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I have become increasingly interested in whether or not I should get into all things spey. I have read lots of stuff on the subject(I am a teacher) and contacted the Red Shed about gear, etc. It is undoubtedly an investment, both financially(see career choice) and spiritually. Living in the Chicago area as I do, I wonder how useful this method will be to me on a year round basis..i.e. warmwater fishing. I would like to attend a "clave" but those seem to be lacking around here.

Being a teacher, my instinct is to ask lots of questions, so here it is, oh wise throwers of line.....
Respond to the question above.... should I make the leap or NOT?
 

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I believe no-one could answer that question !! That choice is yours !!

But I will tell you this , there are lots of options with a two-hander !!! If it swims , it most likely will take a fly on the swing !! Whether below the surface or on top (skated/damp) .

Sometimes , you need to think outside the box !!

Mike
 

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EAT IT!!!
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So what is it about two handed rods that draws you to them? Have you been fishing for steelhead in the GL's or elsewhere for awhile and want to try something new, or are you taking up fishing for lake run fish and thinking about starting with a two hander? What rivers do ou fish and how do your fish them? What other types of fishing do you enjoy, or want to try? A little background would make the question easier to answer. However, spey rods are just plain fun, and therefore you should probably get one or more anyway just to have a new toy in the bag.
 

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The Answer is yes.
 

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#&%*@^# Caster
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Remember you do not necessarily need a double hander to start learning how to spey cast. You can do all the spey casts with a single hander and in some instances I would rather use a single than a double hander. Get a copy of the RIO Modern Spey Casting DVD. Simon has a great section on spey casting with s single hander. Try it out for awhile and if you like it you can always get a two hander later.

-sean
 

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I agree with Sean, I love my double handers but spey casting is a blast with a single hander especially in smaller rivers. Pick up the RIO Modern Spey Casting DVD, Highly recommended.
 

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Hiz-

I use spey setups for all my fishing - which also happens to be all Warmwater fishing:) . Probably 90% river and 10% lake

I use 3 basic rods -

11'6' - 6/7wt for Goldeye,Smallies, White Bass etc sized fish .

12' 6' - 7/8 wt for Drum, Big Walleye etc. and it doubles as a DH overhead rod for fishing the Lake Winnipeg/Manitoba surf with a shooting head.

15' 10/11 wt for our Channel Cats and Carp.


The spey approach tends to favour swung presentations , although with a short head line you could still swing and have a limited strip at the end of the drift.

I,m sure if gave a few more details on species and water types , folks here would have some suggestions, as to wether/how the Spey approach might work for you..

hope that helps.

Will
 

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As a new convert to the double hander, I'll take a kick at fielding this one. As background, I've been a fishing addict since diapers - according to my parents, toddling around the yard playing with sticks which I dubbed "fishing robs" and nearly drowning myself a few times crawling into the water trying to get at minnows which I could either see or imagined. In the 35 odd years since my love of the sport has ebbed and flowed, but never gone away and I've been lucky enough to fish throughout BC as well as a few other places around North America and even worked my way through university as a guide at a fancy fly-in saltwater salmon resorts off our west coast. Over the years I've become far less concerned about catching fish vs. getting out on the water to enjoy the whole experience, and for the last 10 years have pretty much been dedicated to C&R flyfishing vs. all other approaches. In a nutshell, while it is sure nice to catch some fish, these days I am more than satisfied if I can just spend a nice day out on the water away from my blackberry, enjoying casting, using some flies that I have tied and exploring a beautiful place. I think this is an experience that is somehow much more typical of flyfishing in general than other forms of fishing.

Last summer, for the first time I had the opportunity to cast a friends spey rod and it was love at first flail. I have not looked back since and for me, the double hander has firmly lodged itself as my absolutely favourite way to fish. For me, the reason for this is simply the complexity and the beauty of double handed cating vs every other way to get a line out there. I can happily spend days whiling away the time playing around with all the different cast styles (and trying each particular situation in which they are needed or advantageous). While this is somewhat possible with a single hander, there is just so much more cool stuff you can do and work on on with the double handed rod. And when you nail a cast just right it feels sooo good. For me, since moving over to the double hander I've just found my time on the river so much more rewarding - the casting alone makes a trip worthwhile, and there is a lifetime worth of learning and perfecting possible. Add to this some nice scenery, comradery and a few fish and I'm in heaven.

Technically, yes the double hander is much more efficient fo covering water all day yada yada... But it beauty and complexity of the casts IMHO that makes it such a wonderfull way to fish.

My $0.02.
 

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hizzoner,

We had a clave in the Chicago-area this past year. There are quite a few of us who swing flies with two-handed rods for steelhead in WI/MI/PNW from the fall through the spring. With rivers like the Fox, Milwaukee and Kankakee nearby, great smallmouth rivers are under two hours away no matter where you in live in the Chicago-area. And, yes, smallies are a blast on a two-handed rod. Two-handed rods are a great way to target that great game fish.

Poppy at the Red Shed can certainly set you up spey gear. Once the rivers start running free in the spring, shoot me an email and I will be glad to meet you on the Fox if you would like to try some two-handed rods. There is even an FFF instructor who you can contact for lessons in our area.

- David
 

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That Guy in PEI.....
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Mitch,, your wisdom exceeds your years:smokin:
Buy a rod,,, fish your ass off with it until A--you buy another and another,, or B---you hate it. There will lie your answer.
Either way,,, all things lead to mitch's answer;)
Salmon Chaser
 

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Your obviously interested in it. Its a skill that you will carry forever once you learn it. Might as well go with it now.....then when your older and have even more time to fish, it will be there to utilize. (assuming your not already retired :chuckle: )
 

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If you want to learn about spey casting, the way NOT to proceed is with the single handed rod---and on that point I would differ with Sean and M.J.Adams. I think one needs to be schooled in the basic spey casts with a two-hander and THEN apply that theory and muscle memory to the single-handed rod.
 

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Released to spawn
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2 Spey - Yes..

If you want to learn about spey casting, the way NOT to proceed is with the single handed rod---and on that point I would differ with Sean and M.J.Adams. I think one needs to be schooled in the basic spey casts with a two-hander and THEN apply that theory and muscle memory to the single-handed rod.
I would agree. The DH rod is the ideal tool for all the genres of Spey casting, and whilst it is nice to be able to apply those techniques with the SH rod, I would encourage learning with the DH'er 1st.

You never know, you might fall right into it ;)

Mike
 

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chrome-magnon man
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kinda on the fence

I'm on the fence (kinda) on this one re single versus two-handed rods and learning the Spey. The way I look at it is if you intend to fish bigger waters or technical casting situations on waters where you would require a longer cast with limited room and the ability to control a fly at long distance (what I would call "typical reasons for wanting to fish a two-hander"), then go with the two-hander and later apply what you've learned to a single hander. However, if you are purely interested in Speycasting on waters where you can't see youself making long casts and where distance line control is not important, then learn to do they speycasts with a single hander.

While the techniques are the same whether using a single or double hander, the way you utilize them is somewhat different. For example with a single hander you are less likely to raise your hand as high or use a longer casting stroke, and the bottom hand will not come into play as much (unless double hauling) as with the two-hander, so I don't think it's as easy to transfer the learning from single to double as it is from double to single.
 

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PiscatorNonSolumPiscatur
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If you have doubts, don't do it. Most things in life that we have a passion for got that way because we just "knew" it was for us. If you want to contemplate the situation more, I'd reccommend going to a spey clave or going out a few times with someone that uses one. Chicago is not that far from steelhead fishing. The question will answer itself.
Good Luck! ;)
 

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Waiting for the grab...
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You got that right...

Bud, this is like asking coke heads if coke is worth doing:saevilw: :hihi:
There is no other statement that has more truth than the above.
Maybe the only other is "Don't do the crime if you can't do the time".

Fly fishing is a gateway drug to spey fishing :smokin:
 

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My take on it is, that unless you are willing to make a considerable commitment in time and effort to learn the casting forget about spey casting. I do think it is worth the effort, I estimate it has increased my steelhead catch rate by a about 1/3 over one-handed casting.

I think the commitment required to learn the casting is why so many rods are for sale. I have used a fair number of different rods and lines and they all would cast well enough for fishing if the line weight reasonably matched the rod. I haven't found a combo out of 2 dozen or so, that wouldn't cast at least the 70' most fishermen seem to feel is appropriate for fishing and I don't claim to be a master caster. Some were more tiring or less pleasant to use than others.

My experience also is that it is not overly difficult to change from short head lines to long head lines. It only takes me a few casts to make the adjustment.

Are we so proud of being spey casters that we make it seem more difficult and mystical than it really is?
 

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That Guy in PEI.....
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It's called expertising:razz:
 
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