Thursday, November 11, 2021

11.11.21 "Remember young sensei, you fish with a fly rod....."

     Ah, striper fisherman. So many types, kinds, motivations, and skill levels. There's nothing more of a Danny-downer or blow to a fly fishermans mojo then to watch the boast around you or read the fishing reports to see what you could be doing if you were "just a normal" fisherman like my kids used to say. Yes, there are times when you are standing amongst a hoard of spin fisherman and you are on fire, usually when the bass are on tiny baits and they just can't match the hatch, even with a teaser attached to some un-Godly offering that isn't anywhere on the bass' mind. 

     But that is then, and this is now. Big bass on big baits that are usually low, very low, albeit they do come up, and occasionally in, a time when the fly fisherman can have a shot. But, for the most part, when bass are on big bunker it is tough for the fly fisherman. You can find a pod, try and tease them up with a tease and drop technique, add 4 ounces of weight and trying dredge them, but most outings its drive around, fish less then you drive, and leave frustrated. But thats okay. 

     So the outfront bite goes on, out a ways for the guy stranded on the beach, with an occasional venture in within casting range. You can't time that from home, you just have to be on the beach, or in your car with a pair of binoculars looking out for birds, bait, or busting fish. Or, you can just go and blow your arm out making cast after cast enjoying the solitude and scenery hoping for that chance you might be at the right place at the right time with your feet planted in the sand. 

    So don't be sad or frustrated when you look at the reports that anglers are posting up. Look at what they are throwing and where....then take a deep breath and relax. You are a fly fisherman, now, some guides will bring a fly rod in case the fish are up and when they are they will or have you throw big flies at the fish that came up. But if you are a "fly or die", kind of like the Upper Delaware "dry or die" kind of angler, expect long days of driving, casting, and hoping for a little luck. Those big ones in the channels top 40 feet and out front to 55 feet are hard to present to with the depth and tide, no matter if you have a 550 gr line and are a master of the feed the line to get it down. And then, remember these fish respond well to the "drop and reel" fishing, grabbing baits when the hit the bottom and reeled up to the surface. You dumb big fly presented parallel to the bottom isn't all that and a bag of chips. 

     But my favorite report as of late was these chaps out in a tin boat near the Hook having the day of a lifetime, even beaching it to run up to the local bait shop for snag hooks, and hopefully circle hooks to go with them. 

Stay positive. Keep your fly in the water. Sand eels are coming soon.