Rogue River 'Mini' Spey 'Clave yesterday on the Rogue.
Weather not withstanding (and a few distributors that turned out not to be there) an out standing fun day. Jim Jones and I arrived at 0900 and the place was already well populated! The on-water instructions were unfailingly good; I really learned 'new stuff.' And I do mean NEW STUFF vis a vis the use of a two hander rod. One of the better bits was several of the instructors were using 'switch rods' (short spey's if you will) for their demos.
Bit after bit of new insights on 'why things work,' or if you want them to work better 'try this.' Clear communication with the 'students.'
The best part!!!! Bob Meiser had my new 3-4-5 12'6" (a true 4wt if you ask me), and Steve Gotshall had my custom made line for same READY TO RUMBLE!! Boy's and Girls, this is not just a fishing rod, it's a Bloody work of Art!! Without actually putting this Puppy on a scale I'd doubt the finished rod weighs would top 4 oz. And that's for a twelve and a half foot long rod. A total feather!! Speaking of 'The Feather' (just above the handle is Bob's trade mark), it's NOT a feather, it's a HAND PAINTED FEATHER!. And unless you had you nose a couple of inches away, you'd never know. Even then you have to set you mind to what you're about to look at. The paint work is flawless!
The grain weight window for this rod (weight of head) is 250 to 400 which (top end) seems a lot, but the spread would allow you to use light tips with this rod. The line Bob chose for me (and Steve hand built**) was a grand total of 280 grains or the very bottom end of the range. Why? Bob says 'I've watched you cast for years and you tend to put every thing you've got into the forward stroke (after a slow set up of the D loop?) so I started light, and we may want to cut it down a bit further.'
Line compensating for caster faults???
Married these two up on a reel with a 16' leader and a bit of fluff for a fly and off we go ......... Kids, you don't cast this rod, you just 'flick your wrists' and 60' of line/leader are off the reel!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! As casting room (as in to the far bank) was limited, that's as far as I could go save for casting down stream. But the next 'class' was lined up on the bank behind me and needed the water.
After Jim and I got home (dinner together last night) we stripped the 'Head,' running line and backing off the Tioga and slipped them onto my new (as in out of the box new) - DRUM ROLL PLEASE - Hardy 'The St. Aidan' reel. Perfect fit, just wind her on, pull off a few feet to hear that Baby Scream .... TOTAL JOY!!
CAN'T WAIT TO GET THIS PUPPY ON TO THE MAIN RIVER AND GIVE HER A REAL TEST DRIVE.
** Line markings. Steve does something I've never seen before, and made HUGE SENSE. He puts the line marking information on his hand crafted lines at the leader connection, NOT at the back end of the head. That way, one quick glance at the reel and you know exactly what line you have loaded. Never seen that before, but a really great, and simple answer, to an 'age old problem' of what the hell's on this reel. Yes, yes, line makers give you a small peel off sticker, but with a lot if fishing I give you a couple of years before that's total history.
Fred Evans - White City, Oregon