A Simple Tip For Better Streamer Fishing

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Here’s something simple you can do when fishing streamers, which will catch more fish and save you some pain.

I’ve been meaning to write this tip for years and haven’t because it’s just so simple. But I was reminded of it the other day and figured it was time. No matter what species you are targeting with a streamer, you’ll hook more fish and have a much more pleasant experience if you put your rod tip in the water. It’s a simple trick that accomplishes a couple of really good results.

First off, you’ll get better hook sets. Putting your rod tip in the water reduces slack in the line and uses the tension of the water to help you get a positive hook set. It’s a natural position from which to point the rod at the fly, insuring a solid connection when a fish eats. You’ll always get better hook penetration with the rod tip in the water.

The second benefit is for comfort, but it also leads to hooking more fish. Anyone who has fished a streamer knows about line burns. It’s crucial that you maintain control of your fly line by holding it under one or two fingers of your rod hand when stripping. A dry fly line, or worse a sandy one, can be fairly painful, especially on a hook set. Keeping you line wet by keeping the rod tip in the water lubricates it and keeps it clean. No painful burns or cuts. As a bonus, you will hold your line more firmly when it doesn’t hurt you. That will give you a better connection when the fish eats and you’ll hook more fish.

Thirdly, with the right kind of fly line, it actually

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2022 Holiday Fly Fishing Gift Guide

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Here are a list of the best holiday gifts for the fly fisher on your list! It’s that time again. Santa is harnessing those reindeer, Mrs Claus is baking Christmas goodies and all those elves are putting the finishing touches on that new 5 weight and those fresh waders. Forget about the elf on the shelf, these gift ideas will make you the G.O.A.T. on the Boat! Rods and Reels Recon Saltwater 6- $595 I’m a big fan of saltwater 6 weights and this one is my favorite. The Recon delivers the performance of a $1000 fly rod at about half the price. If you have a saltwater and/or on your list, it’s sure to please. https://www.orvis.com/recon-fly-rod/2YLB-Family.html Scott Wave- $675 Scott’s newest offering the Wave is another mid-price saltwater fly rod that delivers in a big way. In addition to being a great flats fishing tool, I find the Wave to be a great rod for streamer fishing in fresh water. Top notch quality and a great price. https://olefloridaflyshop.com/shop/fly-rods/hps-rods/scott-wave/?attribute_size=9+Weight+9Ft+4+Pc Superfine Glass- $498 Perfect for the stream angler the Superfine Glass fly-fishing rod series is built with S-2 fiberglass for smooth, slow casting with the strength to get the job done. Black type III anodizing aluminum reel seat with wooden insert (2-5 wt.) or aluminum tube (6 and 8 wt.). Hard chrome guide and double-foot striping guide. Matte olive blank with quick rod identifier. Nylon-covered rod tube and cloth storage sack included. https://www.orvis.com/superfine-glass-fly-rod/3BH5-Family.html Echo Boost Blue- $299 Echo’s new and updated fast action saltwater rod. The all-new actions are a result of Tim’s relentless tweaking to Echo’s Boost Salt Series. With its light tip section mated to a powerful bottom section, these rods pack the punch needed to fight the wind and other challenging conditions. https://www.chifly.com/Product/Details/6498/Echo-Boost-Blue Winston Air 2- $1195 When … Continue reading

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Jesus Built My CCFX2

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Watch the badass video!

WELL, JESUS AND KRISTEN…AND THE REST OF THE CREW AT NAUTILUS.

Last month I while I was down in Miami I stopped in to see my friends Kristen Mustad and Jesus Marmol. My timing couldn’t have been better. In addition to doing a little fishing, I got to see the very first CCFX2 reel to come off the floor. To say it was impressive would be an understatement.

It was cool to get a first hand look at what goes into the making of a quality fly reel. The attention to detail was mind blowing at every level. The guys and gals a Nautilus have their heads in the game. But you don’t have to take it from me, because I shot video of the whole thing. Watch and see for yourself.

Watch, “Jesus Built My CCFX2”

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6 Reasons To Love And Fear The Barracuda

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By Louis Cahill

Every angler who catches a barracuda can’t wait to catch another, but if you aren’t a little afraid of these fish, you’re about to get bit.

I was fishing in the Bahamas with G&G videographer Charlie Murphy and I caught a nice ‘cuda about four feet long. Murphy is a dyed-in-the-wool musky fisherman and no stranger to toothy fish. When I got the fish to the boat he reached down with a handheld GoPro to get a closeup. Our guide caught him by the elbow.

“Don’t get your hand close to that thing,” he told Murphy.

“I’m not afraid of that fish,” Murphy answered.

“You should be,” I added. It wasn’t long before he realized that we were not dealing with a musky.

Barracuda are an awesome sport fish. Although they can be tough to catch on a fly, they are not a fish you pursue for the challenge of feeding. You cast to barracuda purely for the adrenaline rush. The barracuda in the Bahamas are the most fly friendly anywhere and I always carry a rod rigged with wire leader and a big fly so I can take a shot when a big boy shows up. I’m not a purist who thinks I’m above catching one of the most exciting fish on the flats.

I’ve written about ‘cuda fishing before, but that day on the boat with Murphy made me think. If I’m going to extol the virtues of the Barracuda as a sport fish, I should write a word of caution. As an advisory, I know of no more serious fish to land and handle. They can be more dangerous than sharks and if you’re going to put a hook in one, you’d better be prepared for what comes next.

I recommend ‘cuda fishing as a team sport. Having a friend—or better yet a guide—to help you land a big one is a real plus. Handling gloves are a great idea as well. You do not want this fish slipping out of your grasp. I very rarely cast to large cuda when wading. When they find they can’t run, they will often attack. If you do tie into a big one while on foot, it’s best to head for high ground.

Here are 6 reasons to love and fear the barracuda.

Unchecked aggression

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The Bahamas is a State of Mind

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There’s nowhere I love to fly fish more than the Bahamas, but it isn’t all about the fishing.

I guess I’ve always been a cultural voyeur. Whenever I travel I can’t be satisfied just being on vacation. I have to try and immerse myself in the place. To try to imagine myself living there. Being part of the panorama. I’ve nearly taken it too far a couple of times and I’ve had friends and travel companions who have. In the 1980s I ended up leaving a friend in Thailand and the ramifications of that affect me today.

Truthfully, I’m my most relaxed when I’m far from home. At home the clock and the calendar hunt me like dogs. I’m a fitful sleeper, when I’m able to sleep at all. My head swirls with an endless to-do list. My inner soundtrack is like a Miles Davis LP on 45. But when I’m out there, way out there, like British Columbia or Patagonia, I sleep like a baby.

Even though it’s just an hour and a half by plane, I get the same relaxation. Just being on foreign soil I guess. It’s instant, no unwinding time necessary. A deep breath of salty air followed by a long drink of rum and I’m a local, in my head at least. Of course it’s hard to be uptight in the Bahamas, but once in a while I do see people pull it off.

This photo captures a moment. One of the moments that hangs with me as strong as any fish I’ve landed. It’s the end of the day and we’re riding back to the dock when our guide, Jose Sands

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Swinging Streamers on Big Water

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By Kent Klewein

MOST STREAMER FISHERMAN OUT THERE WOULD AGREE THAT POUNDING THE RIVER BANKS WITH A STREAMER WILL CATCH TROUT JUST ABOUT ANYWHERE.

If you’re willing to put in the time and hard work eventually you’ll be rewarded with a big fish. During high water flows on rivers where habitat is insufficient out in the main river, many trout will relocate to the banks where they can use the irregular banks and it’s abundant cover to shelter themselves out of the excessive current. There next move, once they’ve gotten to the banks, is to find prime ambush spots where they can easily pick off prey moving by. This is why casting to the bank and ripping streamers back to the boat is so effective. You’re repeatedly putting your streamer right in the kitchen where good numbers of fish will be feeding.

The majority of the time this scenario works great, but what do you do when you find yourself in areas where the water is super deep and the fish are sitting on the bottom? These places make it extremely difficult for anglers using the pounding the bank technique to keep their streamers down deep in the strike zone during a steady retrieve. Even with a full sinking fly line the cards are stacked against you. Don’t get me wrong, it can still work, especially if you cast upstream of your target water, and give your streamer time to sink before you begin your retrieve. Unfortunately, you won’t always have the time nor the room to pull this off, and that should have you searching for an alternative method that’s better suited for fishing your streamers in these deep water locations.

Swing Streamers through deep water hot spots
The best method I’ve found to consistently get hookups from deep water fish is to swing your streamers across their noses. This allows you to keep your streamers in the face of the deep water fish longer, which often will yield more strikes.

Step 1: When possible anchor your boat upstream and slightly across from your prime deep water. (It could be a nice drop off, a series of buckets, or just a long deep run or pool. The main point is that the water is too deep for you to use a standard strip retrieve, and anchoring up will provide you time to work the area thoroughly).

Step 2: Make a cast

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The Teardrop Cast

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By Louis Cahill

The Teardrop cast is a soft presentation fly cast that’s handy for targeting spooky fish.

I learned this cast from a guide in the Bahamas. It was a day I’ll never forget. It was a dark, cloudy day but there was no wind. We spent all morning stalking tailing bonefish in shallow water. The fish were feeding eagerly, but they were really spooky. I was getting a lot of shots but not feeding a lot of fish. When my guide, Ellie Rahming, showed me this cast, I went from zero to hero.

The name Teardrop cast is not commonly known. I’ve asked around but haven’t found anyone who knows another name for the cast. It’s not a secret among saltwater anglers but I don’t hear it talked about much. It sure does make a difference when you’re casting to spooky fish.

WATCH THIS VIDEO AND LEARN THE TEARDROP CAST.

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The Wife And The Mistress

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By Ethan Smith

A lesson on accuracy and line speed in saltwater fly fishing via infidelity.

Note: The following is a bit of “local wisdom” from a Belizean guide. It is intended for educational purposes only. It’s premise is largely chauvinistic, misogynistic, and generally in bad taste. But it works!

In sight fishing for bonefish there is no more important component than accuracy. When the guide calls out a shot, you better be able to hit it, and quickly. “9 o’clock, 60 feet” — hit it. If you don’t, there is a good chance he will jump off the platform, run up to the bow and slap you silly. Saltwater shots are far too precious to blow. His tip and your fish of a lifetime depend on you being accurate and timely with presentations.

Before my most recent trip to Belize my accuracy was fairly poor. I’ve fished salt in the Keys a few times, and I’ve fished Beaver Island for carp quite a bit. I’ve learned that my best shots on Beaver were to laid up fish not the big cruising 30 pound monsters that hang out in deeper water and require 80’ casts, right on the button, from the deck of a moving boat. Those weren’t my fish, and I was okay with that. But in Belize after we wore out the schooled up smaller bones we went super skinny to chase the bigger fish and sight fished for them in gin clear water. To hook up, I needed accuracy, and I needed it quick.

I was fishing out of a great lodge and the fishing director at the time was an experienced local guide and fantastic teacher. Everyday at 3pm he hung out on the dock and gave casting instruction. As soon as he saw my first cast to a target from the dock, he said

“You want accuracy? Think about your wife and your girlfriend.”

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Tenkara and the Sasaki Kebari

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By Mark Roberts

I’d like to share just a little my insight about the Sasaki Kebari as I have learned to use it in Tenkara.

I have been a Single Hand Spey, and Switch fly fisherman for many years and added Tenkara about five years ago for what it has to teach me to become a better fisherman. Simplicity. Learning to do more with what I have, to fish different conditions. The very first time I used my new Tenkara rod and Sasaki Kebari was on a lake. A buddy of mine and I fished the entire shoreline of that lake with our single hand rods and traditional flies and got nothing. I took out my brand new Tenkara and put on my first Sasaki Kebari I tied and caught my first trout in one minute. Caught five more in the next hour.

The Sasaki Kebari can be used as a surface dry fly, as a subsurface wet fly, or as a nymph. The mechanics are that as either a surface or subsurface fly, it is important to have a rod with a sensitive and quite flexible tip. My rod is a larger 13 1/2’ stiffer Tenkara USA Amago, and I use it a lot fishing on the Deschutes River here in Oregon for Redsides. Even with its size and stiff backbone, the Amago has a very sensitive tip.

Typically, just tapping your index finger on the rods handle will immediately transfers that vibration into the fly, as long as you have a line without slack in it. For a surface fly, it looks like a bug fighting for its life, and sending shock waves out into the water quite a distance, which does attract fish.

For a surface fly, the Sasaki Kebari has three benefits, as I see it. Viewed from beneath, it looks like a generic bug with its wings out fluttering fighting for its life. With most Western traditional dry flies, the fisheye view produces just a silhouette of what appears to be a dead bug. 

While fishing the Sasaki Kebari subsurface, it helps to act like a mini sea anchor in the current to create a line without slack, making it easier to feel in your hand and see in the rod tip if a fish is mouthing, or taking, the fly. The same index finger tapping will make the Sasaki Kebari look alive and pulsating in clear water. In colored water it can be sending out shock waves to attract fish from a distance. In a drift in colored water, it can feel much more like live food to a mouthing fish.

There are numerous different Tenkara style flies that were used in Japan in different regions of the country. Sasaki Kebari style is

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Making  A Rattan Fly Rod Grip, Part 1: Video

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There’s nothing quite as classic as a well made Rattan grip on a fly rod.

In addition to being beautiful, a rattan grip has a great feel in the hand. It’s the finishing touch that sets off a rod build and makes it just a little different. It’s especially nice on a split cane rod, but great on graphite and glass as well.

Our buddy Matt Draft, of Proof Fly Fishing is here with a great tutorial video on how to make your own rattan fly rod grips. It doesn’t take a lot of experience or fancy tools to ad this beautiful finishing touch to your rod.

WATCH THE VIDEO AND LEARN TO MAKE A RATTAN FLY ROD GRIP.

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