Fly Fishing Expert Panel Results #2

Fly Fishing Expert Panel Results #2
A Fine Golden Trout

If you haven't read the original Q&A post, check it out before you read this post:  http://www.flyfisherman.com/2011/12/21/fly-fishing-qa/


The next two anglers from the fly fishing Expert Panel are Devin Olsen and Charles Card.  Like all the panelists, these two are as "fishy" as they come...  Devin and Charles are both passionate anglers who just can't get enough fishing.

Check out the differences in opinion on the importance of a quality fly line.  Each anglers' thoughts on slow action rods and thin tippet for nymphs vs. dries comments are also quite different.  From my perspective the major difference between these two anglers is a simple preference of technique.  While both anglers are exceptionally well rounded, Devin spends a lot of time on lakes and rivers tending toward subsurface techniques, while Charles ties on a dry far more often than a subsurface imitation and focuses the majority of his days on moving water.  Please don't confuse their preference with an inability to do anything else as both anglers excel at dries, nymphs and streamers but their preferred techniques show through in their answers.  Interesting stuff!


Below are their comments:


Devin Olsen

On a scale of 1 to 10 please rate each line's importance in maximizing fly fishing success for Trout.

1 = not important, 10 = very important

How important are the following:  (1-10)

Casting ability = 7 Most of the time an average caster can get away with it but there are times when pinpoint accuracy and distance are critical. Good casting is also crucial to minimizing tangles and thereby maximizing fishing time.

Knot tying skills = 3 Anyone can learn to tie knots with all the instruction out there now days.

Ability to read water = 10 I would add the ability to approach the water you read to this category.

Fly selection (available options in an anglers fly box) = 7 For me this would describe having lots of weight options for the patterns you do have.

Fly pattern selection (Royal Wulff, hares ear, Prince etc'¦) = 5

Wading ability/technique = 5 Although it may be more important since I probably take it for granted.

Quality of the fly rod = 6 I wouldn't be without my favorite rods but if you forced me to fish a lesser rod I could still get it done though I would do it begrudgingly.

Quality of the fly reel = 2 This number would change if you are consistently dealing with >18" trout

Quality of the fly line = 4 as long as you are willing to replace a poor fly line often a poor one works fine but is less durable in the long run.

Quality of leader and tippet = 4 I wouldn't scrimp on it but I got away with it during my high school years and was still successful.

Quality of hooks = 8 I believe that a sharp hook that doesn't bend is one of the most overlooked links in consistency of success. It's also one that's easily fixed if you know what to look for.

For the statements below please use 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5 for your answers.

1 = strongly disagree, 2 = disagree, 3 = indifferent, 4 = agree, 5 = strongly agree.

Ultra fast action rods are best for Trout fishing = 2

Fast action rods are best for Trout fishing = 4

Medium-fast action rods are best for Trout fishing = 4

Slow action rods are best for Trout fishing = 1

Fly pattern trumps presentation = 2 At least 90% of the time

Presentation trumps fly pattern = 5 At least 90% of the time

Thin tippet is more important for dry flies than it is for nymphs = 2

Thin tippet is more important for nymphs than it is for dry flies = 4 Sink rate with the least amount of weight possible

Tying your own flies is crucial to maximizing success = 4 Endless customization to your specific needs.

Fluorocarbon tippet is best for nymphing = 4 Abrasion resistance and lower visibility.

Fluorocarbon tippet is best for dry flies = 4 I don't agree with argument that you need nylon to help float your dry flies. If anything I want my tippet to sink and not leave an imprint on the water near my fly.

Fluorocarbon tippet is best for streamers = 5 Abrasion resistance

Nylon tippet is best for dry flies = 2

Devin Olsen grew up fishing the brown trout filled rivers of Utah, which are still some of his favorite waters.  He started tying flies and fishing them by age 9.  By the age of 12 he and his friends were bumming rides from parents to fish in the nearby canyons emptying into the Salt Lake Valley.  He hasn't been able to get away from fish since and has built his life to surround his passion.  Devin has been fortunate enough to live in Utah, Colorado, Idaho, and Montana, which has exposed him to a variety of the West's best trout filled rivers and lakes.  By age 19 he was looking to take fishing to the next level, that year he fished in the Fly Fishing Master's Competition and started guiding.  He began working with Lance Egan and Ryan Barnes in 2005 at the Cabelas' fly shop in Lehi, UT.  They introduced him to Fly Fishing Team USA and he worked hard to become proficient at the techniques needed to compete on an international level.  He made Fly Fishing Team USA in 2006 and has fished in three World Fly Fishing Championships in Scotland 2009, Poland 2010, and Italy 2011.  He was the silver medalist at the 2011 National Fly Fishing Championship and the silver medalist in 2008 and the gold medalist in 2010 at the America Cup International Fly Fishing tournament.  When he's not thinking of competition he's planning his next trip for golden trout in the Wind River Mountains of Wyoming or finding new water anywhere he can.

Devin is currently pursuing a Master's degree in Fishery Science at Colorado State University.  He has been married for 6 years to his wonderfully understanding wife Julia who has realized that the easiest way to spend time with him is to go fishing.

A Fine Golden Trout

Charles Card

On a scale of 1 to 10 please rate each line's importance in maximizing fly fishing success for Trout.

1 = not important, 10 = very important

How important are the following:  (1-10)

Casting ability = 10;    If you can't get it out there, and where you want it, Good luck!

Knot tying skills = 5;    With most lines and leaders already set up for loop-2-loop connections, and pro's in most shops to setup reels, all that's needed is knowledge of at most two knots — one for tippet, and one for the fly.

Ability to read water = 8;   I give this an eight because you can still be an effective angler by covering sheer quantity of water, but the best anglers do spend more time on the prime lies.

Fly selection (available options in an anglers fly box) = 8;   Well rounded anglers always have patterns to cover most aquatic insects, and a handful of terrestrial imitations, especially the traveling fisherperson.

Fly pattern selection (Royal Wulff, hares ear, Prince etc'¦) = 6;   Trout have been known to sample many items to check for possible food sources, so having every new pattern is not too crucial.  The only exception is during specific hatches. Then the angler better have a good imitation of the active bug.

Wading ability/technique = 9;   Regarding personal safety, this is very important.  More emphasis should be put on safe wading technique and the gear that will help keep you safe.  As far as angling success, stealth in approach is more important.

Quality of the fly rod = 4;   A quality rod is a luxury. Even the worst made rods, and long willows will do the job.

Quality of the fly reel = 2;   Even less important than the rod, but a fine reel is more fun to own than a great rod for some reason?...

Quality of the fly line = 10;   Nothing beats a well performing fly line, and is critical for the cast, mends, and handling.  Nothing is quite as frustrating as a line that doesn't do the job.

Quality of leader and tippet =(Leader= 5, Tippet= 10)  I can get by with the same butt and midsection leader for most of a year, but I find myself seeking the thinnest but strongest tippet material available.  The tippet is usually the weakest link in the tackle, so it makes sense to seek the best.

Quality of hooks = 10;  The piece of gear that connects you to the prize. Better be good!

For the statements below please use 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5 for your answers.

1 = strongly disagree, 2 = disagree, 3 = indifferent, 4 = agree, 5 = strongly agree.

Ultra fast action rods are best for Trout fishing = 3

Fast action rods are best for Trout fishing = 3

Medium-fast action rods are best for Trout fishing = 3

Slow action rods are best for Trout fishing = 3;   Rod action is personal.  They can all be made effective tools in hands that are used to the traits and characteristics of each action.

Fly pattern trumps presentation = 1

Presentation trumps fly pattern = 5

Thin tippet is more important for dry flies than it is for nymphs = 2

Thin tippet is more important for nymphs than it is for dry flies = 2

Tying your own flies is crucial to maximizing success = 3;  With the multitude of patterns available from the commercial market, you don't need to be a tyer, but some of the satisfaction from fooling fish with your own creation, is lost.

Fluorocarbon tippet is best for nymphing = 5

Fluorocarbon tippet is best for dry flies = 5;  But all-flouro leaders are terrible for dries.  The thick butt sinks more than nylon, snagging bottom (especially when achieving longer drifts), and drowning the dry during each pick-up, requiring more false casting to dry the fly.

Fluorocarbon tippet is best for streamers = 5

Nylon tippet is best for dry flies = 3;   Nylon is still great material, and the best value.  However, it absorbs water and therefore loses as much as 50% strength after a good soaking, and is less abrasive resistant than fluorocarbon.  For these two reasons, I prefer fluorocarbon tippets to nylon tippets.

Charles Card is another person who likes to fish, and resides on Guide row in Dutch John, because it's as close as you can live to the Green River.

Charles, or Chazz as I call him isn't one to boast, so I'll word it up for him.  If you haven't had the chance to watch Chazz fish, tie flies or walk the walk, you ain't seen nuthin' yet!  Chazz has been guiding on the Green River since his teen years and is one of the finest guides I've had the pleasure of fishing with.  Charles currently works for Trout Unlimited and would love to have your support in stopping a silly water project that is threatening the Green.  To learn more visit  www.ourdamwater.org  and Sportsmen for the Green Facebook page.

Chazz (holding fish) with a client on the Green River

Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Temporary Price Reduction.

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Fly Fisherman stories delivered right to your inbox.