May 22, 2016 at 4:28 pm #5310
I think of them as easy because I’ve done it for so long it has become second nature to me. But everything you said is spot on. It would be difficult for a newcomer to the sport. My grandfather started me with dries upstream so I can get used to bringing in the slack line & watch the fly. Once I was good at that he introduced me to spiders. It was different in not seeing the fly, and it took much more concentration and feel. “Watch the end of the line”, he would say. And if it slightly jerked in any direction where it entered the water, something grabbed it. Sometimes it wouldn’t jerk, but you’d feel slight tension in your line hand or see the line stiffen up a bit.
Spiders were meant to be fished upstream. Maybe across in a straight path, but never swing them downstream, just for the reasons you and Oliver and grandpa said. I’d never be a good Salmon fisher because of the swinging they do, but I guess one doesn’t really have to swing flies to be successful. I might as well kick up a bunch of river bottom and float my fly downstream directly below me. I have caught more fish by accident having my fly float below me while messing with my son’s knotted mess, or my own. I consider anyone doing that on purpose to catch a fish is cheating because they’re not smart enough to outwit the fish doing it correctly. Might as well chum the river as far as I’m concerned.May 24, 2016 at 2:32 pm #5315
Groan……..busted my back again. Looks like fishing will have to wait. I just got the 10′ rod too and can’t try it out.May 24, 2016 at 4:44 pm #5316
This discussion about swinging wets/spiders down and across is pertinent to me because I was doing essentially that last Friday. I was in a section of water where brookies were rising both upstream and downstream from me, about 30 feet in each direction. I had a parachute BWO on a 4wt line and was targeting the fish upstream. Within a few casts I hooked into one and brought him in. In doing so, he temporarily put down the fish in his vicinity. So I turned around and targeted the fish below me. At first I was trying to drift the fly on the surface right down the feeding lane. But that wasn’t working out very well and the fly was going subsurface. That didn’t seem to make much difference to the brookies (well, they ARE brookies, after all). I simply swung the ‘now wet’ fly across and slowly stripped it upstream. Pretty quickly I had a fish on. I was able to repeat this routine several times, hitting fish on both sides of me, going dry and wet all with the same fly.
So, if this is something that doesn’t happen in nature (which I’d agree), why the hell do these fish hit it consistently? Just because they’re the short-bus version of trout?May 24, 2016 at 11:08 pm #5317
It’s not so much that the fish won’t take it swinging it downstream, it’s more doing it the traditional style. I figure they hit it because it resembles food, and it comes in close range to them, so they take it. Why does an Atlantic Salmon take a swinging fly? Same thing I guess.
But swinging spiders or drifting spiders downstream is just wrong. Unethical is the word I’m looking for, in the traditional sense of it all. But yes, they will take it.
And then, like you said, they are brookies.
Creek, take it easy my friend. What 10′ rod did you buy anyway?
May 25, 2016 at 9:21 am #5319
- This reply was modified 2 years, 10 months ago by Scotty MacFly.
Keep in mind that the Spiders and the method to fish them was in the UK. The overwhelming majority of trout are browns. Brookies will take anything under any conditions. I believe they take a bare hook. I don’t find much joy in brookies, but I understand in some parts of the country it’s all they have. I don’t get into brookies here except at high altitudes. A creek will have browns until I get to 9000ft or so and brookies start to show up.
Generally, the browns you get swinging downstream are the smaller/younger ones. Older browns are too smart to be fooled by un-natural acting flies. Of course that’s not set in stone and a big one will fall for it now and then. You also miss a lot of takes, because you’re pulling the hook away from the fish downstream instead of into the fish by casting upstream.
The last reason is tradition. If you want to catch lots of fish, use nymphs. If you depend on fish to feed your family, use worms. If you like a challenge. Fish upstream with spiders.
Catching fish has never been the goal in my fishing. It’s how I catch them that gives me the most satisfaction. Catching fish is just a reward for doing the method perfectly. Finding the easy way has no reward for me in anything I do.
With all that said. I don’t push my ways on anybody. I’m just describing what I like. Everybody is free to find their own pleasures.May 25, 2016 at 9:32 am #5320
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