Daily Cast Archive

(Lack of) Wind Knots

Tracy&James - Thursday, May 31, 2018

Normal service has been resumed in the fishin’ lab, as such I’ve got round to adding another knot to my dataset of pull test results. A friend of Paul’s requested this test and supplied an excellent diagram showing how to tie it – a turle knot or a variation on a turle knot depending on which website you believe. This is a very easy knot to tie but its simplicity belies its strength, recording a very impressive average figure of 85% with a nice, low standard deviation. An interesting observation I made during my initial tests on this knot was that my un-lubricated tyings performed better than ones I’d wetted with saliva. The data presented is therefore for dry knots.

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Choosing A Fly Rod - Physics vs Feelings

Bernd Ziesche - Wednesday, May 30, 2018

After slow motion videos entered the world of fly casting some years ago we learnt a great deal about fly casting physics. Still I prefer to FEEL and watch my casting when trying a new fly rod instead of getting some physical datas about the new rod and how it should bevave. Why? Because feeling and seeing my casting includes even those physical details we yet do not understand.

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What is the word?

Gary Meyer - Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Temerity? No, not quite. When I was a boy I could have sworn the word temerity was one of my father’s favorites, but I never really looked it up in a dictionary. From context, I thought I knew what it meant as it was always associated with statements like, “you will learn more with your mouth shut”, or “you can’t hear nuthin when you’re yappin’”, etc. And it always included a plea to “listen to what I am telling you”! It turns out temerity has more to do with being brash in the face of possible physical injury, like riding my motorcycle without a helmet, and not so much, as I thought then, about respect for elders. I still suffer a bit from temerity today.

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All about fly rods

Paul Arden - Monday, May 28, 2018

I thought I would write something about fly rods today and elaborate on a post I made on the Board last week. I’m going to make a bold statement here: of every possible desirable object in the known Universe, the fly rod is the one that I appreciate the most! I can’t think of anything that comes remotely close. I like my car but I would happily change it for another. I like my boats, my bicycles, and even my walking boots but if I was an Egyptian Pharaoh it is fly rods that I would want with me in my tomb! In fact of all the tools that I use in everyday life, the fly rod gets the most use out of any of them. A question I often hear is does quality make a difference? Of course it does! Sure most cars will get you where you want to go, mine even, but the driving experience is very different between driving an old Mini and a Lamborghini. Actually I wouldn’t like to drive a Lamborghini, let’s just say a sporty car that is not too ostentatious - if there is such a thing. Before I explain the difference between fly rods let me begin by explaining the two processes by which they come into existence...

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small stream, small nymphs and small fish

Daniela Misteli - Sunday, May 27, 2018

We fished the Ilfis, a small stream in Emmental, the place where the cheese with the whole come from. It's a nice river with clear water and a lot of shallow parts. A river that like to be made for flyfishers, but because of everyone can fish in it how he likes there is a lot pressure on the fish and it's not easy to catch something. We fished there with a friend, who knows the river quite well just one small detail: he is a spinn fisher men... so it was quite funny to fish with two fly rods and one spinning rod :)

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Fuller's Earth

Viking Lars - Saturday, May 26, 2018

It's mayfly season, and that of course means breaking about the 4-wts and the long leaders - and of course the Fuller's Earth. I noticed mine was all hard and the smell was really strange. Gone was the smell of washing up liquid, and insted it smelled more like a solvent that diswashing soap. I suppose it's because I used concentrated soap, but that's all I have and I'm not even sure I can get non-concentrated dishwashing soap in the supermarkets.

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just take two

t.z. - Friday, May 25, 2018

The last days in Czechia my trusted HT4 serial number 9 arrived repaired, just a week and a bit after I had broken it. Even though a 12 day return time, of which 7 or 8 were related to freight, is exceptionally fast. Still, not fast enough when on a fishing trip when every hour counts. So I did myself a favour and ordered a backup rod. Nothing too new to me as I used to carry two Sage XP 9ft 5wt with me. After a few years fishing these I somehow got the urge fishing a lighter line. Paul must have heard my prayers and came out with the HT4. I got serial number 7 for Konstanse for x-mas 2014 so she could start with flyfishing. The bug caught on with her, so I had to get an HT4 myself. Serial number 9. This is the rod I stepped on in the Otava river. As this is my only flyrod I needed a backup and ordered another HT4 from Paul. Number 99. You are extremely far from the truth if you now think I'm a well off man. Actually I am pretty low on money and try to live on a very low budget, but try to collect as many experiences and meet good people. I'm 55 now and biological clock is ticking. If all goes well that's another 15, maybe 20 years of fishing and fun. Maybe even more ... however - a very short time in the bigger scale of things. Seriously - I have no time to waste and no use for a fly rod which is under par. After having fished the HT4 for 2 years now, everything else is way under par. I am seriously spoiled. Take my advise. Stay away and refrain from trying this rod. You'd need two in the end (given you are as clumsy as me)

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Not Knot Testing

Tracy&James - Thursday, May 24, 2018

I had planned on adding to my knot testing data set this week however I agreed that someone could use my Instron for ‘proper’ work, as such the ‘no name’ knot, as supplied in picture form by a friend of Paul’s, will have to wait until next week to be tested. I don’t know what the world is coming to when someone is prioritising fission over fishin’. [That joke is nearly as bad as: ‘don’t believe a word that atoms say – they make up everything!’]. In the absence of this data I thought I’d add my tuppence worth into the leader topic as started by Gary and continued by Bernd in their FPs. From both pages it’s clear that there are many things to consider when deciding a leader set-up and different circumstances will lead to massively divergent solutions e.g. straight through 175lb versus a 20lb class tippet for big tarpon. In general my own preference, and that of many other anglers, is to have the weakest point in the leader. This ensures that if the worst comes to the worst I shouldn’t be in a situation where I lose my fly line, which of course is expensive as well as inconvenient (compared to re-making a leader).

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Fly Fishing Discussions

Bernd Ziesche - Wednesday, May 23, 2018

I truly welcome all kind of dicussions about fly fishing since there is always something to learn in them. Even if they take place in some social media. What I however don't like is other fly fishermen telling me what is right and what is wrong. I prefer to make that decision on my own, as I prefer to leave the same to everyone!

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A tarpon leader

Gary Meyer - Tuesday, May 22, 2018

In the next few weeks, I’ll be down in the Keys for a few days of continuously targeting large tarpon. To be honest it is not my favorite way to fish for them but it is fun none the less. It is the epitome of sight fishing and there are plenty of targets. The downside is many, actually, most, are hard to feed. The water is clear and the fish are usually visible although often the shots are rushed as the fish are on the move and quite often not detectable until very close. Sometimes you get lucky and a fish or two from the school will roll at the surface giving away their approach. Other times, especially in the morning you can find stationary “laid up” fish, which is more like the way we find them up near the Everglades. There is a lot of preplanning involved. Water depth and clarity, tide phase, sun position and bottom structure are all components for choosing where to be at certain times. And then you hope someone else did not beat you to your spot. Tarpon fishing this time of year is very popular and there are many other boats on the water doing the same thing.

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Fish Curry

Paul Arden - Monday, May 21, 2018

Ashly and I are having a short break in Thailand. We've been here a few times by car (with the Rocket Condom) but this time we flew up to Krabi. It's been a very long time since I've been this far north, almost 20 years in fact, and CHRIST!!! It's busy now!!!! And this is currently low season!!!! I'm pleased I saw this part of Thailand before it changed and became the tourist herding place it is now. I had the idea that we might drive up with the truck and the boat sometime, drive through Thailand and visit Vietnam and who knows where else - but I'm not sure I can do this nowadays... I like people but can't stand crowds. To give you an idea of how things are now, we did a couple of tours. On one tour, on one small beach, I counted over 50 speed boats and that was just a small snapshot. The mind boggles to think how it must be in high season.

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2-handed Rods for Stillwater Fishing?

Matt Klara - Sunday, May 20, 2018

If you know me, or if you’ve gotten to know a bit about me through my writings over time, you know that two of my favorite types of fly fishing are stillwater trout fishing, and casting 2-handed rods to swing flies on big rivers. I think if you dig deep, there are a number of shared traits that these types of angling have in common. The joy of casting a long line. The relaxed pace of a slow stillwater retrieve or tight line swing. The sudden jolt of a grab from a hidden fish. But the standard gear that these two types of fishing utilize are radically different. On the big rivers, I’m typically casting 12 to 14 ft 2-handed rods, rigged with some type of shooting head and sink tip system or long floating line designed for Spey casting. On the lakes, I’m usually reaching for a 9 or 10 ft single hand rod and either a floating or full sinking line of various densities. But there is one instance where I can think of where I will reach for a 2-handed rod when fishing stillwaters, and it solves a very specific angling “problem” for me.

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Flyfisher's top season

Viking Lars - Saturday, May 19, 2018

Top-season for flyfishers in Scandinavia is right now. There are salmon and sea trout migrating, pikeseason is open again, and they're hungry for food, mayflies are hatching in numbers, garfish and sea trout along the coastline, and when you're like me and enjoy them all, you can end up a bit frustrated.

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the Z knot ...

t.z. - Friday, May 18, 2018

knot knot .... who's there? During my recent visit to Jan Siman in the Czech Republic I learned more about the amazing skills needed to be in the top league of competition flyfishing. One thing is reading the water, understanding aquatic insects and what triggers fish. The other is to fish heavily weighted flies. To be on top of the game, one must be able to change / tie on flies very quickly. In a competition there is not time for fiddling about. I also learned that Jan does not hold his cards close to his chest. rather the opposite. He is sharing his knowledge in calm, yet witty way - which suited me more than well. He showed me two knots, which i like very much because one does not have to rely on the eyes that much. Comes in handy when fishing at dusk and very much for an old mole like me. The Z knot looks like becoming my new favourite. Funny enough they have named it after me, even before we met ... very smart ;-)

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Sportfish Show

Tracy&James - Thursday, May 17, 2018

The Sportfish show last weekend was a lot of fun, Tracy and I caught up with a number of our fishy friends. The BFCC instructors were busy pretty much all weekend with a mix of absolute beginners and improvers, as always the feedback was universally positive from those who had just finished a lesson. Unfortunately the rain that was forecast for late Saturday evening came in early and essentially called an premature ‘end of play’ to outside activities – although some of the demonstrators felt obliged to stick to their allotted timeslot even though there were only one or two people willing to stand and get soaked in order to watch them.

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Wishing instead of fishing, again.

Gary Meyer - Tuesday, May 15, 2018

If I were to write a recent fishing report it would be fiction. The areas I normally like to fish this time of year are suffering horribly from algae blooms. The poor environmental conditions in upper Florida Bay were making headlines before Hurricane Irma. Now, all the dropped leaves and rotting branches are contributing tons of nutrients to the already overfed system. The result is not pretty and it appears the fish have either migrated or died. I use the word “appears” because it is impossible to see into the water. Even if I were to try to fish I cannot imagine how a fish could find a fly unless it was tied with rattles.

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Back to Glass!

Paul Arden - Monday, May 14, 2018

No, not fibreglass - God forbid!!! - but back to glass lens polaroid sunglasses! I don't know about you but I'm totally fed up with paying 130GBP for a pair of polycarbonate lens polaroids which scratch after one month and need replacing after 6 months - if you're lucky. But if you're in the salt, or using sunscreen or worse, DEET then it's quite possible your polycarbonate lenses are stuffed within a month - or to use a phrase that I coined "just by looking at them." Of course I've tried cheap ones but they are, to be perfectly honest, completely crap. You know there's distortion when you feel seasick while walking. So I've been interested in glass for a while. Many years ago - about 20 years ago - I bought myself a pair of Mako glass lens sunglasses. They were good however the main drawback was their weight. Enter Tonic...

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sunday again...

Daniela Misteli - Sunday, May 13, 2018

Because I destroyed my knee a little bit I'm now sitting at my vise instead of sitting at a beautiful veranda in Sweden, with a view to a nice lake. But it doesn't matter, my knee will be better soon and the lake won't move to somewhere else... The good thing is, I can take a look at mother nature's circle: the pigeons are raising a ugly funny feather ball right in front of the house and the baby foxes are playing around outside their home for the first few times... the first thunderstorms of the years are here...

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Tight bends, pockets water and Skagit

Viking Lars - Saturday, May 12, 2018

I'm no huge fan of Skagit lines and Skagit casting (if there is such a thing), but the - let's call in a metod - has some clear advantages and I use a Skagit setup regularly during the salmon/seatrout season. If I can point out one major disadvantage it's that is *very* hard to get a resonable overhead cast with a Skagit setup. The head and fast sinking tip simply turns over too hard, too fast.

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the czech story continues

t.z. - Friday, May 11, 2018

The Czech Story … I remember the Bohemian Forest, known in Czech as Šumava, from a holiday with my parents. I was 6 and it was the summer of 69, the time of the cold war and the area was off limits due to the iron fence between the east and the west. Now the Czech Republic is part of the European union and one can cross the border without being stopped even. So you can understand that it felt amazing driving this road to Susice. Susice is a cozy little town by the Otava. The river is one of the main recreational fishing rivers of the country and supposedly the birthplace of a fishing technique known as Czech Nymphing. This technique has it’s roots in fly fishing competition and it’s many rules. However, the majority of fish in rivers either feed on aquatic insect larvae & fresh water shrimp (gammarus) rather close to the bottom, or hunt at the surface for emergers, duns and spent insects. Czech Nymphing is one of the techniques focussed on catching fish feeding close to the bottom. The fly called “Czech Nymph” is a direct answer to the, now outdated rule, against bead head nymphs. The Czech competition fishermen “stole” the idea from the Polish team. 
The hook is weighted with lead wire which applied to the hook before dubbing, copper wire, ribbing and a strip of latex. This latex was originally from protective gloves. The story Jan told me is that the wife of one of the fishermen was a hairdresser. She used vinyl gloves when dying the hair of her customers. The gloves where dyed in the process as well. The knowledge that vinyl (a thinner and stronger material than latex) could be dyed was akin further and turned into a industrialised product. You can now buy a myriad of different colours. I’ll not go into the pointless discussion whether Czech Nymphing is fly fishing or not. What I learned is in any case that it is fishing which requires quite some skill. Maybe casting a long line isn’t one of these skills, but you have to be a very good fisherman to master this form of catching fish. I am lucky that master Czech Flyfisher Jan Siman took me under his wing the last days and showed me around his area - the Sumava mountains in the southern part of the Czech Republic. He runs a specialised fly fishing shop and guiding service from his base in Susice. On his website you can find more information about the flies, the method and all the knots you need to know. http://shop.siman.cz/index.html?pod=/articles.htm

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Tracy&James - Thursday, May 10, 2018

We’re both back in the UK now, settling into our normal work patterns rather than getting up to go bonefishing every morning. I managed to fish for 42 days straight when we were away, whereas Tracy missed one day in the last week due to a thunderstorm which sat above the island for an entire day – she wasn’t stupid enough to go out waving an electrical conductor around in such conditions. We both caught a lot of bonefish, more than on our previous trip (which we regarded as one of our better ones), however sometimes it’s the fish that weren’t caught that stick uppermost in the memory.

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Gary Meyer - Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Not much fly fishing news from me. There is always a period of strong winds each spring in South Florida and we have been getting more than our fair share lately. It is usually a good time to get the yard in shape, which I traditionally ignore throughout most of the winter. Even though our normal subtropical winter temperatures are often the envy of the entire US, our vegetation goes dormant in winter just like in other places. Starting about now it cranks up into high gear and it will soon be fortified by the beginning of the summer monsoon period. If steps are not taken now one’s entire abode can disappear in a green explosion of vegetation. That does not mean I completely forget about fly fishing though. Traditionally this is a time for reading up, tying flies and when asked, teaching. I recently read an article that I had to translate from Spanish into English. It is quite possible many on Sexyloops also saw the same article as the author, Aitor Coteron, is known here to many. I am nowhere close to fluent in Spanish but living near Miami it is almost essential to have a basic ability for everyday conversation. My attempt to translate without help was quickly abandoned as soon as I grasped the main idea: “It is not the arrow, it is the archer”! As soon as I deciphered that I went immediately to an on-line translation site to devour the remainder of the article.

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Fishing with Paul in Malaysia - part 2

Paul Arden - Monday, May 7, 2018

I had a bunch of questions asked following last week's FP on jungle fishing with me here in Malaysia and so here is some more important information... in particular many people asked me about the best time to visit, which is an excellent question! Last week I offered a May-July deal - this is because I won't be here from August to the end of October, however ordinarily this is also an excellent time to visit, it's just that I shall be in Europe for the Fly Casting World Championships, Stuntman Ronan's wedding, Sexyloops is 20yrs old Meet and a Half Ironman in Portugal. Busy times!

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Casting Pond Design Elements – An Inquiry

Matt Klara - Sunday, May 6, 2018

This week, rather than a fishing story or a tip on stillwater fishing, or something like that, I’m coming to the FP looking, and asking, for some advice. I am currently involved in a project that will rebuild and upgrade a local community fly casting pond. Think something simple like a shallow basin with a plastic liner and boardwalks – not a massive concrete installation like the ones at the Golden Gate or the Pasadena Casting Club (pic). So, since there are few places on earth that have so many casting nerds as Sexyloops, I figured I’d ask your collective advice on what features, details, ideas, and dimensions make a really nice casting pond... and why.

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Slow start

Viking Lars - Saturday, May 5, 2018

The Danish salmon season has been underway for about three weeks, and the season has started very slow. To begin with, more kelts were caught on the opening than usual in most rivers. By this time last year, the "big quota" (a certain amount of salmon over 75cm allowed to be killed) was used up in River Skjern.

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Man Down

t.z. - Friday, May 4, 2018

Man Down …… Wading is not so easy sometimes, especially the last steps out of a river seem the most critical. I have bad feet and even worse balance. I can’t even do x-country skiing. I fall right away. Constantly. Wading works fine though … until the last few steps on these slippery, overgrown rocks right by the bank. Zzzzzzziiiittt … whammm are the correct comic strip “sounds” one should add to the picture of “old man falling”. Man down, so to say. By now I should have the right reflexes and get rid of every thing breakable in my hands before hitting the ground. Well, theoretically this is more than clear to me, but in practice all goes much faster than the old brain is able to process. So I fell towards my right side, like always. This is why I carry my rod in the left when wading & walking. Not this time…… Krrrrrkkkkkk it went under my knee. In a split second my beloved best friend - the Sexyloops HT4 with serial number 9 - was converted into a 5-piece rod. Just that it wasn’t fishable any more. I cried, kicked and screamed for a second and then smiled. I smiled a big smile because I know the man who is responsible for this gear. Not some anonymous big marketing company selling rods made in far "somewhere" … the chinaman is not the issue here, dude ….. so I got ut of the river, to the car, changed my clothes and send a message to Paul. Paul was very proud of me. He said that this was the first butt section of any HT to break apart. Isn’t that nice? I’m proud of myself …........ not. Anyway. The fantastic Jan Siman send the broken rod to England the very same day. Lee got onto it as soon it arrived on his doorstep and turned it around. Now the British Royal mail has it and is transporting it back to the Czech Republic, where I sit in front of a fly shop, tying flies which I swap against beer. There’s a Hotel/Restaurant right next to the fly shop. The owner is a fly fisher of course and he keeps coming by with a fresh pint of Pilsener Urquell now and then to swap it for flies. See, there is always a good side to everything. ;-) I did the smart thing and ordered a second HT4 so I have backup next time. This means I then own two rods … an HT4 and another. It’s like this beers. One is not enough …. Next week … the Czech story and what a hairdresser had to do with nymph fishing and dying synthetic materials. P.S. the best thing is that I know that this type of service is standard procedure at Paul's. He really understands what it is like being without a fishing rod. So do yourself a favour and get one or two. .... By the way - Jan and his friends were equally sad 'cause everybody having tested the rod loved it.

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Rainy Day Bones

Tracy&James - Thursday, May 3, 2018

Our time in the Bahamas is now drawing to an end, unfortunately it’s not going out in the blaze of bonefish and other species that we’d planned, but rather fizzling out due to the scourge of the DiY flats angler – poor light. As I write this it is raining, the sort of rain that you only get in the tropics i.e. like standing in a luke-warm shower on full blast. The last few days have been a mix of heavy cloud, thunderstorms and rain. However we’ve tried to make the most of it and we’ve still managed to catch. So what do you do on a flats trip when you don’t get sufficient sunlight to make spotting fish easier? Firstly, I should say that rain isn’t always a disaster for bonefishing, in fact I’ve had some very memorable days when it’s chucked it down all day. To that extent I’d say I much prefer it to rain than just be overcast. When it’s raining the ripples, caused by the wind, are often damped down to virtually nothing and visibility can be remarkably good – the water seems to take a green tinge and the bonefish really ‘pop’ out at you. Tracy and I had a great afternoons fishing a couple of days ago in these exact circumstances.

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Coastal Fly Fishing

Bernd Ziesche - Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Last week we still enjoyed fly fishing for coastal Sea trout on Gotland in Sweden. Fair to summarize: We had a blast with some serious fish involved!

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Piffen's Trip Report

Piffen - Tuesday, May 1, 2018

I asked for a few testimonials to follow up from yesterday's Front Page. As well as a testimonial, Piffen kindly sent a trip report about his two week stay with me here on Lake Temenggor. Gary is away this week, which gives me the chance to run it today...

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