How to Start Fly Fishing This Spring

April 3, 2024

iSportsman Staff

iSportsman Staff

Fly fishing enthusiasts may argue that mastering the fly is more than a hobby: it’s a lifestyle. Perhaps that’s why the sport can seem so daunting to newcomers. Dean Shadley, seasoned fly fisher and occasional guest writer for iSportsman USA, has written many helpful flyfishing rundowns in the past — we’ve highlighted a few to teach you how to start fly fishing today.

How to Start Fly Fishing: The Fly

how to start flyfishing

The most important bit of knowledge to flyfishing is the art of tying the fly. Dean shares his beginners guide tips and insight on this masterful skill:

“There is a myth that flies and lures are hard to construct and that they have to be perfectly constructed. My flies are far from perfect, some even embarrassing,” Dean said. “Once you learn a few basic tying skills you’ll be able to create any fly pattern that fits your needs.”

Dean shares the benefits, necessary tools, and cost rundowns in this quick read: Hand Tied Fishing Flies Beginners Guide.

Seize the Day with Spring Bluegill

how to start flyfishing

With flies in place, Dean shares the gear necessary to take advantage of springtime bluegill. During the spring (at least in Dean’s neck of the woods) bluegill is in shallower waters for spawning season, making it prime time to wade out with a fly rod.

“Catching any fish under twelve inches long usually isn’t worth my time,” Dean said. “There are few exceptions however and bluegill is one of them. Pound for pound they fight like a tiger and are second to none when it comes to table fare.”

Read Dean’s rundown on how to spot a bluegill spawn, what type of the fly rod to use, and how to care for your catch in Mastering Bluegill Fishing.

Expand Your Reach with Smallmouth Bass

Though the smallmouth bass spawn is over for some, this fish can be active all year round depending on your region. Dean breaks down the where and how for flyfishing smallmouth in gravel flats, deeper water, rivers, and while wading.

“If I could only catch one more fish in my life, I’d want it to be smallmouth bass,” Dean said. “Smallmouth fight harder than any other fish I’ve ever tangled with, and they live in some of the prettiest waters to explore.”

Read on to find waters to explore near you, and learn how to start fly fishing and cast the perfect rod in Fly Fishing for Smallmouth Bass in the Midwest.


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