Updated: Dec 10, 2019
If you're the outdoors type chances are you've gone fishing, If you were like me you went fishing as a kid. As a kid I was handed a rod already tied and everything, I was never really taught what or how to do fishing the right way. As I got older and went fishing on my own I started learning. At first you might buy a cheap rod and reel at your local sporting goods store and eventually you realized one rod, line, lure or bait is not the best option to fish for every fish in the water. For each species of fish you will need use different equipment, and over time you may favor fishing for certain types of fish. I love freshwater lake, rivers and stream fishing, others may favor saltwater fishing more, either way, you figure out what you like and get the right gear for the type of fish you want to catch.
Fly fishing is a whole different way of fishing and if you're the type that can't sit still, this may be for you. Fly fishing is very specific to the fish and what kind of water you'll be fishing in.
I love how more in touch with nature I feel when I'm fly fishing. Another bonus is you don't need as much tackle, this allows to really get to those secluded areas to fish where others are not willing to go.
Fly fishing consists of a rod, reel, backing line, fly weighted line, leader/tippet, and fly lure. All of these need to be matched correctly otherwise even the experienced fly caster will have trouble. So my current rod and reel outfit is a 9 ft. 5wt setup that allows me to fish for trout in rivers, lakes and streams. It is considered an all around setup that allows more flexibility to get the most use out of it, to find out what rod and reel outfit you would need, there are several resources. I have links below.
The backing is made of Dacron braided line and is tied to the fly line. The backing acts as both the filler line in the reel and provides extra length if the fish is a fighter. Next is the fly line itself, it is weighted and tapered. The fly line is what and how a tiny and weightless fly is flung so far, again there are different kinds for what your set up. Next down the line is your leader/tippet, this is not you regular leader like with other fishing. The leader and tippet are tapered as well to match the fly line. The leaders come in different tippet thicknesses for the size of the size of the fly and hook on it. Think of the whole line system as how a bull whip is made, thick at the handle and it narrows down at the tip.
The flys or lures are also overwhelming, there are dry flys, wet flys, nymphs, and streamers. What you want to use with dictate the rod and reel setup. There are of course exceptions. The three resources that can help you get the right rod and reel set up are www.theflystop.com, www.basspro.com, and most valuable info I have found is www.madriveroutfitters.com, they have a YouTube channel that will answer many questions a beginner would have in fly fishing.
Fly fishing doesn't require a boat, you will eventually want waders or even a kayak to get in the water. Fly fishing for me lets me get to some of the most beautiful places nature has to offer. I still like fishing my spinner or bait caster, and I do like fishing with my buddies. Sometimes you need to just get out there and not deal with anything other than you and nature.
I have found that nothing is set in stone when is comes to fishing. Really smart and talented fishermen have figured how to set up their gear in ways most would never think of.
Trick is to know the fish, with the right presentation you will catch em. I have in the past used a spinning rod to set up a fly to catch a 45 lbs salmon! Just keep in mind, my there are always exceptions if you can cast well and get that natural presentation to the fish. I recommend that your beginner set should be a Rod and Reel outfit, they usually come with everything you'll need to start fishing except for the flys. Orvis, www.orvis.com has a good selection with a " Rod selector" app that will point you in the right direction of what rod combo best suits your fishing needs.
The Cast is like the golf swing, you can't rush it and you can't power swing it. As soon as you lose the technique you'll see the results of your cast immediately. A good way to practice is to sit in a chair and cast and only pivot your elbow, your elbow is the fulcrum point that should not change when casting.
Casting while sitting is the same as if you're standing. Some say not to break the wrist either but that is not true there is a time for the wrist to move to increase the efficiency of the energy transfer in your cast. If you watch any good caster there is a slight wrist bend on the up cast and a wrist snap at the end of the down cast as well. The trick is making all the body mechanics come together at the right time, just like a golf swing.
Proper setup is so important to have, the rod outfit has to be set up correctly. The wrong setup will not produce a good cast, especially for someone just learning to cast. Patience is required in fishing and so is honing any skill, there are no short cuts. Hopefully the enthusiasm, determination, and patience will last to learn the fly cast. I The satisfaction of learning something new and seeing the results is an amazing feeling. Fishing of any kind presents its own challenges, and that is what keeps me going back to learn something new.
This is me at lake Sabrina, just about at the time when the trout stop biting and go to deeper water. The sun was out and temp was perfect. The wind started to pick up but the spot I was at, shielded much of the wind and that's where the fish were as well. I started wearing face shields awhile back it is just easier to wear a face shield than reapplying sunblock. Plus sunblock and bug repellent transfer to you tackle and can drive the fish away. So be sure if you use either that you wash your hands well before touching or tying up your lures.
Another tip when fishing a new area look at the insects around and try to mimic them in the flys and lures you use, this usually will help get more bites. Stocked fish can be erratic and may not respond the same way as fish that are native or have adapted to their new environment. Crickets almost always work, get live ones and rig them just before casting or use a foam cricket lure of the same coloring.
I hope you enjoyed the read, and hope this has helped you. Stay tuned, my next blog I will go over all the supporting gear for fishing and review what works and what maybe more hype than functional. Please comment and share this your friends!