Fishin Technician

HOW DID YOU START YOUR FLY FISHING CAREER?

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Got an Orvis setup as a wedding gift from my soon-to-be wife.  (A decision she quickly learned to rue for years.)

 

30+ years ago, my soon-to-be FIL was an *avid* outdoorsman.  Hunted deer, ducks, upland birds, you name it, near my hometown of Augusta ME.  As much as he loved hunting and wilderness camping, his interest in those pursuits paled in comparison to his PASSION for fly fishing. 

 

He'd hike in to remote ponds in N and NW ME, where he and his buddies had stashed canoes, to cast dry flies for naive brook trout.  Carrying those canoes to those spots--and I've been to some of them--must have been a tortuous labor of love, what with the uneven terrain, the blowdowns, and those @#&^%$*** black flies!

 

He'd go to Canada to fish the great rivers for Atlantic Salmon, even went to Russia to chase salmon.

 

In any case, he and my fiancee conspired to get me into fly fishing (she was very good at it, as well as an excellent shot) by getting me this slow-action 9' 3" 8-wt with forward-taper floating line, "so you can use it while bass fishing".  (I was heavily into fishing for both LMB and SMB at the time.)

 

That was all she wrote.  Bought flies and more flies, and leaders, and...well you get the picture, I've no doubt.

 

Within a year, my best fishing buddy and I were headed to the Rapid River in NW ME, because it was remote--motor across Lower Richardson Lake, since there weren't even any tote roads into it at that time, then stay at the sporting camps and hike the 6 or so miles up and down the river--to chase LL Salmon and Brook Trout.

 

(Now I won't say the we were enthused about this at all BUT, our level of excitement would have made a crack addict who was trying to hold up a convenience store with a water pistol just to score again look as serene as Mother Theresa whispering her morning prayers.)

 

We didn't even unpack our clothes.  "EFF that!  Time to fish!"

 

We all but sprinted to the pool below Middle Dam to see what this stuff was all about.  Caddis flies coming off the water!!!!  (Incredulous looks at each other.  "WTF? You *have* to be chittin me!!")  For three solid hours we caught salmon from two to three pounds.  Dry flies and nymphs, then we tied on some classic Maine streamer patterns, then some stonefly nymphs.  We had only the vaguest notions of what to do, but it all worked that morning; reels screaming, salmon in the air, the whole deal.  We only quit when we realized that we hadn't eaten much since the slim jims and Jack Daniel's during the end of our night-time drive and that lunch was being served in the lodge.

 

Became a certified fly-fishing-for-salmonids junkie that morning.

 

 

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I was fishing for stocked trout at a local river as a kid. I used worms and velveeta cheese. 

 

Around May this one year the trout started eating bugs and wouldn’t eat bait 

 

i needed to imitate the flies

 

My uncle had given me a “lucky” fishing hat with a bunch of his flies stuck in the hat from his Catskills and Adironecks fishing days

 

I took one of the flies out of the hat and casted with my ultra lite spin outfit best I could

 

i caught a brown trout. 

 

That was it. I took all my paper route money and bought a fenwick fly rod outfit. 

 

Then I taught myself how to cast best I could 

 

Some kids in the neighborhood saw me practice casting and they thought it was cool and they bought fly rods too

 

we used to practice cast in the street or the school yard 

 

to this day pretty much all those guys are still die hard fly fishermen 

Edited by JohnP

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My father took me and my brother  when we where a about 5 yrs old    And when I was about 15 I started to fish with my buddy.  We fished fly rods .

My friend Skip was a Krueger    The uncles were really into Salt water fishing. One uncle was a well know fly fishermen  the other two owned The Fishermens Friend on the canal and the other owned Whitey in Arlington Ma. There where friends with Ted Williams and Goudy.  Then my buddy pasted on at early age.  Then I started boat fishing.  His uncles taught us how to wrap rods and we became good friends with Al Cappy.  I wrapped rods for Cappy in the off season and we all fished together.  They all had Sea Crafts  

and Cappy has a Sea Bird . Every weekend we would take off to the cape and the Islands 

 Cappy  taught us how to Smelt fish also. He and his buddy Tillio was one of the best Smelt Fishermen  

Then he pasted also.  By then I was taking my kids and friends out.  And still do.  

Then I found this site and started going to the Flyfishing forum 

Then tried 2hand FlyRods  and met Mike Oliver and RJ and Hilltop the boys  So then I fished 2hand rods.   Great bunch of guys .  So  that’s my story and  still fish couple or more times a week to this day.  Boston Harbor and BBay   

Now my sons and their friend all have boats and are great fishermen today .

Edited by ccb

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Started with a bunch of buddies when were were 13-14 on the local bass and bluegill ponds, basically taught each other how to do it, and then everyone got into fly tying as well.  Got horribly addicted to trout fishing and barely made it through college because of it, then got into bonefish and tarpon and lived in the Florida Keys for a couple of years feeding that addiction.  After 50 years it hasn't let up at all, and I'm pretty much back to trout full time now.  What a long, strange trip it's been. 

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Wow that was decades ago. The best memory I have of it was using a a bamboo rod, some self wind reel and small mouth. Broke the rod, and went to fiberglass. Today it’s a multitude of years later, many rods and reels later.  

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Back in the early 80's I was in a little tackle store in Newark DE. Guy had a new 7' Cunnan 4/5 wt rod for sale at 30 something bucks. I bought it and a Plugger reel . Didn't have the brassies to try it out for 2 years.So I made my first journey to the Gun powder. Caught a small trout on a dry fly, and was hooked for life. Still have the Cunnan and use it for small streams.

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Excellent ! We all started as know nothing's.

 

I remember my 1st and 2nd fly rod, both Fenwick glass. An FF858 FF756 both with matching Medalist reels.

 

I mentioned to my future wife that two fly rods are all that was needed to be a complete fly fisherman.

 

FT

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9 hours ago, Southcoastphil said:

Got an Orvis setup as a wedding gift from my soon-to-be wife.  (A decision she quickly learned to rue for years.)

 

30+ years ago, my soon-to-be FIL was an *avid* outdoorsman.  Hunted deer, ducks, upland birds, you name it, near my hometown of Augusta ME.  As much as he loved hunting and wilderness camping, his interest in those pursuits paled in comparison to his PASSION for fly fishing. 

 

He'd hike in to remote ponds in N and NW ME, where he and his buddies had stashed canoes, to cast dry flies for naive brook trout.  Carrying those canoes to those spots--and I've been to some of them--must have been a tortuous labor of love, what with the uneven terrain, the blowdowns, and those @#&^%$*** black flies!

 

He'd go to Canada to fish the great rivers for Atlantic Salmon, even went to Russia to chase salmon.

 

In any case, he and my fiancee conspired to get me into fly fishing (she was very good at it, as well as an excellent shot) by getting me this slow-action 9' 3" 8-wt with forward-taper floating line, "so you can use it while bass fishing".  (I was heavily into fishing for both LMB and SMB at the time.)

 

That was all she wrote.  Bought flies and more flies, and leaders, and...well you get the picture, I've no doubt.

 

Within a year, my best fishing buddy and I were headed to the Rapid River in NW ME, because it was remote--motor across Lower Richardson Lake, since there weren't even any tote roads into it at that time, then stay at the sporting camps and hike the 6 or so miles up and down the river--to chase LL Salmon and Brook Trout.

 

(Now I won't say the we were enthused about this at all BUT, our level of excitement would have made a crack addict who was trying to hold up a convenience store with a water pistol just to score again look as serene as Mother Theresa whispering her morning prayers.)

 

We didn't even unpack our clothes.  "EFF that!  Time to fish!"

 

We all but sprinted to the pool below Middle Dam to see what this stuff was all about.  Caddis flies coming off the water!!!!  (Incredulous looks at each other.  "WTF? You *have* to be chittin me!!")  For three solid hours we caught salmon from two to three pounds.  Dry flies and nymphs, then we tied on some classic Maine streamer patterns, then some stonefly nymphs.  We had only the vaguest notions of what to do, but it all worked that morning; reels screaming, salmon in the air, the whole deal.  We only quit when we realized that we hadn't eaten much since the slim jims and Jack Daniel's during the end of our night-time drive and that lunch was being served in the lodge.

 

Became a certified fly-fishing-for-salmonids junkie that morning.

 

 

Great story, great writing too!

 

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From about age 15 I kicked around the River Almond a short bus ride from my parent's house in Edinburgh. Started with the worm for brown trout and eels (a by-product), then spinning with Mepps for sea-trout on the incoming tide. One of my earliest memories of fly fishing was my first trip with the Dads on Loch Leven. I hooked and lost a big brown on a Dunkeld. An intoxicating experience.

 

I fished long summers as a kid on the Almond and when we were old enough to drive (17) we hit the road to the north-west Highlands of Scotland, fishing around the Assynt region for wild trout. A cast of 3 flies, floating line, and numerous small trout that pulled our arms off! (Fishing these lochs was a privilege I will never forget: http://theanglersculvert.******.com/2015/03/the-loch-at-back.html)

 

Salmon fishing with the long rod was a natural step, and we fished the Dee and Tweed consistently for several years before I migrated to CT. The fishing here, for numerous new freshwater species, and a new world of saltwater, has been absolutely magical.

 

Not the worst fortune to swap wild Scottish brownies for wild New England char!

 

 

 

 

Jonny

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Edited by Silver Stoat

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Jonny,,

 

Interesting that you migrated several years ago. I worked for Honeywell best part of 28 years and fished Stripers for over twenty consecutive years but never made the move. Probably would not have excepted me anyway.

It is not always easy to leave your country of birth fair play to you a good move I think in a great many ways.

I have a friend who lives on the South west coast of Scotland and he hikes in for miles to,fish the hill Lochs and the good news is that the wild Trout are still there. Very few people make those long hard walks to fish them. They get to die of old age how wonderful is that.

The Salmon fishing I know less about but it is not in great shape but even so is still silly expensive on the famous rivers best beats and best times.

The fishing you have in the Sates is still stunning. Got to be a good reason for some of us Brits to fly over every year.

 

Mike

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Fly Fishing ..... It all started right here on the site SOL . What better place to talk to guys about fishing the striper surf fly world . Many questions & PM's answered with ,RJ ,Bonefish Dick , Mike Oliver , Herb ,HillTop ,and many others a few Cape Cod trips , IBSP , Long Island trips get togethers . getting together at the NJ Fly Fishing show every years is also a good thing . I owe these guys a lot & the site Thank You all Merry Christmas & Happy Hanukkah    Hook I 

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2 hours ago, Mike Oliver said:

Jonny,,

 

Interesting that you migrated several years ago. I worked for Honeywell best part of 28 years and fished Stripers for over twenty consecutive years but never made the move. Probably would not have excepted me anyway.

It is not always easy to leave your country of birth fair play to you a good move I think in a great many ways.

I have a friend who lives on the South west coast of Scotland and he hikes in for miles to,fish the hill Lochs and the good news is that the wild Trout are still there. Very few people make those long hard walks to fish them. They get to die of old age how wonderful is that.

The Salmon fishing I know less about but it is not in great shape but even so is still silly expensive on the famous rivers best beats and best times.

The fishing you have in the Sates is still stunning. Got to be a good reason for some of us Brits to fly over every year.

 

Mike

Very intuitive, Mike. I'm very lucky to live, work and play here on the Connecticut coast. We live a comparatively rural life, surrounded by forest. Cutting and stacking wood for the winter suits me. I always wanted more country.

 

And five minutes from a beautiful shoreline and a productive striper fishery. An hour to very good trout fishing. As many ponds and lakes for pan fish, bass, carp, as I could want. Five hours to steelhead.

 

It almost makes up for the regular bouts of homesickness.  

 

- Jonny

 

 

 

Edited by Silver Stoat

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I grew up fishing ponds for largemouth/bluegills and tidal creeks for perch and stripers.  Did not try fly fishing until I was 9/10 years old my dad's friend Denny introduced it to me during our trip to Oregon.  I had fun but did not see utility for use where I was living in Maryland but occasionally I would take the fly rod to a particular pond maybe 3 times a year.  There was a farmer's pond that you could pay to fish he had stripers in the pond and fed them pellets.  I made a pellet fly and would throw out a handful of pellets then cast my fly out there.  The 16-20 inch stripers on the 4 weight rod was a blast on my pellet fly.  

 

When I got to the united states military academy plan was to wrestle division 1, but my classmate Phil Simpson was unbeatable and the same weight class.  So after getting my butt handed to me for 8 weeks of try outs I decided to look into club sport options.  I ended up joining a competitive shooting team and the fly fishing club.  That was when I got super deep into fly fishing and having some trout ponds, lakes, and streams on base with no option to leave gave me the opportunity to spend a lot of time fishing.  I ended up getting into pursuing salmon, steelhead, and brown trout in Lake Onatrio tribs so the few weekends I could escape the academy I went upstate to chase those fish.  During summer vacation window I would go to tropical locations and eventually checked box on bonefish, tarpon, and permit on a fly before graduating.   The club was very formative in me becoming a fly fisherman which is in part why I am starting up a club in my local area to help get new people into the sport.

 

Edited by The Graveyard Shift

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Career?  The word career implies persueing the making of a living or earning some money at the very least.  Fly fishing has not earned me any $.  In fact it's cost me a small fortune......not that I'm complaining.

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