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flymann

FLAT ADDICTED !

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It was always about big fish for me. Following the bunker run, dredging the drop offs, fishing the pilings, and overall searching for bigger bass. This year was different. I always thought that most of the fish up on the flats were small. Some of the best flats fishing coincides with the spring run and I spent most of my time on the pods looking for "The FISH". In May I posted up on the edge of a flat and saw 2 good bass cruise by me. That was it. That was ALL it took. Watching those fish swim in 2 feet of water did something to me. It changed me. I swapped the 10 wt for a 8 wt and the big flies for crabs and smaller bait fish patterns. Can I cast the whole line.....yes. Can I cast accurately.....yes. So tell me why some of my casts landed right on top of fish. Or come up way short. or why my fly got rejected. or why I didn't see the fish at 50 feet till I was on top of it. Ill tell you why. Its a totally different ball game. Keeping cool, being prepared, and taking advantage of every shot is what its all about. For me when I see that fish and I begin the cast time stands still. I'm so focused that for that moment everything else ceases to exists. Its me and the fish, one on one and that's what makes it so special. Theres nothing like glassing a flat with a fly pinched between my fingers ready to hunt. Its kinda hard to go back to blind casting after experiencing a day of sight casting to bass. Let me stop right there and thank my bud Justin(Shallow water) for showing me the ropes. He showed me a few different patterns and helped me adjust my leader system and over all helped me to become addicted. Oh yea not to mention poling me around, putting me onto fish and even taking pictures. Thanks brother I owe you! If I wasn't getting married this year id be buying a smaller boat and getting a platform.

After several missed shots one day it all came together. We eased up on a flat and immediately saw big fish. Ill never forget that first fish. I watched him follow the fly down and then swim away. Almost instantaneously my line came tight and the reel sang for me. 2 straight runs and I was into my backing.Good Sh*t!!!!!. When that fish came to hand It was a great feeling. Ive caught bigger fish and had days where I lost count but that fish was a very special fish to me and it might be my best experience fly fishing yet. It was one of those days that everything went right. No wind, clear sky's, right tide and plenty fish. Watching a fish, getting ready, the anticipation, the excitement, the disappointment, the thrill, the rush, the hope, Thats it man. Thats what its all about. Yup Im flat addicted and I wouldn't have it any other way!I[ATTACHMENT=3517]flats bass 1.jpg (815k. jpg file)[/ATTACHMENT][ATTACHMENT=3518]flats bass 2.jpg (4,203k. jpg file)[/ATTACHMENT][ATTACHMENT=3519]flats bass 3.jpg (5,085k. jpg file)[/ATTACHMENT]

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Great story! Great pics! No spot burning, but what general area are you fishing?

 

Any specifics you can share eg, adjusting your leader, stages of tide that are best, weather that is best , water temps etc?

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Flyman, this definitely appeals to me in a huge way! I recently sold my 21 parker mainly because of a seasickness problem I have been dealing with in my life. Certain medicine works with side effects but just burnt out with the whole thing so I was thinking about a flats skiff to keep me in calm flat water. I am sure there are plant of places to pole.

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Flymann,

 

I can understand just how you feel after I managed to get into some sight caught Stripers this june past. It was electric. This was from the shore as I don't do boats. But either way its just the best way to use a fly rod. Great photos to. Well done Mate.

 

Mike

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Redunlop.....I was using tapered leaders down to 12 lb test but I'm sure you can go heavier. As far as weather you need a clear day with little wind to really fish the flats. Tide doesn't matter but I guess it depends on which flat your planning to fish. For me if there is enough water to get up there ill look for fish. I personally prefer incoming tides but that's just because Ive had to hop out and push off a few times. It sucks to be on a flat by yourself pushing your boat and it wont budge. If you really want to get up on the flats I suggest you read up and get out there.

 

Jnicosia....I think you'll like it man. Chasing fish around is fun especially when there are bigger fish to be had but flats has its perks too. You don't have to wake up at 3 am to gas up then burn 20 gallons running around all day. You don't have to deal with 50 other boats fishing on top of you. Its really a different world and its something everyone that is passionate about our sport should experience. Id make sure you have flats in the area before you buy a flats skiff. I can see it now....50 lb bass on the flats on a popper!lol Good luck man. Ive been waiting for that montauk report from you and Chris.

 

Mike....Thanks man. Electric is a good way to put it. Def the best way to use a fly rod.

 

Bob.....Ive been so busy this year I'm lucky Ive had to time to fish as much as I did. I'm at the point in my life that I know my fishing will have to come second. This was the first year that I missed a lot. The first year that I got the calls and texts and had to live through my buds. Trust me I'm grateful for every minute out there.

 

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Flyman,

 

There is a place on the Cape (Cape Cod) that will allow you to fish the incoming from dead low back to the beach (1/4 mile from the channel edge) in the morning and then a secret underwater waterfall on the dropping tide from the channel side when the tide turns. Lets call the dropping tide semi-blind casting to describe the experience of your offering being sucked down the face of a channel edge and into the waiting throngs of striped bass. Schoolies to 30 pounders.

 

 

The secret is how to get thru the schoolies.. You might want to consider the first full moon in June. Finast northeastern flats fishing, period! If you speak Korean, you will know the answer. ;)

 

Merry Christmas, y'all's.

 

:wave:

 

 

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Great thread, loved the story and philosophy. The pictures were sweet as well, nice shots. I had many missions last season in the skinny utilizing the attributes of my hobie for SB. It was awesome. Your right it's all about the stalk and the eventually explosion in the shalllows. It can get pretty messy and the best part is there's very few boats. :p

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Mike,

 

Years ago, we use to launch at Sesuit Harbor and cruise north across the Brewster Flats on calm days looking for bathtub size swirls or birds working bait.

 

Clousers and Half & Half's on 7 foot 20# test mono leaders were the weapon of choice. I much perfer stalking the smaller flats on foot with a rising tide.

 

The Brewster Flats are daunting to wade and should be treated with respect.

 

Ah!! I just remembered your tutorial on wading the flats. You might want to reprise that for those new to fishing the flats, and especially that Monster called The Brewster Flats!

 

I wonder if it killed anyone last year?

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Flyman - Alan Caolo has a great book out called Sight Fishing for Striped Bass".

 

If you haven't got a copy, I recommend you go to Amazon and see if you can get a used copy. They are really new copies that may have sat too long on a shelf in a book store that doesn't have fishermen as a percentage of their clientel. The reduction in price is more than enough to cover the cost of shipping. Infact, make a list of your favorite salt water fishing books and if you spend over $25 or $30 bucks the shipping might be fee.

 

Flyrodding the Estuaries by Ed Mitchell is a must for your library

 

And Rich Murphy's Fly Fishing for Striped Bass is the new bible. Don't skip the first 122 pages. The knowledge you will gain about the quarry Striped Bass is effen wicked awesome!

 

All three of the above have lots of charts, pictures, and how to information written in styles that make them easy to read and absorb.

 

Give yourself a Christmas present. Enjoy!

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RJ's recommendations are on the money, however, flats fishing comes down to time on the water and thoughtful analysis of what went wrong more than anything else. Anyway, you've got the disease, now keep your mouth shut and don't give it to others or the flats will get overrun with drooling fools. ;-)

JC

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No question that sight fishing is what gets my ticker hammering. I think it's partly that from the instant the fish is spotted, every second has to be stretched to get the most out of what few there are, and then if it goes right, the adrenaline switches into hyper mode in anticipation of the bite.

 

 

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