05-08-2000, 08:54 PM
I've been reading about the North River shad run and had a few hours to check it out on Sunday morning. Launced at the car top ramp off Elm Street, Hanover, and headed downstream. Forgetting that the tide lags three hours, I did discover a beautiful spot, not a house to be seen, no sounds from nearby roads, loaded with birds. Hopefully a shad connection would make my thirty year Old Town spin in circles. No such luck. The three wading casters I passed reported the same. I did make it back to the ramp before the river got too low, and decided to try shooting some fish in a barrel- surely my luck would improve. The dam just on the other side of Elm Street sports a fish ladder for herring and shad, and it's the location of trout stocking as well. The canoe safely stowed atop my car, I took a shad fly loaned to me by my casting coach- and BAM, a hit- not a shad, but one of those stocky trout. Then again, and again. About 5 hits, with 5 errors, no trout! I've got the casting down, the presentation worked, but need to work on my landings. Juro, I know you removed the barb, but couldn't you have at least left a bump?
Did see loads of shad at the base of the dam... enjoying the same sun I did.
Next time I'll try the incoming.
Sounds like a very nice outing, you definitely got their attention!
Although I certainly don't know if this is the case, one of the things that reduce solid hookups is a sag in the line from the current pushing the line into a down current arc between the rod tip and the fly. You might try mending upstream a bit and letting the fly lead the drift downriver slightly.
If the downriver swing was an important part of the presentation, then a technique common to salmon fishermen in the British Isles (and more recently steelheaders) is to lead the fly in a submerged "grease line" swing. In this approach, the rod ends up "pointing to the trees" by the end of the drift. In other words, the rod is led to maintain a workably taught line so it ends up pointing downstream and inward toward land by the end of the swing. This angle causes the fly to lodge in the corner of the fish's mouth, improving hookups when the line leads the fly down and across the current.
Hmmm... you just made me think of a neat tool for the vest - a re-barbing tool! http://220.127.116.11/images/flytalk/Wilk.gif
05-09-2000, 04:34 PM
I think you're correct- poor hookups were due to a sag in the line, as the trout were across the stream, along the far bank, and the line immediately began to sag as it hit the water. The hits were soon after the fly landed, but by that time there was already the beginnings of an arc. Will try to be instantly 'on the mend' in the future.
'Till then, how much are you charging for one of those