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Tight Lines Over 20'?

Re: Tight Lines Over 20'?

Postby erik.ostrander » Sun Nov 04, 2012 8:14 pm

GregM wrote:In my opening post I said "... that first straight-in run on a long line has me baffled." And it still does. A fish can cover 20 feet almost as fast as I can swing to the right or left. And I still won't have a tight line. I'm not sure if there IS a solution. I just hope the fish keeps going so I end up with a tight line, the rod in play, and quiet waters are close at hand. (You don't chase after fish on the Arkansas - the rocks are greased.)

You're just reaching the limits of tenkara. Try a longer rod, or one with a reel if you need to cast that far all the time. :)
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Re: Tight Lines Over 20'?

Postby Daniel @ Tenkara USA » Mon Nov 05, 2012 2:04 pm

Greg, in my experience the only time the line should be allowed to slack is the moment it is within reach - if that.
Keeping your arm close to your body, start angling the rod back as if pointing it back behind you.
At this moment reach for the line. DO NOT extend your arm high as it will make it very difficult to control the fish and to reach the line
When you have grabbed the line pull it steadily and CALMLY. The fish will hardly, hardly ever want to run to you if there is any tension on the line. The trick is to do it steadily and calmly, the fish I used to lose were those I rushed to bring in and when you're rushing at one point or another there may be slack formed. A steady pull will keep slack from happening. If the fish runs to you at any point you can retrieve the line faster.
I should say that THERE IS a always a way to improve on this; it took me a while to feel very comfortable with most fish I caught, I lost a lot of fish in the beginning when using a long line, but experience will teach you.
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Re: Tight Lines Over 20'?

Postby GregM » Mon Nov 05, 2012 2:49 pm

Daniel @ Tenkara USA wrote:Greg, in my experience the only time the line should be allowed to slack is the moment it is within reach - if that.

The fish will hardly, hardly ever want to run to you if there is any tension on the line.

To clarify - this scenario is infrequent, but it has happened enough to make me search for a solution.

So for discussion sake -
Assume an Amago at 13.5', 20' of line, and 4' of tippet, for a total of 24'.
If I extend my arm vertically I can get the bottom of the Amago to 7.5'. Add 13.5 for the rod to get a total of 21' vertical. Any additional line will be slack. A direct run will result in a "not tight" line, and if there is a head shake the fish is usually gone. If I'm standing in 2' of water it is worse.

But, as you say, if there is tension "to me" the fish will likely want to go somewhere else. Perhaps my issue is that I am setting to the side versus up (in anticipation of controlling the the fish), and the fish, not wanting to "follow the lead", bolts directly into me.

Interesting thought. I'll pay attention to the direction of my sets and see what happens.

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Re: Tight Lines Over 20'?

Postby jd_smith » Mon Nov 05, 2012 7:40 pm

Conversely, I often have a fish run toward me ( not often as more fish do then don't, but often as, I do fish quite frequently, and it happens often) . If I am "in" the water and a fish does run toward me, a technique I often us is to stomp my feet a few steps. The fish will usually turn and head away from the commotion and not swim back. This gives me a better opportunity to catch the line while it's tight against the fish.


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