Beginner - "should read's"

Chris Bellows

Your Preferred WFF Poster
#16
check out your local fly shop as most good shops have clinics for beginners. don't be afraid to go in and ask them questions about rigging, etc.

also, one of the best ways to learn imo is to find some small streams with hungry trout and just go fish them with dry flies. non-selective trout (aka. stupid) are a beginners best friend. do some hiking this next summer to find trout that act like trout should.

the best way to learn to fly fish is to actually get out there and fly fish.
 

Rob Allen

Active Member
#18
Hello my name is Mike, I live in snohomish, although I've been an avid waterfowler for over 20 years at my duck club in chehalis, I've recently have been building a love for fly fishing. I find myself on the iPad watching these videos of incredible fishing adventures and know I can someday do it... At this point it's the "idea" of fly fishing that has me intrigued more than ever, since I have yet to fly fish outside of backyard practice. I am a brand new fly fisherman and I'm not afraid to get out and chase my goals, I am obviously looking to gain knowledge in anyway I can. Do you recommend any good books, instructional DVD, websites anything that is a great source of information? (Other than this forum) is there anyone willing to help out a Rookie?

Thanks everyone. Hope to meet you guys on the river!



Hmmm there are lots of great fly fishing books. One thing i would warn about watching videos.
Even a long 15 minute video may have taken a week or even an entire season to film. I do not say this to curb your enthusiasm but i could see how as a new steelhead angler it would be possible to obtain a very inaccurate view of the current steelheading opportunities in the world. For every person that goes to B.C. and has an epic trip and films fish after fish after fish there are two who go and rarely have cause to break out their phone for a quick snapshot. For every multi- fish day you have out on the Olympic Peninsula you'll have a week or more without a touch. All i am saying is don't be fooled into thinking it's easy, it used to be before we destroyed our fish runs but it's not anymore. So be prepared for a bit of hard work, a fair amount of disappointment and a few moments that take your breath away. On the other hand I am a bit of a downer when it comes to steelhead fly fishing anymore so don't let me jade you either.

If you can get your hands on the old 3m Mastery videos with Lani Waller I think they are the best steelheading videos on the planet. Lani pretty much starts with the assumption of zero knowledge and does a good job of covering the basics. There are three videos in the series all on VHS. I do not know if they have been released as DVD's. Avoid the Jim Teeny one.

Also, if you also want to learn to trout fish your first investment should be the "Curtis Creek Manifesto"
it is the best book on the basics of fly fishing for trout. it tells you all the things you really need to know without confusing you with stuff you don't need to know til much later on.
after that the scientific anglers videos on trout fishing are also exceptional I especially like "Anatomy of a Trout Stream" with Rick Hafele. then after that the video featuring Doug Swisher " advanced strategies for selective trout" is also great.

For getting a flavor of the history and culture of steelheading you should also read Trey Combs three books on steelheading, i skip over the how too parts and read the parts about the people and the rivers.
I find that how to steelheading doesn't translate well to the written word, at least for me.
 
E

Evan Virnoche

Guest
#20
Hmmm there are lots of great fly fishing books. One thing i would warn about watching videos.
Even a long 15 minute video may have taken a week or even an entire season to film. I do not say this to curb your enthusiasm but i could see how as a new steelhead angler it would be possible to obtain a very inaccurate view of the current steelheading opportunities in the world. For every person that goes to B.C. and has an epic trip and films fish after fish after fish there are two who go and rarely have cause to break out their phone for a quick snapshot. For every multi- fish day you have out on the Olympic Peninsula you'll have a week or more without a touch. All i am saying is don't be fooled into thinking it's easy, it used to be before we destroyed our fish runs but it's not anymore. So be prepared for a bit of hard work, a fair amount of disappointment and a few moments that take your breath away. On the other hand I am a bit of a downer when it comes to steelhead fly fishing anymore so don't let me jade you either.

If you can get your hands on the old 3m Mastery videos with Lani Waller I think they are the best steelheading videos on the planet. Lani pretty much starts with the assumption of zero knowledge and does a good job of covering the basics. There are three videos in the series all on VHS. I do not know if they have been released as DVD's. Avoid the Jim Teeny one.

Also, if you also want to learn to trout fish your first investment should be the "Curtis Creek Manifesto"
it is the best book on the basics of fly fishing for trout. it tells you all the things you really need to know without confusing you with stuff you don't need to know til much later on.
after that the scientific anglers videos on trout fishing are also exceptional I especially like "Anatomy of a Trout Stream" with Rick Hafele. then after that the video featuring Doug Swisher " advanced strategies for selective trout" is also great.

For getting a flavor of the history and culture of steelheading you should also read Trey Combs three books on steelheading, i skip over the how too parts and read the parts about the people and the rivers.
I find that how to steelheading doesn't translate well to the written word, at least for me.



DAT SUM TROOF if yahknawsayin
 

Alex MacDonald

that's His Lordship, to you.....
#21
Welcome, Mike! (And if you ever want to learn to play "moon river" on your duck call, give me a holler!). These guys here, are a bunch of really knowledgeable-and seriously disturbed-steelheaders. This is my second serious year at it, and I'm also very grateful for their wisdom, not to mention the joke-cracking that goes on. The Spey guys are the worst though, we all wear tweeds, ties, and have out ghillies rig our rods.:D
 

Preston

Active Member
#22
The 3M/Scientific Anglers videos, featuring Lani Waller, mentioned above are available in a 2-DVD set, with an additional section updating the material from the first three.

So far as books are concerned, Roderick L. Haig-Brown's books, Fisherman's Spring, Fisherman's Summer, Fisherman's Fall and A River Never Sleeps are among the few fishing books that actually reach the level of literature. Largely, though not entirely, about steelhead fishing, they are worth reading not only for their literary quality but for the strong thread of a sporting ethic that seems to have gotten lost in the hype and commercialization of today's fishing .
 
#23
They are fairly generic, but the two books I continually turn to in terms of where to fish in the PNW, what time of year, and for maps of access points are

Flyfisher's Guide to Washington
http://www.amazon.com/Flyfishers-Washington-Wilderness-Adventures-Series/dp/1885106580

and

Washington River Maps & Fishing Guide
http://www.amazon.com/Washington-River-Fishing-Guide-Publisher/dp/B004TM5SNY
Neither is a tell all for every spot in the state or how to fish them, but half the fun is learning on your own. And as far as pointers for where to start your search for trout, steelhead or salmon, I've yet to find anything better. Tight lines,
 

Cruik

Active Member
#24
Instructional materials are good, but it's writing like Trey Combs' book that keep me inspired to cast on that 4th or 5th fishless trip. I don't think many other books have captured the history, allure, and reality of steelhead fishing like this one. In a sport that can feel frustrating, it's important to keep your head in the right place and your expectations managed.
 

JayB

Active Member
#25
It's more of a trout and general-fly fishing book than a steelhead book, but my number one suggestion would be "The Curtis Creek Manifesto," by Sheridan Anderson. It's an illustrated/cartoon book, and Anderson manages to effectively compress and transmit the information that most authors struggle to convey effectively in dozens of pages of text into a single page.

My other suggestion, which is also more of a general purpose suggestion rather than anything geared specifically towards steelheading, is to build up a base of experience and confidence fishing for trout on small waters as part of your overall learning curve. It's a different game, but learning presentations, lies, etc (particularly for streamers) that work on small water should give you a boost when you start chasing fish on big water.

http://www.amazon.com/Curtis-Creek-Manifesto-Illustrated-Paraphernalia/dp/0936608064
 

KerryS

Ignored Member
#26
Old school; Steelhead Fly Fishing by Trey Combs. In my opinion the only book you need. The Roderick L. Haig-Brown's books mentioned above will certainly put you into the correct emotional state to fish and give you an understanding of why some of us are so passionate.
 

bennysbuddy

the sultan of swing
#27
Welcome, Mike! (And if you ever want to learn to play "moon river" on your duck call, give me a holler!). These guys here, are a bunch of really knowledgeable-and seriously disturbed-steelheaders. This is my second serious year at it, and I'm also very grateful for their wisdom, not to mention the joke-cracking that goes on. The Spey guys are the worst though, we all wear tweeds, ties, and have out ghillies rig our rods.:D
Maybe you could perform"moon river on a duck call " at the occupy Skagit event this year
 

orangeradish

Eyes to the sky...
#28
I'd add a map book to the list.

Also, if you offer up a duck hunting trip or 2, I'd wager that there would be no shortage of folks willing to take you out fishing.

Good luck, man!

Jason
 
#29
I learned to fly fish in college and fished pretty regularly for three years or so…then life happened. So, almost 20 years later I found myself in WA with a hankering to get back into fly fishing. Over the past 18-months I've been slowly getting back up to speed in fly fishing in general and learning the Steelhead ropes. Best piece of advice I could give you is build a relationship with a good fly shop and get out there and try it. I've gathered a wealth of information from just talking to the great folks at some of our local fly shops. Also, most of them offer some great classes that can help you get pointed in the right direction. I've taken a couple and enjoyed them while learning a ton.

All the books already mentioned are great and I've found that the Orvis website has some pretty decent instructional videos that have proven helpful in tuning up my casting.

Welcome and Enjoy,
Jeff