The North American Fly Fishing Forum

The North American Fly Fishing Forum (
-   General Discussion (
-   -   Initial Impressions of Flyfishing (

ncflyboy 07-22-2011 03:19 PM

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!



peregrines 07-22-2011 04:18 PM

Re: Initial Impressions of Flyfishing
You'll fit right in here :)

I think most of us here on NAFFF feel the same way-- judging by all the different fish members chase.

Who needs expensive gear when you could have a ball doing this?

bigjim5589 07-22-2011 04:30 PM

Re: Initial Impressions of Flyfishing
Robert, demographics show that the majority of fly anglers are trout anglers, so that's where you'll see the majority of fly shops concentrate their efforts for selling gear. Some will cater to other areas of fly fishing because of where they're located. For example a fly shop in the Florida keys would most definitely carry gear for saltwater fly anglers. Fact is of all anglers, fly anglers are a fairly low percentage, so the retailers have a small audience. And, most of the better quality fly gear is relatively expensive when compared to other types of tackle the average angler may be using.

But, you're not alone! I started fly fishing about 45 years ago & there really were no fly fishing magazines back then. I was about 11 years old. There were magazines that had fly fishing articles, and once I became interested, I read everything I could get & envisioned myself as those articles depicted, just as you've described. Then I grew up some & realized the potentials of my local waters, which were primarily tidal, and none of which held anything that resembled a trout. The only exception was a small local lake that got stocked with hatchery trout each spring. I just didn't like standing shoulder to shoulder with other anglers, which kept me from fly casting anyway.

I like to fish for trout occasionally when the opportunity allows, but that's not very often.

I'm actually a blue collar fly angler. I drive a tractor trailer for a living too! Most of the fishing I do is for bass, panfish or some of the "saltwater" species that invade the tidal rivers of the Chesapeake Bay. I started out with a Cortland fiberglass 8 wt, single action reel and a level line. An outfit that my father purchased for me via mail order.
Dad was not a fly angler, so he didn't have a clue what he was buying. I made due, and learned on my own.

I'm a pretty good fly tyer, and even spent 15 years tying commercially. I'm not the best fly caster, but I can cast well enough for the fishing I do. I've been fortunate to have been around some very good casters, so my casting has improved from my self taught beginnings.

I own some good equipment, but not any that's overly expensive. I have 7 rods, ranging from a 3 wt up to a 10 wt and all were either bought used, or traded for. One, a 6 wt Cabela's rod ($240 in their catalog at that time) I bought new at an auction for $90. I've collected a ton of tying supplies, and a small fortune in other tackle, but never felt I had to buy the "best" (or the most expensive) fly tackle to catch fish. What I have works well for me!

There is a lot of BS in fly fishing, as in most fishing, but your attitude about keeping an open mind is likely the best thing a person can do when they get into this sport. There is very good equipment available now, that fits a wide range of budgets. Fly fishing is not just for trout, and many manufacturers finally realized that! However, the demographics are what they are, and trout is still the most popular species of fly anglers. I'm good with that, leaves more of the other species for folks like you & I! :D

caseywise 07-22-2011 04:52 PM

Re: Initial Impressions of Flyfishing
check out ards thread "the worlds best fishing & you".
some good stuff in that one kinda on the same topic.


ncflyboy 07-22-2011 06:33 PM

Re: Initial Impressions of Flyfishing

Originally Posted by caseywise (Post 290096)
check out ards thread "the worlds best fishing & you".
some good stuff in that one kinda on the same topic.


Where's ard's thread? I cannot find it.



FrankB2 07-22-2011 06:35 PM

Re: Initial Impressions of Flyfishing
It's all good............

Bigfly 07-22-2011 07:07 PM

Re: Initial Impressions of Flyfishing
ncfly, many things with fins will eat a fly.
The fish don't care who makes your rod, or fly, or what you drove to the water.
My only personal rule for this sport, is to have fun.
I've found that it's often possible to have fun, when not paying any attention how some others do it. (Or those in magazines.)
Of course, you have to watch'em, in case it's a good trick to learn.......


littledavid123 07-22-2011 08:29 PM

Re: Initial Impressions of Flyfishing
I made a mistake early in life by letting the morality of others, reflected in their activities, guide my pursuits. Every fly fisherman met acted in the most snobbish ways towards how I was taught to fish. Took too long for me to realize that my actions need not mirror theirs.

I fly fish for my enjoyment and if I had to share a hole with someone, I hope it's a kid with a can of worms, and my actions would peak his interest enough to have a go at the fly rod. :)


troutslayer 07-22-2011 08:43 PM

Re: Initial Impressions of Flyfishing
I've always said that you could use a stick from a tree and a tippet and probably catch a fish with a good presentation. What I like about flyfishing is in listed below but also that trout don't care if you are a banker, stockbroker or unemployed. They don't care how expensive a rod you have or that you paid $400 for a reel or that you loolk like you just walked out of a flyfishing catalog. All fish care about is what you are presenting and how you are doing it. If you can do that right, you'll have a great time catching trout! (or whatever fish you are after!)

caseywise 07-22-2011 09:50 PM

Re: Initial Impressions of Flyfishing
here ya go:D


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:38 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimisation provided by DragonByte SEO v2.0.40 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
2005-2017 The North American Fly Fishing Forum. All rights reserved.