4/30 - First Flyrod Striper! [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: 4/30 - First Flyrod Striper!


Quentin
05-01-2002, 09:58 PM
I went to the Connecticut coast yesterday to catch my first flyrod striper. I figured that there must be enough fish around by now that I would have a good chance at getting one, but all my usual spots seemed barren and I was starting to think that I'd have to ride home with the skunk. By late afternoon it had clouded over and started to rain periodically. I was ready to call it quits, but before going home I decided to check out the area near the Audubon Coastal Center at the mouth of the Housatonic River. I had never fished there before, and after walking over to the beach to take a look I decided to wait and try it another day. I had no idea how to fish the place and I wasn't in the mood for exploring in the rain.

Back at the parking lot I stopped to talk to a fly fisherman who was just heading out. He explained how to get to the river channel and persuaded me to give it a try. I suited up, grabbed my gear and started out towards the channel. The closer I got, the more it rained and the harder the wind blew. By the time I reached the river channel I was cursing myself for being so foolish. Then I tried to cast. More cursing. I couldn't even cast 10 feet. I gave up.

I reeled in my line and went over to the other fisherman to thank him for his help and ask if he had caught anything. He said he caught one and just had another hit, and told me to try to get a cast out far enough so that I could feed line into the current and let the fly drift out into deeper water. I went back and tried a few more casts. More cursing. I still couldn't get my line out. By this time it was pouring and the wind was really blasting. I gave up again.

I reeled in my line and started to go back to the car. Then I noticed a spot where the channel curved just enough so that I wouldn't be casting directly into the wind. I decided to give it a few more tries. It worked! I was able to cast just far enough so that I could feed the line out into the current rather than having it drift right back at me. I dumped most of the fly line and let my fly drift for several seconds before starting the retrieve. After two or three strips I felt a little bump and then a nice head shake. No blistering runs. No bloody knuckles. Just a bouncing fly line and a smiling angler. I decided to put the fish on the reel since there was only a couple feet of slack anyway, and I easily reeled the fish most of the way in. Then the real fun started. The fish was pretty big and I had a heck of a time trying to land it. After several failed attempts I just grabbed the fly line and pulled it in by hand. I had my first flyrod striper -- a fat 27 incher! Not a bad way to lose that skunk!

Suddenly it didn't seem quite so cold anymore. Funny how that happens. I stayed until it was almost dark and managed to catch 3 more stripers between 16" and 18". All fish were caught on an olive/chartreuse/white Clouser.

I think I like this game!

Q

juro
05-01-2002, 10:26 PM
CONGRATS!

Great to hear about your success! There's no turning back now, you've broken the ice now; soon you'll be gliding that long loop over the water and projecting that spidey-sense into the depths with that fly.

Sometimes a rod will cast worse if you shorten up the line (not loaded). By moving somewhere that the wind worked with you (not against) to keep that line energized at a longer length you added more wind to your sail. As long as you can get the line straight on both ends and the wind is quartering from behind your non-casting shoulder you can let the wind put some wind into that sail.

Q, that's really great to hear - looking forward to a great summer's worth of fishing adventures!

Jimmy
05-02-2002, 12:32 AM
The first of many. Glad to here about your first striper. It's nice to see you didn't quit when the weather turned bad. I know, I was out that day too. Way to hang in there. The CT clave should be more fun than the CT weather.

Jimmy
05-02-2002, 12:37 AM
The first of many. Glad to here about your first striper. It's nice to see you didn't quit when the weather turned bad. I know, I was out that day too. Way to hang in there. The CT clave should be more fun than the CT weather.

Jimmy
05-02-2002, 12:38 AM
:confused: :confused: :confused:

FishHawk
05-02-2002, 06:28 AM
Way to go Quentin. I got my first Striper of the season last weekend. A beautiful bright 24" sea lice covered fish.
Let the games begin. FishHawk

Roop
05-02-2002, 08:04 AM
Awesome!

Perseverance pays off when your trying to figure out the salt. Sounds like you just learned a great lesson on what type of current seams to look for.

A wise friend told me his theory of catching so many fish, "you're not going to if your fly isn't in the water."

Juro's right on taget about the amount of line outside your rod tip, remember that the tapered part of your line is there to load the rod. You may want to mark where the taper ends & joins the running line with a permanent marker a la Joan Wulff & George Roberts teachings. That way you can be sure to know that you have enought line to load the rod & adjust your casting strokes to the environment.

Nice work, great story.

Lefty
05-02-2002, 09:16 AM
27" ? Excellent! I'm lucky to get 3 of those all season. Nothing to sneeze at. Was it on your own fly?????

Lefty

Sprocket
05-02-2002, 09:19 AM
congratulations Q!

my first was 27 & 9/10ths.

encouraging to hear about people catching - looks like I gotta put away the trouty stuff for some bigger tackle...

Hawkeye
05-02-2002, 09:38 AM
Congratulations Quentin!!

You know that feeling when you finally broke the code? Well you have years and years of that to come. No matter how good or experienced you get there will be those tough code breaking days and it is a joy when you get it.

striblue
05-02-2002, 09:47 AM
That's great ...keep it up.... and remember rainy day can be the best days. I know it usually gives me a full day of fishing without that sun beating down on the water and keeping the fish away from the shore.

grego
05-02-2002, 10:22 AM
Q,

Now You're Hooked!!

Congrats!

Dble Haul
05-02-2002, 10:53 AM
Good work, Q! (Sounds like something out of a Bond film.)

I meant to tell you, we should keep that spot in mind for the CT Clave in case some others don't pan out. By the first weekend in June, that place should still be hopping, probably even after dark. :devil:

DFix
05-02-2002, 10:55 AM
Originally posted by Jimmy
:confused: :confused: :confused:

Way too much coffee :chuckle:

Q: Congrats !!! Grab every chance you get:smokin:

Smcdermott
05-02-2002, 12:30 PM
Q,
Congratulations on your first fly rod striper. As a fellow newcomer I have not had the pleasure of a fish that size. After catching a few fish in the 20" range in a current I can imagine that trouble you had landing that one. Hopefully we will be able to hook up at the CT Clave.

Tight Lines,
Sean

Quentin
05-02-2002, 12:59 PM
Thanks for the congrats guys. You all deserve some credit for my success!

Thanks for the casting tips too. The line I was using was marked to show where the taper ended (thanks GregO) and I was trying to use the proper amount of line, but I couldn't control it and get it moving enough to make a decent cast. When I moved to the other location it put the wind at a slightly different angle to the direction I was trying to cast and it made all the difference in the world. I still couldn't cast far, but it was far enough to catch fish!

I know that the wind is something you just have to deal with when fishing the surf. Even if you always had the option to fish in a sheltered location, the fish are often where the wind is the nastiest. I've got to admit that I can get lazy, particularly when the weather is bad, and only fish at the "easy" spots where I can park the car, get out and fish. In retrospect, I'm glad that I didn't catch my first fish at one of those easy spots. (Although that's not what I was saying at the time :devil: ) I had to work a little for these fish and it certainly made for a memorable occasion.

Lefty: 27" is a nice fish in my book too. And yes, it was caught on my very own hand-tied Clouser :D Back in my spin fishing days :tsk_tsk: I only caught 4 or 5 fish bigger than that during the last 3 years!

Q

Quentin
05-02-2002, 01:07 PM
Originally posted by Dble Haul
I meant to tell you, we should keep that spot in mind for the CT Clave in case some others don't pan out. By the first weekend in June, that place should still be hopping, probably even after dark. :devil:

Mark, I was thinking the same thing. That's a great spot and there's plenty of room for all of us to fish there. We can keep things flexible and pick the best spot when the time comes.
Q

ssully
05-03-2002, 12:38 PM
Way to go Q! Nice fish & report!

willmullis
05-03-2002, 03:31 PM
Nice Story...Congrats