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Old 02-01-2011, 02:35 AM
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Default Adventures of a newbie: Update page 2 - 2/15

Some of you expressed interest in following the path of someone new to fly fishing, and I am in a writing mood, so I thought I would spend some time putting my thoughts and adventures down for posterity.

Last time I posted, I had just settled on a rod/reel outfit, read a bit and watched some casting videos on youtube. I got a bit of spare time, and decided to put on my waders and hit the water to do some casting.

Self teaching isn't the easiest thing to do, and results were marginal but encouraging. I was able to make a loop and bend the line to my will, and that in and of it's self was a victory.

Folks on here encouraged me to get with somebody who knows the ropes, which is easier said than done when one works second shift and has a wife and 5 month old son. Luckily, I got in touch with a high school friend of mine named Dustin Reeves, who, though a young guy like myself, is following his dream and guides out of his own drift boat in Montana in the summer and builds custom flyrods.

Dustin was kind enough to roll out of bed Sunday morning and head down to the river with me to work on some casting. We worked on my cast, and I had a true breakthrough moment.

The first outing on my own, I had come back a little sore in the hand and shoulder, from putting a death-grip on the rod and horsing it around like it was a 20 pound piece of lumber instead of a gracefully tapered graphite flyrod.

Dustin showed me how a short, quick, efficient movement can move the line through the air in the desired shape with very little physical effort. The mental effort of both teacher and student (one very patient, the other stubborn as a mule, you guess who is who!) far surpassed the physical effort required.

In time though, I got to where I would catch my own mistakes quickly and correct as necessary. Once we had a handle on the basics, he showed me some other techniques, we practiced roll casting, a bit of basic mending, and properly stripping line in, which is much simpler to watch than it is to do, at least for this guy! Towards the end he started to show me some hauls, but time was running short and I will need a better handle on basic casting before I try that in earnest.

I'm still barely more than an embarrassment, but two hours on the water with someone who knows what they're doing was worth more than days of reading and solitary practice.

Now, for the perfect ending to the session, it is important to note that I had picked Dustin up at his house, and he had a customer for his rod building business to meet in less than an hour from when we stepped out of the water.

We got back to the truck, and quickly discovered that I had locked my keys inside! I had taken my coat off, keys in pocket, and put it in the tupperware tub that I transport my waders in. As we were heading down, I thought better of leaving the tub in the bed of the pickup, and locked it in the cab of my truck to keep it from being stolen.

Luckily Dustin's girlfriend was able to come pick him up in time to get him home for his meeting. My wife came along with the spare key and a grin a little while later. I'll never live it down.

Last edited by kevthebassman; 02-15-2011 at 02:13 AM. Reason: update on pg 2
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Old 02-01-2011, 06:32 AM
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Default Re: Adventures of a newbie

Quote:
Originally Posted by kevthebassman View Post
.................................
We got back to the truck, and quickly discovered that I had locked my keys inside! I had taken my coat off, keys in pocket, and put it in the tupperware tub that I transport my waders in. As we were heading down, I thought better of leaving the tub in the bed of the pickup, and locked it in the cab of my truck to keep it from being stolen.

Luckily Dustin's girlfriend was able to come pick him up in time to get him home for his meeting. My wife came along with the spare key and a grin a little while later. I'll never live it down.
LOL, I did the same thing when it came time to drop my mother in law off at the airport (I managed to break in)

Great to hear that you are geting your casting under control, it took a while for me to get the feel of a well loaded rod when I was practicing on the lawn at home (when I first started) and I had too wait half a year for the next season too start

Chris
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Old 02-01-2011, 08:13 AM
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Default Re: Adventures of a newbie

Quite entertaning Kev! I love reading about the journey of others as they grow not only in skill but in appreciation of fly fishing. I reminds me of my struggle of learning to cast. The tailing loops, the snapped flies that I lost, the ever present thought that ".....if I could just lay this next cast out perfectly something will hit." Its encouraging to read of your quick growth with your friend Dustin. Keep up the good work and keep us posted.
Oh and the locked Keys happened to me while camping with my inlaws. Like Chris I had to break in. The good news is I became very skilled with a clothes hanger.......
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Old 02-01-2011, 08:18 AM
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Default Re: Adventures of a newbie

Good story, Kev. You're lucky to have a friend that guides, and he probably saved you quite a bit of time and aggravation compared to being self-taught. I went that route, and it's L-O-N-G......
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Old 02-01-2011, 09:21 AM
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Default Re: Adventures of a newbie

Kev: Great story, it's good to hear you have a mentor to help you learn. I think we all have lock our keys in the car at one time or another.

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Old 02-01-2011, 11:23 AM
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Default Re: Adventures of a newbie

Thanks for sharing your first stepsnot surprising you locked the keys inside... fishing excitement
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Old 02-01-2011, 12:07 PM
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Default Re: Adventures of a newbie

Thanks for the great read, Kevin...I don't know yet when we stop thinking of ourselves as "new". I've been at this for a few years and get to fish maybe 50-60 days/yr. I learn or re-learn something every time, it seems.

-Mike
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Old 02-01-2011, 12:08 PM
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Default Re: Adventures of a newbie

Great story!! I have done it so many times I keep a spare key in my wallet!! Keep us up to date on your progress!!
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Old 02-01-2011, 08:22 PM
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Default Re: Adventures of a newbie

That was a good read Kevin!

I have been practicing in the yard whenever it is not windy (newbie 2). Went to the river 2 weeks ago and of course I didn't catch any fish. However, being on the river seemed to exaggerate my mistakes, thus giving me more opportunities to study and learn solutions.

The day did end on a bright note, the local fly shop showed me how to tie the egg pattern (bought the material from them of course) and believe that my egg is every bit as good theirs, only it takes me minutes compared to their seconds to tie...lol

Dave

---------- Post added at 08:22 PM ---------- Previous post was at 08:20 PM ----------

PS: Keyless entry is the only way to go.
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Old 02-02-2011, 11:43 AM
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Default Re: Adventures of a newbie

Wow, how ironic - I was thinking of doing the same thing, making a chronicle of FF from the perspective of a Newb.

Seems like you have that covered now, and nobody wants to be a copy cat.

As for me, I am an Uber Newb - no instruction only reading and online videos, 1 hr of casting practice in the back yard, and 1 day of FF last sunday on the chattooga river in SC.

It will be interesting to follow your progress, and be able to compare my own improvements against yours.
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