Thursday, January 23, 2014

Tip of the Week-Introduction

The snow is flying, which is great for the skiing and definitely helps the water situation but it makes it hard to get out there fishing. So to fill some time and space, I'm going to start a "Tip of the Week" series.

I've thought about writing a book about fly-fishing techniques but everyone and their brother has either done it or tried it and since I have a free publishing forum here at blogger, I'm going to use it. Where I would have started with the book was to define a few elements of fly-fishing that an angler has to learn in order to be successful. You might say they are the essentials and I don't want to bore the bejeebees out of you so I'm just going to quickly mention them: gear, casting, presentation, entomology, reading water, fighting/landing fish and release/conservation.

The cool thing about fly-fishing is that all of these things come into play every time you step in the water and the more proficient one becomes at developing a paradigm that encompasses all the essentials, the more successful you are going to be. For instance, you might be able to chuck 75 feet of line but if you can't get the right drift, it doesn't mean squat. It's kind of like in golf; drive for show, putt for dough...The problem is that there is a TON of information and different techniques that can definitely bog a person down so I'm not going to get so much into the casting and the gear but I'm going to talk more about situational things like winter fishing and where to find fish, etc.

So here's the deal; I'm going to post a tip every Thursday so that the weekend warriors out there can have them fresh in their minds for when they head out on their days off. I'm not going to give away the farm but I hope these tips help. After all, fishing should be fun and as a person get's better and more knowledgeable and starts controlling their own successes instead of feeling like you're lucking into fish every once in a while; hopefully that success and passion becomes infectious and inspires others to participate.

Really quick though, let's talk about gear and where to get it. Anyone can find deals on-line and I'm not going to pretend I haven't done it. In fact, I bought my first pair of down hill skis off eBay for $67 and they were great for the groomers but I also went to a local shop and dropped $400 on boots and I'm so glad I did because I learned a ton. The money was well spent on not only a decent pair of boots but also the knowledge that came with them so I would suggest going into a local shop and start a relationship with them--drop a little cash and you'd be surprised at how much info you can get. It is kind of intimidating at first and I do remember when I first got into fly-fishing but one thing you can be assured of is that there are plenty of options so if you don't like how one shop treats you, go to the next.

As for rods, because it's probably your first purchase, you don't have to break the bank but you should spend enough money to get a quality rod with a good warranty. The warranty is key because you will use it...guaranteed.

I have TFO's in my boat because they have the best warranty and they are solid rods for the price. (I actually fish those rods myself because I'm not really a gear head and I think they're fine rods although a few years ago I was introduced to the Hardy Zenith and I just had to have one.) Starting out, you shouldn't have to pay more than $250-$300. As you learn more about gear and develop your own casting style you might want to upgrade. Eco and Redington also do a good job of offering quality rods at a good price and most major players out there like Sage and Orvis do offer entry level gear as well. Remember though, when buying a rod there are a ton of things to consider like weight, length and action so it's best to go into your favorite shop and have them help you out.

Winter fishing can be pretty stellar on those waters that are open. Make sure to check the regs and we'll see you out there.

Keep 'em where they live...

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