Jet sleds & fly fishing? - Page 2 - Fly Fishing Forum
Pacific Northwest Sea Run Forum No such thing as rainbow trout, only landlocked steelhead

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Old 04-24-2002, 06:54 PM
Jeff Jeff is offline
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Rob that is funny I was getting ready to say I don't have a problem with sleds on the Skagit but I have a big problem with sleds on the Sky. The Skagit is a big river and for the most part they can get to the other bank but up on the sky at places like Hershey, eagle's nest, etc there is no place for them to go except right over your water.

I don't like them for a couple of reason. Sleds don't understand what a fly fisherman is trying to do. They gear guys will free drift over and over the same water even if you are in it. You know what I hate the noise. I am on the river to relax and guess what that noise isn't relaxing to me at all. They are just annoying. Now maybe it is just because I have never been in one and have a drift boat.

As far as fly fisherman in them I guess I still get back to the noise portion. I don't have a problem with people beating me to the water. If they beat me to it so be it. I have taken fish behind people and people have taken fish behind me. It happens.

I will say I have a hard time saying that I would want to take away anyone right to use them though. But for the most part not me. I like the pace of fishing and floating that a sled would take away.

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Old 04-24-2002, 06:59 PM
Patrick Patrick is offline
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Like snowmobiles and ATVs, jet boats are obnoxious as hell; unless I happen to be on one in which case they are a fun way to get around. :hehe:
I own none of them, which is more a result of very limited funds than a categorical opposition to motorized transportation in the boonies, yet I hate the way they sound.
I used to avoid the jet boat weekends on the lower Deschutes at all costs, but one weekend a few years ago I ended up down there with my mountain bike and found it much less crowded than the previous weekend. I strapped on my headlight at 4:00 a.m. and beat the guides to Wagonblast.

Last edited by Patrick; 04-25-2002 at 03:36 PM.
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Old 04-24-2002, 07:01 PM
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kush kush is offline
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Steelhead Warrior

Sandi says that we can make the video - so long as Mel Gibson gets to play me and she gets to play my wife!
Tight lines - tyler.

Still Living Large!
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Old 04-24-2002, 07:19 PM
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FrenchCreek FrenchCreek is offline
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What a great topic and the replies are truly enlightening..
Another aspect of "motorized" traffic is the effect of waves on the shore line. I don't know enough about the WA steelie rivers to comment, but this is a long standing debate on the Bow. Waves erode the river bank! If part of our FF culture includes conservation of the environment, including "noise & wave" pollution, would it not stand to reason that this is part of the issue of motorized access?
Is this an issue on your rivers?
I recently bought a new Clacker to replace my older one for river fishing and I also have a "power" fishing boat that I use on big lakes. I often carry my pontoon or float tube when I get out to a larger lake and use the power to move around & deal with the windy conditions and then the pontoon/float tube to fish from. I prefer this approach because I feel more relaxed in them than I do in the 18 foot/100 HP machine.
Pete AKA Frenchcreek from Calgary
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Old 04-24-2002, 09:41 PM
watersprite watersprite is offline
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Posts: 294's okay for us all to sled your favorite river but NOT mine.

...who care, everybody is doing it already.

...I am a "captain of industry" and my time is limited, so it's okay for me.'s today's technology, why not use it? [What about fish traps and dynamite?]

IMNSHO, just so much compost!

The single greatest reason I took up FF in the first place was to get AWAY from such thinking. Sled drivers are closet bass fishermen who can't give up their toys.

Take bow hunting as an example of the apex of the hunting sports and what some have done to assure THEIR quality time. I guess these same types after taking up bow hunting would purchase the newest compound (better penetration, surer kill - okay I'll buy that one). Then comes the pocket infra-red detector to see the quarry through the brush. Radios to communicate to your like minded minions, driving the prey to your lair. Sound detectors and remotely controlled cameras (they are out there, guys) to gain a fix on the trail system being used. Wearable scents to mask the human smell. BAITING. The travesty goes on and on... Crap, just get a job at the slaughter house and forego the need to buy the archery equipment.

Same goes for the techno Flyfisher. I date myself but, there was a time when flyfishing was the epitome of sportsmanship. The pursuit and associated esthetics were far more important than the taking. One fished the smallest of tippets as a means to give the prey a sporting chance (of course with C&R these tables turned, an exhausted fish is a dead fish). Now we have bobbers and jig heads, epoxies and jelly rope, side scanning fish finders and jet sleds.

And how many old flyfishers like myself are being driven to support an outright ban on motorized traffic on these rivers because of the callous few who disregard common courtesy and true sportsmanship.

Ethics, guys. Simple ethics.

...make it a nickel.
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Old 04-24-2002, 10:48 PM
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sinktip sinktip is offline
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Heck Steve, I leave you alone for one day and you open up this can of worms. Some peoples kids...

I can't resist loggiing in with a couple thoughts and opinions. First off, good question and some great answers. My initial reaction is to question if this is just another way to categorize fishing. We all do it but as flyfishers, I think we are the worst. We get all uppity about indicator vs. swing or floating line vs. sinktips, etc. What is authentic and traditional. Hell I don't know and I don't really care. It seems we should be trying to make fishing more inclusive rather than more exclusive.

Today was the first day I had been in a jetboat on a westside river. It didn't suck. Were the gains of quickly running up and downriver from hole to hole worth the noise and loss of tranquil float and conversation? Today it was, tomorrow maybe not. But it was nice to just pick up and run up to the next run after a well known fly fishing legend low holed us. (And no I will not say who it was but it was rude.) I guess in general I have no problem with using sleds on the large rivers to get around.

I will agree with Jeff that the Sky is not big enough for the 24' deep vee hulled monsters that some guys are running on it. Smaller sleds or boats like Dennis Dickson's, Kush's or Dan Reiffs, are probably fine. I wish I had one.

Finally, someone said the issue is not jetboats but the people running them. Like many things in our sport, it seems to me to be an issue of education. We are all out there for the same thing and in our own way are competitive to get it. If you are not, my hat is off to you and good luck fishing the bamboo rod and floating line

Oh, I almost forgot. Kush, you have nothing to feel sorry for about the Larson's incident. Well maybe your language but given the Canuck bashing earlier, OC and I earned it.:hehe:
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Old 04-24-2002, 11:27 PM
OC OC is offline
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Before This thread makes juro and sinktip nervous that this will turn into one of those jet sled flames I'll say thankyou to all who gave some insight into why you fish the way you do. I know we all are being pushed into new ways to fish because of our enviroment that we fish and the amount of people fishing in it. Was just wondering if by using all the new technologies if we are cutting ourselves short of that good quality that we seek.
this said I'd like to anounce that Sinktip has just bought a sled with 10hp more than our good Canadian friends who do research on th eSkagit have.
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Old 04-25-2002, 02:29 AM
lastcaststeve lastcaststeve is offline
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Wow, this is a great topic OC! With exceptionally respectful opinions I might add!. I have never met Sinktip, but my opinion would be quite similar. I am lucky enough to own a number of floatable craft, including pontoon boats, canoes, a 17 wooldridge, and a 22 tolly with a 460 ford and kodiac pump (BTW, i use it for fall kings...not generally flyfishing). IMHO it's not that we use these craft for fly fishing, it's as someone else said it's the manner and respect for the other fisherman in which we use sleds. I, Like Kush just got my wooldridge a year ago, and i can spend a whole day on the water just learning the water and seeing new things on the river that were never available to me before without the sled (kind of like watching beavers, osprey, or a water ousel as your walking into a favorite run) Although it's a different type of enjoyment than flyfishing, it sure is a lot of fun. INMHO, it's which craft we choose on the water we wish to fish. Pontoon boats and drift boats for small water where they are not likely to be offensive, the wooldridge on small to medium sized rivers, and the Tolly only in the lower columbia. I can remmeber very well when i dispized jet sleds, drift boats, etc...until I owned one..I really don't mind following people down through a good run of water, the sled allows me to run upstream after a drift boat or other craft has fished through a run...If every spey nut had to walk into their favorite hole carrying a 15' rod, i suspect the path created would look like a walmart parking lot. Sleds are kind of like fishing buddies...they're all a--holes, except for the ones your fishing with/in today! LOL! BTW, OC it would be a pleasure to take you for a ride anytime, or walk into a favorite run of water...there's a time and place for both....

Great topic!
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Old 04-25-2002, 02:56 PM
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juro juro is offline
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Given a choice, I'd rather fish a sled-less river but on some rivers the increase in sled activity pushes the fish to the gradual sloping side where the fly swings sweeter. The best fishing usually occurs at daybreak w/ fish laying in tight, late morning after the sled traffic pushes everything over to the near side, then in the evening when everyone is heading back to the ramp!

As far as what is and isn't flyfishing, etc - once again there is no point in comparisons, it's as subjective as anything in life. Some people see flyfishing as a tradition, near religion - but that doesn't make it exclusive or inclusive.

In the traditional angler's defense, what's equally "exclusive" to me is to have a flyfishing site that does not provide a place for people to express their passions and convictions for flyfishing no matter how hardcore that might be.

You should always feel free to express flyfishing as a form of religion here. You should also feel free to not have to agree to be welcome.
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Old 04-25-2002, 04:34 PM
OC OC is offline
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Thanks Juro for the confidence in us to express our thoughts.
Th3e jet boat thing is not a bother to me at all except they are noisy but I can live with that. But I have a question for you, you have been around awhile and have seen things change. What I'm truely concerned about are we missing something in going fishing with all this new tech stuff. I know it's great stuff I have the best rods made in the world and they keep well broke. But a new example of what I'm trying to get across would be when you striper guys are on the Cape and your a few miles apart from each other. One group gets into fish the other group has none around at all. So being good guys the one that have fish call on the cell phone to come on over. That's nice to share an end result but what about the experience of having no fish around and figuring it out on your own why there are no fish in my area. Is the learning experience of figuring things out not a part of fishing and does it not give you some great stuff to think about before the next fishing trip? We seem to be wanting all the rewards of fishing and seem to makeing a learning day something not desired. If this true then we no longer are fishing. tech stuff has made way to easy to fish and this is hurting the total package of fishing.
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Old 04-25-2002, 04:38 PM
Poul Poul is offline
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I'm plagued with self-doubt..

I've been thinking about buying a sled for a couple of years now, mainly in order to get at some places that are very difficult to get to without one -ie- Bulkley Canyon, the Skeena.

I currently own a raft, a pontoon boat, a canoe, and an inflatable kayak, which get me to most (but not all) of the places I want to fish. But every year, as I get older, it sometimes seems to be more work than enjoyment to get to some of "my" spots. For instance, bounding into the lower canyon on the thompson, given the state of my knees these days, is pretty much a thing of the past.

I reckon with a sled I'd have a little more energy and a little less back pain at the end of a long fishing day.

The down side is towing, launching, storing. and buying gas for the thing, plus the noise, pollution, and being part of what's turned into a rat race to catch at least "your" share of the fish..

However I don't want to be like those folks who drive me crazy by constantly riding their trail bikes through my campsite...

It's clearly about wanting to catch more fish (than you anyway). I wish I could move beyond that competitive desire into some sort of zen-like state, but it's not that easy, at least for me with steelhead.

Interestingly, I've learned to become much less competitive when it comes to trout fishing.. I'm happy to go out, catch a couple just to prove to myself that I still can, and spend the rest of the day hanging out at the campsite with a book or a beer.

Maybe one day my brain will click over and decide that I've caught enough steelhead and don't have to prove anything to those other anglers when they ask me "how many today?"
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Old 04-25-2002, 05:02 PM
OC OC is offline
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Well said Poul. I can go trout fishing all day and never cast a line unless I see exactly what I want and if I never cast a line or if I do cast and catch that trout exactly on my terms it's been a great day. And your right about the steelhead thing it's intense and I'm addicted, The experience of steelhead fishing is to me a lot rougher learning curve.
Still having trouble with posting if I take more than one minute to write and i'm having to hurry way to fast. Problems arose when we went to flytalk 3 format. Can you help ? do I need to re register?
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Old 04-25-2002, 05:17 PM
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Whistler Whistler is offline
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Poul, I just assumed it was your zen-master status that was putting all those fish on your line. Competitive? I thought you liked getting out of bed at 4:30. Come to think of it maybe I'm the one wandering around in a zen-like state.Jet boat? is this the real Poul? BN
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Old 04-25-2002, 05:55 PM
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juro juro is offline
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OC - since I can start a reply, go to lunch, come back and finish it - I assume the time out is an individual browser-side thing. I know it has nothing to do with the server... but I will ask around.
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Old 04-25-2002, 07:17 PM
OC OC is offline
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It would be great if you could look into it. Last night I used my home computer instead of my work computer and it still timed out. What happens is I will complete a post clik submit repley and I get you are not a member of flytalk. It is the same message i get when I sign in to post.
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