Mono shooting line sucks in the ocean….


I fished the incoming tide today at Sunset Beach. I fished the afternoon for the first time and it was pretty crowded for an overcast day at the beach. One really has to watch one’s backcast because its really hard to stop 400 grains of line and fly once its launched at a kid or dog on the backcast. Today I thought I would try the Deathstar with mono and 30 feet of t14. I felt pretty lame out there trying to overhead cast that. There was a breeze pushing onshore and my casts just didnt have the snap that they use to. I just haven’t figured out the magic combination of lines and rods yet. I have yet to try the 15.5 foot TFO 8/9 wgt which has a 535 grain Skagit line and with some T14..   I did practice with the TFO and it’s a really long rod. Catching an 18 inch striper on it might not even bend it but I feel like I need about 20 feet more on my casts. I might try the Skagit line on the Deathstar next time. Ive read that manufacturers like Beulah actually make a Beach Surf Fly Rod designed to overhand cast.  They are fast action two-handed fly rods designed to load quickly and cast long distances with half the effort of single hand rods.  They are built to cast 9 to 12  wgt lines.   In addition, Airflow is prototyping a 40+ two hand  Beach Fly line.The line is 150 feet long with a 35 foot head and weighs 530 grains and is engineered to connect seamlessly to 115 ft of running line.   Specifically designed for fast 11 foot two handed surf rods.  Its all new science to me.   One of these weekends,  Ill figure it out. Casting mono in the ocean sucks. if you loose a loop of it to the surf,  the surf drags it out of your basket and you have to restack the line. .It blows around a lot and its awkward but when you get a cast off with it,  it makes you forget all that.    I have three stripping baskets that I use in the surf from Seal Level fly fishing.  I think the best one for surf fishing are the deepest ones.

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I fished for a couple hours walking more than fishing looking for a Rip and bait. I had no luck and the beach was very crowded and there were lots of bait fishermen  to work around.    I ended up with one small perch (too small to even eat). I think Ill try the lake or forebay tomorrow.  The wind looked calm this morning.

Olympus_261503_M_Zuiko_Digital_ED_9_18mmLast week I bought a new lens for the Lumix Gx8–the Olympus 9-18 f.4.0-5/6 lens. My lens of choice for landscapes and fishing are the ultra wide lens.  It started with the Iconic Nikon 14-24 f/2.8 which in my opinion is one of the worlds best lens.   The equivilant lens for the mico  4./3 is the Lumix 7-14 f/4 G Vario and it was my go to lens in the boat and on fishing trips.   The only problem with both the lenses was that they had a big bubble on the front and you couldn’t use filters unless you built something. which I did try. The Oly 9-18 collapses from a 6 inch lens to a two inch form factor and you can use 52mm filters on it.   It features a 100 degree super wide angle  lens that has very little distortion or fisheye.  It could be the best fishermans lens on the market.

4 thoughts on “Mono shooting line sucks in the ocean….

  1. Meng,

    The deeper bucket and longer fingers to catch the mono loops is a necessity, even with my deep bucket, mono will still blow out on occasion. I’m still having a “love hate” thing with all the different running lines: love mono when it shoots without tangling, hate it when it blows out or when it slips on a hit; love the way the coated core running lines handle, hate them when they send shocks down my forearm when tendinitis is acting up because they don’t give – like now!

    The lines I’m using with the Deathstar and 7126 Method are 32′ of LC13 and a mono line (OPST and Sufix Elite), Airflo Sniper Custom Cut full line – uncut head, and an Airflo compact skagit head,10′ T11 tip, and Airflo running line. I have the 7/8 and 8/9 11′ Beulah surf switch rods – they’re my back up rods now.

    I’m still dinking around with lines and haven’t settled on one yet. I tend to fish the bigger structure beaches more often and like the LC13 heads and Sniper CC, and will pick up sand crabs occasionally but not often enough to drive me crazy.I haven’t put down the Method – it’s an ounce lighter which doesn’t seem like much but I like the way it feels and I like left hand casting it. Anyway, I’d say try everything because what works for some, won’t work for you – everyone has a different casting stroke and sense of feel.

    Good luck – you’ll figure it out!


    • Thanks Ken, My memory is getting worse with age for the details… I also love mono! I bought some Frog Hair Shooting line to play with also.

  2. Meng – I own a Deathstar, and fish it in the surf exclusively and unlike Mark, I only double hand OH cast. To my taste, the Deathstar just doesn’t feel “right” with anything less than 475 ish grains, and I personally feel it works best and comes into it’s own with 500+. It will cast a slightly longer head than the standard 30ft “ish” shooting head… up to about 34′ then it gets unruly to keep all that line aereialized – especially in the “real world” conditions of fishing the beach. For Stripers, I fish one of two set-ups in the surf – depending on conditions. Either an Airflow Skagit Compact F/I 480gr head with a 10′ tip of T14 (you could downsize to even T8 if you wanted) or I fish a Rio OBS 30′ Type III head – which is JUST heavy enough. The Type3 setup works better in unruly surf and windy conditions, or when I want to fish multiple flies because of it’s smaller diameter and no floating section. The floating section on the skagit head make it a little tough to manage your retrieves sometimes cause it gets pulled all around, especially in heavy hydraulics.

    And you’re right…. Sufix, Amensia, really ALL the mono runners are HELL in the surf, too hard to grab – they slip and cause me to miss many sets, as well as slip through my hands when playing a fish sometimes, not to mention they easily blow out of the hip-shooter even in a light breeze. Don’t give up on your Deathstar – it is a GREAT rod in the surf once you get it lined right for how you cast/fish. Feel free to email me if you have any other questions – I’ve spent the past 2yrs getting the thing lined right… and tried a lot of setups.

    Bobby V

    • Bobby,
      Thanks for your wisdom and pep talk. I was starting to shop around for a Beach Switch before I read your post. Thanks for the line recommendations and Im going to keep working on the Deathstar. I will try the Skagit you recommend next. With the 10ft of t-14, the total weight of the head is a whopping 620 grains. I hope I can get the Deathstar working since I like the feel of the Deathstar. It’s got more length than those 11 foot custom beach switch rods, Its plenty fast in the butt section and an 18 inch Striper or 2 lb perch feels pretty good on it. Ken Oda is using mono and casts an uncut custom OBS (about 33 ft of t-14) these days on his Deathstar and hes got a hella deep bucket.

      The “Rio OBS 30′ Type III head – which is JUST heavy enough” is only 375 grain in the 9wgt intermediate. The WF10I S3 is 510 grains. Should I try that? I think the OBS type three (or intermediates) are in 7 through 10 wgt. I think I might be fishing too deep with the t-14 lines since I hook sand crabs and it feels like its on the bottom most of the time.

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