Last week we discussed the in’s and out’s of our 2020 two hand spey lines and this week we are backing it up (see what I did there) with an overview of our running line options. For those unfamiliar with two handed fly fishing, your spey reel firstly requires backing, then a running / shooting line as spey heads are usually short. Then comes your head, your tip which may float or sink depending on what you wish to achieve, your leader and then your fly.
Firstly, you need backing to not only provide a little backup when that fast water bruiser races off downstream, but to fill up your spool so your line isn’t too tightly coiled and so your drag can work as designed.
Fly lab 20lb Backing
Airflo Braided Mono Backing
Now for the fun stuff, your running line determines how far and easily you can shoot that spey head but most importantly, how you control it through the swing, the retrieve and the cast. Your running line is what you must grip through the casting process. Here are our winter 2020 options...
The Airflo Ridge Running Line
This is a coated line option with a braided core, essentially the same as the flyline you’re already used to, and so makes for a sensible choice for two handed newbies. Tough, all-round and general purpose is the description I’ll run with. The Ridge Running Line is easier to grip than most other running lines and with SuperDri technology, floats, and lifts from the water very well. The ridge running line is relatively tangle free and handles well in both warm, and cooler temperatures. Simply loop it and go. This is the running line I use on my guide reels and recommend for anyone getting into spey, or those having issues handling other options due to arthritic conditions.
Miracle Braid is a lighter, thinner running line option and my personal go to for heads over 350gr, though will work with both heavier, and lighter lines. The textured nature of braid makes for easy handling in a variety of situations and offers better abrasion resistance when fishing around rocks and debris. Miracle Braid is low stretch with zero memory and offers a durable, anytime easy shooting option.
Airflo Impact Mono
This is a slick, oval shaped mono designed for shooting heads. Its low diameter is perfect for lighter trout spey, and single handed heads, which lack the weight to tow a heavier running line when shooting for distance. Imagine a Mini towing a Hilux... Impact mono offers very little friction on the shoot and very little drag in the water. Low stretch removes any memory, while stretching just enough to protect lighter tippets when swinging nymphs and soft hackles, while still retaining feel. The 150yd spools of 30lb are a high viz yellow in colour so you can better track your swing.
Issues with mono slipping from your fingers during the cast? A wrap of rubberised tape on the foregrip of your rod beneath where you hold the line will fix this.
A Note On Loops
We will discuss in detail how to make simple, strong loops in both braid and mono in a future blog but for now here’s a very handy tip, make sure your loop is big enough to slip your entire reel through, for a quicker and hassle free way of attaching your head.
Next week we detail our sink tip options for 2020. These are what help you catch more fish.