There are many levels of what I will loosely call “fun” when it comes to casting artificial flies to catch a fish.
All are fun, of course; they are just experienced differently as you climb through the angling ranks.
I believe most of us would agree that just “getting out” is the foundation for fun in fly-fishing.
But it takes many fly anglers some doing to “get out” on the water.
Understanding or relating to this comes in degrees measured from your station in life:
Your age, where you live (proximity to a local fishery and what kind — i.e., cold water, warm water), and most inspiring of all, just how deeply your passion for the sport runs.
For those fortunate enough to live near a tailwater fishery, well, you know you can wet a line anytime of the year.
Of course, weather conditions, mostly in the winter, often make an outing unfeasible or inadvisable, but the passion that pushes you to go wet a line competes fiercely with nature and practicality.
Just the idea of “getting out” is something to ponder and, in its most basic form, inspirational.
If you think back to when you were a kid, the act of getting outside was one of freedom — our first brushes with and against the outside world.
From my early years I vividly recall and can almost smell the essence of going fishing — getting out.
Like many others, my fishing journey began with a worm, a bobber, and my father toting me and my siblings along to fish for bass and sunfish.
I can’t help grinning when I think of the tapestry of those days.
Those outings — those “getting out” days — laid the foundation for a life of a head uplifted and a view upstream.
There was something just plain natural about looking ahead to the next trip, upstream or upriver — to the next day out, the next adventure of “getting out.”
I say it plainly: each angler has a tradition.
Where you learned to fish, how and who taught you, play great roles in the ongoing angling production we are part of and to which we contribute — one journey and cast at a time.
Our stories become a part of others’, and by that, we continue what has been shown, taught, and handed down.
It really is an awesome thing.
When one person can show another how to catch a fish, or just the joy of angling for a fish, it is exhilarating for both.
It all comes from making an effort — an effort to “get out” and away from our regular routines.
It all starts with simply “getting out.”
Make a plan to do that in the coming year, or next week or today for that matter.
You will be the author of your own memories.
Maybe I will see you out on the water.