“That’s Not Fly Fishing.” How many times have you heard this at the bar or seen someone write it on social media? When the way you are fishing isn’t up to someone’s standards, when it doesn’t align with their own preferences, it seems that this frequent argument comes out easily — That’s not fly fishing!
Of course, there is no single definition for what fly fishing is. The fly rod is a tool. Flies are the bait. And how anglers choose to use them is where personal creativity comes in. It’s that inventiveness and room for imagination that makes fly fishing so attractive to us in the first place.
How can we do things better? How can we use these tools to catch more trout?
Every angler draws their own lines for what fly fishing is. And this episode is not just for talking through what fly fishing might be and where each of us might draw the lines. Instead, we’d like to acknowledge the absurdity of the lines themselves — the decisions we make about what is fly fishing and what is not.
How can someone be so adamantly against tight line tactics, but gladly fish a bobber and split shot all day? This makes no sense.
How can you be all in on tungsten beads but claim that adding split shot makes it not fly fishing?
Likewise, how can you be against a ball jighead on a streamer but have a full box of dumbell eyes? Is it because Bob Clouser told everyone it’s okay?
These absurdities, and these questions are what we’re here to talk about tonight. There’s a lot to this one, and we have plenty of conversations with a full house.