Fly Fishing Lessons

Brown trout on a fly rod

People often ask me about fly fishing lessons. They ask, do you teach fly fishing? Do you know someone who does? The answer is yes and yes. Then they ask, Is it hard to learn how to cast? And how do you know where to cast? As well as, how do you know what fly to use? Then they ask what gear do I need to get started fly fishing? All great questions and so let me try to answer them in a way that is helpful to the beginner angler.

Fly fishing for browns

Do I teach fly fishing?

Absolutely! The coolest part of fly fishing is watching someone catching their first fish! Seeing the look on someones face when that first fish comes up to the surface of the water to attack their fly. That is the point where they usually get “hooked” on fly fishing. I just wish I had more time to teach, its especially fun when I get to give kids lessons.

Do I know someone who teaches fly fishing?

When I don’t have time to teach I like to steer beginner anglers towards a local fly shop. Fly shops are always helpful and often offer group casting lessons for basic casting, either in the parking lot or at a local park. The great thing about these events is that the fly shop usually supply the rod, reel and fly line so someone who is just curious and not sure if they want to start fly fishing won’t have to purchase any gear to check it out.

Is it hard to learn to cast?

Casting isn’t really that hard at all, I am talking about the basic cast, It’s all about rhythm and timing. Some other casts, like the roll casts and reach casts are more technical and can take some practice to get the hang of.

How do you know where to cast?

When fishing rivers you want to look for seams, pockets, rocks and fallen trees, otherwise known as structure. Fish like to sit or hold in the slower currents next to faster water as well as cover. This lets the fish spend less energy while waiting for food to float by them in the current. Fish also require cover to get away from predators and that’s why rocks, wood and cut banks hold a lot of nice fish.

How do you know what fly to use?

Fish eat mostly underneath the waters surface, they are targeting nymphs, small bait fish, leaches etc. If you are fishing with dry flies then its best to observe what flies or terrestrials are around on that day. A great idea is to familiarize yourself with hatch chart in your area. Hatch charts will show what fly patterns are prevalent during certain months and they can also get as in depth as to what time of day is best to watch for them as well as what sizes seam to work best.

What gear do I need to get started fly fishing?

Orvis Encounter

The only gear that is completely necessary to get started fishing is a rod a reel, fly line, leader and a couple of flies. All the other gear can be acquired as you decide to progress in the sport.

Take a look at some of our suggestions regarding fly fishing combos. These combos come with everything you need to get started fishing. These packages are a great way to get what you need as a beginner, they are put together to take the guess work out of pairing a rod a reel as well as fly line together. The combos we have suggested are not expensive but they are not “cheap” either. Check out our Rod and Reel page here for more information.

These are just some fly fishing basics that I hope will help you understand how to start to understand this great sport of fly fishing.

There will be more in depth blogs to come on these subjects so stay tuned and check back often.

As always we hope that this fly fishing lessons blog was helpful and if you have any comments or questions please leave them below.


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