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

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Old 05-08-2012, 11:24 AM
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Default Need help starting out Surf FF

Im going to begin Surf Fly Fishing in a few weeks in South Jersey. Ive asked about flies at the local shops. These guys are clueless to saltwater FF. Im told to expect to catch Blues and Stripers.

- Can anyone tell me what flies (types, colors, and sizes) Im going to need to start?

My rig: Orvis Access 10wt, 9ft, tip-flex with an Orvis Hydros LA V, loaded with 10wt clear intermediate WF line. It currently has a 15# tapered leader on it. I was told I can replace it with 20# mono. I have wire tips as well.

- Can you give me an idea of what mono to use as tippet?

I have my Cabelas First Flight waders.

I know I will need a stripping basket as well, pliers, knife...Anything else?
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Old 05-08-2012, 11:47 AM
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Default Re: Need help starting out Surf FF

Joe, you can start with this post by Mark in the FAQ sub-forum
http://www.theflyfishingforum.com/fo...tml#post303976
You'll see that he recommends Clousers and deceivers as flies to start with and that's fine. If I was going to stick to one fly, one color, it would be a yellow or chartreuse over white deceiver. A fly with the "Ray's fly" colors of olive over yellow over white would be my second choice. (I like pink and white too, but that's just the way I roll )
A 1/0 hook is a good place to start and I know folks who only use that size. Personally the flies I carry are tied on hooks sizes from #4 to 3/0
For a leader I usually use a three part hand tied mono leader of 4' 40#test, 2' 25#test, and 2' 15# test. Other times I'll just go with 6' straight 20# mono.... It all depends on the size, weight, air resistance of the fly
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Old 05-08-2012, 11:49 AM
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Default Re: Need help starting out Surf FF

For flies you can't go wrong with your basic bucktail decievers in red/white, white/blue, black/yellow combos, along with clousers in just about any color combow andsome good poppers. 15 is fine for tippet but 20 can't hurt either I would get a few spools of Maxima clear or green from 8 on up to 25 for different conditions. Have fun man blues are an absolute blast on the fly!
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Old 05-08-2012, 01:43 PM
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Default Re: Need help starting out Surf FF

.... I read your post again.... You wanted to know what brand of mono to use ?
Ande is one of the best as is Trilene Big Game. I use Climax and Ande

I think the most important skill to learn when moving from the fresh water to the salt is tying good knots. You need to be able to tie them in the dark or while your hands are shaking in the middle of a blitz
The only way to do it is to practice. Get an old spool of mono and some nippers, sit in front of the TV and do it ... over and over.
Albright knot, blood knot and some different loops especially the non-slip mono loop. Then use the ones you tie the best. The Bimini twist is the strongest loop and you should tie some just for fun even though you can get by with something easier. You'll see

You mentioned that you have wire for the bluefish. The 64 strand "knotable" wire is pretty straight forward to deal with and you're best off with that.
The single strand stainless piano wire or the 7 strand coated wire are much more of a painintheass. The single strand wire kinks easily and needs a haywire twist knot .. no thank you. The coated wire is tied with the Albright knot on the leader side and a figure 8 knot to the hook..... It takes a while to do and it's easy to muff if you're nervous. Figure 8 knots will kink every time if you draw them from the wrong end.
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Old 05-08-2012, 03:32 PM
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Default Re: Need help starting out Surf FF

Great advise already given. I use Yozuri Hybrid now to make my leaders & for tippet, but have used both Ande & Big Game in the past, both of which work well. I started using the Hybrid on some of my baitcasters & liked it so tried it with the fly rods. Liked it there too, so now only buy one type of line. I'm not a person who believes fish are smart enough to see a line, leader or tippet & know what it is, so don't use fluorocarbon, which is rather expensive. However, since the Hybrid is made with a blend of fluoro & nylon, it has better abrasion resistance than many "mono" or copolymer type nylon lines. Another reason I use it for leader & tippet.

You don't have to get real technical with leaders & tippets for the northeast salt, but as Riptide said, what you use will depend on the flies being used. Just don't make the mistake of thinking that longer is better, particularly with an intermediate line & sinking flies. Like Rip I generally keep my leaders & tippets in the 4-8' length range & often with a 16-20lb test tippet.

One thing, be prepared for many days with no fish. Surf fishing is not like river, stream or lake fishing. The fish you're after will only be there if there's something for them to eat. That's the way it is, as the fish will move with the bait. No bait, probably no fish either. There are places along any beach that will attract fish, but you have to be able to identify them. Otherwise they can all look the same. You also have to understand the currents & tides.

Structures, inlets, backwaters, etc if they're are any, help attract both predator & prey, but with those long sandy beaches often you just have to get lucky & be there at the right time & right place. However, when you do, you'll remember it for a lifetime!

I don't do much surf fishing now, as I live too far away. I do more fishing in tidal creeks. But I do remember seeing Bluefish blitzing bait against a beach many years ago. They were busting the surface everywhere & could literally be caught 20 ft from the edge of the beach and seen chasing bait in the waves. I even remember seeing them chase baitfish onto the beach, then flip themselves back into the water with the next wave. That my friend is something I'll never forget!
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Old 05-08-2012, 03:56 PM
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Default Re: Need help starting out Surf FF

..that's a good point Jim makes
Surf structure can be hard to read and the hydraulics and currents constantly change with the amount of water coming over the bars
(the terms "surf fishing" and "salt water fishing" are not interchangeable )
You'll want to read the structure at in the daylight at low tide when you can see the most of the bars, cuts, troughs, cusps, and bowls.
That way you'll better understand how the gamefish will use the structure to their advantage

I love fly fishing the surf ! Nothing like it !

Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 05-08-2012, 04:36 PM
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Default Re: Need help starting out Surf FF

Quote:
You'll want to read the structure at in the daylight at low tide when you can see the most of the bars, cuts, troughs, cusps, and bowls.
That way you'll better understand how the gamefish will use the structure to their advantage
Rip, thanks for adding this. Low tide conditions can teach a lot about an area! When I mentioned structures in my previous post, I was thinking in terms of piers, jetties, breakwaters & such. But as you've added, there is "structure" to a beach. That's what I meant when I said places that attract fish, I just didn't go into the same detail.

I have a book that describes what you've said very well, with excellent detailed drawings showing where bars, cuts, etc will be located. Such information can shorten the learning curve quite a bit. I fished the surf long before I bought the book, but it helped me better understand these areas. I just have to figure out which book it's in!

I'll post it as soon as I do.

OK, "Fly Fishing The Coast" by Ed Mitchell & "Inshore Fly Fishing" by Lou Tabory both have some pretty good detail that helps explain & identify the areas that Rip has mentioned.
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Old 05-08-2012, 04:54 PM
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Default Re: Need help starting out Surf FF

Ohyeah, there's some science involved in understanding how the structure affects the currents, and once you understand how it works you can walk down a beach and KNOW that you're at the best spot around and if there's bait and any gamefish, they'll end up right there

You're probably thinking about Lou Tabory's book In Shore Fly Fishing or maybe Ed Mitchell's book Fly Rodding the Coast. Lou's book explains this very well.
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Old 05-08-2012, 05:00 PM
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Default Re: Need help starting out Surf FF

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Ohyeah, there's some science involved in understanding how the structure affects the currents, and once you understand how it works you can walk down a beach and KNOW that you're at the best spot around and if there's bait and any gamefish, they'll end up right there

You're probably thinking about Lou Tabory's book In Shore Fly Fishing or maybe Ed Mitchell's book Fly Rodding the Coast. Both explain this pretty well
Yep, I guess we're on the same page!
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Old 05-08-2012, 05:51 PM
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Default Re: Need help starting out Surf FF

You will definately want to have a stripping basket in the surf. What part of South Jersey? I wander those parts pretty frequently, you might just run into me
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