Part II: Fly Fishing for beginners - How Do I Learn? Who Do I Ask?

Posted by Christopher Paine on

If you have never fished or wet a lines as some anglers would say. That is okay. I started as a boy in a small pond in the woods out behind my house. Full of bass I could catch them with bubble gum I think and I had parents and cousins to show me how. But if you are starting later in life and never had the experience or a mentor that is okay you still can become an angler in a lots of different ways.

Fishing with Mom and Dad is a great start, as long as they have patients. Parents that don’t hover and just let them fish are better teachers, learn from trial and error. I have made tons of mistakes from catching trees to catching friends, that is all part of the learning curve and making mistakes are good teachers…

You can learn a lot from friends and maybe the best way to learn. Getting tips or tricks from you friends is priceless. A good friend will not have you compete with each other, the competition is between you and the fish not with each other.

You ladies that want you boyfriend to teach you to fish may want to reconsider. If they can teach you how to drive than they have patients enough to teach you how to fish.

I take people all the time to teach them how to fly fish and land a fish. Sometime I will hook a trout or a salmon and hand them the rod, just to give them practice on how to land the fish with a net.



Guides are another good resource to help you learn to fish and where are the best spots. A great guide would be a wealth of information and know the area. The guide should be willing to help you with you techniques as long as you listen to his or her advice. A good guide you cost around $400 to $500 per day. Some guides do have a lot of patient some maybe like a drill sergeant. Try to find guides with endorsements many online resources. Some local tackle shops have good relationship with local guides so don’t hesitate to ask around.

People usually hire guides for special fishing trips, recommend you take the time and effort to do a little research on he or she beforehand. You can always call and talk with them to see if you are compatible with each other.  Ask about cancelations policy and bad weather what would happen? Remember this is fishing not catching, you are not guaranteed to catch anything and will not get a refund if you don’t!



You can take all kinds of different lessons on and offline. Can take cooking lessons, personal trainer sessions, and cooking lessons. Can read a blog like this one to learn some basic skills of fishing. Fly fishing be that you can spend a lot or a little on the sport, it is taught in all kinds of schools. Can break fishing schools down to two kinds of schools. First is school on technique. Casting, hooking, fighting and landing a fish. Some go to a casting clinic to learn for just two days, can be time well spent. The second school type would teach you fishing lore. Teach you how to read the water, what fish are taking, different flies to use and when. This is a good fundamental start for a beginner to get the basics. People seem to be more frustrated with the lack of technique than the lack of lore. Friends that have taken you fishing you may just fish and that is a good teacher, but it may not get the answer to why we do things the way we do.


Learn by watching

One of the most valuable pieces of advice is Watch the water! Can you see: fish feeding, how are they feeding, are they going after schools of bait fish, are the just cruising looking for bit of food, birds feeding on bugs or bait in the water, how is the current, fish feeding along the seams in the current, and what places would provide safe protection for fish.

Can be more productive on the water when you first just stop and look. Can catch more fish if you just study the water before you come charging down to the shoreline and cast…


Books and Magazines

Three magazines that have been around a while are Field & Stream, Sports Afield, and Outdoor Life. They are a good source of information to read and study to get better at this fishing and hunting thing. Have many articles on how-to and where-to and will pickup tips and tricks from all of them. Fly Fishing has a number of magazines as well as online forums and blogs like this one.

So for now that end this piece.


Tight line…






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