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second too long, the line and lure will
fall to the ground behind him, most like-
ly ending up hooked into grass or brush.
If he initiates the forward cast too ear-
ly, the line will "crack," and may break
Add to this scenario overhanging
trees and a 10-mile an hour wind, and
it's easy to see why it takes an accom-
plished fisherman to catch a fish rather
than a branch or a bush. However, an
experienced fly fisherman with good
control of his equipment can place a fly
smaller than a dime into an area the
size of a softball.
On small trout streams or when cast-
ing under overhanging brush and trees
where fish are hiding, this pinpoint ac-
curacy means the difference between
success and failure — IF catching fish is
how you define success.
Many fly fishermen consider catch-
ing fish only a small part of success. Jack
Saum, an experienced fly fisherman
says, "It's the whole package — tying the
fly, figuring out the right one to use, find-
ing the right spot, and presenting it to
the fish. It's wondering about what's
around the next bend of the river."
Mr. Saum, who casts flies he tied with
rods he built, likes the solitude and
peacefulness of the experience. "In fly
fishing, you create something for the
fish to eat. Then you stand in a cold,
clear stream using sight, sounds and
even smells to locate a fish and tempt
it. There are other ways to enjoy the out-
doors but none like fly fishing," he says.
Trout is the most popular prey of fly
fishermen, with bass and other fresh
water panfish running a close second.
In many trout streams it is illegal to
catch trout using any method other than
fly fishing. Rainbow, brook and brown
trout are the species most common on
the East Coast, and usually they are
fished for with miniscule flies. Many fish-
ermen hand-tie their flies, using only
feathers, hair and a hook. Flies can also
be purchased but many made today use
Poppers made from balsa wood, a
surface lure resembling a frog or an in-
sect, are often used by fishermen seek-
ing bass or panfish. Whichever lure is
being used, it must match what the fish
are feeding on. This can change on a
daily basis, especially in the spring when
insect hatches occur constantly.
The best way to keep on top of what