Fly Fishers are a unique breed, and I cannot say that I am a member of this group of anglers. I’ve ventured deep in the sea and fought with a marlin for hours. The fight with this majestic and giant fish is quite the opposite experience from what I’ve come to understand of a typical day of fly fishing. While my battle with the marlin was about power and strength, fly fishing seems to be more about grace and technique. While both kinds of fishing are a game of strategy of man vs water beast, there is a unique juxtaposition between the excitement of reeling in a large game fish from the deep depths of the ocean verses the relaxation that comes with pulling out a small trout from a shallow river. I did some research, by asking my angler friends, to see what fly fishing is really about!
LORD OF THE FLIES.
One thing I’ve always wondered is why is there so many types of flies? The bait fly fishers use, flies, comes in a wide variety. Dry flies, wet flies, poopers, and more. Dry flies for example imitate adult and emerging insects like caddisflies, mayflies and grasshoppers. Wet flies imitate pupal and nymph stage aquatic insects, fish eggs, and worms. Every type of fly imitates a specific meal to a specific fish. There are literally thousands of flies, and to be a great angler, you need to know what kind of fly is appropriate for the fish you are trying to catch. Master anglers can look at the water and know what bait by recognizing what is in the water that the fish are currently eating.
Along with knowing your flies, you must also know the gear that works best for you. Different rods, reels, and lines come in varying weights. Having the proper set up for your style of fishing will make a giant difference in your success rate out there.
PRACTICE MAKES THE MASTER.
But perhaps the most important factor of fly fishing is technique. Without proper technique, your rod and fly setup is useless. How to get the fly to land where you want it and learning how to cast in the wind are just some things every angler works tirelessly to master, often they’ll just practice their technique in open fields. The constant practice and learning of new techniques are part of what the anglers love about this sport!
MIX IT UP.
When my narrow mind thinks of fly fishing, I picture a person standing still in a river testing their patients to get a catch. I have since been that there are many different ways of mixing the sport up to keep it fun and interesting, which is the most important thing in fly fishing. Many fishermen choose to fish from rafts cruising down the river or even from stand-up paddle boards to get to remote parts of the water. These other ways of fly fishing are just a few of the ways you can make fishing more enjoyable to your personal taste.
If this new view of fly fishing is catching your interest, think of getting a guide to take you out. Even some of the best fisherman will have local guides go fishing with them to let them on to the best spots and ways to catch the fish in that area!
So reshaping the way I think of fly fishing I’ve come to see why some people are fanatical about this sport. Find a friend of yours or a local guide and see for yourself how this activity brings joy to so many people!