Location: west coast steelhead/salmon, BC/Alberta trout
what was your first spey, and why did you choose it?
Lots of folks are always looking for advice on a first two-hander. I thought it would be interesting to hear from you about the first two-hander you purchased.
Mine was a custom made Sage 10150 that was recommended to me by a friend who also happened to be a tackle dealer. The year was 1994 and Sage was the two-hander of choice, and of course it had to be a "traditional" action because I thought that must be what I needed if I was going to be spey casting.
That was my first rod too. It was the one I cast during my introduction to spey casting, a lesson with Whistler (Brian Niska). Think it was back in 96, or maybe 97. Unfortunately, I never really got it lined right, and didn't put much into practicing with it. So now, I'm basically back at the beginner stage, and casting short rods with shooting heads. And having way more fun, and catching fish to boot. Planning on lining the 10150 up this year just for kicks though...
Location: north. Washington/south British Columbia
St. Croix 14-foot 9/10
Dr. Way Yin (Spey Bubba) told me that this was a rod that performed far better than its modest price indicated. I did find it to be a capable medium-heavy rod, of medium action, well matched with a DT10. I've been through a dozen spey rods since, as our selection continues to increase and improve. The rod and I parted company under embarrasing circumstances, or I'd still be happy to use it occasionally.
You boys are just beginers 94 ,97......... I started at about the age of 11 or 12(1967) with a hand me down Fibreglass Clan 14ft. This was not the same Clan company of today and was based in the Trossachs. After on season my father and I stripped of the handle and stuck a couple of feet of green heart up the butt of the rod to make it a 15fter. It was all the rage at the time there were no commercial available 15rods on the market.I feel in retrospect this alteration did not assist the action of the rod.
Location: Many. From NE salt, Russia, Canadian A Salmon, NW Steelhead, Bahamas, Keys. Live in Upstate NY
While in Kamchatka in 96 Adam Tavender told me that I'd really enjoy spey casting. I told him I'd been quite interested, but there was so much confusing information I didn't know where to start. He told me to give Kerry Burkheimer a call and discuss my needs. As my primary steelhead river was the N Umpqua, Kerry built me a 1338. I still use it, but his 1398 has become my most used rod.
Mines was a gold motif 14' hardy favorite with a double taper aircel supreme of which i was an absolute embaressment to my fishing companions as all i acheived was aerate the water ,then came the daiwa amorphous 15ft jim love special of which i still use today for my sunkline work. I hadn't seen this rod worked until i seen head boatman colin wilkie throw the whole Lee Wulff across the Tay!
was my first. I used it for overhead casting. I wish I still had it and that I had gotton to Dana, or some other instruction early. It would have saved me me money and a LOT of frustration. Then it was the 9140-4 and 10150-4 by Sage.
My first Spey was an unknown blank that a friend built for me when I was 19. He bought it from Anglers Workshop. Reddish brown finish 13' 9/10 weight. Very fast, I believe IMX graphite. I'm actually curious if anyone could possibly identify it ? Never got it lined right and it sits in a closet now.
Soon after I bought a Orvis Trident 12'6" 8 weight. This is the same rod that Dana has reviewed on Spey Pages. It is actually a very nice rod and a good beginner rod. My wife fished it on the Deschutes last September and was hucking out 60 - 65 ' casts with ease after only 1 lesson.
Location: Somewhere between the Grizzly Bears and the Machine
I bought it at a Steelhead Society Auction in 1992 as a blank. While everyone told me it was wrong 9140 it just took me a fair while to figure out how to line it (it is really a 10 wt) it was and still is, one of the very best rods around. While I now have dozens of rods and it rarely gets used, it is still a favourite.
My first was a SAge 9140-4 I bought in early 1993. I bought it because two folks I knew who were using 2-handers recommended I get a Sage 9140. Since they didn't tell me if it was the 9140-3 or the 9140-4 they were talking about, like Dana I decided it had to be the 9140-4 because it was a "traditional spey rod". After I got the rod and ran into both of these folks on the river, they told me they forgot to say it was the 9140-3 they were actually recommending, not the 9140-4.
My first rod was the Sage 1014-3 RP II. It was purchased about 1990-91. The reason I bought it was because a local shop had it sitting around and made me an offer that was tough to refuse. Absolutely no one was using a double-handed rod around here at that time. I put an Ultra 2 DT11F Salmon taper line on it and used a reel which I later discovered was way too light to balance it correctly (a Lamson LP 6 or 7). Since my initial instruction came from Mike Maxwell, who hated the Sage rods, I quickly thereafter bought a Fisher 15' 9 weight made from a blank by a friend of mine. This rod had an action very similar to those of Mike's Gold-N-West speyrods as Fisher made the blanks for Mike. The truth is I didn't particularly like either rod and ended up buying the Sage 9126-3 (or was it a 10126) that had the European action and was perfect for GL steelhead water around here. I later learned that Goran Andersson designed that rod for Sage and there are still times I wish I hadn't sold it. Especially since the fishing buddy who bought it rarely uses it.
In 1999 I got the bug to give this 2-handed stuff a try. I was convinced by a long-time 2-hand user and local flyshop owner that to fish the Cowlitz effectively I needed a T&T 11wt. I had lived close to this river and fished it regularly. He had after many years settled on the 16' version. I checked out other sources and talked to other shops but was sure this guy in his many years of experience was ahead of the others . I ordered the 15' model and with some videos began the process of teaching myself to use it with a double taper line. Had I not caught a nice 30" hen the first time out I probably would not have had the perserverance to stick with it. I knew no one else who used a 2-hander,and had not yet become famailar with the internet.
Anyway, after a summer of fishing, alot of frustration, and an occaisional fish to keep me hooked, I began to get the basics of the movements and timing etched in the neuro-networks of my brain. Later, this website did more than anything else to teach me.
I still use that rod in winter but have tried out many others. That first rod did indeed affect my tastes in rods as I have a harder time using the "softer" rods.