Initial Impressions of Flyfishing
Lately, we have had newbies ask about gear and the like. Their questions echo in my memory when I started flyfishing.
When I began my pursuit of flyfishing, I read flyfishing magazines for info and the like. What nearly turned me off was the cost of flygear...I saw plenty of ads that pictured $600 rods, $300 reels, and $300 waders. I thought to myself "I'm just starting out...isn't there gear out there that's easier on the wallet?" Nobody flyfishes around here, and I'd hate to be stuck with expensive gear, should I develop a dislike for it.
I've been flyfishing for 13 yrs, and I'll probably never flyfish for trout or visit a flyshop. I was initially under the impression that flyshops were the only place to purchase gear, get advice, and learn about flyfishing. Correct me if I'm wrong, but many of the flyshop websites I have visited did not carry $100 combos, $80 waders, or $25 flylines. I began to believe that flyfishing was a pastime reserved for folks that played golf, had a nice boat, or had a private airplane...expensive hobbies.
I'm happy that there's more to flyfishing than casting a 9' 5wt for trout. I'm glad that I don't have to conform to the image of a flyfisher as the "experts" try to convince me to be. I don't use a hand net nor have worn a vest. I have put fish on a stringer, and never used a creel. I've never used a tippet (I used "quik snaps") but I have recently bought some tippet to cast some small flies for bluegills.
Yes, I will never fit the image of a flyfisher as portrayed in magazines or pictures from yesterday. I almost convinced myself that unless I dressed and played the part, I was not a "true" flyfisher.
After looking at the flyfishing magazines, I came pretty close to closing the door to flyfishing. I'm glad I kept an open mind and decided to step out of the circle!