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5 Steps to Shortening your Fly Fishing Learning Curve

Feb 10, 2021

Fly fishing doesn't have to require a lot of time or financial investment if you get the proper information and instruction right off the bat.

At first, fly fishing was nothing short of a puzzle / trainwreck / dumpster fire for myself, but after a few years of slogging it out on my own I began noticing patterns in those that were successful on the water. 

If I had to go back to my younger self and teach them to fly fish, I would absolutely recommend these five pieces of advice. If you're new to fly fishing, I hope this serves you well:

  1. Seek your local fly shop for equipment purchases - Too many times, as a young fly shop employee, I would help a disappointed angler who had opted for a cheap fly rod kit they'd purchased from a big box store that was doing them more harm than good. Your local shop will point you in the right direction based on your skill level, and the areas/species which you spend the most time targeting. 
  2. Take a casting lesson - As in golf, the best equipment in the world will not fix a faulty stroke. Building a solid foundation of casting skills and you will reap the rewards for the remainder of your fly fishing journey, in a wide variety of fishing scenarios. 
  3. Book a guided trip - Gaining local, professional knowledge from a licensed guide is a great way to shorten your learning curve exponentially. One day with a knowledgeable guide can save you time, money, energy, and ultimately give you a greater sense of confidence in fly fishing.
  4. Study fish behaviour - What species are you pursuing, and how exactly do they behave? What are their predators, what are their prey, what sort of water do they like or dislike residing in? Understanding their behavioural tendencies will allow you to locate them more often when they are in feeding mode.
  5. Study insects and various food sources - The better you can understand the food sources you are trying to imitate, the easier it will be to fill your fly box with patterns that are going to catch fish on a consistent basis. Furthermore, you will gain a greater understanding of how these food sources behave in the water, determining the speed at which the fly should be retrieved

BONUS: Enjoy every second and never hesitate to reach out to someone for help!

Find today's episode below on Fly Fish University TV & the Fly Fish University Podcast!



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