As Simple as it Gets (II)
I'm getting ready for the 2009 season! The new boat from Dave
Scadden should arrive any day now. A new 6 wt is waiting for me
at Boris' new shop. The fly bins are slowly filling up. The Forum in
Granby is in 2 weeks.
By Chris Chin
New this season too is teaching some of the basics to my new
girlfriend Liliane. The gear is spread out on the floor as I want
to sort out stuff to be cleaned, stuff to be repaired and stuff to
be replaced. There are over 12 reels, 10 rods, 15 lines, dozens
of leaders and thousands of flies! (right the travel case for the
workhorse reels and spools.)
While I am showing her some of the differences between wets
and dries, drags, lines etc
I come to the shocking realization
that this can all be fairly complicated! How to bring it all back to basics?
Actually, our fishing here is really simple as we only usually fish for
Atlantic salmon and sea run brook trout. This means that we don't
match the hatch (these particular fish being in the river to
they don't eat all summer long).
I pull out two flies to explain the difference between wets and
dries. In essence, dries are tied so that they will float and wets
usually will not float. Sure, there are special cases where we
want them to do just the opposite of that, but why complicate
things right now? This also means that the "products" we
sometimes slather in the flies must be kept straight too. Silicone
or "float" is for dries (to help them to float) and "Gink", sink or
dishwashing liquid is for the wets (to make them sink).
Basically, there are just two casts here too. Dries get cast up
and across the current to get a nice "dead drift" straight down
with the current. Wets get down and across presentations to
make the fly swing back towards the near bank. There 'ya go
no mending, reaching or anything.
We're also looking over the program for the Fly Fishing Forum
which is taking place in a couple of weeks in Granby, Quebec.
Some of the workshops are quite interesting. A nice touch (IMHO)
is an emphasis that many of the speakers seem to be putting on
simplifying the sport.
Over the years, I've run into quite a few anglers. Some seem
to be quite caught up in the "technical" side of the sport. The
perfect cast, the perfect balance of rod, reel and line. The
perfect leader taper for a #22 dry on a 2 wt medium action
This is all fine and dandy. There is a certain satisfaction
at excelling in the mechanics of casting. However, one should
make sure that they aren't scaring away newcomers with some
of the finer points of the sport. (or even worse, missing
opportunities to connect to a fish 'cause we're too caught up
in the techniques of it all).
I've picked out a setup for Liliane to learn on. A simple one.
TFO Axiom 6wt 9 ft with a WF floating SA Line and a bomb
proof (older) Lamson reel. Easy to cast, this rig will turn over
even the biggest salmon fly. We'll keep this simple for a while
to come. As soon as the weather warms up, we'll move out to
the park and start some casting lessons.
Getting ready for a new season is a real thrill for me. I hope
that it is for you as well. Just try to keep it simple. ~ Christopher Chin, Three Rivers Quebec.
Chris Chin is originally from Kamloops,
British Columbia. He has been fly fishing
on and off ever since he was 10 years old.
Chris became serious about the sport within
the last 10 years.
"I'm a forest engineer by day and part time
guide on the Ste-Marguerite River here in
central Quebec. I've been fishing this river
for about 10 years now and started guiding
about 5 years ago when the local guide's
association sort of stopped functioning."
Chris guides mostly for sea run brook trout
and about 30% of the time for Atlantic Salmon.
"I often don't even charge service fees, as
I'm more interested in promoting the river
than making cash. I like to get new comers
to realize that salmon fishing is REALLY for
anyone who cares to try it. Tradition around
here makes some of the old clan see Salmon
fishing as a sport for the rich. Today our
shore lunches are less on the cucumber sandwich
side and more toward chicken pot pie and Jack
Chris is 44 years old as of this writing. He
is of Chinese origin although his parents were
born and raised in Jamaica.
To learn more about the Ste-Marguerite River,
website. You can email Chis at: Flyfishing.firstname.lastname@example.org.
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