Teaching fly fishing

Life is so full of coincidences! Last week I had a very sucessful day on the river Test fly fishing for trout then towards the end of the week I was telephoned by a future student who asked if I could give one of her relatives, who was visiting from Canada, a fly fishing lesson. Normally I would have recommended that he find a casting coach and get some casting lessons first but he was returning home in two days and would not have time. I gave the matter a little thought and after a telephone call to Syon Park I agreed to show him the basics.

On Sunday I met Steven at Syon Park and began my first fly fishing lesson. Steve had never cast a fly but after about twenty minutes, with a bit of wool on the leader instead of a fly, was doing a fair job of laying the fly on the grass about ten yards away. He was either a natural or I have a better casting action than I thought. He was still making a few mistakes with his technique but all he needed was practice.

I tied on an epoxy resin buzzer and explained how to fish it slowly.

Steve at the end of a sucessful cast

Steve had already done quite a lot of fishing in Canada, catching walleye and perch, sometimes through a hole in the ice but nothing had prepared him for the sheer speed of a rainbow trout. He got a take right under the rod tip at the end of the retrieve and managed to hold onto the fish for about forty seconds. He almost had control of the fish when it surfaced and saw us, it turned and shot away at great speed catching him by surprise, pulling the rod down and parting the leader before he could let go of the line he was holding.

Stev playing his first rainbow trout

I don’t know who was more upset, him or me. He had one more take during the rest of the day but alas failed to hook the fish. His casting improved throughout the day but I suggested that if he intends to take up fly fishing he should get some more casting lessons. Money well spent!

He enjoyed the day as much as I did but I was disappointed not to have got him a fish. He certainly earned one.