Trout fly fishing: playing

In trout fly fishing, once it is hooked, a small trout can be easily retrieved on the reel. Alternatively you can simply pull in the fly line with the reel hand while pinching the line between the rod handle and the index finger of the rod hand. When doing this it’s very important that you keep the rod tip high. This allows the bend of the rod to absorb force as the fish struggles against the line. Before larger trout can be landed they will often take line in powerful runs.

Unlike spin fishing, in which the line is already on the reel, playing a large fish with fly line and a fly reel can present a particular challenge. Normally when you hook a fish, you will have extra fly line coiled between the reel and the index finger of the rod hand. The challenge then is to reel up the loose fly line onto the reel without breaking off a large fish. You also need to be sure you don’t get the line wrapped up around the rod handle, your foot, a stick or anything else that might be in the way.

With experience, you can put really large trout on the reel simply by applying light pressure on the outgoing line using the fisher's fingers. Once you have extra line on the reel, you can use the reel's drag system to tire the fish out. It is important, though, to use heavier tippet material if it won't startle the fish. The for this is that an exhausted fish can easily die if you release it too soon. Heavier tippet material enables the angler to land the fish while not making it exhausted. Trout fly fishing, remember, requires a different set of skills than other types of angling.

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