"Combat" Flyfishing Setup for King Salmon

Messages
39
Reaction score
4
Hey Guys,
Last week, went up to the Oswego River to try some King Salmon fishing and, as always, it was very crowded. Due to this, part of your fishing strategy MUST be to
make short casts and drifts; otherwise, you're constantly tangling lines and lures with other guys and/or striking them with your rod or line if attempting to cast too far. Casts must be no more than say, 25-30 at most , 20 usually being the optimum; Moreover, when you get a hookup, the fight has to be over as quickly as possible for a number of reasons including the following:
1) Consideration for the other fisherman (common decorum on the Oswego and Salmon Rivers is to yell "Fish On!" when one gets a strike as a warning to fellow fisherman and , in response, they will oblige by reeling in and waiting till you either successfully net the fish or the fish breaks off and the fight is over.
2) The wading conditions- You wade out into the river about 150yds over to, and in front of the dam. The wade isn't bad but can be treacherous and you do need a wading staff. In front of the damn, the water velocity is considerable and can knock you over quite easily if not careful. Fighting a King under these conditions is quite challenging to say the least and I've found myself in the drink more than once from stepping forward or backward too far and ending up in hole in with a sudden and significant depth change. Consequently, the longer the fight goes on, the more likely something will go wrong (i.e., you fall and nearly drown or, at the very least, lose the fish in a breakoff).
3)Time factor- It takes ALOT of time and effort getting yourself in a prime position here to get a King; you have to wade out at 4 am to get a good spot and you cant forget any of your gear (been there, done that!). Otherwise, you have to wade back , which takes at least 20 minutes at the very least and by the time you get back, your spot is always taken by another guy!! Also, you only have so much time to be there. Due to the fact that you're hooking up on every 3rd or 4th cast , as are you're brethren, you spend more time waiting for other guys to fight and land their fish , in deference to them, as likewise, they do you. so, in four hours of fishing , say, you're lucky if you can successfully land 2!!

From my experiences here, however, I have noticed that Spin fisherman clearly and definitively hold a distinct advantage under the aforementioned conditions. They can cast farther and require less room than Flyfisherman, have smaller drifts in their presentation and finally, have fewer requisite knots in their rigup, resulting in fewer break-offs; Consequently, they can be more aggressive in their approach including fish fighting.

Considering the obstacles faced when Flyfishing under these conditions and also, the fact that I will fish no other way for them than with Fly Tackle , I was thinking the following setup may be optimal :

1) Remove Flyline and spool the rod entirely with monofilament line akin to a Spin Fishermans line. This way, I don't require a flyline knot to leader connection which I always worry about, especially when fighting them!! When using a 10' rod and rigging up a 10-12' leader, I find that I have to keep ALOT of line out to prevent the fish from breaking the guides/rod (worse case scenario, of course) if they suddenly go on a major run and Ive reeled line into the guides and past the leader/flyline knot. Also, being able to reel in more enables me to bring the fish up higher in the water column and not have to step back as far when other guys are assisting and are attempting to net my fish.
2) Use better knots to prevent break-offs and fight fish more aggressively- Due to my excessive caution about break-offs, Ive become a bit too timid in my fish fighting approach, to the point were my style and approach is entirely ineffective. I had on a HUGE King earlier this week and fought him for 15 minutes , only to lose him due to lack of aggression and weak knots at the fly. Consequently, Ive been researching other stronger knots for tying on my fly and for the barrel swivel attachment; for example, the Eugene-Bend and/or Non-slip Loop knot for the fly to tippet connection and the Berkly Braid and Trilene knot for the tippet to barrel-swivel attachment.



Basically, after elucidating all of this, I was hoping for commentary/ feedback as to my proposed setup; What do you think?
I know this post is lengthy and I apologize for that but I wanted to explain in such a way in order to provide sufficient info that includes all nuances pertaining to the issues. Thanks for taking the time to read and reply :)

David
 
Messages
39
Reaction score
4
How do you plan on casting your fly with only mono as your fly line?
Ill have 2 pieces of shot attached to an un trimmed tag-end from my leader ; the weight of the shot will be enough to launch the fly 20-30
feet easy, even further if need be ii let out more line and open loop it enough
 

JoeE

Well-known member
Messages
1,422
Reaction score
78
Location
N.Ireland
Count the number of anglers in these pics: https://www.instagram.com/joeearlysalmo/

Some rivers are more busy than others, we have a set of basic rules that the vast majority follow reasonably well. For example, spin men usually give way to fly anglers coming down the pool who fish one step one cast so works well in the long run
 
Last edited:

JoeE

Well-known member
Messages
1,422
Reaction score
78
Location
N.Ireland
Ill have 2 pieces of shot attached to an un trimmed tag-end from my leader ; the weight of the shot will be enough to launch the fly 20-30
feet easy, even further if need be ii let out more line and open loop it enough
I'd look at a centerpin reel and cast your weight/fly while still having a reel to play the fish

 

simonjh98

Well-known member
Messages
211
Reaction score
575
Was googling that river and by christ I couldn't stand that combat fishing

View attachment 50472
That's just inconsideration and stupidity at its finest. If you tried stepping infront of another angler here in a stream, you'd have a very sore jaw! lol.

Why can't your fisheries have limits on people per beat, and why can't you rotate down it on a 1cast1step basis? I've been behind 5 or 6 guys fishing streams on the Mourne and you take your turn ,everyone gets a throw at the entire pool within a quick period of time.

This would just frustrate the hell out of me, and tangling lines and foul hooking fish is inevitable. This isn't fishing to me imo. I can't see how you can enjoy this unless you're fishing to keep the fish.
 
Messages
39
Reaction score
4
In this case , we are cuz they're gonna die anyway Being anadromous ; I agree w you though that some sort of turn taking system Mayb be in order here and I would gleefully welcome it
 

Rrrr

Well-known member
Messages
6,553
Reaction score
655
In this case , we are cuz they're gonna die anyway Being anadromous ; I agree w you though that some sort of turn taking system Mayb be in order here and I would gleefully welcome it
So do the guys cast then take a step downstream or just stay in that same spot all day ?

Sent from my SM-G981B using Tapatalk
 
Messages
39
Reaction score
4
Stay in the same spot pretty much. You wade out there at 0 Dark Thirty to get a prime spot , then hold it all day and/or till you're done w it. Its very competitive. There is, however, an established decorum in terms of deference to others when they hook up/ are fighting fish which is considerate. Having said that, there is no such thing as "Taking turns" over here and I think that if I were to suggest it, Id get laughed out of the River lol (even if it does make sense).
 
Top