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Thread: New to fly fishing

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    Default New to fly fishing

    I'm interested in learning how to fly fish and was wondering what is good beginner gear for a female. I saw the post about the Wright & McGill Fly Girl rod - what is a good length? (I'm 5' 4" and a lefty if that makes a difference.) My husband and I want to take classes to learn as neither of us know the first thing about fly fishing - just from what we've watched others do. I know this is a broad question, but anything to start me off would be great!

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    Member jakec5253's Avatar
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    Default fly shop

    My advice would be to visit a fly shop. 3 Rivers is out there in Wasilla, and they are a great shop. They will definately get you set up, and won't sell you junk you don't need. This forum is a great place for info, but it is hard to beat the information gained from a established shop.


    Jake
    All the romance of trout fishing exists in the mind of the angler and is in no way shared by the fish.

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    Member garnede's Avatar
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    Default

    Run! It is a money hole. But a fun one. My advice is similar to Jakes. Go and get the feel of the rod in your hand. Typicaly most people up here use a 9' 8wt for salmon. and I use a 9' 5wt for trout on most streams. I do not know if this is diffrent for women, but take a rod, with reel on it, and see if it has a comfortable grip and if the weight is something you can manage to cast all day. Also if it is in your budget get a 3 or 4 piece rod. They are slightly more expensive and a little heavier, but it is much easier to carry a 27"-30" rod tube than a 54" rod tube. You can put it in a backpack when hiking to fishing and keep your hands free. It is also much easier to travel with. Good luck.
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    I'd reccomend starting with a 5 weight 8.5 foot rod, I like the TFO professional for value. Also get a lesson
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

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    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3griffs View Post
    I'm interested in learning how to fly fish and was wondering what is good beginner gear for a female. I saw the post about the Wright & McGill Fly Girl rod - what is a good length? (I'm 5' 4" and a lefty if that makes a difference.) My husband and I want to take classes to learn as neither of us know the first thing about fly fishing - just from what we've watched others do. I know this is a broad question, but anything to start me off would be great!


    First of all, welcome to the forum

    As for the Wright & McGill fly rod, get it. I have one in my hands as I type this. Well, beside me but you get the point. I ordered the 6 wt 4 piece 8.5' for my wife. Perfect rod for many species. For you, dollies, grayling, lake trout, perhaps. Just a good all around rod wt. One thought, if you plan on doing some salmon fishing later, you may opt for an 8 wt for salmon. If this seems like a likely move in the near future, perhaps getting a 5 wt would make more sense now. I would rather have a 5 wt for grayling/trout and an 8 wt for salmon. However, if you want one rod for many different species, the 6 wt is a tough all around choice to beat. We also got the Wright & McGill "Fly Girl" reels. I am very impressed with what I see. Beautiful reels and the quality/fit/finish is equal to that of my Ross Evolution reels. But they are in the box and have not been used. Initial impression is a very good one though. I will spool these up and cast some tomorrow. As for learning, a class would be great. But there are some other products I can suggest to help. One is a Lefty Kreh dvd "Flycasting.." It is on Cabelas. This is how I taught myself how to cast. My wife watched it with me again last night and it does a great job of explaining what is important without boring you to death or making things sound complicated. Just a great dvd. I also got Jan Wulff's "Dynamics of Fly Casting" from Amazon. It came in today as well but we have not seen it yet. Had great reviews on Amazon. Also got my wife a book by Cecilia "Pudge" Kleinkauf. She writes some for "Fish Alaska" magazine and has a few books out. She and her husband have a fishing lodge in Alaska somewhere. The book I got my wife is "Fly Fishing Women Explore Alaska". Should be insightful and entertaining. Just flipping through it here at my desk, I can see the pictures and basic info alone is worth the price of the book. Perhaps a woman would get even more out of it since it is written from a woman's perspective. Not something you can say for most fly fishing books. Lastly, I hope you are looking at Cabelas. They have the "Fly Girl" rod and reels marked down substantially. Welcome to the forum, post often, and pm if I can be of any use.
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

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    Member TYNMON's Avatar
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    Default Advise lesson first before investing...

    Flyfishing rod action is highly personal prefference... Fly Fishing America had an article comparing rod performace by matching up rod price and speed to angler casting ability... There was a very clear coorilation between lower cost and slower action rods for less skilled casters... Something to consider, as your skills develop you will develop different tastes for rod action and weight.

    Highly recommend fly casting course... Fly casting is essincial to fly fishing and they are two entirely different skills.. Much easier to learn to cast on a lawn and develop your arm strength with out the distractions of fishing.

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    Default Pudge

    Quote Originally Posted by danattherock View Post
    First of all, welcome to the forum
    Also got my wife a book by Cecilia "Pudge" Kleinkauf. She writes some for "Fish Alaska" magazine and has a few books out. She and her husband have a fishing lodge in Alaska somewhere. The book I got my wife is "Fly Fishing Women Explore Alaska". Should be insightful and entertaining. Just flipping through it here at my desk, I can see the pictures and basic info alone is worth the price of the book. Perhaps a woman would get even more out of it since it is written from a woman's perspective. Not something you can say for most fly fishing books.
    Pudge also offers fly casting lessons in the Anchorage area. My wife did a three day, women only lesson with her a couple years ago. She really enjoyed it, and learned a lot from it. It was her first ever intro to fly fishing, and after the first day, she could easily cast 20-30ft. I have met and talked with her at a couple of the sportsman's shows, and she is a wealth of knowledge, and would be a great option casting lessons.

    Jake
    All the romance of trout fishing exists in the mind of the angler and is in no way shared by the fish.

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    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Been reading over Pudge's book. Great pictures and lots of good info. I might have to read it, then give it to my wife
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

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    Default Thanks!

    Gents, Thanks for all of the great info! The hubby plans on taking the fly tying and rod building classes from 3 Rivers this winter - he's stoked to find an indoor winter hobby instead of puttering with the old '92 John Deere 318 out in the garage! I'm going to order the Fly Girl rod (#5, 8' 6") on Cabela's but I'm not sure the Fly Girl Reel will work. The 3.56" arbor looks great, but is 90 yards of backing enough? Ordered the recommended books/DVDs from Amazon too! Thanks again! Hopefully I'll be posting pictures of my first fly fishing catch soon!

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    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3griffs View Post

    is 90 yards of backing enough?

    !

    Add 30 yards of fly line to that and you have 120 yards (360 feet). That is a pretty good amount of running room for a fish. One thought, get a high quality fly line as they cast much better. I prefer the Scientific Anglers GPX floating line. Also, if you get micron backing, you can get far more on the reel than what the reel is rated to hold since this backing is thinner in diameter.

    For reels, I am quite impressed with the "Fly Girl" reel. Very impressed. Another reel I could suggest would be the Orvis Battenkill bar stock. I had looked at them for my wife's rod. I have some myself and these are nice reels. Until August 3rd you can buy one of these reels and get a free extra spool. Nice deal for sure. Link below...

    http://www.orvis.com/store/productch...subcat_id=7643




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    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

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    Member ak_powder_monkey's Avatar
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    I'll also say Pudge is awesome,

    except when she low holed me at the Ugashik Narrows
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

  12. #12
    Member jakec5253's Avatar
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    Default fly girl rod

    3griffs,
    If make down to Anchorage at all, B&J's carries the Fly Girl rods. I bought a 8' 5wt from there for my wife.


    Jake
    All the romance of trout fishing exists in the mind of the angler and is in no way shared by the fish.

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    Default Drags

    Thanks for the tip on the Battenkill reels. I'm tempted to order one for reds but wonder if the drag is strong enough to slow down a big red or silver in the upper Kenai? I've been using the Okuma Magnitude and Helios reels and so far they have had the best drags for the buck but I'm always open to better products. The Okuma Helios 7/8 weight I'm using now handled strong 7 to 8 lb. reds in swift Kenai water with no problems - I never had to palm it. My question - can I do the same thing with the Battenkill?

    If not - I'd strongly recommend the Helios for reds and silvers. It is too easy for a beginner to whack their fingers trying to stop the reel from spinning and still hold onto the rod when a large fish gets hooked in swift water.


    Quote Originally Posted by danattherock View Post
    Add 30 yards of fly line to that and you have 120 yards (360 feet). That is a pretty good amount of running room for a fish. One thought, get a high quality fly line as they cast much better. I prefer the Scientific Anglers GPX floating line. Also, if you get micron backing, you can get far more on the reel than what the reel is rated to hold since this backing is thinner in diameter.

    For reels, I am quite impressed with the "Fly Girl" reel. Very impressed. Another reel I could suggest would be the Orvis Battenkill bar stock. I had looked at them for my wife's rod. I have some myself and these are nice reels. Until August 3rd you can buy one of these reels and get a free extra spool. Nice deal for sure. Link below...

    http://www.orvis.com/store/productch...subcat_id=7643




    .
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
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    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post

    Thanks for the tip on the Battenkill reels. I'm tempted to order one for reds but wonder if the drag is strong enough to slow down a big red or silver in the upper Kenai?

    .
    My guess is .... kind of

    I used these reels on a St Croix Legend Ultra up in Nome and got lots of pinks on them with no trouble. But silvers, not sure man, it could be pushing it a bit. I would rather have a Lamson Velocity. But for dollies/grayling/pinks/etc.. the Battenkill is a "killer" reel. Ha ha.. Very high quality, lightweight, and smooth reels with strong drags. But not sure about taking larger salmon. Then again, I had the smaller 5/6 wt reel. Perhaps the larger models are more worthy than I am giving them credit for.
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

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    Thanks for the info.

    I noticed that they have the parts manual on line and was able to see how the drag was constructed. I may order one of the smaller reels but I suspect for the fishing I mainly do it wouldn't work very well.

    I normally have my drag adjusted very heavy so it is difficult to even strip any line from the reel. Even so when you get a large red or silver on and they decide to head downstream I usually have to stop the reel manaully and try to reel and lead them into shallower water. If you hook a king it is even more exciting as they are usually snagged. With a 30# leader and strong hooks it becomes a challenge to just hold onto the rod.

    Thanks again!


    Quote Originally Posted by danattherock View Post
    My guess is .... kind of

    I used these reels on a St Croix Legend Ultra up in Nome and got lots of pinks on them with no trouble. But silvers, not sure man, it could be pushing it a bit. I would rather have a Lamson Velocity. But for dollies/grayling/pinks/etc.. the Battenkill is a "killer" reel. Ha ha.. Very high quality, lightweight, and smooth reels with strong drags. But not sure about taking larger salmon. Then again, I had the smaller 5/6 wt reel. Perhaps the larger models are more worthy than I am giving them credit for.
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
    ".. ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country" JFK

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