Approaching the water when fly fishing

If you understand, and respect your environment, and your place in it when fly fishing, take pride in your skills, you will have a better experience all round. Be sure to take in the natural world all around you, how the animals behave, changes in plants and insects, the changeable flow of water in rivers and lakes.

When fishing for brown trout in a stream or lake don't just rush straight in. If you take your time, observe the trout's nature and behaviour, you will have learned some valuable lessons not just for this trip but for later ones as well. Look out for likely spots. Be aware of the positions of plantlife, like bushes and grasses, and note the rocks and currents, and any man made constructions around you. How flies move on the water will tell you something, and the birds which are after them will give you even more information. Weather conditions are important also: wind, rain, clouds, sunshine; it's all significant.

Decide whether you are going to fish upstream or down. After you've cast, think about the next step, the next pool and how best to approach the fish. Be sure to stay low and move slowly. Always approach the water carefully. Many fish hold close to banks and are caught in the first few careful casts; if that's not happening, you can start working on longer casts. Wade only as a last resort, because it can damage insect life as well as drive fish away. Wading can also be dangerous for an angler, too, so we urge you to be exceptionally careful in this regard. Try to stay unobserved, tread softly and don't let your shadow fall on the water. Wherever trout are rising try to keep downstream or behind their feeding direction. Cast the fly in front or upstream of the most recent rise. These few simple guidelines will ensure you a pleasurable day's fly fishing.

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