Four p.m. Monday came and went. The Ladyfisher and
I had not arrived at the Three Rivers Resort in Lowell,
Idaho. For some reason I had remembered the drive from
west of Seattle, WA to the 'Fish-In' as about three
hundred miles and would take about six hours. In
retrospect even that does not make any sense. So,
after getting a late start on Monday morning (dropping
off our dachshund, missing a ferry by five minutes and
a detour in Seattle and realizing that it was more like
418 miles and would take about nine hours) (oh yes,
Krispy-Kremes too) we pulled into the campground at
about nine-thirty. Only to be soundly chastised for
worrying the heck out of the bunch by being so late.
Arms were pumped thoroughly, smiles and grins exchanged
and warm salutations abounded. We had at last arrived;
our vacation had started. The plan was to stay from
Monday afternoon to Saturday mid-morning, let those
attending play with the many rods we had brought with
us from several makers (new stuff, some only days on
the market, not yet in shops) and fish when we were
not swapping tales or trying to help a bit with any
perceived casting problems.
It was wonderful seeing the gang again, most only
once a year, filling in each other on what has been
going on and in general, just 'hanging-out.' There
is no doubt, fly-fishers are a fine group of folks.
So, Castwell has entered the camp, Let the games
begin! And we did.
The Ladyfisher will fill you in on more of the
details, I want to try to bring a different view
of events. As you might suspect, it will be about
fly rods and casting. Some things became rather
clear as the days went on and more and more got to
play with the rods. This for instance. If a rod
seemed to have a 'light' tip and a 'stiff/heavy'
butt section. Not saying this is a bad thing here,
but that if the rod was that way, all who cast it
would agree. It might be fine for short casts and
had the power to lift a better fish if hooked, but
would not perform well at longer distances.
This type of opinion seemed universal. All would
agree on each rod. If the rod seemed to be 'great'
they would agree on that too, everyone of them. I
found this to be rewarding, and truthfully, a bit
surprising. I will mention a few here now and give
more information in later columns and reports. One
outstanding very low priced rod was from Gatti, an
IM6 for about a hundred and a quarter. Folks, that
is one fine stick, at any price!
The fiberglass rod from Hardy nearly put all in shock,
nothing is as smooth, nothing. The Xi2 from Sage was
an absolute winner casting at all distances well, but
the star of the show was my wife's new rod. The one-piece,
six foot, five weight cane, 'Lee Wulff Classic.' This
is the one I picked as the best of show in Denver and
was very pleased by the raves it received there, but
I was not prepared for the reception it got at our Fish-In.
At the show I had watched as a fellow mistakenly was
casting it with a six weight line, it was doing just
fine. Last week someone put a four on it just to see
what would happen. Again, it was just fine. Now we
will all agree that any rod will cast three lines.
This is the first time I have seen one do it with no
change in any way. The rod is actually a 4/5/6. She
does use a five on it by the way. We both fished it
and not only does it cast great, it 'fishes' well too.
There is much more to be said, but not right now.
We had a grand time, everything went well, had a nice
vacation, met old friends, made some new ones and are
now ready to get back to work. Hang in there gang, the
best is yet to come.
~ James Castwell