Trout Spey Hacks

5 Easy tricks to get the most out of your trout spey experience

Writing about fly fishing really helps me learn and understand more about my personal fishing experience. Since I’ve started writing about Trout Spey, I’ve had several game changing ah ha! moments.

My casting has improved dramatically, my fly designs are on-point and I’m having a lot of fun. Here are 5 simple things that I hope will help you on your journey:

1. Mono Running Line

If youre going to use it, why are you spending upwards of $40.00 for what amounts to a tiny bit of line for a ton of cash??? I recently stumbled upon Amnesia (wait, what was I just talking about?). I’m not taking about being hit on the head and forgetting who I am, I’m talking about the leader material that comes in about 330 feet of cheap, plentiful, easy-to-handle and reliable mono goodness. It costs about $8.00 and one spool will last you a long time. Currently, I use 20 and 25 lb Amnesia and it handles extremely well compared to its more expensive and thinner counterparts.

2. Rod Wraps

Chances are, if you’re like me, you don’t transport your rod in a tube from the car to the river. And if you’re really like me, you don’t store your rods in the tubes until the season is over. This leaves the tip of the rod and the rod blank exposed to a number of things conspiring to turn your 4 piece rod into a 5 piece… You don’t need anything fancy. Elastic hair ties or rubber bands work well. There are ties specifically manufactured for fishing rods which can be found at most fly shops and sporting goods stores as well. The important thing is to keep the tip safe and to tie all 4 pieces of rod together (putting a tie at both ends of your rod is a good idea). Also, placing your reel cover on will also help hold everything together.

3. Buying Your First or your 15th Rod

The more I get into 2-handed casting, the more I think I need to buy every rod known to man. I look at spey and switch rods like mini sports cars and I’m a collector! But damn, they are expensive! And since I’m not in jail, you’re probably wondering how a broke-ass fishing guide can afford lots of rods. Well, my dirty little secret is that I use eBay a ton. There are so many “used” switch and spey rods that are practically brand new out there. You can pick up a pretty good rod and in many cases, you’ll get a wicked steal by being patient (like the classic Sage rod pictured above). It seems that many people buy spey and switch rods, try them out a couple times, decide they suck, and sell them. Their loss, our gain! Just don’t bid against me ☺

4. Casting Hack

There are days where I’m embarrassed to be on the river and then there are days I feel like I could be putting on a casting clinic for an entire stadium full of people. Casting is that on or off for me. Luckily, I have my buddy Paul Tornow that I can lean on for casting fixes. Here’s something we talked about and I worked on three days ago that has transformed my casting: focus on loading your rod and keeping it loaded throughout the entire cast. I noticed that I was working really hard but basically dumping line out there instead of casting it. I knew I was adding slack into the cast by trying too hard but didn’t know the cause. The problem was that I wasn’t actually loading the rod on my initial sweep. Once I began to load the rod and keep it loaded, I was booming casts out consistently. Try that simple thought and see if it helps you.

5. Equipment

When it comes to the gear you’re lugging around are you a Sherpa or the “keep it simple” type? I’ve seen the Sherpas out there, you know who you are. 2 or 3 rods, big old backpack, hip pack, 9 fly boxes, 600 flies, every fly fishing tool known to man, cook stove, you name it. For me, it’s about carrying only the bare necessities. I try to think of things I truly need as opposed to carrying things that I may need. If it can’t fit it in my waders, in my jacket or hip pouch I don’t need it. A handful of flies, some leader material, a few sink tips and a small snack are about all I’ll need for a full day on the water. It’s liberating not carrying a week’s worth of fishing and survival gear while tromping around the river. Try it and see if the minimalist lifestyle suits you.

As always, thank you so much for reading and do feel free to share this if you found it interesting! Also, hit that little green heart. It helps more people discover things they are passionate about!