Author Topic: I Can imitate a Spin Fisherman when I have to  (Read 152 times)

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David Bisnett

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I Can imitate a Spin Fisherman when I have to
« on: August 19, 2018, 04:50:03 PM »
I often fish a pond adjacent to Wolf Lake in the Catskills and have posted before about catching Pickerel and Largemouth there throughout the late spring and summer. With the summer heat in the early part of the summer and heavy rains almost daily the second half making Catskill trout rivers and streams unfishable , Iíve been doing a lot of warm water fishing lately. Of course, largemouth and pickerel are easier to catch than trout as they are not as wary and more aggressive but you would be surprised how even they can pose challenges when conditions are not optimal. Lately, Iíve noticed that I  was able to catch largemouth but my catch rate for pickerel has been declining since early summer . However, when I would go out and fish with friends who were spin fishing, they were able to catch pickerel AND largemouth while I was chucking streamers , worm flies crayfish patterns , etc.
Yesterday was horrendous as both spin fisherman each caught a pickerel and 1 or 2 laregemouth wheras I caught nothing below the surface and finally, a largemouth on a bass popper. What was I doing wrong? Finally , it occurred to me what the problem was: the spin fisherman were catching fish because their baits were staying deeper in the strike zone longer ; furthermore , they could produce a steady retrieve which was necessary for the pickerel whereas I could not. To imitate their retrieve with my fly rod , I rigged up my streamer pattern using a setup essentially the same as a Carolina rig that spin fisherman use for bass: slip sinker , swivel and 12-18 inches of tippet off the swivel and then the streamer . With this setup I noticed immediately my streamer went into the strike zone near the bottom and stayed there! I trolled with this setup to find find fish and as soon as I got a strike, stop and cast but instead of strip retrieving, i reeled the fly in to imitate the spin fishermanís retrieve the best that I could. Final result: I caught a largemouth and a  Pickerel and hooked into 2 more pickerel that I lost while bringing into the boat. I obviously noticed a marked increase in success in terms of interest by the pickerel , especially as compared to yesterdayís effort in which I got NO HITS from the pickerel. Clearly the rig I devised solved the mystery ! The only thing I may do in the future differently is use a fullsinking line setup to facilitate easier casting as waving that rod around with the slip sinker was not easy! Only thing Iíd worry about is, would I still be able to achieve the steady retrieve of the streamer while concomitantly keeping the streamer down in the strike zone and level running near the bottom. Will a sinking line enable the fly fisherman to do that? I donít know as Iíve never used one 🤔

Scott Voisin

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Re: I Can imitate a Spin Fisherman when I have to
« Reply #1 on: August 19, 2018, 05:46:43 PM »
I've just started to use full sinking line and I have found that when you count them down they are very consistent and good to maintain the desired depth.  You have to adjust your cast a little with them but I find that they cast quite well.  To achieve the smooth constant steady retrieve employee the Roly-Poly method.  You can do this very fast to very slow and add in pauses or speed changes as it suits.  Here is a link to an example of this retrieve.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0yxH8PRuueA
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David Bisnett

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Re: I Can imitate a Spin Fisherman when I have to
« Reply #2 on: August 20, 2018, 05:03:49 AM »
Thank you Sir for the post and clip! Great advice and Iíll be sure to try that to see if it achieves the same effect and is easier ; itís arduous casting with that slip sinker on and then reeling line in only to strip it all back out seconds later for another cast!
Iím curious to see how the sinking line works keeping the fly deep and level like a spin fishermanís Carolina rig can achieve; I hope it works  :)

Chris Puchniak

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Re: I Can imitate a Spin Fisherman when I have to
« Reply #3 on: August 20, 2018, 02:46:36 PM »
Yes, Scott has got you pointed in the right direction.

There is a reason why many of us lake anglers have 10 or more lines with sink rates from floating up to as much as 8 inches per second, and use various retrieves such as the roly poly or handtwist.  We have Sweep lines, density compensated lines, and Sink tip lines, all of which can be used to maintain a certain depth or sink/ascend in a very specific manner.  Using the right line and retrieve can help you stay in the zone where the fish are longer, and that is often the key to lake fishing. Find the depth they are at, and keep your flies in that zone the longest you can to present your flies to as many fish as possible.

A floating line is the most versatile line in that you can fish from the surface to a depth of 25+ feet if you want to, but it isn't the most practical and efficient way to cover all the waters (unless you use a floating indicator, anchor, weights, very slow retrieve, etc... in which case it can be used to fish a zone very effectively).
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