: Helping SWFF Newbies
I started off fly fishing targeting trout. I was self-taught, young & stupid but, with a desire to learn. I remember how frustrated I was trying to get shop owners to help me out or approach others on streams or ponds for help.
So, I thought that it may be a nice gesture if we offered up some thoughts on a major issue for some of the lurkers out there who are new to SWFF for stripers - fly selection.
My suggested selection, by month, in order of preference.
May - June: herring, silversides, squid
July - Aug: eels, silversides, squid
Sept: eels, silversides, bunker
Great & easy to tie patterns can be found in almost any SWFF fly pattern book (Saltwater Fly Patterns - Lefty Kreh)and can help keep you from wasting $$ by buying the flies you find in the shops that are tied just to catch the fisherman.
01-06-2001, 08:50 PM
Way to go Roop...
Last year I joined a club in the Pioneer Valley and was really disappointed by the old timers' failure to step forward with assistance for newbies (where to go/what to use/etc)...
They preferred beating their chests and bragging about who caught what and who was the king-of-the-beach, and "who wants tickets for the awards banquet".
Thanks for bringing up this progressive idea...I hope it takes off...and I appreciate the energy and positive attitude the FORUM fosters!
01-06-2001, 09:33 PM
Jeff, your right on point... I still can't believe I spent all those years and money on buying flies. Now I think mine have something of me in them and The variety has opened a big door. Tying IS part of flyfishing and something I have missed. At the last UFT meeting this past week I watched a guy do Squid patterns using Clear acrylic Cauking ,so I was down at the hardware store this morning and now have 5 squid paterns setting until tomorrow and I could not buy something like those anywhere. Some hits with a magic marker and 5 minute apoxy thin coat and in the box they go. Unfortunatly I left Lefty's book as well as others down the Cape. But in one month so far I have done about 120 flies... over doing it but learning all the time. I will have to hang all the store bought flies from the rafters on my Cape porch.
WOW! John - I am duly impressed! I should have known you would show the same kind of zeal for this that you show for the *use* of those flies on the cape's great waters.
GO JOHN GO! Boy at this rate you will have more flies than your fly shop by spring.
See you at the fly show,
01-07-2001, 09:06 AM
I have only been fishing for stripers (to any large extent) for the past 2 seasons. It is sort of funny as to how I got into fishing for stripers on the fly. I was fishing for trout/steelhead in the Deschutes River in Oregon (camping along side the river near Maupin - a great way to fish that river on the cheap) and I got to talking to an experienced local guide. I was a bright-eyed college graduate that was really impressed with my first foray into Western trout fishing. I commented to this veteran guide (mind you - a sort of quiet type full of hidden wisdom) that I wished that trout fishing in New England was as exciting as trout fishing out west (read: bigger fish on a consistent basis). This sage paused, turned to me and with a glimmer in his eye said, "Son, I would trade in all of this for the striper fishing that you have at your doorstep in New England." At that moment the seed was planted. Iíll be damned if the grass isnít greener on my side of the country.
I got back from my cross-country trek (which included a cheap trip to Alaska for some salmon fishing - US Forest Service cabins cost $20/night and some are situated in very remote, prime fishing areas) and headed to Black's Creek in Quincy on one August night, one hour before dead low-tide. I had purchased some clousers simply because they were the only fly that I knew of for striper fishing at the time. That night I caught well over 25 stripers, no cows but I was getting schoolies on every cast. That was the moment I became a striper addict.
Since then, I really haven't done much fresh water fishing. I have been learning the ways of the salt (largely thanks to great people such as the people on this board).
Now to the point: I keep a notebook (unorganized, just a repository for ideas) that I use to write down notes and observations about my fishing excursions and interactions with members of this SWFF community. From casting tips, to places to fish, to fishing techniques, fly tying patterns - I keep notes on many helpful tips that come my way via those more knowledgeable than myself.
Now, one thing that I do is write down everything that went wrong, and right, with a fishing outing. For example, there are some frustrated notes concerning my first trip to Joppa (flats in Newburyport, MA). Without a stripping basket I could not cast very far in the strong current (still caught 10-15 schoolies). You can bet that I went out and did some Rubbermaid engineering before my next outing. Lesson learned.
Anyway, I recommend that people who are new to SWFF write down some of their own observations upon their first outings into the salt. If anyone in the Southern NH area would like tips on getting started then I would be glad to talk to you/meet with you. Anyone is also welcome to accompany me on a trip to PI in the spring.
Getting started is not a difficult thing. The rewards are plentiful.
And make sure that you thoroughly wash all of your gear after it has been in salt water. Just saturate a zipper in salt water some time, let it sit for a day or two, and see how hard it is to ďunstickĒ the zipper. That will be an indication that salty gear should be washed after each outing. A garden hose does the washing trick for me.
Waders are a must, but not expensive waders. I own some nice waders but last year (during warmer weather) I defaulted to using some L.L. Bean nylon backpacking waders (non-boot foot - $70) with good sandals over the nylon feet (lots of velcro on these sandals in case your feet ever sink into the sand or even the muck on Joppa - otherwise you might lose a sandal). I found this setup to be very comfortable. On really warm days if I get hot I just ditch the waders and wet wade in the sandals. In the early and late seasons (May and late Septemer through November) I wear neoprenes. It can get cold if you do not insulate well.
wow!!!! John you're a wildman! don't ever think you're wasting time tying... you just cut down the amount of time it takes to make better ones. practice,practice,practice. glad to hear you're having so much fun with it. Tom D
01-09-2001, 12:39 AM
On being a Newbie
After 40 years of tying, I'm still a Newbie and learning lots from others, this Board is one of many sources of inspiration
Try to always stay a Newbie, even when confirmed as an addict, it keeps you learning and open to new ideas. You will know that you are a confirmed addict when you have a collection of 200 specimens of real insects preserved in Isopropyl Alcohol (BugBalmer) in your tying room
Make 6 flies when you only need 3 and give 3 to others, amazingly you always wind up with 6, 3 of yours and 3 from others
Now that I've gotten into tying for SWFF my wife is concerned that I will start collecting eels and poggies as well! She really freaks out when I start asking for raw uncut squids at the Suchi Bar....
Ask young kids 8 to 10 years old to help you out with designing a new fly, their unrestrained imagination when looking at all the colorful tying materials you have will surprise you. My best Steelie pattern was "invented" by my son, when he was 10 years old. No one else I know wants to use the fly until they see me landing 5 to 1 compared to what they get with their pattern.
Use the "pretty fly" concept, make it just because you or your wife think it's pretty, many of my favourites are in that class, they resemble no bug or bait but fish think it's "pretty" and eat them all the time.
Have fun and keep tying, it soon becomes a form of artistic impressionism and a fabulous release for those inevitable stressful days we all have.
There are many vices in the world, I only have one vise!
01-09-2001, 04:15 PM
Here is everthing I've learn from 1999-2000 seasons!
(0) The odds of getting a line foul, an equipment failure, or some type of operator error, IS directly proportional to the current surface activity.
(1) If there are Spanish/King Macs. around, use wire.
(2) It is harder to "shoot" your fly line when you are standing on your running line.
(3) Your fly will catch fewer fish embedded in your back, than when placed in the water.
(4) When fishing B-Bay, more fish will be caught in Chatham.
(5) When fishing Plymouth, more fish will be caught in Chatham.
(6) When fishing Sandwich, more fish will be caught in Chatham.