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Photo/No Hackle on water - Fly Fishing Flies

Fly Fishing Schools


Fly Fishing School New Jersey In my humble opinion, Fly Casting and Fly Fishing Skills are at an all-time low. What I mean by that statement is the number of good Fly Fishermen relative to the total number of Fly Fishermen is extremely low. It was a different story 30 years ago.


Back in the 60’s and 70’s you saw very few Fly Fishermen on the stream, but a high percentage could cast well and had good angling skills. Today, you see crowds of people but very few can cast or catch fish.  



I think there are several reasons for this pathetic situation. First of all, nobody wants to Practice. I run into dozens of anglers around the country that come up and say "Your videos are really great".


Fly Fishing School in Michigan After thanking them for the complement, I always look them in the eye and say “do you practice those skills I demonstrate”? Invariably, they dodge the question and say “where did you catch that big brown”? In other words, people mainly watch the videos to be “entertained”. This is too bad.


There’s so much information and so many great videos out there to learn from. You’d think everyone would be an expert, but nobody wants to pay their dues on the casting field. After all, you can’t become a par golfer in a week-end.. Casting is no different than any other sport. If you don’t practice, you can’t acquire the skills to become a good caster.


Casting Demo - Fly Fishing SchoolsPopularity of the bead head nymph is another reason why so many anglers lack Fly Fishing Proficiency. I’m first to admit this style of fishing can be deadly. 


In fact, it can make a beginner look like a superstar, but unfortunately, it inhibits the growth of total angling skills.


Lack of competent instructors is another major problem. It’s a case of the blind leading the blind. I personally know dozens of so-called Fly Casting Instructors that have their little “certified” patch on their vest and certificate on the wall, unfortunately, most are dangerous with a rod in their hands. 


Fishing out of boat - Fly Fishing SchoolsThere are literally hundreds of certified guys and gals across the country and I’m afraid I’d be exaggerating if I said twenty percent are “really” good casters. The bottom line is that you have to be careful in selecting an instructor. Get lots of references.


Longevity doesn’t always mean that much, but for what it’s worth, I ran my Fly Fishing Schools continuously since the 60’s until about 7 years ago. For freshwater, Orvis and Fenwick beat me to the punch by a year or so, however, Capt. Bob Marvin and I started the first saltwater Fly Fishing School in Key West.

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