tgd627

Sight Fishing Scenarios

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Hello, 

 

I’d like to start a discussion on what people prefer when planning to sight cast for stripers in the north east. The day they look for, the tide, then sun, sand bottom, grass bottom, or edge of grass to sand flat, rocks, etc. Once the fish has been sighted what is going through everyones mind, how do you compose yourself to take the shot. Where are you placing the shot on the scenario you’ve played out. Try and talk about if your seeing a school of fish, a pair or single. What you think they are feeding on (if you can tell) and why? If you think they are feeding on crabs but you’ve got a sand eel pattern tied on and the clock is ticking, are you taking the shot or going to change the fly and try to follow or watch that fish. Stripping basket or no? Boat or wade, or boat to flat then wade? Do you like flies that sink quickly, slowly, suspend? Do you consider the color of clothes your wearing? I’m sure I’m missing some stuff so feel free to add more info to spring more ideas. If you want to talk about equipment and fly patterns that’s great but I don’t think those things matter all that much. We all know 7/8wt on calm days, 9/10 on windy days. But if you think clear tip lines or something specific is important than go for it. 
 

I know I’m green here and don’t mean to toss around a lot of opinions (we see enough of that) but every time I open up any forum I see a lot of what fly? What line? What rod? Leader? I agree those things matter but SOL has people who fish hard with so much knowledge that is wasted on which $500 rod should I buy? It would be cool to start some more scenario based conversations and how these people dissect and solve the problems they encounter on the water pursuing this species we are all obsessed with. 
 

One last thing that I cannot stress enough because I use it all the time and find some awesome info from posts dating back 2002 and earlier. The magnifying glass in the top search bar is there for a reason. Use it. Before you ask a question try and find the answer because I would almost guarantee it has been asked and answer. Twice. 
 

Thanks for your time, 

TGD

Edited by tgd627

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Seems you answered yr own question. And 2X ...

 

Much of what it seems you are wanting to discuss, is being done thru zoom, etc. Paid and unpaid fishing guides talking around the warm round belly of the internet's stove, we gather at least 'til spring.

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12 mins ago, frazerp said:

Seems you answered yr own question. And 2X ...

 

Much of what it seems you are wanting to discuss, is being done thru zoom, etc. Paid and unpaid fishing guides talking around the warm round belly of the internet's stove, we gather at least 'til spring.


Seems like you had absolutely no input to anything I was looking to talk about. Keep it moving 

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Usually fish shallow back bay sod banks & flats from boat/land, sight fishing in my area(south jersey) can be tough to do consistently - at least if you mean actually seeing the fish or shadow in the water. Typically I look for signs of them feeding, try and figure where they are set up, and then methodically work my way toward them.

 

- 8 wt w/ intermediate line with some type of deceiver or variation thereof. 

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You realize you're identifying as much to discuss as any well-written book on the topic. I would humbly suggest you start with one thing like the flats, bays from a boat, or the surf, as it's different for all. The other point is that sight fishing for stripers is also different in each setting. For example, If I'm fishing in a bay from a boat, I'm looking for signs that stripers are likely to be active such as birds, baitfish, and nervous water. Rarely do I see the actual fish unless they're feeding on bait at the surface or I'm fishing adjacent to a shallow reef, mussel bed, or rock, or I'm landing a fish I've caught. Also, fishing at certain tides varies as well depending on where you're fishing. Lots of variables.

 

If you want a deep discussion on this forum, pick one setting  where you'll most likely fish like the flats or the beach in the surf. Narrow down the topic a bit. Otherwise, buy a book, as fishing techniques with the fly rod vary in all locations. One I highly recommend is Lou Tabory's "Inshore Fly Fishing: A Pioneering Guide to Fly Fishing Along Cold-Water Seacoasts." That will address all your topics, and give you strategies as you change locations and conditions.

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1 hour ago, tgd627 said:


Seems like you had absolutely no input to anything I was looking to talk about. Keep it moving 


He was being helpful.

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5 mins ago, South Shore Fly said:

You realize you're identifying as much to discuss as any well-written book on the topic. I would humbly suggest you start with one thing like the flats, bays from a boat, or the surf, as it's different for all. The other point is that sight fishing for stripers is also different in each setting. For example, If I'm fishing in a bay from a boat, I'm looking for signs that stripers are likely to be active such as birds, baitfish, and nervous water. Rarely do I see the actual fish unless they're feeding on bait at the surface or I'm fishing adjacent to a shallow reef, mussel bed, or rock, or I'm landing a fish I've caught. Also, fishing at certain tides varies as well depending on where you're fishing. Lots of variables.

 

If you want a deep discussion on this forum, pick one setting  where you'll most likely fish like the flats or the beach in the surf. Narrow down the topic a bit. Otherwise, buy a book, as fishing techniques with the fly rod vary in all locations. One I highly recommend is Lou Tabory's "Inshore Fly Fishing: A Pioneering Guide to Fly Fishing Along Cold-Water Seacoasts." That will address all your topics, and give you strategies as you change locations and conditions.


After I submitted the whole thing I kind of realized that was a bit lengthy. Your point is very well taken. 

The topic I wrote was sight fishing scenarios. That to me really only means one thing. Seeing the fish in shallow water or deeper from a boat and casting to a fish or a large school of fish if your lucky. What you described is blind casting at bait and birds. You even said you rarely see the fish which means it cannot be sight fishing. 


What I’m talking about is very hard in the northeast and very rare. Which makes the topic specific in itself. Thank you for the book recommendations. I own the tabory book and many others. 

 

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1 hour ago, tgd627 said:


Seems like you had absolutely no input to anything I was looking to talk about. Keep it moving 

Not exactly a great way to get people to offer their thoughts....

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12 mins ago, Drew C. said:

Not exactly a great way to get people to offer their thoughts....


I see this whole thing going downhill quickly.

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Just pick out the parts you wanna address & do it - stripping baskets are for moho's(peeps who suck) but around here your best bet is shallow flats at high tide & in the dark if possible. If you do it this way then use your ears and listen, which depending on how it's defined, may not be sight fishing.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

Not sure if you are fishing with a guide or DiY ... i sight fish 90% and hire a guide 80% of the time , hiring a guide will cut the learning curve drastically its money well spent even with one trip ,these questions you have can be answered by putting TIME on the water/bow and learn from your guide, expensive and hard way to hunt/ fish not for everyone.You can have the right fly the right conditions the perfect cast the perfect feed and still get the middle finger and be humbled but thats what keeps us feens coming back for more.its basically hunting but not with a riffle but more like a bow or spear.

Edited by thaistick

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7 hours ago, thaistick said:

Not sure if you are fishing with a guide or DiY ... i sight fish 90% and hire a guide 80% of the time , hiring a guide will cut the learning curve drastically its money well spent even with one trip ,these questions you have can be answered by putting TIME on the water/bow and learn from your guide, expensive and hard way to hunt/ fish not for everyone.You can have the right fly the right conditions the perfect cast the perfect feed and still get the middle finger and be humbled but thats what keeps us feens coming back for more.its basically hunting but not with a riffle but more like a bow or spear.

Thanks for the response. 

 

I’m not a guide I’m a regular guy who lives near inshore and off shore flats and wants to start a discussion about people’s approach to this sort of fishing. What you said that the end of your response about “doing everything right and getting the middle fin” that’s the stuff I’m talking about. Why do you think that happen? See the boat? Fly to big? Saw the line?  
 

I wasn’t looking for advice but more so opening a conversation. I’m guessing now that I just didn’t explain myself well enough. 
 

I am well aware that many guides and fly tyers around New England are holding zoom meetings that you have to pay or subscribe to. I think those are very helpful and a lot of fun to fill the winter void. That doesn’t mean we couldn’t have a conversation here about similar things openly.
 

Seems like people want to log onto a zoom chat at 8 pm on Tuesday drink a beer and listen to what one persons opinion on that specific spot they guide is. I was looking to open that up past an hour zoom and dive deeper. 
 

There is a thread with hundreds of responses about people’s in-depth opinion on names of fly patterns. I took a good amount of time (for me) and put myself out there to talk about a style of fishing that I love and am obsessed with. If you’ve got a sarcastic response go back to talking about fly patterns. If you want to talk about a difficult style of fly fishing that takes time and effort then let’s get into it!  
 

-TGD

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Posted (edited) · Report post

I fish several mudflats where sight fishing is possible, but almost impossible from a boat, and prohibitive while wading. I'm currently designing a float tube set up to haul a ladder and to get me back through the troughs when the tide comes in.  I've caught some larger stripers looking for movement and water displacement.  Something I learned from many years stalking large carp in stained water. Subtle changes in the surface can give away large fish in shallow water.  At least this gives you a direction to watch and be hyper-aware in.  Stripers are up on the flats to feed, so at least  it gives you an advantage. If there isn't a specific bait in profusion, many flies will work. Crab, small minnow, topwater, shrimp, baby lobster, sand eels,  all have worked  for me. Just a preference but a sand eel that dives for the bottom  quickly has worked well, as it's what sand eels do. Same for a crab  or baby lobster that  goes claws up in a defensive posture as it's what they do.  Doesn't mean patterns that don't , won't work, just a little touch of reality for wary fish. I also limit flash to just a few strands or a bit of estaz or dubbing.  There's a famous flat that was a big striper fest every year  by boat that as the season got into late June would still hold incredibly wary fish that would move off from boat displacement at  80'.  Long casts, long leaders going down to 8 lb. fluoro and a 7'  wt. line with shrimp flies would occasionally get one to eat. A blast in shallow water.  I fished a somewhat similar scenario in Casco Bay with a guide and small crab flies.  Sometimes a  size  1 or 1/0  chartreuse and white Clouser can be the ticket.  Big bass seem more likely to eat a smaller offering in shallow water.  As I've hooked , but not landed a striper  out of the teens sight fishing, my opinion ain't much.  Still fun to have a  3' fish on in an equal depth of water.  

  I've had much better luck with slow presentations and patience with larger fish.  2-4 year olds?   Whatever moves and catches their attention.  That same focus on food makes them easy prey for  f!@#$%& seals.  At least where I fish , the damn things don't come in real shallow. Use to be in  Maine a good hand clap that sounded like a rifle would send them  packing.  The good old days. Now we have to rely on Great Whites.

  

Edited by bloosfisher

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