Sunday, July 10, 2016

School Time - With Two-Handed Rods

Pre-class Q/A with Jeff Liskay - great guy.
At left, pre-class school circle for an on-the-water clinic in Tenkara and two-handed Spey casting hosted by my local fly shop: The Painted Trout. Patagonia sent a couple of their field staffers and these folks did a great job without the "Sage-first" talks I've had from other sponsored events.

The woman in the foreground is Lauren, one of the fly shop owners and an enthusiastic two-hander. Dirk (not pictured) - the other owner - is a traditional bamboo single-handed type of fellow. He's also a reel geek so we get on fine.

This weekend saw me postponing a trip up north to fish in order to get some first class instruction. Doug Scott gave the Tenkara introduction Saturday morning for about an hour-and-a-half and Jeff Liskay gave the two-handed clinic for four hours Saturday and a good six here on Sunday. He was generous both with his time and with his instruction.

Good instructors can explain the same things multiple ways AND provide multiple drills to strengthen the fundamentals they're trying to teach. The time with Jeff just flew by and he made me a much better two-handed caster in the end.

Doug in action.
The light Echo 10'6" 3wt I have provided a little challenge for both of us. I've been fishing it this year with a 7 wt Wulff TT and it has been "touchy."A little work discovers the rod is just fine when I clean-up my set-up for the cast.

Jeff emphasized the lower-hand involvement in the cast and while I'll tell you I was using the lower hand, I really wasn't trusting it sufficiently to avoid complications.

Scandi, Skagit, Rage, Delta Spey de-mystified.
Anyway, I missed a dash to the South Branch of the Au Sable this weekend. I did become a competent caster with my two-handed technique. This training will pay off when I line the 11' 7wt Echo glass I plan on using for steelhead this fall.

The Wulff TT 5wt Ambush rolls off the 3wt glass nicely. The super compact head and conjoined line makes it an easy beast to throw with authority. The 7wt TT tales a more refined action and I have to stay on my toes ...though I really appreciate the ability to mend with dry and soft hackle that I get with the TT line. The Ambush is for smallish streamers and - ugh - indicator nymphing at a distance.

Jeff in action with one of my fellow students.
I hate the bobber/tuft fishing but there are times when I cannot reach the water I want to fish without the crutch.

Anyway, great classes and a great use of time even if it was a sacrifice of a outing to get instruction.

This was my first formal two-handed instruction. World of difference.

Hello, steelhead.


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