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View Poll Results: What direction should the sport of Fly Fishing go in?
Traditional view of Fly Fishing 24 75.00%
New, hip, edgier vew, better for the younger generations 8 25.00%
Voters: 32. You may not vote on this poll

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  #11 (permalink)  
Old 12-18-2008, 08:04 PM
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Default Re: Direction of Fly Fishing?

Mike,

I voted traditional on your poll. I can only offer my own opinion here but there is no new hip edgier way to learn the methods of Fly Fishing. Good topic, wow this one hit a nerve.

Now for a reference point; This past fall I was approached by a young man (possibly inebriated) with his hat on backwards and carrying a box of Bush Light on his shoulder. It was 9:00 AM and I had been standing in the same spot in the pouring rain since 30 minutes before daylight waiting for a run of Silver Salmon to come up the riffle I was watching. He sat his case of beer down and began casting directly in front of me. I (as politely as possible under the circumstances) informed him that he would have to move. He told me he would "in awhile". I then informed him that his window of time was closing rapidly. He acted as if I had not spoke. I then began making some "Very Traditional casts" whose back-casts came dangerously close to the "Hip, and Edgier" young man. He hurriedly snatched up his beer and split, but not before bothering an older gentleman who was positioned down the channel from me. After annoying the other man he joined up with three comrades and they had a conference while giving me the evil eye. Then they headed up the path (Thank God) back toward the 4X4 trail that led to this spot.

Later that day the older gent who I had been sharing the run with for three days (he was from Ireland) gave me some of his Sea Trout flies in a swap for some of my Salmon flies which he deemed to be desirable based on my catch. The older gent was perhaps 70 or so and his vision was failing and for the days that we shared this remote spot I had been his eyes, spotting fish and directing his cast so that he too could catch a few fish. We were both very traditional sorts of fishermen and in our actions displayed respect for one another and our shared interest in fly fishing. Between the two of we had accumulated to some 90 years of experience steeped in traditional fly fishing values.

I do not prejudge all young people who approach me on the stream or river based on the type of bad behavior that this particular person demonstrated but when I read the description of hip, and edgier, this incident came to mind.

I would be very disappointed if the members of this forum young and old alike were to support anything but the traditional and historic methods and ethics that have shaped this sport into one that men and women alike love so dearly. Some things just simply should not be up for nomination as instant gratification activities.

No matter what happens, marketing, age, hip, edgier, come what may, if the people I encounter in any aspect of living my life are reasonable and respectful sorts I will always respond in kind. For those who act otherwise, I still have plenty of Back Casts left.

Ard
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Old 12-18-2008, 11:29 PM
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Thumbs up Re: Direction of Fly Fishing?

Ard, I couldn't agree more.

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Old 12-19-2008, 02:09 AM
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Default Re: Direction of Fly Fishing?

After ruminating on this a bit I voted for the traditional.

To me fly fishing is what you do when you want a challenge, want to pay closer attention to river life forms and just in general to become totally absorbed in the activity--its a moving meditation in usually very beautiful areas. When its like that, it isn't about being better than others on the river or who catches the most fish; its about being totally absorbed and in the moment. To become one with the river; to find contentment; to realize that we aren't the superior species, we are just another place on the wheel. I'll stop, otherwise I'll have to break out in around of "Cumb by yaw", or whatever that tune from the 60's was.
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Old 12-19-2008, 08:44 AM
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Default Re: Direction of Fly Fishing?

I agree with Douglas. Yes, fly fishing is a business to some extent, but I don't worry about its direction. I guess it kind of goes against me that companies, magazines are trying to define it in some way. I guess each of us wants slightly different things from fly fishing: Some are almost obsessed with techniques and catching as many fish as possible, others primarily want to enjoy the outdoors, or a so-called spiritual experience of the moment, etc. To me, whatever anglers are after is okay.

I often share - not market - my love of the fishing with non-anglers, but I stress that for me, fishing, is a subjective sport, a sport that I can do on different levels.

I guess what I'm trying to say, is that, to me, fly fishing can't be defined.

Randy, still pursuing the techniques and spirituality of an ideal cast ...
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Old 12-19-2008, 08:50 AM
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Default Re: Direction of Fly Fishing?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hardyreels View Post
Mike,


Now for a reference point; This past fall I was approached by a young man (possibly inebriated) with his hat on backwards and carrying a box of Bush Light on his shoulder. It was 9:00 AM and I had been standing in the same spot in the pouring rain since 30 minutes before daylight waiting for a run of Silver Salmon to come up the riffle I was watching. He sat his case of beer down and began casting directly in front of me. I (as politely as possible under the circumstances) informed him that he would have to move. He told me he would "in awhile". I then informed him that his window of time was closing rapidly. He acted as if I had not spoke. I then began making some "Very Traditional casts" whose back-casts came dangerously close to the "Hip, and Edgier" young man. He hurriedly snatched up his beer and split, but not before bothering an older gentleman who was positioned down the channel from me. After annoying the other man he joined up with three comrades and they had a conference while giving me the evil eye. Then they headed up the path (Thank God) back toward the 4X4 trail that led to this spot.

Later that day the older gent who I had been sharing the run with for three days (he was from Ireland) gave me some of his Sea Trout flies in a swap for some of my Salmon flies which he deemed to be desirable based on my catch. The older gent was perhaps 70 or so and his vision was failing and for the days that we shared this remote spot I had been his eyes, spotting fish and directing his cast so that he too could catch a few fish. We were both very traditional sorts of fishermen and in our actions displayed respect for one another and our shared interest in fly fishing. Between the two of we had accumulated to some 90 years of experience steeped in traditional fly fishing values.

I do not prejudge all young people who approach me on the stream or river based on the type of bad behavior that this particular person demonstrated but when I read the description of hip, and edgier, this incident came to mind.


Ard
What I think of when I read this is "Yup, Alaska has Rednecks too." The only indication given that this guy falls into the hip/modern/edgy category is a hat on backwards and his age. He sounds to me more like a plain old-fashioned ignorant jerk. I think discussion of whether hip/modern/edgy=rude is a different matter.
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Old 12-19-2008, 04:30 PM
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Default Re: Direction of Fly Fishing?

I would vote for the edgier content, but I didn't because I'd like to add some explanation. Perhaps you might revise the poll a little.
1. Traditional topics have already been covered by folks like Joe Brooks pretty well. So the edgier stuff offers new knowledge.
2. I don't like to have hobbies turned ONLY into new areas for commercial exploitation. My daughter goes to malls as a hobby. My hobby is fly fishing, not shopping for fly fishing items. Others get a thrill out of spending money on FF, and I would like them to continue to get pleasure that way. Country club atmospheres can be promoted and I don't mind. I just feel sorry sometimes that newbies who would like to learn how to fly fish get too much advice on spending fortunes on equipment and guided trips or solitary fishing rights in a private club and don't even try to go fishing when they discover the huge cost that can pile up if they take all the advice offered by marketers. Others can get great joy by spending a lot of dough on fishing experiences.
3. Even for me, I like to see some innovation to fit the sport to the challenges of the future such as carp fishing and catch & release. Also, the diversity factor and promoting FF to challenged fly fishers and welcoming youth and women as much as we can is a very good thing.

I'm all for expanding FF into more and more areas, but don't chase away newbies with huge startup costs. I have about 20 fly rods and my last one cost $10.50 for the blank. I'd like to let newbies know that FF can be a reasonably cheap hobby if they have a tight budget. I don't want FF to be only for the rich.
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Old 12-27-2008, 11:17 AM
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Default Re: Direction of Fly Fishing?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hardyreels View Post
Mike,

I voted traditional on your poll. I can only offer my own opinion here but there is no new hip edgier way to learn the methods of Fly Fishing. Good topic, wow this one hit a nerve.

Now for a reference point; This past fall I was approached by a young man (possibly inebriated) with his hat on backwards and carrying a box of Bush Light on his shoulder. It was 9:00 AM and I had been standing in the same spot in the pouring rain since 30 minutes before daylight waiting for a run of Silver Salmon to come up the riffle I was watching. He sat his case of beer down and began casting directly in front of me. I (as politely as possible under the circumstances) informed him that he would have to move. He told me he would "in awhile". I then informed him that his window of time was closing rapidly. He acted as if I had not spoke. I then began making some "Very Traditional casts" whose back-casts came dangerously close to the "Hip, and Edgier" young man. He hurriedly snatched up his beer and split, but not before bothering an older gentleman who was positioned down the channel from me. After annoying the other man he joined up with three comrades and they had a conference while giving me the evil eye. Then they headed up the path (Thank God) back toward the 4X4 trail that led to this spot.

Later that day the older gent who I had been sharing the run with for three days (he was from Ireland) gave me some of his Sea Trout flies in a swap for some of my Salmon flies which he deemed to be desirable based on my catch. The older gent was perhaps 70 or so and his vision was failing and for the days that we shared this remote spot I had been his eyes, spotting fish and directing his cast so that he too could catch a few fish. We were both very traditional sorts of fishermen and in our actions displayed respect for one another and our shared interest in fly fishing. Between the two of we had accumulated to some 90 years of experience steeped in traditional fly fishing values.

I do not prejudge all young people who approach me on the stream or river based on the type of bad behavior that this particular person demonstrated but when I read the description of hip, and edgier, this incident came to mind.

I would be very disappointed if the members of this forum young and old alike were to support anything but the traditional and historic methods and ethics that have shaped this sport into one that men and women alike love so dearly. Some things just simply should not be up for nomination as instant gratification activities.

No matter what happens, marketing, age, hip, edgier, come what may, if the people I encounter in any aspect of living my life are reasonable and respectful sorts I will always respond in kind. For those who act otherwise, I still have plenty of Back Casts left.

Ard

I could see where you are coming from but that could go on both sides of the spectrum. Last October a couple friends and I were fishing the Southeastern Wisconsin Lake Michigan Tribs. Fishing the Salmon runs. We were in a good spot and were catching quite a few salmon. Of course we are all catch and release fisherman and never keep fish unless we are in Canada. An hour into the catching three older men came by us and told us we are in their spot and would like us to leave before we get in trouble. I thought it was foolish and told them that no one holds spots on public rivers, it is first come first serve and you should really learn to respect other fishermen while they fish. If you looked from a distance you could tell there was a distinction between the two of our groups. We were younger in our 20s wearing waist packs, baseball caps, and had some digital camera and video recording equipment on us. One of my friend's was wearing a buff headwear for UV protection that has a stylish gansta pattern on it. The group were older most likely in their 50s if not 60s had the traditional clothing on, fly vests and hats. This had nothing to do with how we fish or the manner we fished it in or our ethics. They left. The next day before heading out to the spot again we went to a local tackle shop that notified that some older men saw a younger group of kids poaching salmon out of the river and fishing with illegal rigs. I commented on the fact that people do not care what they do to our rivers and our fishing. Later I would eat my words in a sort.

We headed down to our spot and saw the older men there, asked them how the fishing was and they ignored us. As we walked off they told us don't get into trouble now. I ignored that and headed down stream. A couple hours into the day we were approached by a ranger who asked us how was the fishing. We stated pretty good but have not got any large numbers yet. He asked us for our licenses and we glady handed them over. That is when he pocketed them and starting asking questions. Asked us if we thought we could get away with it or if we had any ethics ourselves. I had no clue what he was talking about, the ranger asked us to come with him. We got to a parking lot and told us they got about a dozen reports of a group of young college students poaching salmon from the river. I stated that I would never poach any fish, I am a biology student in College from Chicago enjoying a cold morning of fishing. From his facial expressions I could tell he did not believe it. He revoked our licenses (which were good for a year by the way), took away our tackle and told us we could get it back when we pay the fine, $500 per person. But as a result of this we would not be able to fish in Wisconsin again legally.

I thought this was a joke until gave us the tickets and drove off with our tackle. Here we are a bunch of college students most of us Biology students who practice catch and release and are currently helping professors with research projects for the conservation of our streams and rivers, we thought this could not be. A couple guys in the group immediately called their fathers one who happened to be a lawyer. I was on the phone with the local rangers saying they never showed us proof, they stated they do not need proof because the citizens who reported us are trusted. We went back to the fly shop and asked around turned out one of the men in the group we ran into the day before was a retired ranger and the other man was a retired county sheriff.

To make a long story short we didn't get our tackle back until the end of November after we threaten to sue the State of Wisconsin but we think they gave it up because my friend threaten to sue the DNR of Wiconsin for racial profiling because he was African American and was profiled for being a poacher. A guy in the fly shop asked if we were the ones who got caught poaching, I stated we didn't get caught because we never poached. He told us he knows the guys who reported us and they dislike how we fished, dressed, and acted. He said they stated we were a bunch of rich kids from Chicago, destroying the prestige image of fly fishing and needed to be taught a lesson.

Ever since this happened I been thinking, if most fly fisherman who are more traditional enforce this aspect of the sport, this sport with never expand. The main reason I started this is not to change the image of fly fishing but how can we expand fly fishing in a way which it would reach out to other anglers. For years I saw fly fishing as a sport of stuck up trout fisherman, men who looked down upon other forms of fishing. When I realized that you can fly fish for more than just trout, I started to get into the sport. I have friends who got into because they wanted to fly fish for pike or smallmouth. The idea I am trying to convey is how can we expand the sport but at the same time not ruin the traditions? My great-great-grandfather got into fly fishing in the early part of the 20th century. He lived part time up in Northern Wisconsin at a military post and saw men catching muskie with short rods large hooks with suckers or bass on them. He thought that you could fly fish for them. He never caught on on a fly but in the 70s his grandson my grandfather caught one on a fly rod, actually his fly rod.

I don't think I conveyed the idea of what this was about properly. We only got 26 votes and that is not enough of a sample to properly use statistics show the opinion of the population of the site. Ideally it would be perfect to have 10 votes per 50 members on the site. Guess I will need to go to a different website where the users are more helpful.
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Old 12-27-2008, 01:53 PM
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Default Re: Direction of Fly Fishing?

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Originally Posted by MikeG View Post
. . . I don't think I conveyed the idea of what this was about properly. We only got 26 votes and that is not enough of a sample to properly use statistics show the opinion of the population of the site. Ideally it would be perfect to have 10 votes per 50 members on the site. Guess I will need to go to a different website where the users are more helpful.
MikeG, I think you answered your own question (1st highlighted quote). As to your second highlighted comment, if you give up on projects like this so easily, you're going to have a tough time later on.

I'd respectfully suggest (as I & others implied earlier) that you clarify your questions to be more specific and less abstract, so that members can quickly understand your question and the range of sought answers and not have to guess at what you mean to ask. Having said all that, getting a 20% membership response is a rather tall order for any organization.

FWIW . . . just my 2c.
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Old 12-27-2008, 06:32 PM
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Default Re: Direction of Fly Fishing?

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Originally Posted by Fly2Fish View Post
MikeG, I think you answered your own question (1st highlighted quote). As to your second highlighted comment, if you give up on projects like this so easily, you're going to have a tough time later on.

I'd respectfully suggest (as I & others implied earlier) that you clarify your questions to be more specific and less abstract, so that members can quickly understand your question and the range of sought answers and not have to guess at what you mean to ask. Having said all that, getting a 20% membership response is a rather tall order for any organization.

FWIW . . . just my 2c.
I am not giving up, I am just switching my sampling. I posted it on another Fly fishing site and in a day period already got 150 votes. Also posted in a regular freshwater board, and a muskie board and got at least 1/3 of the members from those sites. I thought this would be a good site for my research but I guess it is not. I am not giving up just reworking it.
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Old 12-27-2008, 07:00 PM
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Default Re: Direction of Fly Fishing?

MikeG,

Be interesting to see how the response (traditional v. new) varies from forum to forum, particularly if you could correlate it to age of respondents (know that's probably impossible).

Anyway, good luck with it.
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