Fly Fishing

Piscifun fly fishing reels

The Art of Fly-Fishing


Fly Fishing is the art of presenting to a fish a bunch of feathers tied to a hook in such a manner that the fish will believe that the aforesaid bunch is something edible and become "permanently attached" to it. The seductiveness of the presentation of the artificial fly depends greatly on the ability of the fisherman to cause his line to fall gently on the water within reasonable distance of the spot where his prospective victim is lying in wait for something to eat to pass by.

Fly fishing is the highest branch of angling, itís appurtenances are the most artistic of all fishing tackle and its practice utilizes the most graceful of all motions involved in fishing. It is a perpetual joy to its votaries, and, like chess, while the elementary moves are easily learned, there is always room for improvement.

The requisite tackle is simple, beautiful and, comparatively speaking, inexpensive. The man of moderate means is perfectly equipped with a ten-dollar outfit, while the wealthy angler may gratify his artistic taste in the ownership of an equipment costing fifteen times as much and both may meet on the stream on exactly equal terms. The float sinkers, spoons, bait boxes and swivels of the bait fisherman form no part of the fly-caster's outfit.

A light rod with the reel seat below the hand - a simple single- action reel, 25 to 60 yards of waterproof enameled fly line, a couple of 6 foot leaders of single silkworm gut, an assortment of flies and a book to hold them, a creel, and a short-handled landing-net complete his equipment. He has no bait to procure and no worry, trouble or bother in transporting and keeping it alive; the success of his day's outing depends on his skill, the use of the simple equipment given, and his knowledge of the habits of the fish he pursues.

The novice who has never tried to cast a fly will get perhaps as much assistance as he can receive from printed matter out of the following simple instructions:

Fishing with the Fly: Take your rod from the case, attach your single-action reel to the butt of the rod on the same side as the guides, in such a position that with the reel on the under side of the butt the handle will be at the right hand. Join the tip and the middle joint together, keeping the guides of both in line, pressing the ferrules gently together, avoiding a twisting motion which is apt to injure the rod ; then bring the second joint and butt together in the same manner. Draw 3 or 4 yards of line from the reel and thread it through the guides and tip. Attach the free end of your line to the upper leader loop with a knot as indicated in illustration (1). The advantage of this knot lies in the fact that

Attaching the line to the upper leader loop

any amount of tension on line or leader will serve only to draw it more tightly, but a slight pull on the loose end (A) will at once release the knot. Make an assortment of three flies, using dark or dull coloured flies for bright days or shallow water and bright gaudy flies for dark days or deep streams. Pass the loop of the fly snell over the leader loops, then bringing the body of the fly through the latter. The leader should be moist and pliant before using ; otherwise it will snap when casting and your flies will either decorate some nearby tree-top or sail down the stream entirely unconnected with the rest of your tackle. For casting from a boat or on a comparatively open streaks the ordinary over- hand cast which is the simplest may be used. Hold the butt of your rod in your right hand with your reel underneath. Strip sufficient line from your reel to enable your end or dropper fly to come to the butt of your rod. Hold the hook of your dropper fly in the left hand, pulling it backwardly on a line with, and sufficient distance below the butt of your rod, to bend the tip in a half circle. Hold your rod almost horizontally, with a slight upward inclination to the tip. Release the dropper fly. The spring of the rod tip will cause the line to spring forward its full length and the flies to light on the water.

From American Game and Food Fishes. Jordan and Evermann.