The Battle between GOOD and EVIL

30 May

The battle between good and evil, or fly versus spin fishermen has raged on for many years. Personally I have choosen fur and feather over gear simply because I like to make my own flies and the art of casting a fly rod proficiently is challenging. Yes the odds trend more towards the fish rather than the fisherman when using the long rod to do battle, but the gear guys don’t exactly win all the time. Especially when the long rod is in the hands of someone who’s knows what they are doing. They do however have a huge advantage of covering more water, far more easier than even the best fly bum.

A few weeks ago I got to experience the best of both worlds chasing a freshwater monster that has no other aquatic enemies but itself. FREE WILLIE!!!! I met up with a guy who has a ledgendary status amongst Wv Musky fishermen, much like Paul Bunion does with lumberjacks. Except his blue ox is a jet boat named “Secret” and his ax is…well an ax. He actually carried an ax on his side, who messes with a guy that carries an ax? I don’t. Yes he is from the Dark side, but I needed to see fish move and how, when, and where to move them.

We met up at one of the local ponds, after a handshake and a brief conversation/inspection we were in position. I’ll make this next part as brief as possible so I can get to my point. WE MOVED A LOT OF FISH!!!! I’m not sure if it was pure blind luck or our awesome musky fishing skills, most would lean to the latter. I learned 3 things: 1 Make bigger flies. 2 Get a bigger net. 3 Calm Down.

Back to the whole good vs evil thing. Eric shared some pure fisherman born wisdom with me when I questioned his tactics. He has and still does fly fish for the big beast, but the musky is kinda like a Heavyweight prize fighter with no stamina. Big mean ugly and can put a hurt-n on you real quick. I’m pretty sure they have taken human life. But if the fight extends for to long he’s done and may never recover (this is true for any fish, especially the Essox). Gear fishing for them only helps decrease the chances of a fish loosing it’s life from an extended fight. His first fish hooked took about 90 seconds to go from hook set to net and this was no little fish. 40 plus that tail walked its way across the net and off the hook. He has way to much respect for the fish to see it killed. Using his Jedi like police skills, yes another cop on my list of fishing partners(#4), he would talk to almost every passing bass fishermen to see how the bite was for them. Seemingly waiting for one to say they had hooked and killed a musky as some bass fishermen may do to help “protect” their fishery. Thankfully none were taken because I’m pretty sure he’s killed before (please don’t take anything I say as Fact). Funny thing was when he ended a conversation with them he usually asked “seen any musky?” In a tone spoken in a muffled way, seemingly not wanting them to understand the question or hoping they don’t know they are here. Their reactions were the same as if someone asked if they had seen big foot. Strange.

SO where am I now on my feelings towards fly vs gear fishing? Well for musky I’ll be doing both for now. And I’ll leave the reason for it to be that gear helps save on the wear and tear that my elbow and wrist gets when casting big flies for big fish all day long.  And using gear to throw heavy monster flies measured in feet and weighed in pounds is an art in and of itself.  Plus a shit ton of fun!!

If your gonna fly fish for them, make sure you use at least a 10 wt with 60-100 pound test and a steel bite wire. BE READY to set the hook as soon as your fly hits the water. Strip set the hook and put some BILL DANCE into it. My limited experience has been that they don’t travel far after being hooked, so you won’t want to dick around with getting your fish on the reel. Worry about keeping the rod tip down so the fish doesn’t jump and do a water walk. Push your gear to the limits to get the fish in the net quickly. As with all fish keep them in the water while you get your camera ready. De-barb your hooks or limit yourself to a single hook close to the head of the fly, they like to kill quickly by hitting their prey head first and a trailer hook will likely end up in the fish’s gill. When releasing hold them in the water until they can keep themselves upright. Wait for their tail to begin to move and let her go. Another good tip I learned from CAPTAIN AWESOME himself Kent Klewein is to carry coke (the drinking kind) with you to stop a fish from bleeding. Musky bleed, who wouldn’t with hooks that size. If your fish is bleeding give him a good hit of coke to help him stop.

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2 Responses to “The Battle between GOOD and EVIL”

  1. Leia April 13, 2013 at 7:01 AM #

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  1. The Battle between GOOD and EVIL - May 31, 2012

    […] The battle between good and evil, or fly versus spin fishermen has raged on for many years. Personally I choose fur and feather over gear simply because I like to make my own flies and the art of casting a fly rod proficiently is challenging. Yes the odds trend more towards the fish rather than […] BentRodMedia […]

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