Tim Flagler is back on the Swing to break out some of his magic, focusing on trout spey fishing. With his years of experience and knowledge, Tim discusses the best lines and rods for this style of fishing and how to present the fly to the fish.

We also dive into fly tying as Tim shares some of his top fly patterns. Who better to learn from than the one and only Tim Flagler, possibly the greatest fly-tying YouTuber on the planet?


Trout Spey Fishing with Tim Flagler. Hit play below!


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(Read the Full Transcript at the bottom of this Blog Post)

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trout spey fishing
Photo via https://www.instagram.com/tightlineproductions

Trout Spey Fishing Show Notes with Tim Flagler

1:00 – Only a few spots left to fill at the Stillwater School! Head to wetflyswing.com/trips to learn more and join Phil Rowley for some incredible Stillwater fishing at the Northern Lights Lodge.

2:52 – We talk about the show season, and I ask Tim what his favorite part of the show scene is.

trout spey fishing
Photo via https://www.facebook.com/tim.flagler.94

5:17 – Tim and his family live in Northwestern New Jersey, where they have access to a beautiful trout stream.

6:55 – We had Tim on the show last year, where we talked about his YouTube Channel. In case you missed that episode, check it out here:

WFS 279 – Tim Flagler on Tightline Productions, Fly Tying Tutorials and Youtube

7:40 – Tim walks us through the definition of trout spey. He said that what it really refers to are lightweight spey rods. He said he got into trout spey fishing because he wanted to solve night fishing.

trout spey fishing

17:06 – We talk about trout spey presentation. Tim explains that trout mostly spend their time within a foot of the bottom, where they find most of their food and can stay away from predatory birds. Tim prefers to use weightless flies that can be taken down to the depth where trout are with a poly leader or a sink tip.


19:32 –  He explains different setups for trout spey, including single-hand setups and two-handed trout spey with Skagit rigs and shorter heads designed for larger flies and heavier sink tips.

trout spey fishing
Photo via https://www.instagram.com/tightlineproductions/

23:39 – Tim recommends using a short Skagit head for a 9ft 5wt setup, something like the OPST commando head, with a shooting line like a bare monofilament or Amnesia. A poly leader or tip is needed to complete the Skagit setup.

27:05 – We discuss the confusion around choosing the right weight for spay lines, as it is different from traditional single-hand lines. Tim recommends seeking advice from a fly shop or spey instructor to avoid wasting time and money on incorrect setups.

31:07 – The pandemic put a damper on spey casting events and claves, but they are slowly coming back. There are various events and clinics for spey casting, including trout spay clinics, and they are worth attending. Tim mentions the Spey Nation.

trout spey fishing
Photo via https://www.facebook.com/tightlinevideo

32:00- We talked about Tim’s fly fishing presentations and clinics where he teaches about different setups and gear. Tim’s specialty is in macro videography and incorporating it into his fly-tying patterns.

34: 22 – Tim has been producing fly-tying videos for 40 years now.

38:24 – Tim discusses his long-standing affiliation with Orvis and MidCurrent. He also mentions the success of the one-minute tying tips, which have been popular due to their digestible format, and the tie-offs with Tom Rosenbauer that they started during the pandemic and have become very popular.

43:03  – Tim breaks down the difference between Catskill-style dry flies versus other types of dry flies.

46:00 – Tim explains that for two-handed rods, he generally uses a Skagit head with a heavier sink tip and larger flies, while a Scandi head is lighter and better suited for smaller flies and lighter tips.

48:00 – Tim has a varied collection of rods, which includes both spey and single-handed ones. He has a Douglas DXF and an Orvis Clearwater. He also has a Redington Hydrogen Trout Spey 2wt 11’0″.

Photo via https://www.newraftfl.com/

53:30 – We talk about flies that Tim uses for trout spey fishing. Tim is currently working on a series of flies to hopefully sell commercially through Fulling Mill.

57:00 – Tim mentions four key elements for his flies: a trailing hook, the ability to push water to attract fish, fine dark markings to resemble natural prey, and movement. Additionally, he notes that incorporating a little bit of flash can also be effective in imitating bait fish.

1:00:00 – Tim discusses the importance of spey casting and the different casts used for different river conditions and wind directions.

1:03:00 – Tim noted some great instructors for those who want to dig deeper into spey casting. He recommends Klaus Frimor, Simon Gawesworth, John Hazlett, and Topher Brown as some of his favorite instructors to watch.

1:08:00 – Tim said that he is still learning and taking spey casting lessons himself, including one with champion Whitney Gould at the Golden Gate Angling & Casting Club.

1:10:00 – Time for the two-minute drill. I asked Tim to pick a rod and a fly. Tim chose a single-hand 9ft 5wt rod and a squirrel and herl bugger. His tip for trout spey fishing is to seek coaching from an expert. Tim’s dream trip is to go fly fishing in New Zealand.

You can find Tim on Youtube tightlinevideo

Instagram @tightlineproductions

Tim Flagler

Trout Spey Fishing Videos Noted in the Show

Related Podcast Episodes

WFS 279 – Tim Flagler on Tightline Productions, Fly Tying Tutorials and Youtube

Klaus Frimor on Loop Fly Lines, Scandi Style Fishing, Underhand Spey Casting (WFS 127)

Read the Full Podcast Transcript Below

trout spey fishing

Trout Spey Fishing Conclusion with Tim Flagler

That was another episode filled with valuable information about trout spey fishing and fly tying, featuring Tim Flagler. He discussed the definition of trout spey, including the best lines and rods to use and how to present the fly to the fish.