Fly Fishing Basics


The concept of fly fishing basics is to present the fly to the fish so it looks natural. The fly in fly fishing is a hook tied with natural or synthetic material to imitate a bug or other food source of fish. The fly is nearly weightless so you need some way to deliver it to the fish.

Fly Rod and Fly Line

The delivery is where the fly rod and line comes in. Fly line is weighted to match the different sizes of fly rods. A 5 weight line is designed to cast on a 5 weight rod.

Casting a fly rod is the easy part. Making sure the line does not create drag on the fly is the hard part. You can think of yourself as the puppet master making the fly behave like a natural insect.

If you are fishing a caddis pattern you can make it skip across the water.

If it is a bait fish pattern your fishing then strip the line in to make the pattern swim.

If you fishing a dead mayfly then hold the line off the water so the fly drifts unencumbered on the water surface.


In fly fishing you need to know about five types of bugs to match most of the activity on a river. Here are a list of bugs and the flies that match.

1. Mayfly
Dry - Parachute Adams, Nymph - Pheasant Tail

2. Caddis
Dry - Elkhair Caddis, Nymph - Hares Ear

3. Midge
Dry - Griffith Gnat, Nymph - Zebra Midge

4. Stonefly
Dry - Chernobyl Ant, Nymph - Kaufman Stonefly

5. Terrestrials
Ant, Grasshopper, Beetle, Cricket, Mice

Now go check out some gear.

Pink Fly Rod

Big Thompson River Colorado

Rocky Mountain National Park

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