Thursday, June 8, 2017

I'm Glad I'm Not A Trout

I write a lot of stuff most every day (night), and most of it is about fly fishing, fly tying or some aspect of being on a river or stream.  The following I wrote late one night this past February after tying a bunch of flies while waiting for the fire to die down before calling it a night.  I have no idea where I was going with the title, but in reading the following now, I realized that when I'm tying flies I'm doing a lot of thinking.............who knew?

As I write this, it is 15 degrees F outside.  I have been tying flies in front of the fire for the last two hours and it occurs to me that I may not be fishing in the foreseeable future.  Not that that matters, I tie every day whether I'm fishing the next day or in the near future.   Being an optimist, I'm always looking forward to being on the water casting a fly as soon as the time and opportunity arrives.  So I must be prepared with the right flies, recently tied so they have the right mojo.

When I tie a fly, I think about being on the water and how I am going to fish the fly I'm tying, and how it will look as I fish it.  I think about silhouette, posture, color, proportion, and how the materials will compliment each other to create the "look" I want in my mind.   I often imagine the specific situation that requires the fly I am tying as it forms in my vise with each wrap of thread and material.  As I prepare and then tie on each material, how the material feels in my fingers and looks as it is tied on to the hook, is a part of the process.  If it doesn't feel right or look as I wish once it is tied on, I will take it off and either "fix" what it is that isn't right, or I will simply discard it and start over with a new piece of the material.  It's not like I get strung out about it, there's no scissor flinging of bobbin thumping, it just part of the process of creating what looks right to my eye in the vise, and as it will look on or in the water (to my mind's eye).  As for the feel of a particular material, that's important, and if I cut a section of hair, or fur, or pluck a feather and it doesn't feel right, I don't use it.

Don't ask me to explain what it is about the look and feel of the materials as I use them, or the finished fly, because I couldn't answer that, except to say that I think the answer would be different for each of us.

Update 6/9/17 - The title was/is a reference to the fact that the trout were hunkered down in water that was barely above freezing at the time.  

Sharpen your hooks!

1 comment:

Mr. Q said...

I know what you mean....when you do something a million times it becomes second nature and you "know" without doing, that it will be right or wrong, I guess they call it "second nature"....