Deneki royalty Stuart Foxall is back with a follow up post on the added benefits that come with fishing as a team. Thanks as always for sharing your wisdom Stuart!
So you’re mid way through you’re swing when a monster, chrome King Salmon slams your fly!!!! What do you do next???
Set the hook hard with a low strike into the bank. Don’t rebound your rod tip back at the fish. This can create a little slack line where the fish could throw the hook.
The idea behind keeping the rod low and into the bank is to keep the water pressure pushing your Skagit head downstream with the current. This creates a downstream curve of the line that actually helps pull the hook “backwards” into the fish’s mouth. The drag created by the line bowing downstream in the water actually helps force the fish to swim upstream away from the drag we have created. This tires the fish out much quicker and gets the fish where we want it…….fairly close to us.
We want to keep the rod pointed towards the bank for as long as we can. The more that we move our rod position around, the bigger we make that hook hole. Keep changing direction can actually make the hook hole larger which gives the fish a chance of pulling free while netting.
As the fish begins to tire and we get the fish on a shorter line we can begin to raise the rod slightly. Still try and keep your rod pointed towards the bank as much as possible. I like to reel right down onto the fish and “lift” him through the water column. Keep lifting the fish and making it work like this really helps tire the fish out quickly as it will keep trying to swim back down the river bed…..this is called “pumping” the fish.
Now is the time we need to work as a “team” with our guide. They will place themselves below you to get ready to net your prize. By raising your rod tip over the guide’s head and sweeping towards the bank again (notice how we still haven’t changed rod angle), the fish will be pulled towards the guide’s waiting net. I like to talk to the guide here so he knows you are getting ready to move the fish towards them, they will also be able to tell whether the fish is ready to be netted or not. That’s where the teamwork comes in. For very large fish I will walk towards the bank keeping that fish moving towards the net as your rod just won’t be strong enough to do the final work.
Obviously there are times when the fish just don’t want to play ball. So some of these guideline’s may not be followed…..these are the fish that we all love and remember!
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