December 06, 2012
'Calico Syndicate' Inventing New Ways to Get Flies Down Fast and to Cut Through Kelp
By Tim Romano
Fly fishermen who need to get a fly deep quickly might be interested in the techniques and fishing gear being developed by the Calico Syndicate, "a group of six friends who have a passion for saltwater flyfishing and chase calico bass off the coast of Southern California."
They have been experimenting with casting heavy lines in order to get their flies down to 40, 50, 60, and even 100 feet deep through high current and massive kelp beds. The Syndicate has tried 72 different line recipes using stock lines and materials over the course of the past seven months, according to Keith Munemitsu, one of the mad scientists pioneering this technique. He said they “are now comfortably casting 800-950 grain lines up to 12 hours a day, from boats in the open ocean many days in a row.” They are doing this on big, but not huge rods, like nine and 10 weights—supposedly without much fatigue.
Pretty nutty eh?
Not only are these guys developing insanely heavy, but easy casting lines, they have also developed what they call the "Kelp Cutter": a super abrasive leader which consists of four feet of Spiderwire Spectra connected to a couple feet of fluorocarbon. This lets the heavy lines to literally cut through kelp once they've hooked up to a fish.
You can check out their videos on YouTube and head on over to their Facebook page to learn more and perhaps join the conversation if you’re the kind of whacko that needs to get flies way down, fast, or needs to saw through a forest of seaweed when landing fish.
“We have made a conscious decision to share our findings openly with the general public because we truly believe that there are much wider applications to what we are doing… East Coast Striper fishermen, Ling Cod & Halibut fly anglers, etc… anyone who needs to get a fly deep quick – but retain the ability to cast into structure or tight areas," said Munemitsu.
I'm thinking about begging to try out one of their lines in a local reservoir about 20 minutes west of me. It's very deep and holds large musky and lake trout.