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What Happens When.............?

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It is a perfect fishing day, you get to your spot, make a great cast, and bam! a fish strikes, you set the hook, you fight the fish for a brief time and then, slack. The fish has gotten off, thrown the fly, broke the tippet, or what ever, but the fish is gone. Do you cuss, blame yourself, blame your equipment, or just laugh it off? I used to get real upset but not anymore. The way I look at it is more power to the fish. He may have beat me because I didn't not land him, but I won because I fooled him into striking the fly. If I get the fish to the bank and it flops off or if it gets off just before I land it in the net, more power to him. If a fish strikes my fly I consider it a success. If a fish strikes my fly and gets off, I still count it as a success. I don't have to land every fish to be successful or to have fun. If it frustrates you to the point of ruining your day, find another interest.

Joe

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1. I fish to get out, away from "civilization". Catching fish is just a plus.

2. I try to take a look at my line, etc., before making that first cast. If I forgot, or I decided it "wasn't that bad", an then break off at that point, then I spend a second or two cursing myself.

3. I don't get frustrated until later in the "day". If I fish for an hour or two without a hit, I'm okay. If I miss a few fish during that time, I'm still okay. It's only when I've been casting 'til I lose track of time that I start to get ... errrr! Then I start making mistakes in the casts that "grrr" me up some more and it's time to pack it all in.

4. Very first cast, hook and not land a fish? I'm okay. It means there's a good chance that many more will follow.

 

And last, but not least 5. For me, the best part is the hook set and a few seconds after. During that first few seconds, even small fish can feel huge.

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Since I don't take a fish unless it is going to be consumed as soon as I get home, I count a "catch" as soon as I can get a look at them! If I can release a fish without having to touch them, everyone wins!

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I count a "catch" as soon as I can get a look at them! If I can release a fish without having to touch them, everyone wins!

My feelings exactly. To me, the ideal release is to grab the leader and have the fish unhook itself before I have to unhook it myself. Second best is to lose the fish a bit further out. The net is just the last resort (unless I actually want to keep a fish to eat.)

 

I don't particularly like to break a fish off, though. No need for it to go swimming around with a length of leader hanging from it. Plus, I've lost a fly, and have to spend time re-rigging.

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It is a perfect fishing day, you get to your spot, make a great cast, and bam! a fish strikes, you set the hook, you fight the fish for a brief time and then, slack.

Joe

 

The fact that it is perfect fishing day and I just made a great cast means the whole day has been a success. My days to get out are limited due to health reasons so any time I can get on the streams is a total day of successes, fish or no fish.

 

I seldom keep any fish, I can spend the whole day casting and never get a strike and it is still a good day. If I'm not catching, then I can claim I'm working on my casting, presentation, etc. About the only time I will keep a fish is if I have hooked it deep and know it will not survive if put back in the water.

 

Besides, isn't it called fly FISHING and not fly CATCHING?

 

My 2 pennies worth.

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If you ever take up tarpon fishing with a fly rod... the above sequence of events is the norm... Big or small, those silver critters will send you home talking to yourself quite a bit... If I'm with an angler I simply say... "let's go get another"... since we're not generally fishing them in crystal clear waters like they have down in the Keys. The backcountry of the Everglades has dark waters (many days looking like strong tea...) and we'll have many shots during a day - if it's on... Just nothing like a tarpon to test your gear -whether it's a baby (less than 20lbs) a medium - or a giant...

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Rainbows! I have had more large Rainbows spit a fly than any other species. Sometimes after a fight.that lasted long enough to convince me that the hook set was solid but then.... Admittedly, every once in a while, the old spinning tackle angler in me takes control and I'll over power a 6X or 7X tippet and loose one. I once lost a 22" Bow due to a poorly tied blood knot (29 degrees-cold fingers). Fine, my fault and I can except that. BUT having a fish on for 30 seconds, pulling hard enough with the current to seemingly sink my fly into concrete, only to have the line go slack really makes me question what Bow jaws are made of. - I tie on sharp, brand name hooks!

 

Still there's no cursing for me. At times fly fishing can be a struggle but in the end it's way, way more enjoyable than a day at the office. Besides sometimes everything goes just right and I actually land one of those big Rainbows.

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i just shrug my shoulders and go home. getting skunked or fish spitting out a fly isnt the worst thing in the world to have happen. i'll sleep good at night :)

 

i fish from about 6 different bridges that span the local waterways (rivers, ponds etc) in my area and the state of connecticut has decided this would be a good time to replace them all rendering them useless to fishermen. there are other places to fish but i have no type of watercraft to fish from.

 

i guess i'll just have to wait until theyre done replacing bridges. back to tying flies :)

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The trip is the fun. I fish farm ponds for pan fish.

Most of them need fish taken out of them. So I share fillets with folks.

 

Rick

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I use to get pretty mad when it would happen if it was a nice fish. I guess now that I'm getting a bit older age has changed me. Now when it happens I just shake my head and quietly sulk for a second or two, but then I realize its those fish that beat us is what keeps the excitement going.

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I never miss. But for those of you who are less talented than me, I completely agree with Steve. If fishing was as easy for everyone else as it is for me, there would be less value in finding the fish in the first place, fooling it with a fly that you created, and getting the presentation right.

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Not fly fishing, but a related story:

I used to bass fish with a co-worker who considered himself "ready for the pros". We'd go fishing in his Ranger "Eliminator". He'd have all his bass rods. I'd have a couple bait casters and a couple of spinning set-ups. Back then, I was throwing "twirl tail" worms with no weight ... spinning gear was the only way to get them out there.

I'd usually catch more than him, since his "Florida rigged" worms would go to the bottom, get lost in the muck or weeds. I cast in behind him (I was in the back of the boat, always ... and he would cast and reel as fast as he needed to to hit every hole he thought would produce) and pick up nice bass that didn't take his offering.

The last time out, I had already boated three or four fish, and he'd caught nothing. He WOULDN'T change to weightless ... just wasn't his way. He finally got a hit, and lost it. Threw his rod into the boat, breaking it and flipping another rod overboard. After staring after the lost rod for a minute or two, he climbed into the driver's seat, fired up the engine ... waited just long enough for me to get into my seat ... then headed for the ramp. Never said a thing.

 

We never went fishing together again.

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Hey Mike, it is probably good you didn't go fishing with this guy again. What a sore head. It sounds to me that he has more money than brains.

Joe

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Ha, that's a funny thing, Joe. He didn't have more money. He didn't, truly, have enough of either money OR brains. He DID name his boat, when he bought it ... "Sore Subject" ... because his wife wasn't happy about it.

 

I don't know if he owned any weapons ... but I might've been a little more worried if he did. As it was, it was all I could do to keep from laughing at him. It might be that he was brainy enough to see that I was trying not to laugh, and that's what pushed him to head for home. He never said.

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