Browsing articles in "Cack Handed"

Update from the Fish Creek Atlantic Salmon Club

Feb 2, 2017   //   by Geoff Schaake   //   Cack Handed, Environmental Stuff, Fish Creek Atlantic Salmon Club Minutes, Like Minded Mofos, Mojo, Raffle Prizes, Spey Fly Tying Video, Spey Nation Supporters, SpeyNation  //  Comments Off on Update from the Fish Creek Atlantic Salmon Club

In an email correspondence with the Fish Creek Atlantic Salmon Club,

We’re off to a good start this year.  We got 47,500 eggs and losses have been minimal.   The eggs are starting to hatch so we expect to be moving from the incubator building to the hatchery within a few months, depending on the weather.

That sounds great and can’t wait to see them in the river this June.

Check out the video I made while spending the day with the club stocking the Atlantic Salmon that were partially paid for and supported by our raffles at Spey Nation Events.   See you all this June 24th at the Pineville Lot for our 10th Spey Nation Celebration!

 

The Fish Creek Atlantic Salmon Club Stocking Atlantic Salmon into the headwaters of Fish Creek from Spey Nation on Vimeo.

2017 Spey Nation Update Email Went Out Today

Jan 23, 2017   //   by Geoff Schaake   //   Cack Handed, Mojo, Spey Nation Presenter, Spey Nation Supporters, SpeyNation  //  Comments Off on 2017 Spey Nation Update Email Went Out Today

Check Out the newest newsletter.   In your inbox now!

10th Annual Spey Nation 2017 Official Flyer Released!

Jan 20, 2017   //   by Geoff Schaake   //   Cack Handed  //  Comments Off on 10th Annual Spey Nation 2017 Official Flyer Released!

Fish Creek Atlantic Salmon Club Meeting Jan 28.

Jan 27, 2016   //   by Geoff Schaake   //   Cack Handed, Fish Creek Atlantic Salmon Club Minutes, Mojo  //  Comments Off on Fish Creek Atlantic Salmon Club Meeting Jan 28.

The next meeting of the Fish Creek Atlantic Salmon Club is Thursday Jan. 28 @ 7:00 at the Camden Rod & Gun Club.

 

We will have two guest speakers – ESF Grad students Justin DiRado and Chris Powers – who will give a presentation of their two year NY Sea Grant project to study Atlantic Salmon Restoration in Great Lakes Tributaries.  The objectives of the study included: Evaluate strain growth, survival and movement in Lake Ontario and Oneida Lake tributaries, determine if adults are returning to Fish Creek, and analyze otolith microchemistry.

 

Their presentation will include an overview of the project, fieldwork and lab experiments conducted, a review of their findings, and preliminary recommendations for rearing Atlantic salmon.

Club members helped with the stocking and electrofishing, had a great time, and learned a lot in the process.  This will be very informative and should help us do a better job raising and stocking our fish.

We like videos with grabby steelhead

Nov 12, 2015   //   by Geoff Schaake   //   Cack Handed, Like Minded Mofos, Mojo, SpeyNation  //  Comments Off on We like videos with grabby steelhead

We like videos with grabby steelhead…period And Spitting

 

Fishing for Steelhead with Curtis Ciszek from Poler Outdoor Stuff on Vimeo.

The Mystic M-Series 3113-4 Switch Review

Nov 10, 2015   //   by Geoff Schaake   //   Cack Handed, Gear Reviews, Spey Nation Presenter, SpeyNation, Trout Spey  //  Comments Off on The Mystic M-Series 3113-4 Switch Review

 

Disclaimer:  I bought this rod the first time I picked it up and it’s permanent home is in my truck.

Finish and Initial Thoughts:  The Mystic M Series 3113-4  switch rod has a sleek finished black blank with black wraps and silver wrap accents making for a handsome no nonsense appearance.  According to Mystic’s website, “The componentry of the M Switch rod is first class from top to bottom. Featuring titanium quad leg stripping guides, super grade custom handles, light wire stainless snake guides, alignment dots, and the kind of craftsmanship Mystic is known for.”  Mine came in a sectioned off that off black cordura case embroidered with an orange Mystic Logo and zippered padded top flap.  The rod is 11 feet 3 inches long with a longer full well forward and lower handle than other switch rods I have seen.

Balancing the Rod:  The Mystic M Series 3113-4  switch rod weighs in at a puny 4.75 ounces and I tried a few reels on the rod and it seems to balance nicely with about 3.7 ounces (My Lamson Litespeed 2) to about 5 ounces (an old Farlow Serpent I have lying around).  Whether you’re a clicker or disc drag kind of fisher, that’s up to you and I use both depending on my quarry.  I hardly ever notice this rod is in my hand.

Lines:  Mystic recommends a grain window for the Mystic M Series 3113-4  switch rod  from 205 to 230 and a quick session with the rod makes it clear that this is a standard 3 weight switch rod.  I fish my standard 5 weight Wulff Ambush TT Taper, (18 foot head with at 215gr) a 10 foot RIO Floating Poly Leader and a 7.5 foot tapered leader to about 3x.  This rig casts buggers to a weighted size 4 and all the wet flies you can throw at a trout.  I have also casted the 6 weight Ambush (18 foot head at 235gr) that I found too heavy for my liking and a SGS custom Scandit head Steve Godshell made which is 22 feet (215gr) and is smooth for you scandi casters out there.  Personal preference for my trout spey is an integrated line/head that I can strip in streamers past where the loop connection would be if necessary.

For Overhead casting, Any single hander 5 weight line (I have used both the Wulff Triangle Taper and Rio Gold)  will work just fine.  It’s a great rod to swing until you find rising fish.

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The Goods:  Casting this rod is what a 3 weight switch/spey is supposed to be.  Just plain fun.  Let’s be clear, this is a rod to through buggers, small streamers and wet flies.    Mystic’s website explains about the entire series “Our Switch rods are designed to load deep into the mid-section, but provide plenty of reserve power in the butt of the rod for fighting big fish,” but let’s be realistic, it’s a 3 weight and this particular rod can only be asked to do so much.   That being said, I have regularly hooked and landed brown and rainbow trout up to 24 inches while that’s a challenge this rod is up to the task for, it still bends delightfully for trout in the 8-15 inch range.   Find a pod of 12 inch smallmouth bass and you just might put permanent smile wrinkles in your face.

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Confidence:  Some of the trout speys I have wiggled over the years seemed a bit thin walled and made me nervous either casting longer lines or fighting larger fish.   You never want to have the threat of exploding graphite to damper your enjoyment streamside.   That isn’t the case with this rod.   I will caution that even though this rod can be leaned on during a cast without fear of exploding, it really excels and launches line with little effort.  If you can’t be happy with a 3 weight throwing 70 feet then you shouldn’t be throwing one no matter what manufacturer makes it.

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Summary:  Trout Speying is supposed to be fun and I get a kick out of taking fish on the swing.   When I bought my first trout spey rod, I bought it as a toy and to play around with.  It quickly became one of my favorite ways to fish for trout.  I have used switch and spey rods to fish trout on many of the larger trout streams and tailwaters in the Northeast and it just keeps getting better and the Mystic M-Series is the one I grab most.

Sage 3110-4 ONE Trout Spey Rod Review

Nov 3, 2015   //   by Geoff Schaake   //   Cack Handed, Gear Reviews, Like Minded Mofos, Mojo, SpeyNation, Trout Spey  //  Comments Off on Sage 3110-4 ONE Trout Spey Rod Review

Hey Bill,  Howsabout you send me one of those new Sage ONE Trout Spey rods for my annual Landlocked Salmon trip next month.  The email was a veiled attempt to get my hands on the new rod and see what all the fuss was about.   2 weeks later the USPS dropped off a cylindrical shaped box on my door step.  You know the shape, the one that your significant other instantly recognizes and enters the dreaded “What did you buy now?” mode.  Honest, it’s just for a demo.

 

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Mis-labeled should be 11′ 0″

Sage 3110-4 ONE Trout Spey Rod Review:   Note:  Revised as the rod delivered was mislabeled as 11 feet 9 inches.   The actual rod is 11 feet 0 inches

Finish and Initial Thoughts:  Note:  The actual length of the Sage ONE 3 weight is 11 feet  but the action is more a spey rod instead of a switch and that’s what I want to focus on.  That being said, the Sage 3110-4 ONE is a typically beautiful Sage rod.  It’s sports what Sage calls a “Black Ice” finish however I would say in the Autumn filtered sunlight, it has a distinct Olive cast to it.  The hardware is top notch as you would expect from the premium rod maker with black thread wraps with Bronze trim wraps, Fuji ceramic stripper guides, and hard chromed snake guides and tip-top.  The handle/reel seat area boasts a golden bronze anodized aluminum down-locking reel seat and Super Plus cork mini-Spey fore grip and rear grip.  Top that off with a black rod bag with Light Black logo and model tag and protected by a black powder coated aluminum rod tube with the Sage medallion and you have yourself one nice looking rod.  Most of that stuff came from the Sage website and everyone I showed the rod to commented with a sincere “Nice”.

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Balancing the Rod:  The Sage ONE 3110-4 weighs in at a puny 4 3/8 ounces and I tried a few reels on the rod and it seems to balance nicely with about 3.7 ounces (My Lamson Litespeed 2) to about 6 ounces (Some old Pridexes I have lying around).  Whether you’re a clicker or disc drag kind of fisher, that’s up to you and I used both throughout the day and you can decide whether you like the reel to pull the tip up at all during the swing but I found the Lamson to be more to my liking for fishing.  I hardly noticed the rod was in my hand.

 

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Lines:  The recommended grains for the Sage ONE 3110-4 is reported by Sage to be 250gr but since I was fishing a river that doesn’t allow weight to be added to the leader or fly and the fact that I was going to be using a floating poly, I kept things on the smaller end.  I fished with a 5 weight Wulff Ambush TT Taper, (18 foot head with at 215gr) a 10 foot RIO Floating Poly Leader and a 7.5 foot tapered leader to about 3x.  I also casted the 6 weight Ambush (18 foot head at 235gr) and a SGS custom Scandit head Steve Godshell made for my Mystic M Series 3 weight switch which was 22 feet (215gr).   Any of these lines worked and this rod has a huge grain window, you can just feel it.  The 5 weight Ambush seemed to be the sweet spot for me and the combo I was fishing had me firing 75 feet consistently with little effort.

I didn’t try nymphing or dead drifting as that stuff doesn’t interest me but I am sure a single hander 6 wt weight forward line would work fine if you were caught in that situation.

The Goods:  Casting this rod is ridiculously fun and that’s really what trout spey is all about.   I tend to bristle a bit when articles about trout spey focus on throwing large streamers and stripping them in.   Let’s leave that to the 5-7 weight switches and focus on the program I like to run.  For this rod, it’s a 3 wet fly rig or a small lightly weight bugger in the 6-4 range that it eats up.   Ask it to rip a circus peanut very far and you are either perfect in your mechanics or going to be disappointed.  You’ll be disappointed if you asked your 7 foot 3 weight to do that too so let’s stay in reality for a few minutes.

Today I was swinging small feather wing landlocked streamers and traditional hairwings for Landlocked Salmon in the Lake Champlain Tributaries on the New York State side.   Fish ranging from 16 to 24 inches are the norm but larger fish are regularly caught.  With a size 6 tmc7999 hair wing or a 6x long #4 streamer hook with a black ghost tied to the end of the leader, the rod performed all the casts with ease.  Mending was easy and manipulating the swing is also a breeze and the salmon that were in the pool I was fishing responded better to a broadside sped up swing than a classic steelhead slow vertical presentation and the extra length was appreciated.  The rod is quick and responsive recovering fast and light but not a wet noodle.   During the swing it doesn’t bow or bend unnecessarily, a quality I appreciate when high sticking the swing.

 

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Fighting Fish:  I had four salmon eat during the broadside swing and each time I had large bows in the line to create the desired speed to elicit the strike.  Every fish came unbuttoned during the fight and I don’t think I had enough in the rod to make up for the bow in the line, the slack in the running line and softness of the rod (Not a negative, we are talking about a 3 weight here and I probably wasn’t 100% used to setting the hook on this rod either) to get a great connection and drive the hook home.  And, as a local reminded me, driving a hook into the kype of a fall 20+ inch salmon isn’t an easy task anyways.  I did however get a great set when the fifth fish took on a straighter lined swing, jammed the fly hard and took off towards the lake.  The fish hooked itself and the rod performed with an even bend and surprising backbone down by the handle.  Overall a great shock absorber for light tippets.   Making the same trip, I might choose a 5 weight spey to handle these fish but I would not hesitate to swing this rod for stream trout anywhere in the country where the fish average 12 to 20 inches.   Asking it to handle salmon over 20 inches consistently may be too much to ask.

Confidence:  Some of the trout speys I have wiggled over the years seemed a bit thin walled and made me nervous either casting longer lines or fighting larger fish.   You never want to have the threat of exploding graphite damper your enjoyment stream side.   That wasn’t the case with this rod.   Even when intentionally leaning on the rod during the forward stroke, the rod never felt punched out and folded.

Summary:  Trout Speying is supposed to be fun and I get a kick out of taking fish on the swing.   When I bought my first trout spey rod, I bought it as a toy and to play around with.  It quickly became one of my favorite ways to fish for trout.  I have used switch and spey rods to fish trout on many of the larger trout streams and tailwaters in the Northeast and it just keeps getting better.   The Sage 3110-4 ONE Troutspey is a serious rod for serious fun.  It will do all the things you ask it to and then some while you giggle and that’s what it’s all about.   Whether you’re looking to extend your steelhead season by swinging flies for trout or smallmouth bass or you are tying a box full of Bergman Wets to swing during the next pmd hatch, you should feel confident to have this rod in your hand.

 

To find out how you can get a review of your rod here, please email us at speynation@gmail.com

Tackle Tool Changes

Oct 15, 2015   //   by Geoff Schaake   //   Cack Handed, Like Minded Mofos, Mojo, Spey Fishing Equipment, SpeyNation  //  Comments Off on Tackle Tool Changes

Big changes are happening over at our “Virtual Spey Nation Tackle Selector” tool.

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As you know, Thanks to our hard-working Spey Nation elves, we have compiled a list of over 1000 two-handed rods and who knows how many lines into a searchable database all geared to bring the unique experience of Spey Nation to the virtual world. You are able to search rods (say show me all the 12 to 13 foot 7wts) and with a click, see all the lines that may be appropriate for that chosen rod. We are excited to bring you this information and hope to keep it as updated as possible. Product information in our database is free to everyone to use as a resource.

Well, we still are working in the Spey Nation Workshop and look at it now!   You still can see all the cool rods in our database, plus some new ones have been added.

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New Look!  Pick one! Or click the HOT LINK    to quickly find your rod, or go to the manufacturer’s website!

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Now you have all your lines but wait!  Click the “Export to PDF” button

 

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hoof on down to your local fly shop!

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Get finding your next rod here!  

Oh, I’m sorry, do you need a new line before steelhead season?  Scandi, Skagit, Long belly?   Don’t Know?  Search Them All!

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Spey Rod Tackle Selection Tool

Sep 28, 2015   //   by Geoff Schaake   //   Cack Handed, Like Minded Mofos, Mojo, Spey Fishing Equipment, SpeyNation, Trout Spey  //  Comments Off on Spey Rod Tackle Selection Tool

It is my great pleasure to announce our new “Virtual Spey Nation Tackle Selector” tool.

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Thanks to our hard-working Spey Nation elves, we have compiled a list of over 1000 two-handed rods and who knows how many lines into a searchable database all geared to bring the unique experience of Spey Nation to the virtual world. You are able to search rods (say show me all the 12 to 13 foot 7wts) and with a click, see all the lines that may be appropriate for that chosen rod. We are excited to bring you this information and hope to keep it as updated as possible. Product information in our database is free to everyone to use as a resource.

Want to see how cool it is?   Show Me all the 12 to 13 foot 7wts!

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You asked?   We Delivered!  Pick one!

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Click Line for all the lines that are appropriate….or description….or go to the website for more info!   It’s that easy!

Show me my next line!

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Get finding your next rod here!  

Oh, I’m sorry, do you need a new line before steelhead season?  Scandi, Skagit, Long belly?   Don’t Know?  Search Them All!

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Your Welcome!
Spey Nation
www.speynation.com
speynation@gmail.com

Scottish Salmon on a Spey Rod Video

Sep 8, 2015   //   by Geoff Schaake   //   Cack Handed, Spey Casting Video, Spey Fishing Video, SpeyNation  //  Comments Off on Scottish Salmon on a Spey Rod Video

Scottish Salmon – 2015 from atlanticspringer on Vimeo.

Searching Vimeo, I came across this gem. Good stuff!

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