Improve Fishing With 5 tips on Centerpin fishing
There isn’t a more productive or hardcore way to fish for Steelhead than using a Centerpin rod and reel. For those of you that don’t know what I’m talking about, a centerpin reel has a large arbour with no drag and free spools all the time. Your brake is your fingers and learning to use this reel to its maximum takes practice and skill. I prefer a centerpin over a baitcaster when it comes to finesse float fishing for Steelhead. The centerpin when matched with a 11ft to 13ft rod gives you the greatest control over your line when dead drifting your float which results in more hook-ups. Also, playing a fish with a pin reel gives you the ability to instantly control the drag to ‘feather’ the fish to shore. Here are 5 tips to improve your centerpinning for steelhead:
1. Controlling your float. The biggest mistake you can possibly make when drag free float fishing is allowing a lot of belly of line into the water. Why? because you will not be able to set the hook properly if the float goes down and the belly pulls the float in unnatural directions. If you are fishing an area and it requires you to put a huge belly of line in the water, then don’t fish it until you can position yourself closer. Your float should be going down stream without any drag in any direction at all. The only part of your line that should be touching the water is a very small amount near the float. The float should be angled slightly upstream at all times, if it’s any other direction then your float is ‘pulling’ your bait in an unnatural direction. If you are trying to make a float on the far side of the river in the slow water, after casting throw a couple quick mends into your line this may give you a couple of extra seconds added to your drift.
2. Split shot. If you want a smooth presentation of your bait under water add larger split shot near the float and then use smaller split shot near the snap swivel. Evenly space out your split shot and the underwater presentation will be sexy!
3. Maxima Fluorocarbon 6-10lb leader. Match your leader to the water conditions! Clear water use a longer leader and lighter pound test. Heavier or dirtier water use 10lb test. The fuorocarbon maxima leaders are nearly invisible underwater, put it in a bowl of water and see for yourself. I would only recommend using maxima’s fluoro for your leaders.
4. Bobber stoppers. I don’t always like to use a float that slides up and down the line freely but there are a lot of times when the use of a bobber stopper is a must. A bobber stopper is simply a very small rubber stopper that you slide up your line to the depth that you would like your float to stop at. The nice thing about the use of bobber stoppers is that you can fish very deep water, or along a river bank with very little casting room. When casting the float will slide all the way down to your split shot allowing you to cast easily, when your gear hits the water the line slides through the float and stops at the bobber stopper. Here’s a neat trick to be able to see where you bobber stopper is on your line: tie a small piece of yarn to your line just below the bobber stopper. This will allow you to see if the line has slid all the way through the float to the bobber stopper.
5. Learn the wallis and the short cast. If you learn these two casts you will be able to fish many more spots on the river bank than ever before. These casts allow you to make short to medium length casts with very little casting room.