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Ready to become a fly fisherman?
Before you run off to buy your very first pair of Simms waders you might want to give this a read. The truth about fly fishing could make you switch from Orvis to Ugly Stik in as little as five reasons.
The truth is, fly fishing sucks…
Looks simple enough...
If you are interested in getting into fly fishing life will not be easy. Brace yourself, here comes five reasons why you may want to go and buy a can of worms instead.
1. Good gear costs an arm and a leg
This one is obvious. Walk into any outfitter, fly shop, or even local sporting goods store, and take a look at the prices.
Are you down with spending 20% of the cost of a used car for a fishing rod? Do you also know that 9 out of 10 rods end up meeting their maker by being slammed in a car door?
Take a look at some of the “great deals” I found on Amazon:
2. Trees, weeds, rocks
Are you content with catching trees, weeds, and rocks 90% of the time?
Let’s take a look at what fly casting looks like for the beginner:
“Oops! I just backcast into a tree.”
“Ok, now my line is free.”
“Oh wait, I’m stuck around some weeds.”
“Ok, good I’m free again.”
“Woohoo! I threw a cast into the water!”
“Wait… Is that a bite?”
“Oh crap, I’m snagged on a rock.”
“Sweet I didn’t lose my fly.”
“Hang on, I’m in a tree again”‘
“There goes my fly and tippet…”
This cycle will repeat over and over until you give up (or drown yourself).
If you fish any of the beautifully wooded streams in Pennsylvania, you can count on spending most of your fishing trip dealing with removing hooks from places they don’t belong.
3. “wind” knots and knots in general
If you read up on fly fishing you’ll quickly learn that “wind” knots are somewhat of a normal occurrence on the water.
They’re called “wind” knots because, “you really suck at casting and you’ll probably put your eye out” knot, is just too long of a name.
As a beginner you will become very familiar with “wind” knots. Most of the time they happen because you suck at casting. You will also become very familiar with tying knots as you’ll be replacing your tippet over and over again due to the “wind.”
4. Spooky fish
Want to catch wild Trout? Even with the stealth of a ninja, the fish will hear you.
As you hobble your dumpy, wader clad, butt down the stream bank, the Trout are listening. While you are busy breaking sticks, falling on your face, and whistling while you walk, the Trout are finding their hiding places.
By the time you make it to the water the fish have already been laughing at you for quite some time. Since you are a rookie, you’ll top it off by jumping right into the water, wading across the stream, and stopping two feet from where you plan to fish.
Please don’t stop to wonder why you got skunked.
5. Your first Trout will make you cry
That’s right. You better be ready to look like a sissy boy on the river. If you are anything like me, you’ll spend most of your beginner fly fishing trips catching 4″ Bluegills and the occasional Bass on topwater flies. Wild Trout will remain a mystery. When you try to fish for wild Trout you will become very familiar with the skunk.
The first wild Trout you catch will bring tears of joy to your eyes.
My first Brown Trout on the fly
Yesterday I caught my very first wild Brown Trout on the fly. It was one of the best days of my life. While I didn’t ball like a baby, I will admit there was some moisture building up behind my glasses.
All by myself, on a misty morning, a hurricane rolling in, I caught my first Trout on the fly. It was 6:56am.
I have a fly rod that was donated by a good blogger buddy. I tie my own flies on the cheap. My waders say Cabela’s on the front. I don’t wear fishouflage. I even use an altoids tin as a fly box.
- If you can be cheap
- If you don’t mind catching more snags than fish
- If you can deal with tying the same knot over and over and over
- If you can tiptoe
- You might just endure long enough to enjoy one of the best hobbies and moments of your life
I hope you took the time to read through all the BS in the beginning of this article. Fly fishing can be hard and at times it sucks but it’s also one of the most rewarding pastimes around. Nothing worth doing is ever easy.
Do you LOVE fly fishing? Was it too hard for you? Let us know in the comments below!