Double Tapers

Double Tapers

Viking Lars | Saturday, 9 January 2021

With “development” so much knowledge is lost and so much of what once common wisdom and standard equipment is lost as well. In fly fishing, this of course has led to the development of carbon fiber rods, which are now the standard - and for very good reasons. Reels are lighter, large arbor and for good reasons. Leaders are monofilament nylon and there’s a good example of a “development” I don’t like. I think nylon casts better and fluorocarbon takes aeons to degrade if lost. I recognise that it has it’s applications, but for the vast majority of the fishing I do, it really has no place. And it’s bloody expensive too and I find it’s actually outperformed by nylon as far as casting goes.

Another “new standard” is the WF-line, although it’s really been around for many, many years. I mainly refer to it as the “new standard” because no one, and I mean almost no one, uses a double taper anymore. And that combined with the fact that many, especially new, fly fishers seem to favour shorter and shorter bellied WF-lines, much is lost.

I love DT-lines. When I was taught dry fly- and nymph fishing for trout and grayling, it was the norm, and for me it still is. There’s no limitation on carry and you sacrifice no control, either in the air or on the water (not that I need particularly long casts here in DK). They are nothing short of excellent for roll casting. With no shooting line they last for a very long time (especially if you keep them clean).

Many modern WF-lines have bridged the gap as you can now get lines with a good head length - 14-15-16-17 meters and even longer, even for lighter rods. Still I prefer the double taper. Why? They’re all made for proper presentation and usually have a front taper better suited for that purpose and I find most WF-lines to have too steep a front taper. And (at least to my knowledge) all double tapers are made to AFFTA-standard, and don’t get me started on why I think it’s a *very* bad idea to make half-weight-heavy and even heavier lines. I mean, on the market you can find a WF 6 and the description then tells you it’s made a full line heavier. What the hell is that all about. OK, I got myself started and will shut myself down now.

There are of course a few downsides to the double taper. One is that it doesn’t shoot as well as WF-lines. And every now and then in limited space, that can be an advantage. And another one is that they take up more space on the reel, sometimes forcing you to either reduce the amount of backing and go up one reel size (and since I fish 4-weight 99% of the time for trout and grayling, I don’t like too heavy reels, but then again, 50 yards of backing is more than enough for me - and less could even do it).

If you haven’t already, consider trying a DT-line and maybe even support your local dealer in these ridiculous times by ordering ones online.

Have a great weekend!

PoD: To negotiate the backing-issue, I always use GPS-backing as even a 25lbs take up less space than a standard, 20lbs dacron. On this reel I have yet had the time to change to camp backing, which is now available and obviously very necessary. And yes, it's been snowing and now it's melting off.