Fly Fishing for Salmon in Canada
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Fly Fishing for Salmon in Canada

Fly Fishing for Salmon in Canada


Fly Fishing for Salmon in Canada

Fly Fishing for Salmon in Canada

Comparatively few anglers have ever enjoyed the privilege of fly-fishing for salmon in the famous Canadian streams where this sport, undoubtedly the highest form of angling, is found at its best. But many anglers now take advantage of the salmon fishing offered by the non-preserved waters of Nova Scotia and Newfoundland, where the sport, if not equal to that offered by the classic Canadian rivers, is still strictly worthwhile. For this reason the subject hardly comes properly under "general" sweet-water tackle it seems best to include here a few suggestions about salmon fly-fishing tackle, although it may be said that the angler who has the ambition to tackle salmon will, beyond doubt, know more about salmon tackle than it is possible to tell him herein.

If you can afford it select a rod of split-bamboo; these may be had for from $30.00 to $50.00. Solid wood rods of greenheart and noibwood are, however, very extensively used, and an average price for a rod of this sort is $25.00. The prices given are for rods 14 or 15 feet in length, and these lengths are the best. The standard length of the salmon fly-rod adopted for tournament casting is 15 feet. Salmon fly-rods, since both hands are used in casting, are built with double hand-grasp. Other fittings such as "snake" guides, etc., should be the same as for the trout fly-rod.

A single-action click reel, supplied with a reliable drag, to hold 100 yards of C or D enameled line is right for the rods mentioned. A salmon fly-reel of this size, in German silver and rubber will cost about $22.00; in nickel and rubber $14.00. A double tapered enameled line, size C, 120-yard length, costs $11.00. Regular, level, enameled silk line, the same as used for trout fly-fishing but in the larger sizes, averages $1.50 for 25 yards. Economy may be practiced in this regard by using 50 yards of silk line spliced to a length of cheaper but good linen line.

Nine-foot leaders should be used and these may be made from three-foot lengths of heavy, medium and light gut, or, where the fish run large, extra heavy, heavy and medium gut. Nine-foot salmon leaders may also be made from lengths of triple-twisted, double-twisted and single gut. Use only the very best gut, and test it.

The best salmon flies are: Silver doctor, black fairy, Durham ranger, Jock Scott, silver gray, brown fairy, dusty miller, Nicholson, black dose. Of these the silver doctor and Jock Scott are the best. They should be tied on No. 2 and 4 hooks. A few flies on 1 and 1-0 hooks should be in the book for high water and evening fishing. Double-hook flies are also used. Salmon flies are not listed in the same way as trout flies. Each salmon fly has its own price according to the greater or less expense of tying it; for instance, the silver doctor costs $6.50 a dozen, while the Jock Scott is $7.00. Others range from $3.50 to $6.50 the dozen.

Leader-boxes and fly-books have been discussed in the chapters on trout-fly-fishing. Small salmon may properly and preferably be netted or beached; larger fish must be gaffed. Experienced salmon anglers prefer to use a gaff made by lashing a gaff-hook to a stout handle. The gaff-hook may be procured at any good tackle store. This saves, also, the trouble of packing a gaff into the woods. Gaffs, complete and very well-made, with take-down handles, may also be had.

Camp, Samuel Granger. Fishing Kits and Equipment,. New York: Outing Pub., 1910. Print.

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