just want to know I can go deep if needed... I do appreciate all the advice given by everyone, great reminders and advice for any steelheader from beginer to experienced to gleen from.

    This has been very interesting.

    So what kind of full sink shooting head do you suggest for a 7136zaxis? (I typically fish a 480 Compact Skagit and 420 compact Scandi if that helps you point me in the rigth direction.)

    Thanks, James.
  11. James Mello Inventor of the "closed eye conjecture"

    Posts: 2,787
    Tacoma
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    So one thing of note. Are you fishing in the GL area most of the time? Just curious as as standard shooting heads just don't turn over some of the offerings we throw in the glacial rivers here... But with that said, the rain fed rivers, probably a pretty smart option.
  12. pcknshvl Member

    Posts: 555
    SEATTLE, WA, USA.
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    Hey Mumbles--have you excercised your new sinking AFS heads yet?

    Tom
  13. shotgunner Anywhere ~ Anytime

    Posts: 481
    45th Parallel NW Michigan
    Ratings: +23 / 1
    James W, Guideline's DDC Connect kit is the most versitile way to go. An intermediate body looped for tips with 3 supplied. The body will turn over up to 12' of T14 or RIO tips very nice. Check here: http://www.hooked4life.ca/glsteelhead/Home.html for quality info, very nice site. If you like a 420 compact skandi you'll likely be looking towards an 8/9 Guideline Power Taper. They come at 44' trim from rear to fit your preference or two different factory looped lengths. Don't forget Bob Meiser / Steve Godshalls new intermediate skagit heads, no reports yet but should be sweet.

    James M, Yes almost exclusive Lakes region [so far] Guideline Power Tapers have a solid rep for strong turnover. The 9/10 470 gr head I mention has easily turned over anything I've tried including some good sized Waddington lead eyed Rabbit wing stingers. 10/11 are animals, common to fish big tubes with both body bullet weight and Turbo Cone. I'm unsure just how big of flies you guys may have to use..

    The DDC are easiest to fish. Once you move into a Hi D full sink head they force you to be on top of things a bit more as noted by DocDoc. Alot can be done with angle changes to dial sink depth.
  14. Gorgefly Member

    Posts: 465
    Washougal, Wa.
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    James
    I have seen quite a bit of action lately on what I think to be your infamous run....seems every time I drive by there is a gear guy on it though. I am assuming the return is fairly good judging by the numbers of people I see there this past few weeks.
  15. James Waggoner Active Member

    Posts: 776
    wa
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    Yeah, it's no secret spot for sure.
  16. Charles Sullivan dreaming through the come down

    Posts: 2,289
    bellingham wa
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    I'd fish a light tip on the inside. I'm interested if theirs a bucket or some dimples near the tail out.

    Go Sox,
    cds
  17. James Waggoner Active Member

    Posts: 776
    wa
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    Shotgunner, thanks for the info on the guideline head and the website. I like the idea of getting the head down below the faster currents, slowing down the swing and getting deeper with less.

    thanks, James.