Monday, April 18, 2011

Twisted up in knots

Since knots have been a source of frustration recently, I decided to spend some more time practicing the double surgeon. One of the problems for me is the contrast when "following" which line is which. So this morning I colored the lines with different colored magic markers and problem solved. Once a little confidence is built up I will be able to put this crutch away but I did tie my first double surgeon knot successfully today. The weather here looks like rain for the next several days (off and on) so I am going to practice my knots and not go fishing although I was tempted to go at 0500 today.

Another source of frustration is the line being curled so I bought a "leader straightener" to help. This also has helped tamp down the frustration level and allowed me to get over another small hurdle that will make time  at the river that much more enjoyable. A few steps backwards to eventually make strides forward.

I have to bide my time and get all the fundamentals right because I am in this thing for the long haul.


  1. Ed,
    One problem I used to have with knots is that I would try not to waste too much line. So I would try to tie the surgeon with just a 3 inch loop.....I was thinking I was saving line...but in the end I was wasting time.


  2. is funny you say that because I did find that I did the same thing. This morning I gave myself plenty of material to work with and voila (for the one French visitor I have): no problem.

    Thanks for sharing.

  3. Practicing a lot of the little skills, like you're doing now will pay huge dividends on the water...less frustration.

    One thing that occurred to me...check out the local TU or FFF. Both have experienced anglers and sometimes do classes. Keep bangin' away Mac.

  4. This site has helped me a lot,

  5. Thanks Howard....that is my what I am hoping for (less frustration).

    I plan on joining TU but I have to figure out which one is the best to join (geographically speaking). There are three I can choose from within a decent radius from my house.

  6. Thanks Kevin. I found this somehow a little while ago and have been using it and a book that I have to practice a couple knots. I appreciate the help.

  7. Hey Ed. Don't forget to put a little spit on that knot before you pull it tight. You're moving along very nicely.


  8. Thanks Mark.
    I have noticed that spit comes up a lot when knots are discussed. I may have to start to chew in order to generate enough spit.

  9. Hi Ed, I have a suggestion that might help with the knots - however, I'm not exactly sure what kind of fishing you're doing with regard to 'em. . . sounds like trout fishing. Here's what works for me, if trout are the quarry...

    Orvis Braided leaders and the improved clinch knot. The braided leader has a pre-made loop in each end. I use the "handshake loop" method to connect the bigger loop to the loop in the end of the fly line, then I tie the tippet onto the braided leader with a clinch knot. Then I tie on the fly with a clinch knot.

    One easy to tie knot and no "memory" in the leader because it's not mono. Plus, I only buy a leader every 2-3 years(they are very durable)so there's a money savings in using braided leaders too.

    This system may not work for everyone, and it might not even be "fun" for everyone. Some folks just like learning and using lots of knots. But I have found over the years that the fiddling with gear and knots and lines and gadgets isn't nearly as fun as watching a trout rise to a fly. Of course, it's taken me 20 years or so to get over all that cool stuff that helps make fly fishing so much fun, too. :)LOL

    Good luck and keep at it! You'll soon be helping others!

  10. Thanks Owl I appreciate the advice and "stopping by". I am chasing trout right now.

    I saw that leader set up in the Orvis catalog. I am going to buy it and keep it in the vest.

    I also was told by a couple of people of the site that demonstrates knots being tied( and they had the Improved Clinch Knot that look straightforward.

    Sounds like you and RD had a nice time.