Well if you haven’t already guessed it, a new era in my fishing has now begun. It has always been a goal in my life to have a crack at fly-fishing. I watched my husband for a few years in his late 20’s have a go and watched his frustration with tangles, knots, diminished catch rates versus effort. The flip side to this was the amount of elation he had when he finally scored a capture. He soon went back to fishing conventionally with a spin outfit and the novelty seemed to wear off. I had a little play back then and caught my first barramundi on fly but felt I had so much more to learn about fishing in general that I wasn’t prepared to dabble in the fly fishing world just yet.
I have come to the realisation that you never ever stop learning (yes it has taken me a while, hasn’t it?) but feel more comfortable with my knowledge in other areas to now embark into the fly-fishing world.
Do I know what I have gotten myself in for? I am not sure that I do yet. My headspace is filling fast with too much information like rod weights, shooting lines, intermediate lines, sinking lines, leaders, tippets, double halling, the list goes on.
Determined to succeed, as I love a challenge I am just slowing everything down and trying to just concentrate on the basics.
A practice rod is a good start; these are little short rods that can be used inside the house or backyard if you can’t get to the park to practice with the real thing. You need to practice casting and learn about controlling the rod to then be in control of your line. The first thing I learnt off the big man himself, Peter Morse, is that your line will do whatever the tip of your rod is doing. So, if you are waving your rod around loosely your line will follow suit and hence your casting will be terrible.
It is also about learning to accelerate and stop where appropriate. This puts load on the rod so your line follows around in a nice loop and when you are ready to shoot out your cast your line should lie down nicely on the water.
The more I practice the more you can feel when things are getting out of control and you learn how to correct that. For me it is about slowing things down and controlling my stops. This has been my major hurdle.
I was luckily enough the other week to get out with Chris Stannage and Greg Seeto and by trial and error of watching each other and giving each other feedback we were able to constructively correct our casting. I was also given a play with different weight rods, 6wt, 8wt and 12wt. Although the 12wt was a heavier rod set up with a sinking line that I don’t think I could cast all day it actually slowed me down and I was able to feel the load points of the rod and therefore could stop and accelerate where needed to lay down some okay casting. I won’t say great or good, as I know I need more work yet.
I am no expert by any means but am seriously considering buying a Daiwa New Era fly rod and reel. As I am slowly learning you need different lines for different purposes. The Daiwa New Era Fly Reel also comes with 2 spare cartridges, which means for me I don’t have to invest in several reels for different purposes. This means I can have sinking line on one, intermediate on another and floating on the 3rd one, this makes a lot of sense to me. It is the first of its kind with fully interchangeable cartridges with no tools needed to change and saltwater friendly.
Watch this space as my adventures into the fly-fishing world continues.