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Fishslayer74

Switch Rod For Large Bull Trout?

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I've been doing alot of fishing for Bull Trout in the past couple of years and was starting to wonder what it would be like using a Switch Rod for it instead of my traditional 8wt fly rod. I do chuck some pretty heavy/bulky flies and was wondering if anyone had experience fishing this type of rod for Bulls. Any information would be greatly appreciated.

 

Cheers.

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I think switches are to big to be swinging around on the small waters I chase bullies on. There are some waters that would suffice, ie; oldman.

But just imagine trudging to the next hole sporting a 11 footer. My bully specific rods are shorter than the typical rods I use just because of the small waters.

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Which usually isn't a successful tactic for bullies...

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I'm just wondering why a switch rod would not be a successful tactic for bulls? I fish areas like the lower elk which is quite a distance to the other side in most of the areas where it would be nice to get it over there and I'm generally just swinging large flies. The other thing is that there are many areas that I find it hard to get a sufficient back cast to get the fly out far enough. I was fishing the Margaree River this summer and it was no larger then the Elk River and 90% of people were using Spey rods. So really what is the difference? Does anyone out there have experience with this?

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"High sticking" isn't a successful tactic! As it is WAY too passive for Bullies!

 

P

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I'd

 

"High sticking" isn't a successful tactic! As it is WAY too passive for Bullies!

 

P

I'd beg to differ on that. I've hooked into many bull trout over the past 3 years with that method as well. Not saying your wrong but it's worked for me. I've used a hand full of different methods and they all seem to work.

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But just imagine trudging to the next hole sporting a 11 footer. .

They do that for fishing out west for Steelhead and Salmon. What's the difference?

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Guest bigdirty

Get out there and try it. Only way to really know.

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I tried to fish a switch for bulls a few times... Not good. Set a single hand rod up with a shooting head, it's the most efficient I find.

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They do that for fishing out west for Steelhead and Salmon. What's the difference?

Size of the water..... dude you asked for input and now you are arguing your points you asked on, just fish your switch if that's what you want.

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Size of the water..... dude you asked for input and now you are arguing your points you asked on, just fish your switch if that's what you want.

IMO it was just a question, as a reader of the comments, he isn't arguing at all. He clearly just asked, "whats the difference"

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Size of the water..... dude you asked for input and now you are arguing your points you asked on, just fish your switch if that's what you want.

I'm not arguing with you I'm just trying to figure it out. The lower elk where I said I'd be using it is quite wide. And I've watched many videos of guys hiking on smaller tribs with spey rods out in BC. I just didn't get the comment. Not trying to rub you the wrong way at all. You've helped me out in the past and I appreciate it. And I don't have a switch or spey but looking at possibly getting into it and just want info from people that have applied this technique to fishing bulls. I see that they fish this method on the Pitt River and other BC rivers.

 

Cheers,

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Nope, you're right uber. Dead drifting high sticking/a big hunk of meat doesn't work for bull trout. They definitely only chase and attack their meals to get their feed. They always pass up easy meals, and would rather expend the time and energy chasing around smaller fish. I wouldnt know.

Carry on.

In regards to rod selection, never tried switch rods, but as far as most of my bull trout flies go, they're all half chickens and lining a switch properly to have the ability to cast a fly like that, would be a real pain. You'd be looking at 12wt switch, and an 800-1000 grain head, at least in my case. I fish a 9'6 7wt, and chuck those flies with a powerfly taper. Its not pretty, but once you've entered the realm of triple articulated 6-10" flies, you can't really make it "look" pretty. Some might even say its not fly fishing. I just know that I dont lose any sleep over it. But my vote would be there is no need for a switch rod, and overhand casting a switch rod is not pleasant.

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Pick up a true Spey rod. You won't single hand a switch, or you will rarely.Plus as you progress in DH casting you will want a dedicated spey rod to maximize all the tips you can use and cover a lot more water area and search the water column.

 

I high stick a ton of water with my DH you can mend forever it seems like.

Also after using a DH for a while you will incorporate it into your single hand casting more.

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I known fishslayer74 for years he was just asking a question about spey and not trying to be a dick.

 

12th switch 800/1000 grain heads????

 

Fishslayer74 that's bad advise go to fishtails and talk to Chris or Curtis

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I have hooked into more bulls letting a big streamer dead drift along the bottom of the run that I have by wearing myself out trying to provoke an "attack" . Just sayin. My BT rod is a 10 footer. Works OK for high stick / dead drift but a switch would be better.

 

Only thing I'd be worried about is getting TO the river. If you have to fight through thick bush / forest it might be best to leave her broken down till you are on stream? Good luck!

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And one more thought that came to mind, is that anyone targeting bulls on really small waters might want to rethink why they are there in the first place. Especially this time of year. Leave 'em alone for pete's sakes! Any small tribs are spawning grounds for them.

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Are you looking at a switch to spey cast it or overhead cast? I've had a few switch rods ranging from mediocre to great (Method 6119 is my current favourite) and I'd never use any of them overhead unless I was surf casting. I also have a 9' 8wt rod with a 5wt Rio Scandi Short on it. Works great for single hand spey casts so that could be another option to throw in the mix.

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Spey rods are really really shitty at one thing in particular, and that is stripping.

 

I've done a LOT of bull trout fishing (and a ton of Spey fishing)!and most of my success for them has been while stripping. Spey rods are truly unwieldy when trying to use them to strip flies back in, especially if you're trying to do it at any reasonable speed.. Good for swinging, not ideal for stripping. Considering that the elk really isn't that large, I think you'll be frustrated if you're stripping for them.

 

Also, to be able to toss a good size bull trout fly (say a Chuck and Duck), you're going to need in the range of a 600 gr skagit, especially if planning on using a sink tip. When I was in Mongolia, the Spey guys are fishing similar fly size and tips are using 9-10 weight speys, with 700-750 gr skagits (and no, it's not just due to size of the fish) to be able to turn over the flies. Spey fishing comes down to one thing, and that is mass turns over mass.

 

To compare it to steelheading, most steelhead flies are a lot smaller and certainly less heavy than most effective bull trout flies.

 

Personally I bought one of the Sage Smallmouth Bass 290grs. They're built to turn over big bass flies, and have no issue putting a 300 gr sinktip on when I want to get really deep. Short height helps with overhanging trees, etc. also a great pike rod.

 

Whichever way you go, improving your casting will improve your success over any gear change

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Spey rods are really really shitty at one thing in particular, and that is stripping.

 

I've done a LOT of bull trout fishing (and a ton of Spey fishing)!and most of my success for them has been while stripping. Spey rods are truly unwieldy when trying to use them to strip flies back in, especially if you're trying to do it at any reasonable speed.. Good for swinging, not ideal for stripping. Considering that the elk really isn't that large, I think you'll be frustrated if you're stripping for them.

 

Also, to be able to toss a good size bull trout fly (say a Chuck and Duck), you're going to need in the range of a 600 gr skagit, especially if planning on using a sink tip. When I was in Mongolia, the Spey guys are fishing similar fly size and tips are using 9-10 weight speys, with 700-750 gr skagits (and no, it's not just due to size of the fish) to be able to turn over the flies. Spey fishing comes down to one thing, and that is mass turns over mass.

 

To compare it to steelheading, most steelhead flies are a lot smaller and certainly less heavy than most effective bull trout flies.

 

Personally I bought one of the Sage Smallmouth Bass 290grs. They're built to turn over big bass flies, and have no issue putting a 300 gr sinktip on when I want to get really deep. Short height helps with overhanging trees, etc. also a great pike rod.

 

Whichever way you go, improving your casting will improve your success over any gear change

Thanks so much for the response Bcube. I really appreciate it. As a matter of fact I do have a Sage Smallmouth Bass rod. What type of sinktip have you put on yours? Do you use a sinktip line with a 15 foot sinking head or do you just put a piece of 5 to 10 foot sink tip onto the end of your existing line? As well will that rod be enough to bring in some of the 30" plus fish that the Elk can produce? Cheers.

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I just bought an integrated 300 gr ultrafast sink tip, and cut the tip back to 12 feet long. Anything longer is going to be too long to be effective at manipulating your line, especially since the rod is shorter. I don't like looping sink tips on single hand rods as you can feel the hinge when you're casting. I'd also say that 95% of my fishing is using the floating line that comes with the Bass rod. No sinktip is going to beat 5 or 6 split shot at the eye of the fly.

 

It will handle any bull trout if you know how to pull on fish. The rod has a very strong butt end, so make sure you make the rod do the work.

 

Bulls are hardly renowned fighters, so all you have to do is know how to apply pressure. Odds are you'll be fishing pretty heavy leader, so just reef on em. There was a lot of guys using that rod (and the 330 gr Largemouth) as a Baby Tarpon rod. You'll be fine.

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Spey rods are truly unwieldy when trying to use them to strip flies back in, especially if you're trying to do it at any reasonable speed.. Good for swinging, not ideal for stripping.

I agree if you're using Slick Shooter. I've found that using the Connect Core running line or a Switch Chucker isn't bad to strip at all, though you're not going to get the same distance. I've been pretty happy using Connect Core on the Bow, but my steelhead rig still has Slick Shooter on it.

Whichever way you go, improving your casting will improve your success over any gear change

Not to mention having to learn a new casting style. Spey casting isn't really something you master in a day or two.

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