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Newbie intro

Posted: Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:51 pm
by JohnTheWine
Hi Folks

Newcomer to this forum so let me introduce myself before I start asking questions!!
Aged 73. Retired Winemaker (which explains my pseudonym!!) Fished in the UK on canals and lakes until 1975 using fibreglass, greenheart and split cane rods. Emigrated 16 years ago and started a successful Fruit Wine and Liqueur business which have now retired from. Took up fishing again in NZ and bought Spinning, Sea and Fly Rods - tried them all over last two years and have settled on Fly Fishing - love the challenge!!
For Fly I initially bought a 9’ 6wt Airflo Stealth combo for $150 from H&F in Timaru and had one outing with it before I trapped it in the car door and …. buggerr!! Got a Kilwell Dragonfly 9’ 6wt combo for $170 from our local shop in Waimate and have enjoyed using that …. meanwhile, I repaired the Airflo by Gorilla glueing a galv nail into the break and now use it as a spare.
Have had reasonable success with the Kilwell with Trout from the Ahuriri, Waitaki, Buller, Motueka and Maerewhenua - most recent being a 5lb Rainbow (All time best for me!!)
I’ve been having trouble casting distance which hasn’t mattered much on the places I fish so I decided to put a 7wt line on to see if it would help but, as no doubt you will all know, it didn’t!!
Why extra distance you might ask, well just last week I visited Fish & Game’s Office in Temuka and Hamish there put me on to the Temuka River for a try. Problem was that, although there were plenty of fish, I had to go into the shallows to get my line out to them - and promptly spooked everything around….. would liked to have crouched on the bank and put a line out - maybe 50’ or so would have done it. This afternoon I took the two rods into the garden to test and, no surprises, the 7 wt line struggled (strangely enough the Airflo coped OK with its bit of nail!!) Changed back to 6wt line and everything flowed from both rods but only hitting 40’
Thinking of upgrading my Rod anyway and would like your thoughts on the following - H&F suggested going up slightly with an Airflo Blade Combo at $499 or, I see that Complete Angler have a Sage Approach 5wt for about $345 - any feedback appreciated. I could go to a Sage X but I’m not sure I can do it justice and, if it is the wrong choice, that would be an expensive rod lying around - as an aside, any shops Timaru - Oamaru area that have rod testing??
The other question is that I wear strong prescription glasses and would like to, maybe, get some polaroid glasses that go over them - have plastic ‘clip-ons’ but not much good.
About it for now - thanks for reading - won’t be so long next time!!


Re: Newbie intro

Posted: Tue Apr 24, 2018 10:26 pm
by Steve
Welcome to the forum John!

We did have a casting instructor or two who used to frequent the forum, not sure we still do have one or not, but that's likely what you need first and foremost :) Though the nail probably doesn't help a lot either! There are probably some old threads re casting somewhere in the depths of the forum, I'll see if i can find some

A good line helps, the packages tend to come with cheaper lines, though lubricating them regularly will make them cast better.

Think a 7 weight is too heavy too for smaller streams like the Temuka, it'll spook the fish too :)

Re: Newbie intro

Posted: Tue Apr 24, 2018 10:30 pm
by Steve
Here you go - note this is on the old forum - it's read only now ... ;f=4;t=277

And there will be more on the posters website if you follow the links

Re: Newbie intro

Posted: Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:48 pm
by JohnTheWine
Hi Steve
Many thanks for getting back to me so quickly. Have had a look at the link you posted - very informative - and I'll have a practice tomorrow when I go out on the river for a few hours. There's a big Rainbow on our local Waihao River I spotted recently - better luck this time eh??
Must also commend you for not 'pushing' your wares from the Fly Shop to me - you may well get some business from me solely because of that!!
All the best

Re: Newbie intro

Posted: Thu Apr 26, 2018 9:38 am
by fraser hocks
Yea I think as Steve so rightly pointed out, getting casting lessons will improve the whole experience for you. So often I see people go out and spend a fortune on high end equipment thinking its going to make them cast better, when in many instances it will really be at a determent to their casting. Now don't get me wrong I'm always for buying the latest kit, but if your casting stroke isn't spot on then, your just wasting money.

Maybe check with your local tackle stores or local fly fishing club and see if you cant get some instruction. Joining a local club also means you can get to fish with others more experienced. You get to learn stream craft, fly selection as well as maybe some casting instruction.

Re: Newbie intro

Posted: Thu Apr 26, 2018 10:13 am
by Dave
Have you been back to H&F to see if you can get the broken section of your Airflo rod replaced?
As Fraser said joining a Club is a good idea. As well as getting some help with casting and stream craft you may also get the chance to have a cast with other rods. Also lines vary considerably and different lines will work better on different rods for different people. If you are going to buy anything new make sure you try casting with the rod and line combo you are looking at. I have a Rio Gold line that I use a lot of the time but only on one of the #6 rods I have. The other rod I normally use does not feel good with the Rio Gold on it.

Re: Newbie intro

Posted: Thu Apr 26, 2018 9:07 pm
by JohnTheWine
Many thanks Steve, Dave and Frazer.
Have made enquiries and there’s a chance that the local Fishing Club maybe holding some Fly fishing practice this winter - I’ll know more next week.
Dave, didn’t bother to take rod back to H&F as didn’t think it was worth it but thanks for the thought.
As I said, I was out on the Waihao today for 5 hours and had a good practice using the tips Steve directed me to. Hitting the 50’ mark with no problem now the generic WF6 line is back on but will get a better line next and more practice this winter.
Suffering from TAS these days so want another rod despite not actually needing one!!!