Spey, Scandi, Skagit…

While this isn’t necessarily a post on the topic of backcountry hunting, it does relate to the common thread of pursuits that gets you outside in wild places. I recently became the proud owner of a Spey rod. I have flyfished for about 15 years, and have chased bull trout in B.C., bonefish in Belize and trout all over the West. But none have been landed on a Spey, or two-handed, rod. Mostly it was due to getting yet another rod/reel/line setup, and then learning the styles of casting associated with it, which can be daunting. But through some good luck and a connection at work, the full kit showed up on my doorstep recently.

More than anything this has reignited my interest in flyfishing, and it is the learning of something more or less new that is motivating me. Don’t get me wrong, I love flyfishing in all of its forms, but this style and all of the intricacies, flies, casts, line weights and details is exciting. There is a long history to the art of Spey casting, and it is fun to watch it expand and evolve, depending on which part of the world you tend to wet a line. My goal will be to land a nice brown or rainbow trout on it in a local river; the Madison, Yellowstone or perhaps Missouri come to mind. Like hunting or even martial arts, I believe one does not truly master Spey casting. There are certainly experts in all of these chosen pursuits, but the elusive goal of truly mastering it will always be just out of reach, regardless of how long or how dedicated you may be. There will always be one more new way, or more precise bit of movement or awareness that you just won’t “see” in your lifetime. And along with the amazing places wild fish call home, I can see myself enjoying the way of it for many years to come.


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