Hello everyone, I'm new to this site and new to spey fishing. Just bought a St Criox 9 13 foot and was looking into a multi tip line. Are these lines good to go? Which would you recommend for this rod? Any help would be greatly appreciated!
With either the Windcutter or the Midspey with heads, they come with a type 3 and a type 6 sink tip. Could I also run heavier heads, such as Rios Big Boy shooting head or Teenys T-series with this line and rod combination? Or would the type 3 and type 6 cover me for most situations, such as winter Steelheading on the Vedder or Coho fishing on the Kitimat?
The more dense the head you want to use, the better you'll do with the short heavy heads like the windcutter. This will entail stripping in the running line between casts, but the cast will carry tips even bigger than the type 6 consistently with a little practice.
As technique improves the longer belly heads can be employed which require less stripping (or none) while still providing distance in casting the tips.
But IMHO you rarely if ever need more than the type 6 tip. This is because you shouldn't fish the same water with a fly in winter as you do other times of the year, or with other types of gear. Take a lesson from the float guys - they don't fish the same deep fast pools as the bottom bouncers, they look for holding seams and rest areas on the migratory highway. Take a lesson from the spoon and spinner anglers, who work the big water but swing across the tailouts and bouldery pools where there are lots of easements from the current for fish to hover. One can tell from the fly speed that the presentation is effective.
Everyone will walk a different trail through their own angling experience but using heavy tips I lost more flies and caught less fish. Changing my approach to working what the river gives the winter steelheader and fishing with lighter tips I lose few flies and catch more fish.
That being said you always need to carry the kryptonite sinktip just in case
I have both the 13 and the 14 ft St. Croix rods. I love them both. The 13 footer is a great dry line rod, but it will handle tips as well. As for the Big Boy heads.......well, probably not. A type 6 is pushing it but it will work. If you want to dredge you may want a beefier rod. (like the 14 footer)
For line weight, it depends. Do you like a fast action rod or a slower action rod? I prefer a slower action rod and the 8/9/10 windcutter works great. The Rio site is a great place to start your search. Best of luck to you. The multi-tip lines are wonderful as you will soon find out.
I fish the St. Croix 13' and 14' and would agree with Rio's recommendations on both. I like the Windcutter 7/8/9 with it's 15' tips on the 13' rod. The rod's too soft for me with a Bigboy. On the 14' rod I've used both the 8/9/10 and the 9/10/11 Windcutters but prefer the 9/10/11 with heavier longer tips. The only trouble I've encountered with multi tips is guide ice when you have a fish on. Keep the guides clear of ice and you'll be fine.
If you are just starting out I think that it is true that you will find earlier success with the shorter heads (WC), however I see a couple of advantages to the "Midspey"- type lines - the Rio Midspey, the Airflo Long Delta and the Michael Evans Arrowhead.
The most important may be the reduced amount of stripping you will have to do between casts. While I've never fished the Great Lakes rivers it seems to me that they are not overly large so really long casts are not normally required, this would mean the mid-spey types would likely cover most of the water with minimal shooting. The mid-speys handle tips very well and the lack of excessive stripping will eliminate the ice-up problems associated with cold weather fishing.
Secondly, if you ever wish to take up long belly lines, having learned to cast on the 65' heads of the mid-speys you will have less trouble adjusting to the longer stroke required by the longer bellies. Many who learn to cast with Windcutters really struggle to make the change. I think that it is because the very short WC head allows the caster to get away with alot of bad habits. Many of these habits just destroy a long belly cast (this is why novices find WC's the easiest to cast), whereas the mid-spey type lines are just long enough to require solid casting technique, yet are short enough that new casters can realize good success early in the learning process.
Just some things to consider as you set yourself up.
Even in the PNW most of the fish are going to be caught without shooting much line on a midspey. Even Ed Ward on the Skagit claims he doesn't cast more than 80 feet most of the time. That is the midspey plus a straight leader.
A Windcutter with a Bigboy easily works over 60' out from the reel without any stripping. That covers a lot of fishing here but I still nearly always shoot line. Most important to me, the WC handles long sinktips easier than the Midspey - at least for me. Longer tips seem to keep my fly down better through the latter part of the swing. Most of my fish hit between the last quarter and hangdown.
If I didn't fish sinktips, I'd probably use a Midspey all the time. Still, there's something satisfying about shooting a Windcutter across a big river.
A forum community dedicated to Spey casting, fishing, flies, and enthusiasts. Come join the discussion about trails, licenses, fishing, game laws, styles, reviews, optics, accessories, classifieds, and more!