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yankeefisherman

Another beginner asking for advice

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     I always fished w/saltwater spinning outfit since the first time I started fishing, which is 20 years plus.  This past fall I started feshwater flyrodding and love it.  I purshased a saltwater flyrod thinking I would love it, but have grown to hate it.  Can't cast long, feel I'm wasting my time and I'm doing everything wrong.  My cast are usually no more than 25 feet. I read most of the posts on this forum which encourages me to not quit.  BUT, I still bring my spinning outfit when saltwater fishing, and when time allows, I try the flyrod, in which I usually strike out.  I use sand eel flies, clousers I think, but is there more I should be doing.  Do any of the regulars go back to spinning when flying just isn't working?  Thanks for the help.


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Yank, I find it interesting that you say you can't cast more than 25 feet with your salt water outfit. You mention that you started fly fishing freshwater and loved it, I am guessing you use a different outfit for that, .so I am curious, how far can you cast with that outfit. It it is more that 25 feet than my guess is it is not you with the saltwater outfit but it may be your salt water out itself.

 

I don't know if you know any one who fly fishes salt water but if you do you may want to have them try out your outfit and you try one of theirs. If you bought a package outfit, many of them come with a floating line and floating lines are not always the easiest to try and load.

 

I know many guys who bring both spinning and fly outfits and switch from one to the other and some do it for the same reason you are experiencing. They still switch back and forth and don't give up and I don't think you should either. I am sure you will meet other people on the water who fly fish.

 

I am going to give you one more bit of advice, if you see a person fly fishing that appears competent, don't be afraid to ask for a little advice. Fly fishers like to show how good they are and impress people with their ability and knowledge. I am not saying that in a bad way. They like to try and help people. Take advantage of that, you will be surprised with the help you will get. Then you will find out if it is you or you mechanics and just may get the answer and help you need.

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Yankeefisherman, If you are using clousers, you may want to try using the oval or Belgian cast. If you have any books on fly casting you can probably find instructions there. You can probably find lots of information on the internet if you try oval cast or Belgian cast. That is the cast I use when I'm using weighted flies like clousers. Good luck and don't give up on saltwater fly fishing.

 

Tim

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Agreed that if you're only casting 25 feet, something is wrong, either with your setup, your casting, or both.

 

Going from fresh to salt can be a huge learning curve. I couldn't cast for bupkis when I made the crossover. Turns out that not only was I a lousy caster, my rod and line were not properly mated for my style of casting. Once I found the right line for the rod everything fell into place.

 

Loading the rod has little to do with whether the line sinks or floats. It's either the right grain weight for the rod or it isn't.

 

Agreed also on tagging along with someone who knows what they're doing, watching others, and asking questions.

 

Clousers have caught plenty of stripers, but it's not a one size fits all fly. If the bass are keyed on tiny grass shrimp or big herring or feeding near the surface, you can toss a small sinking fly till the cows come home and not get any hits. Try to look at fly fishing in its simplest form: where are the fish? What are they eating? How are they eating it? How can I present my fly to them in the way that will make them think it is something good to eat?

 

Start with finding the fish. You can't catch what isn't there. Or, as Woody Allen once observed, 80% of success is showing up.

 

Hope that helps,

 

Steve Culton

 

P.S. I have caught a good number of stripers this year (fishing at night) that were less than 25 feet away from me, some as close as 10. The two are not mutually exclusive, but in terms of catching it is far more important to be a better angler than it is to be a better caster.

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Yank where ya from? This time of year fishing can slow down for most places in the NE. My recommendation is to dedicate this month to figuring out fly fishing the salt, leave the spinning gear at home and force yourself to figure it out. Get/read advice here, on youtube and other online and offline sources. If you meet another salt water fly rodder pick their mind, go into a fly shop or ask people on here. You'd be surprised how quickly your technique will advance if you put in the time consistently. In a month or 2 the Striped Bass migration will start up again and you'll be ready and catching fish.


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Practice makes perfect! I am new to the fly to. I bought a 9wt last spring and though. Id love it turns out i wasn't the greatest right off the bat so almost any day i havent been fishing ive been taking it down to my local spot. Even if it was for 15mins. I watched a ton of videos asked everybody i knew anything they could tell me. my spot had 5 pillings then a steel wall prob 3o ft back and overall distance is prob a hundred ft or so. I set it up in my mind as a game. Id aim to certain spots and when i reached my target id change to something else see my thinking was hey maybe a bluefish would hit it as a added bonus but its very shallow there but as ive been doingtthis the conditions have changed wind to face side etc... but my target has always stayed the same so when i apply techniques when it counts i can picture my target the situation im facing and follow through and my success rate has improved dramatically. Im certainly no professional at it but im now throwing backing on my casts witch i never dreamed of. Also try to check your set up rating...

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I really like the advice looking it as game! Will help get more focused on learning to cast further and more accurately. Find somewhere like mentioned above you can aim at something. I actually took the same approach when I learned and it was a really enjoyable way to learn fly fishing.


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I am in Cherry Hill NJ. If you are close to me I would meet up with you and see if I can help. Not that I am an expert but sometimes having someone look at your cast can help. I have even video taped myself so I can see what I am doing wrong.


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  thanks, I bought the Orvis 9 foot, 8 weight floating line.  I'm thinking I should strip more line before forward "haul"? but truth is I find the fly at times whizzes by my ear.  But I won't give up.


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Yank,

Sounds like you are stripping line from reel as you feed line.

 

Strip 50' of line into your basket - or on to the ground- and then start your casting/feeding line until you feel the thinner running line in your line hand. Then cast.

Herb

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Another thought. Simplify! Avoid the complications presented by windy, surf, darkness, etc. For a beginner, standing in 1' of water is much harder than on land, as there is less height for your false casting before hitting the ground or water.Try practicing on your lawn, and get comfortable with a short distance before going for more length. Then add just one variable and get comfortable with that. I love fishing the surf, but it can be tough with the waves knocking you off balance and/or and grabbing your slack line. Do you use a stripping basket? It makes a big difference, at least until it fills with water! Try fishing a spot you can get close to with depth and current, and fish your fly like a streamer. It will help you stay in the strike zone longer. Most of all, remember that it is a journey, not a destination.

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Yank,



Practice cast with leader only, no fly, until you get your stroke down. A fly, esp a weighted fly can throw a monkey wrench into things if your stroke is less than excellent. MAke sure you start your cast with at least 25 foot of line out of the tip so that you can get the rod to load easily. Practice, then leave the spinning rod home-- it will be sink or swim and you will be forced to fish with fly rod, otherwise too easy to pick up spinning.


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