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Saltwater Fly Fishing Bonefish, Tarpon, Redfish, Permit, False Albacore, Striped Bass, etc...


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Old 02-16-2005, 08:58 PM
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Default Saltwater Fly Line

Hi Folks

Can someone help me with fly lines? What is your opinion for the best fly line for an 8wt rod fly fishing for bonefish in the tropics? I've tried a few but am not totally pleased with any of them. I consider myself a good caster. I can cast to tailing reds on the LA and TX coast and do just fine. Does the tropical heat have an extreme effect on a fly line? Can you help?

Bob
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Old 02-17-2005, 10:31 AM
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I recommend either Scientific Anglers Mastery Bonefish or Cortland's Tropic-Plus in both 555 and 444 Lazer. If you want to shorten your leader go with the Ghost-Tip variation.

These are fine lines and specifically engineered warm water fishing. All are excellent in their casting qualities providing all the distance and accuracy you might desire.

Doug
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Old 02-17-2005, 12:40 PM
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I totally agree with doug's recommendations but would like to list some other options in case you've already tried those.

I've got the Airflo bonefish line in an eight and like it pretty well. They use a totally different material for the coating and while its smooth like a cold weather line, it does feel somehow harder. Shoots well too. It does behave well in the heat.

Rio makes some good lines too, I just don't have any experience with them.

Cortland also makes a redfish line that is almost exactly like a bass bug line but intended for use in the salt in the heat. The redfish line will behave more like a shooting head, and the bonefish line better for carrying line in the air. If fishing for bones off the bow of a boat i might rather have the redfish line, due to its quicker loading proficiency. But you might find it harder to be accurate.
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Old 02-19-2005, 06:31 AM
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Very good info posted. I would also add Rio lines. Their Saltwater taper is a good all around choice, but they make a Powerflex Core Bonefish line as well as a Florida Bonefish line, which has a 9 ft. clear sinking tip for fish in water 2 to 4 ft.
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Old 02-20-2005, 09:12 PM
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Do you think the ghost tip on the Cortland line really makes a difference? It seems like the fish would notice the fly line regardless if its clear or not. Also, what type of leader attachment would you use on a ghost tip?

Bob
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Old 02-21-2005, 08:55 AM
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good question about the ghost tip.

It will undoubtedly get your sinking fly down a little quicker, and be less likely to spook fish after the cast than a neon orange line. I said after the cast because if you have only three feet of leader sticking out from a big thick 8wt line, the commotion caused by that line hitting the water might be more likely to spook fish.

Back to reality, if we're talking about redfish here, then it will usually take a lot more commotion than that to spook them. We're talking about a fish which has been caught thousands if not millions of times by a 1/2 OZ plug hitting the water within inches of its head, and that will eat a dead shrimp off of 40lb mono.

Having a short leader sticking off of that ghost tip line will almost definitely make it kick over harder and give you fewer problems with the wind. You could just do a loop-to-loop connection with 20lb mono, tie the fly on with a loop and be good to go. (damn, i've almost sold myself on one) If you wanted a little better leader performance, you could make the butt 30lb and do a double surgeon's down to 15 or so.

For your knot, I have full confidence in a well tied nail knot. For anything below a ten weight, I tie a standard nail knot with 40 lb mono. For heavier rigging, I double the fly line over and do the nail knot around two thicknesses. I have rigged dozens of lines for tarpon this way and never had a failure.
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Old 02-21-2005, 12:26 PM
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Bob,

Regret that I failed to amplify my remarks; There are two Ghost Tips ... The one on the 555 Tropic Plus is a 5-foot clear floater. The one on the 444 Lazer is a 7-foot intermediate. You can find my review of the 555 Tropic Plu Ghost Tip at: http://www.hcangler.com/cortland_555.htm. If the link doesn't work, please let me know.

Unlike Cliff, I am ordinarily not a big fan of the nail knot except in certain curcumstances. Instead, I use a whip-finished loop secured by at least 12 half-hitches and then glued. However, I did not choose this for the 555s. The 555's construction is so different I went with a short braided connector further secured to the line by two nail knots.

It is a good rule to remember that the shorter the leader that can catch fish, the better off you are. And, if you use loop-to-loop connections, lengthing of shortening the leader becomes a simple task. During my workup for the 555 review the leader I made was a total of 6-feet in two stages -- 60/40. In fishing the salt, I typically use hard mono and remain very conscious of the leader's diameter more so than the pound-test rating. Sometimes what worked yesterday doesn't work so well today all because of the leader and the size of the leader butt. The bottom line is to experiment. What's good for Bull Moose is not necessarily good for you.

Here's a trick that sometimes works wonders ... Let's say you are fishing the flats with a 7-weight rig with a knotless leader that has a butt diameter or .023 and an overall length of 9-feet. Mr. Wind begins to blow. Your fly no longer turns over. Try this: loop in around a foot or so of heavier leader material - say .027 to .030 - between the line and leader butt. Next, shorten the leader's midsection & tippet and, at the same time, increase the class size of the shortened tippet. Believe it or not, these two small changes just might keep you in the game.

Doug
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Old 02-21-2005, 12:39 PM
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Doug's reply made me realize that the way I rigged those heavier lines was with the nail knot making the loop in the end of the fly line, but the loop-to-loop connection was between the loop in the fly line and the butt of the leader. There was not a piece of mono sticking off of the end of the doubled over fly line that the leader was attached to. I usually would do two or three nail knots on the fly line in this case.

Thanks to Doug for inadvertently reminding me of the best way to do what I was referring to.

I also have a system for the other end that allows easier change out of lines on the same spool. Any interested?
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