If I were fishing for trout with a fly rod I would like to use something like this.
If they were not feeding on the surface because of cold weather one of these would be cool.
Or even one of these these;
Of course there may be days when I may not catch as many fish as I would were I to carry a bag of plastic beads, floats, and weights, but I always seem to have caught enough to satisfy the idea that fly fishing with hand tied flies and streamers was pretty effective and fun. I guess at heart I may have a tendency toward tradition or perhaps art, or maybe it's just that I wanted to be a little different. I don't know what made me want a fly rod all those years ago. I was catching plenty of fish using my little St. Croix Ultra Light spinning rod and my Eagle Claw Golden Eagle reel (I still have the reel) but something about fly casting & tying drew me in.
It didn't take long to find that some days I may be able to catch more fish with bait than I was catching on flies. However that was more closely related to my skills as a fly fisherman than it was to the shortcomings of the fly. Back then I carried the old spinning rig along for when I gave in to the need to prove myself. As the years passed I became more serious about wanting to be more than someone who carried a fly rod when fishing but would do whatever it took to catch a fish. It was then that I began to learn how to catch fish consistently using hand made artificial flies that imitated insects and forage fishes that trout eat every day. Perhaps that is why I shake my head when I hear stories about beads and 'nymph rigs'.
Everyone has heard the Old Wives Tale, that fly fisherman are an elite bunch who look down their noses at other ways and means of fishing. For me that ideology came and went, it was however replaced by a certain subliminal scorn held for the use of non traditional paraphernalia attached to the leader which is attached to a fly rod. This I can not change and I know it will not subside with time as did my disdain for 'hardware fishermen'. I see a person using spinning gear and lures / bait as a person who has made a choice regarding how they fish. People who make choices are to be respected, at least that's how I feel about it when it comes to fishing. When I see a person using other than traditional fishing flies and tackle (an outline of which can be found described in writings spanning more than 530 years) I see someone who is still worried that he or she may not be able to catch a fish by fly fishing. There may be or will be, days when you may not catch a fish without indi rigs or beads but it is those days set before you that you are to ponder & figure out 'why'. That day is the time of actual advancement if you reflect on the happenings and conditions and strive to understand 'why' you were not successful. If you learn this game by always doing whatever the herd is doing so that you have the best possible chance of feeling that trout struggling on that taunt line you may be missing the very heart and soul of what it means to be a fly fisherman.
Of course I could go on, there is every possibility that some have read what I said and completely disagree with my opinion; my thoughts. They can not be altered, not even by a run of fish-less days. I use those days my friend, and I use them well, so that when I have fit all the pieces of the puzzle together and have one of those days that many dream of I can say, that happened because I learned to fly fish.
The fish was dead when the picture taken, it was killed and eaten. That smile was a matter of pride, no weight and a traditional wet fly presented in the current with my fly rod. It took a life time but I figured out how to do it with consistency. BTW, I don't post many pictures of fish but I thought the one above would help to give relevance to my words.