Why You Should You Learn to Fly Fish
- 14 Jun, 2019
I believe that it is safe to say that most people who enjoy outdoor activities have at some point or another seen a video of a fly fisherman wading in a beautiful mountain trout stream while casually casting a fly rod. But, not everyone is aware that fly fishing is actually an ancient sport dating back to the Greeks near the end of the 2nd century C.E. Thus, by taking up the sport of fly fishing you join an ancient community of specialized anglers. However, that is not the only reason for taking up the ancient art of fly fishing. In fact, I can think of five very good reasons for becoming a fly fisherman. For instance, fly fishing is truly an ancient form of art, it’s more challenging than other types of fishing, it’s more complex than other types of fishing, it can be done in any type of aquatic environment and, most importantly, it’s more rewarding than other types of fishing.
It’s an art form –
In fact, fly fishing is not only an ancient means of catching fish, it is literally an art form. Therefore, by learning to fly fish, you are learning not only the modernized version of knowledge that has been passed down from human to human for countless generations, you learn to become one with your environment and your equipment. In fact, fly fishing is the most elegant form of fishing an angler can choose to take up and, once learned, the action of casting a fly becomes both challenging and mesmerizing.
It’s challenging –
Also, because fly fishing is an art form, it’s also more challenging than other forms of fishing because the art of fly fishing is predicated on the angler using an artificial fly rather than an artificial lure. This stricture is, in turn, further compounded by the fact that fishing flies have very little weight and a lot of wind resistance and thus, they cannot be cast in the conventional manner. Therefore, fishing with flies requires more skill than fishing with conventional lures does because the angler has to not only present his fly in exactly the right spot in exactly the right manner, he must also be able to manipulate either the fly line or the fly itself in order to make the fly appear to be a living insect, bait fish, or crustacean. Thus, the number one goal in a fly fisherman’s life becomes to learn to present the right fly in the right spot at the right time.
It’s complex –
Fly fishing is also very much a thinking man’s sport. In fact, it is precisely because fly fishing is a very complex sport encompassing many different types of aquatic environments and nearly all species of fish as well as many different types of flies, fly rods, fly reels, and fly lines that attracts many fishermen to the sport. Thus, a new fly fisherman can start with the basics and then literally spend a lifetime learning new types of fly fishing for different fish species in different environments while using different types of fly fishing equipment.
It’s rewarding –
Thus, fly fishing is rewarding precisely because it’s an ancient art form of art as well as because it’s challenging and because its complicated.
However, while that might seem like an oxymoron, the fact is that most humans have an innate appreciation for grace and beauty and fly fishing is nothing if it’s not a beautiful and graceful form of art. Also, the very fact that fly fishing is a complex sport is what draws so many new anglers to it who then find themselves fully immersed in the world of fly fishing where they then spend a lifetime exploring the various types of fly fishing and the different aspects of fly fishing.
Also, for reasons unexplainable, there is simply something about facing a wary fish in his own environment and fooling him into striking your fly and then landing that fish that is somehow more satisfying than catching a fish using a conventional rod and reel with a conventional fishing lure.
Your choice of environments –
Last but not least and, contrary to popular belief, fly fishing is not limited to fishing for trout in crystal clear mountain streams. Instead, due to many advances in manufacturing modern fly rods, fly lines, and fishing flies, fly fisherman now have the option of fishing for nearly any freshwater fish species in any freshwater environment ranging from streams to rivers to ponds to lakes. For instance, in addition to fly fishing for trout, fly fisherman can catch such species as sunfish, smallmouth and largemouth bass, striped bass, pike, muskie, shad, carp and, even catfish.
In addition, anglers who live near the sea can fly fish estuaries, salt marshes, the surf zone, inshore flats, inshore waters and, off shore waters for many different saltwater fish species. Thus, a saltwater fly fisherman can catch such fish species such as snook and baby tarpon one day and then, the next day they can catch sailfish, marlin and, sharks simply by changing their location and their fly fishing gear.
Thus, regardless of where you live, if there is fishable water nearby, then you can successfully fish it using fly fishing equipment.
So, why learn to fly fish? Well, because by learning to fly fish, you join an ancient community of fly fisherman who practice an ancient art form using modern equipment and who also enjoy the grace and beauty of the sport as well as its challenge and its complexity. Thus, if you prefer easy and simple methods of fishing, then fly fishing may not interest you.
But if you are the type of angler who enjoys learning in addition to pitting your intellect, knowledge, and skill against a wary adversary and coming out the victor, then you may very well find that fly fishing provides you the most fun you have ever had while fishing!
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