Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Switch Or Spey?

We have done quite a few spey trips this season. Either teaching basic casts or learning how to effectively fish with a doublehander is always fun for us and clients. One question we field often is "Should I buy a switch or a spey rod"? The answer is what size river and fish are you most likely to be working. If your target fish are trout and landlocked salmon then a switch or light spey are optimal choices.

The next important decision would be what type of fishing do you want to do MOST. Swinging flies, nymphing, streamers or dries can all be done with either rod style. You will sacrifice one technique for another to a certain extent. You can still get the job done with either rod choice, but at what cost to you're enjoyment of being on the river? With as many choices of both spey and switch rods and lines available it's an overwhelming dilemma. Add the cost of entering the game and it's easy to make a costly mistake. Both you're time and money are valuable.

We guided a doublehander trip yesterday. The client's goals were to learn to fish better with a switch rod. We covered nymphing, wet fly swings and sink tips. Hell we even caught a few fish. It wasn't because we're a rock star. It's because the client researched a rod for their intended purpose and found an exact fit. A well played first round.

Spend sometime this winter deciding on what you want out of spey. Give a shout if you're in need of some practical, no B.S. opinions.


  1. Was out salmon fishing with a friend yesterday swing flies with my 10' 7wt. Boy was my arm sore , fishing a 3wt in small streams doesn't exactly get you into shape ! I've never considered a two-hander before but would love some idea of what to consider first. The 10ft 7wt is the right size for the fish I target just looking for something easier to punch out a longer cast without much room for a backcast

  2. You might want to look into a 7wt switch rod. The added length and double hand capability can improve your distance and control.

    Depending on what kind of technique you wish to use will help determine what line type. I suggest a simple floating weight forward style line for beginners.

    Hope this helps.