Fly Fisherman, only?

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by shadowcast, Jun 18, 2013.

  1. Fly only now. I left the west for a 10y stint in Arkansas and took up bass fishing with a buddy who had a boat. The three spinning rods I used for bass have not been touched since I moved back to the PNW about 10y ago.
  2. I'm not yet ready for plunking, but I like to troll herring for salmon out in the salt, cast & retrieve jigs for Black Rockfish and Lings with spinning gear, drift and jig vertically for Lings and Cabezon, hurl bait out over the waves with a 3 oz pyramid sinker for surf perch, and ... I just might bait fish for white sturgeon this year, since its the last year we can keep 'em here on the coast. I also know a shallow mudflat where I could probably swing a scented sturgeon fly to rest just upstream from a basking sturgeon, and then hope it homes in on the scent. They aren't always there, though, and it take great effort just to check and see.

    A surfer I know who just moved to the beach is an upper Satsop River gear-fishing hillbilly who claims absurd numbers of coho landed, and used to fish sturgeon in the Chehalis. He's got the know-how and I've got the boat. I'm liable to become more corrupted than I already am, no doubt. I won't show him any of my more sensitive cutthroat spots, though. He's no fly angler.

    But I fish flies for trout and most fresh water species. I will twitch jigs and fling metal for Coho in the lower rivers, though. And also for Kings!

    I do notice that I had always resisted becoming a gear whore until I got back into fly fishing. Didn't take long before I caved in.:rolleyes:
  3. I do a bit of both. If I go out with my dad, I will bring the coffee grinder and sling crawlers or spinners.
    If I am on a driftboat, I do both. I will fly fish when I can, or sit and pull a plug and eat a sammich. Also will throw a jig and bobber if the water looks good and I havent gotten anything with a fly.
  4. I grew up on gear also, but once I picked a fly rod I was hooked! Since than the only gear in my house is for my wife. I have been out on a friends boat with a down rigger though. I kinda put that in a different classification even though I know its gear
  5. I fish fly about 95% of the time. I have nothing against picking up a bait caster and tossing hardware at 'em. I rarely fish with bait if at all.
  6. Fun topic. Me, I just like to go fishin', however that's accomplished. Where there's a reasonable chance, I'll opt for fly gear, because it really is my favorite. In recent years, I have taken to the practice of bringing a long spinning rod along for steelhead, and it's my go-to for salmon. I agree with the sentiment that "the tug is the drug," but I believe a spoon or spinner can sometimes coax fish that watched your beautiful fly swing by numerous times without so much as a second look into aggressive eats. The opposite sometimes holds true as well, in my experience. When I'm really serious about steelhead fishing in the winter, I bring a Spey rod, a one-handed nymph setup, and a spinning rod along. I enjoy the satisfaction of knowing I'm making good presentations in all the likely holding water, and I enjoy catching fish on all three outfits. Walking up and down to retrieve the rods I'm NOT fishing at any given time does tend to get old, though.

    As for salmon, well, I've figured out that there are very few reliable places around where I live to catch coho on flies. Thinking about the glory hole i lost when they brought in a bunch of rip rap to protect the pump house on the lower Satsop a few years back still hurts. I used to outfish all other types of gear on a fly rod in that run, but now, it's a deep, roily mess. I try a bug rod most trips, and I occasionally get lucky, but for the most part, the Lower Chehalis, Satsop, and Wynoochee have very little good fly water that holds table quality fish, especially as the fall progresses and the water rises. A guy fishing from a drifting boat could probably do well stripping and bouncing barbell-eyed flies through certain spots, but I've yet to have that luxury, so I generally stick with the stuff that gets me in the zone while stationary. Coho will give you all the fun you can stand fishing large spinners and twitching jigs off a spinning rod (when you find them, that is).

    When whoring boat rides, the when in Rome principle applies. Even trolling bait and back-bouncing are good fun with friends and a cold beer or three. Watching a bite materialize in a rod holder is pretty good stuff, in my opinion. I recently took a trip out of Westport with three buddies to target rockfish and lings. Sunshine, flat seas, plus limits of lingcod and rockfish in 30 feet of water made for a pretty great day. I was also reminded on that day what an idiot I am with a bait caster. I can't find a way to hold one of those so it's comfortable, and thumbing a spool while casting takes a good deal of finesse I haven't yet mastered.

    Anyway, I'm a fly flinger at heart, but I love to go fishing, and I rarely miss a chance.
    shadowcast and bigdood like this.
  7. I don't discriminate and will fish any way any how depending on what else I'm doing. I've got a lot of hobbies so don't get to fish as often as I'd like and will take it anyway I can. My fly fishing is typically done in tandem with some sort of hike/camping trip. When the summer surf is small I fish the salt quite a bit via kayak and not on the fly, unless you count a tandem shrimp fly setup for black rockfish. Hell, I'll even combat fish the Puyallup in pink season just for the experience.
  8. I've done it all ,But since about 1990 its been 75% fly gear & 25% of the time Plunking gear (yes I'll admit I love to go Plunking with the Mrs.) other sins I will admit to include from 1978 to 1989 I was a gillnetter in S.E. alaska & a berring sea joint venture trawler which I would consider gear fishing...
  9. So how many of the younger peeps get the reference to "Dupont spinner"? :)

    As for me, I spent my career in the south Puget Sound sportfishing industry by managing a marina. It was all gear-fishing so that's what I did too.

    For a few years (back in the '70s) I got into backpacking into alpine lakes and tossing a few flies around. I had an Eagle Claw Trailmaster spin/fly combo and took both flies and metal. Kinda gave up the backpacking pursuit when I got more into climbing and bc telemark skiing but still did some PS salmon fishing, either mooching or "meat lining".

    Retired in 2009 and just last year got back into the fly game and am really enjoying it. But I still toss gear or bait now-and-again, both in the salt and fresh.

    OTOH, I think I agree with Bob Triggs when he said: "I have often felt that fly fishing has offered a window into a deeper state of mind, and a way of life and art that those other methods had not provided me with. So in this I can say that fly fishing has lead me to my better self. "Practice to be quiet"."

    In fly fishing, I find myself more into researching the fish: their behaviors, their histories, their habitat, their feeding patterns,....

    Just my 2ยข!
  10. Flyfisher at 13 , last time I plunked bait was with my daughter and her
    Significant and the grand kids, I like the challenge of Fly fishing and love fly tying and catching them on my own creation. There are a lot of
    Good fisherman out there regardless of the way they fish!
    Kelly Michelsen
  11. Fly only for me. I have been fishing for less than a year; learning fly-fishing is more than enough to keep me occupied without complicating it by mixing in other methods. Initially I thought that fly fishing was complicated, but looking at some of the rigs people throw and the massive variety of lures, spoons, spinners, baits, etc., gear fishing looks MUCH more complicated.

    I've never caught a fish on gear, but catching on a fly seems like it is more fun. But at the same time, the gear guys seems to enjoy themselves plenty, so what do I know?
  12. I like it all, gear or fly. I'm whored up with tackle for both.
    wadin' boot and jordan101 like this.
  13. I only fish an inexpensive spinning set up, an Eagle Claw Blue Pacific 125 reel (that I got as a teenager in the 1970's) with a Zebco rod, when I fish with my 5 yrs old daughter. Otherwise, strictly fly fishing the rest of the time.
  14. I consider my self an Angler. I love to pursue fish and ALL methods that in-tale that. I do not understand why someone would limit themselves to one application but to each his own I say. I can enjoy slaying trout on a river with big fly's one day and be stoked to crush bass/crappie/pike the next with gear. Sounds exactly like my weekend!
    cuponoodle breakfast likes this.
  15. Yeah buddy!
  16. Most of my life was with spinning gear or salt water level wind. Fly fishing and fly tying is within the last 5 or 6 years. I have to say it depends on what I'm after. (Just try for halibut or a ling on a fly) but my favorite is a small out of the way stream with a fly. I'm talking trout here. I'll be back out on the salt when the salmon start coming in. Yes I've read some folks try for ling on a fly but it has to be pretty shallow and I don't think what they are doing is really fly fishing.

  17. I do the same. All types of fishing has it's merits and require different skills necessary to be successful
  18. I fish however I want to fish that day/moment. Spey, single hander, baitcaster, centerpin, spinning rod, downriggers... I've had amazing times on the water with all of them.

    My tops: dries for steelhead, and spoons for steelhead.
    cuponoodle breakfast likes this.
  19. I fished mostly with gear growing up, though was introduced to fly fishing at about 10 or 12. Progressed to mostly fly fishing for trout and using gear for steelhead and salmon. About 20 years ago switched to mostly fly fishing for everything. Now, I use gear when fishing with a good friend in his boat for steelhead a few times each year. It is his preference, and I'm fine with that. Today I fish for trout year around and only with a fly, but I'm not a purist. I still own a few spinning rods and reels, but the fly stuff dominates my collection.
  20. I grew up with a spinning rod for trout, then got into the baitcaster and salmon/steelhead fishing. I picked up a fly rod about 10 yrs ago. I like to throw spoons for coho and steelhead( the hits are so violent). I like to see the float go down knowing a king just inhaled my eggs, or the flash of a steelhead as it races off with my bobber/jig. I really like top water action of Bass fishing. Trout rising to take my bug is probably my favorite.

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