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Lateral view of a Female Hexagenia limbata (Ephemeridae) (Hex) Mayfly Dun from the Namekagon River in Wisconsin
Hex Mayflies
Hexagenia limbata

The famous nocturnal Hex hatch of the Midwest (and a few other lucky locations) stirs to the surface mythically large brown trout that only touch streamers for the rest of the year.

Ventral view of a Hydropsyche (Hydropsychidae) (Spotted Sedge) Caddisfly Larva from the Yakima River in Washington
With a bit of help from the microscope, this specimen keys clearly and unsurprisingly to Hydropsyche.
27" brown trout, my largest ever. It was the sub-dominant fish in its pool. After this, I hooked the bigger one, but I couldn't land it.
Troutnut is a project started in 2003 by salmonid ecologist Jason "Troutnut" Neuswanger to help anglers and fly tyers unabashedly embrace the entomological side of the sport. Learn more about Troutnut or support the project for an enhanced experience here.

NW PA - Pennsylvania's Glacial Pothole Wonderland

Posts: 398
RleeP on Mar 6, 2010March 6th, 2010, 3:18 am EST
I don't know if it is getting easier or harder. It depends on a lot of things.

The one thing I have noticed as I enter my late 50's is that while everybody is talking about climate change, few seem concerned that the Earth's gravitational pull has trebled over the past 5 years. I don't understand the lack of attention to this because it's so very obvious to me..
Aaron7_8's profile picture
Helena Montana

Posts: 115
Aaron7_8 on Mar 6, 2010March 6th, 2010, 5:46 am EST
All the elder statesmen on this page make me feel very confident in my future with this sport. I have only been fly fishing for two years in earnest ,three if you count the fly/spin fishing I did when the long rod frustrated me. I had an experienced fly fisher convince me that if the spinning rod come along then you will never get any better and will give it up. So for me every trip out it seems that my casting and presentation get better and I wind up catching mor fish than I did the month before, regardless of fishing conditions and time of year. fortunately I live and fish in areas with low fishing pressure that allow me the oportunity to learn this way. Also have got some great advice off of this board. So thank you all.

Jmd123's profile picture
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2474
Jmd123 on Mar 6, 2010March 6th, 2010, 6:50 am EST
Aaron, for you it can only get easier. Enjoy!!

No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
Lagrangeville, NY

Posts: 119
Patcrisci on Mar 6, 2010March 6th, 2010, 12:35 pm EST
seriously,aaron, as you gain skill and experience and knowledge of the sport you will find that it will get easier,meaning that you will learn to read water better,become more familiar with fly hatches and fish behavior, become a better caster, etc. one thing about this sport is that you can always learn a new trick whether it's a fly tying tip or a casting tip or whatever. and you will always find fish to refuse your offerings no matter how god you are. this is the challenge and it is this -- this pursuit of what is difficult -- that keeps me and i suspect,many fly fishers returning to the water.
Pat Crisci
Red Lion, PA

Posts: 4
Mfb1978 on Mar 21, 2010March 21st, 2010, 1:58 am EDT
I'm new to this forum, but for me flyfishing is getting harder. I think the main reason is that i don't get out enough and never have since I started. I usually only get out on the streams half a dozen times a year because of my work schedule. I am hoping this year to get out and do a lot of fishing.
Lagrangeville, NY

Posts: 119
Patcrisci on Mar 21, 2010March 21st, 2010, 4:20 am EDT
Mike, you make a good point. I would agree that the degree of difficulty is tied to the amount of time you put in on the water. Stands to reason, generally speaking, that if you put in more time you would get the benefit of increased skill in casting, reading water, fish habits, etc.

The learning curve for me was not so steep> Not because of any native intelligence -- but because I learned to fish by fishing worms on a spinning rod, then progressed to spinning lures. When I got bit by the flyfishing bug I read everything I could get my hands on on the subject. So, I knew how to read water when I started flyfishing. What was difficult for me (and still is) was learning about insect life and fly patterns, and casting the fly.

Having reached a reasonably competent level of fly fishing, I like to keep raising the bar for myself. There are stages (I read this somewhere -- maybe a Nick Lyons piece) that most fisherman go through. It begins with trying catching every fish in the water, then the largest fish, then the most difficult fish, rising fish only... I try not to get too hung up on the "catching" part and just enjoy being on the water. It sounds corny, but for me, it's true.
Pat Crisci

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