We are often asked to articulate what it is that makes fly fishing so special and it is true, sometimes it is hard to describe the affliction. Here is a short article I wrote for a local Adventure Guide that may help get to the nature of this spell bounding activity… Enjoy the Season!
Magic on the Fly-
Why “fly fishing” and not just “plain old fishing”? The answer may lie in the art itself, fly-fishing’s opportunity to connect with nature, or just a simple love of wonder.
Traditional fishing, of course, requires plenty of craft and — without a doubt — demands a certain amount of finesse. Fly fishing, though, totally captivates its participants with an undeniable and unique delight: the flow of casting. Many of us became addicts for life, so strong is its pull. Catching fish became secondary, though it had been everything until we discovered fly fishing’s other joys: tying flies and leaders, casting, the drift — reading the water, hunting the fish and finding the magic.
Perhaps the most important aspects of fly fishing — where, when, and with whom — help create its magic. After all, the most sought-after species reside in Mother Nature’s finest waters. And being surrounded by the great outdoors helps dispel the stress that life sometimes generates.
Seasons for the fly angler can also create a wonderful mystique of promise: the promise of change, and another shot at the fish of a lifetime. Dedicated anglers might find themselves on an uncrowded stream in mid-winter, reaping the benefits of a small window of opportunity, something unique to each season.
Winter, spring, fall, summer, all influence the planet’s creatures, and that includes fish and fishers. Nature’s ever-changing conditions create an infinite number of possibilities. In my opinion, it’s the core of fly fishing. Game fish move as their food does, and an observant angler can learn to recognize these movements during the hunt.
The fellowship of fly fishing is based on ethics, conservation, and love of the game. A day on the water can be one of complete silence and concentration, or filled with laughter and fine spirits — both very different yet completely satisfying. Getting started can be easy and need not be expensive. The basics include a rod and reel, a handful of flies, and fish water.
Once you open the door to fly fishing, though, be prepared to immerse yourself in a lifelong journey that could take you much farther than your backyard. Perhaps into the realm of magic.