Tuesday, July 22, 2008


It's what steelheading has given me so far this season.

Or, more accurately, what I've taken away from it. From what I understand, everything you get from this pursuit is earned.

Reflection has been ever-present in my fly fishing experiences. Without it, I'm not sure I would have been able to develop any reasonable level of skill, much less write about it.

Since starting this blog, I've maintained a religious steelheading schedule.

If it seems that I've nothing to show for it, so be it.

It's part of being a beginner.

I recently came to grips with that on a particularly windy day. Presented with a strong on-shoulder breeze, I had no choice but to cast cackhanded. That didn't worry me at first--my cacks had been pretty consistent--but for some reason, everything was falling apart and I couldn't figure out why. To make matters worse, fish began surfacing in the fading light.

"Not much time left," I thought to myself.

Consumed, I continued to flog the water in futility.

No takers.

Disgusted with myself, I gave up...and thought about my first days with a single hander...

When I started fly fishing, I couldn't do anything right. Cast, tie, find the fish, you name it--I was incompetent.

Through observation and study, I began to shed some of my inadequacies, identifying my bad habits and rethinking my approach.

"Why should this be any different?" I asked myself, attempting to cool my frustration.

It shouldn't. You have to start somewhere.

Now, with a spey rod in hand, it's simply time to do it all over again...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Great post! You're lucky in that you have easy access to a summer run of steelhead to hone your skills. Wish AK had a summer run.