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Old 09-09-2011, 10:38 AM
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Default The history of flyfishing

Where Can I find the history of modern fly flishing?
im writing a research paper and im thinking about doing the history of flyfishing from the 1950's era to present. (if there is enough info) Since Flyfishing is so old I could write a series of books but im just doing a paper so a shorter time frame would be nice.

Also what would be good to include?

I was thinking including how flys are changing and how we are now starting to see flys tied with synthetic materials. Also go over how there are bamboo, glass,fiberglass, graphite, etc for different fly rods and a bit of history behind them as well as what makes one so much better/worse than another. What else would be good info to include?
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Old 09-09-2011, 11:10 AM
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Default Re: The history of flyfishing

I would start with Google or Yahoo. Then check "interviews with>>>>>>" Jim Green, Fenwick: Jim Payne: Joan Wulff, HL Leonard: FE Thomas.... etc etc.

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Old 09-09-2011, 11:40 AM
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Default Re: The history of flyfishing

the orvis blog just recently did a short series on the history of fly fishing, you could start there as a reference point.
This is the latest post, you can search the blog for the earlier editions.
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Old 09-09-2011, 12:30 PM
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Default Re: The history of flyfishing

Referencing the use of synthetic materials in flies...do NOT miss John Betts of Denver, Colorado. He started it.
Gary
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Old 09-09-2011, 02:10 PM
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Default Re: The history of flyfishing

I googled it and i got a few websites that I really liked but most of them covered stuff from the 1700's and older. My teacher said I would be better off refining my era to either really old or more modern so that I didnt end up with a long boring drawn out paper.

I was sitting in class earlier and came across one of those Orvis blogs, it was pretty interesting. Ill have to go look at other entries.

From the movie "A River Runs Through It" the one brother supposedly creates the "shadow casting" was this a real type of casting? did it lead to spey as we know it today?
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Old 09-09-2011, 02:14 PM
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Default Re: The history of flyfishing

The American Museum of Fly Fishing USED to have - don't know if they still do - a lot of video of a roundtable discussion I conducted amongst Paul Schullery, Lefty Kreh, Dave Whitlock, Stu Apte, Leon Chandler and maybe one or two others. If you're into doing stuff from the '50's forward, these guys have been there, done that, got the hat and the video. Guess you could google them to find their website and find out if the footage (it was an 8-hour discussion) is still up on their site.
Just a thought,
Gary
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Old 09-09-2011, 03:30 PM
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Default Re: The history of flyfishing

Flyfisher117-- this sounds like a great topic--- you can find a ton of info for your paper by researching (googling) some of the names and examples provided below:

Dry flies adapted for faster American streams by Theodore Gordon (Quill Gordon) from the dry flies used on the slower chalk streams in Great Britain by Frederick Halford, resulting in the Catskill style dry fly

Tying flies for species other than trout- there's been an explosion of fly fishing for all kinds of fish besides trout. These include flies tied by saltwater pioneers like:
Stu Apte, Apte Tarpon Fly for tarpon
Joe Brooks, Brooks Blonde, for variety of saltwater gamefish
Harold Gibbs, Gibbs Striper Fly, Striped Bass
Lefty Kreh, Lefty's Deceiver, variety of saltwater gamefish
Bob Nauheim, Crazy Charlie, for bonefish
as well as freshwater species from panfish, carp, bass, musky etc.

Imitating food other than trout stream insects and baitfish, "flies" are now tied to imitate a wide variety of prey including:
crabs (Del Brown's Permit Fly)
shrimp (Borski Swimming Shrimp)
squid (Sea Arrow Squid)
mice (Morrish Mouse)
eggs ( Glo Bug)
frogs Messinger Frog
worms San Juan Worm
crayfish (Dan's Crayfish)

Tying flies as an art form:
- Traditional Atlantic Salmon fly fishing patterns tied as art and/or collectibles (Thanks in large part to Poul Jorgenson's book Salmon Flies)
- Creative interpretations (never meant to be fished) tied in Atlantic Salmon fly style
-"Realistic" flies tied as exacting replicas of insects including scorpions etc not meant to be fished

Improvments in genetic breeding of chickens for different applications in fly tying pioneered by Dr Tom WHiting of Whiting Farms-- examples of feathers from a "genetic" cape and saddle feather compared to feathers from birds raised for meat/eggs. Here's a good link: Whiting

Use of synthetic and new natural materials, examples include
Bob Popovics patterns like the surf Candy and Siliclone using epoxy and silicone respectively
Provide examples of synthetics now used in fly tying by pulling names of items from any fly tying catalog.

Patterns from all over the world now shared and adapted for local use
New Zealand- Matuka
Easterrn Euorpe- Czech Nymphs

Good luck!

---------- Post added at 04:30 PM ---------- Previous post was at 04:20 PM ----------

No that "shadow casting" was poetic license-- but the casting for the movie was excellent. The casting was done by Jason Borger (son of Gary Borger a fly fishing legend), John Dietsch, and Jerry Siem (excellent caster and rod designer for Sage fly rods)
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Old 09-10-2011, 01:08 AM
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Default Re: The history of flyfishing

More happened in fly fishing between 1950 and 1970 than in all the previous history of the sport. When I first began fly fishing in the 50"s, my first "real" fly leader (knotted and tapered) was cat gut, which was very expensive and came in a sealed glassine package filled with something wet - I can't remember what. It was knotted often and could only be tied while wet or it would just splinter and break. So I quickly abandoned it for monofilament - untapered. The "X" marking system comes from the grading of those "cat (apillar) gut" leaders.

The 1950's marked the end of them, and the end of silk fly lines, which was my first. The first plastic line "scientific anglers air cell" to the best of my recollection hit the market around the mid 50's possibly as late as '57) and probably the biggest advances in bamboo fly rod making extended through the 60's. Jim Payne, Pinkie Gillam, Tom Maxwell and others all were making fast action bamboo rods with big enough guides for the rapidly expanding floating line diameters. These were the lightest and strongest rods on the market until the late 80's when graphites and other technology had progressed enough to catch up, then surpass in strength/weight ratio.

During the 60's also, Jim Green developed the Ferrulite joint - eliminating the need (and expense) for meticulously turned ferrules (on the bamboo rods) and stamped ones for fiberglass rods, paving the way for good joinery of the more brittle graphite materials.

As far as the history of the equipment, by far the biggest improvement has been in the lines. The biggest improvement (from an orthinological and other fauna viewpoint) has been in the rapid development and acceptance of man made fibers to tie our flies with. The jungle cocks and polar bears are no longer on our hooks.

So, basically, you have picked the worst time period for a short paper.

Cheers,
Jim
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Old 09-10-2011, 07:21 AM
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Default Re: The history of flyfishing

First thing, read this book by historian Paul Schullery. It's the definitive book on the American experience

Click the image to open in full size.


This book, by Glenn Law is only 175 pages but it's a good over view

Click the image to open in full size.

I could recommend a number of others more specialized but those 2 are where to start

On line this is a good reference

http://www.flyfishinghistory.com/.
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