One of the great things about fly fishing, as Adam Kautza has noted, is freedom.
We are free to fish in whatever legal way we want. So, I’ve noticed that many anglers over time develop tendencies. Sometimes, they become quirks.
What are yours?
To get the ball rolling, here are mine:
- Flies. I only fish ones I’ve made. I really enjoy making flies. So, losing them or giving them away to others lets me make more.
- Leaders. I make my own. It’s almost required if you Euro-nymph. And, I love my Harvey Slackline Dry Fly Leader.
- I drive alone. I’m an extrovert by nature, and, I really enjoy meeting people at rivers and chatting with them. However, there is something about getting into a car, turning on music or podcasts, and driving on quiet and dark roads alone. It’s very soothing.
- Plastic strike indicators. I avoid them as much as possible. I will do everything I can to tightline or float a sighter. I will throw a strike indicator during winter; it will be a New Zealand-style wool one, though. The wool is extremely sensitive. I like the white wool, as the indicator looks like an innocent piece of foam on the water (hopefully). I do have plastic indicators in my chest pack every time I go out, just in case.
- Pellet flies. I won’t fish them. I want to fish something that looks natural. If needed, I will fish my favorite San Juan Worm, Mops and eggs, and so, I’m not going all-Puritan on you or anything.
- Fishing guides. When fishing new water, even in a new state, I won’t hire a guide. After fishing the Farmington a dozen times and finding some success, I did contact Zach St. Amand and learned a ton as I tried to figure out such a long river. Normally, though, I’m a DIY type of guy. Much of the fun in fly fishing for me is to do the research and see if I can catch. It makes any fish in the net that much more rewarding.
- The Low Probability Option. I often go for it. I often eschew “hot” spots that are loaded with fish and people and go to stretches that may or may not yield fish. I will fish the mornings during frigid days. I will fish during high noon in August. I guess I’m looking for new challenges.
- Private water. I don’t feel drawn to it. I know it’s a “thing” on the west coast. You go to a stretch of water that someone owns, and you pay a fee to target water that limits anglers. You stay at a resort, perhaps. I one day will fish one of the Montana spring creeks. But, for now, I’m a public-water kind of guy.
- Redds. I won’t target them. I think spawning fish are producing future fun for me, and I want to leave them alone.
- Karma. I do wonder if it exists. When I give flies to someone or yield my “hot” spot to a new angler, I feel great about it. And, something good later on happens to me.
So, what are your quirks?