Depth, temperatures & line choice - Spey Pages
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-14-2001, 02:53 AM Thread Starter
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Originator: Pauline J.Date: 12/13/2001 10:53 PM
I was fishing the Salmon a couple of weeks ago. There were a lot of fish about and after playing around with the various tips I have with my WindCutter spey line I managed to hook into a couple of fish (using the type 6 tip). I also lost a lot of flies on the bottom.The water was 39 degrees and the guy in a tackle shop I stopped at suggested I needed to fish a 24' Rio 150 grain tip, as I would stay deeper than my type 3 tip, but not lose some many flies.

My questions are these.

1) Was he trying to sell me a tip just to make a sale or would this tip fish between the type 3 and the type 6?
2) Why did I only catch fish when I was hooking the bottom - is that normal when the water is so cold?
3) Is there a guide to what depth I should fish at what temperature (and with what tip I should use!)?

Any help would be gratefully received

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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-15-2001, 02:03 AM Thread Starter
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Originator: MJCDate: 12/14/2001 10:03 PM
Pauline J
   You didn't say what weight tip you were using (I'm curious). There are some opinions by some really good fisherman, that a lighter longer tip will sink better and let fly ride a little off the bottom. I can't say from personal experience but it seems to make sense. However if you hooked 2 fish with the tip you were using I think you were doing OK. As to losing a lot of flies, you don't say how many that is, but in my experience losing flies is part of winter steelheading. I don't know the motive of the fly shop guy but in dealing with fly shops for a great many years I think fly shop personal will try to steer you in the right direction. With the longer tip you might have saved some flies. If you buy your flies that might be a big plus. A Big Boy tip is $36.00, if the flies you lost on the one trip add up to more than $36.00 then a longer lighter tip might be worthwhile. Also maybe you would have hooked more fish (maybe not). The reason you were only hooking fish on the bottom would seem to be that is where they were concentrated for the time, place, and conditions. For some more good info on winter fishing check out the Pacific Northwest Steelhead section on the Flyfishing Forum. Fred Evans started a thread called
O K it's winter, now what--line/fly choices
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-15-2001, 02:08 PM Thread Starter
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Originator: Fred EvansDate: 12/15/2001 10:08 AM
Good morning "PJ."
Good suggestion above on the 'click over' to the Flyfishing Forum board. I asked what I thought would be a bit of an open ended question on your topic and very knowledgable folks (both single and double handers) dived right in.
The running discussion is now into 'page 2' of the board. The full run is one you may want to have your printer up and ready as it's worth saving.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-15-2001, 10:40 PM Thread Starter
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Originator: PoulDate: 12/15/2001 6:40 PM
The problem with a very fast sinking tip is that if you try to slow your fly down as much as possible, which is arguably more important than depth in cold water, you hook bottom, so you subconsciously fish your fly quicker;  I prefer a shorter and slower tip than most, but always use a fly that sinks faster than my tip.  I would rather have my fly swing a foot higher in the water column above the fish's depth, than have the line and/or fly below the fish's depth.  Two advantages:  you don't smack fish with your line as you fish through the run, and your fly visibility is improved -- if you're right in the rocks in larger substrate, you have to be very close to the fish's position before it's visible because the rocks block the fish's view.
Just another of my whacky theorys that, even if it doesn't catch more fish, lets me fish with confidence without snagging up...
I only use the faster tips in very fast water.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-15-2001, 11:07 PM Thread Starter
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Originator: Willie GunnDate: 12/15/2001 7:07 PM
Poul et al
I have to agree you are better fishing the fly above the fish rather than below, as the Ghillie on Wester Elerchies River Spey  says " fish cannot look down "
Why do you all fish sink tips rather than a full sinker or an intermediate?
If the water was as cold as that over here I would fish a large fly on a full sinker. I would alter the size/ weight ratio of the fly so it darts and weaves above the level of the line.
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