I started about 80% sinktip and 20% dry line but have flipped that to 80% dry 20% sinktip in recent summer fishing.
Of course time of year, time of day and weather, river conditions, etc - all play a role in the choices.
I think my numbers are down per hour fished but the enjoyment level is up for each one blasting a riffled fly beats a dredged fish for me hands down.
I need a steelie Spey fishing fix.
When I first started using sink-tip lines on Deschutes summer steelhead, I got the uneasy feeling they should be outlawed as non-sporting. This was back in the late 70's and early 80's when the river was stuffed with the little type-A wild fish. These steelhead seemed to respond to the deeper fished flies more readily than to the dry-line presented fly. Five fish days were pretty common and you could go into double digits on the occasional "A-Grade" trip. The sink-tips caught fish under any and all conditions, even during those dry-line times of early morning and late evening.
More recently, as fishing became tougher and more and more of the hatchery fish appeared in the catch-ratio, the sink-tip became the "go-to" tool, particularly when the sun was on the water from mid-morning on to early afternoon. The line really extended the amount of time one could fish with confidence. The Deschutes flows from south to north, and in many drifts fish are facing almost directly into the sun.
Still, once canyon shadows have taken over later in the afternoon, a switch back to the floater works well enough and is much more enjoyable to fish, as least for me. I'll switch to the sink-tip after the sun has been on the water for about an hour or so in the morning (depending on the north-south orientation of the drift) and then back to the floater as soon as the shadows go from bank to bank.
07-10-2007, 07:54 PM
16 years ago I switched to using floating line at least 98% of the time after the rivers drop to their normal summer low for the simple reason that you and Eric have articulated, it is more enjoyable. Besides, a surface or near surface take is very satisfying.
It has been said that there are a couple of famous flyfishermen on our local rivers who are fishing on top year round even in winter when rivers have good vis and doing very well and have been doing so now for 3 or 4 years. Two years ago they took two fish over 20 pounds on top in winter. One must expand the mind and have the courage to go beyond the written rule. Besides Sinktip is a person not a method of fishing.:smokin:
07-18-2007, 10:19 AM
I fished on winter 4 years ago with a dry line. The conditions allowed it, I raised a March fish to a skater on a very popular run which was a thrill! I went back to fishing tips in the winter and adapted my presentation to a combination of how I swim my fly. One thing i really enjoy and missed this year was fishing behind the buddler as he fishes thru a run.