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  1. #1
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    Nov 2012
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    Default Teaching Someone River Fishing

    I have a friend who started fly fishing a couple of years ago. He fishes stillwaters for bows.

    He is really quite keen to start river fishing and has asked me to help him in this quest. I have given him some basic tackle, which I would describe as a 'starter' kit, and have agreed to show him the basics come next April.

    Now having had time to think about this commitment, I'm not very sure how I should go about a days tuition, bearing in mind that he has never fished running water.

    My thoughts were to keep it simple and start off with Dry Fly, my logic being to give him an understanding of a drag free drift, and how to avoid same. Having said that there is nymphing, bugging, wet fly, spider fishing etc.

    I suspect a few days will be necessary.

    Any thoughts/ideas as to how I should approach this would be much appreciated.



    Douglas

  2. #2
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    devon
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    Default Re: Teaching Someone River Fishing

    I think a few days spent on the river in winter, just walking and looking is a good idea. No rods or fishing to get in the way, it is possible to point out where fish are likely to be, explain where you might cast from and to, back cast concerns, length of drift you may want etc etc. When it comes to the season and time to fish a lot of the preparation and basics will be covered and there will be an idea, at least, of the differences between the still water fisheries and river.
    Dave

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Teaching Someone River Fishing

    Quote Originally Posted by lepirate View Post
    I think a few days spent on the river in winter, just walking and looking is a good idea. No rods or fishing to get in the way, it is possible to point out where fish are likely to be, explain where you might cast from and to, back cast concerns, length of drift you may want etc etc. When it comes to the season and time to fish a lot of the preparation and basics will be covered and there will be an idea, at least, of the differences between the still water fisheries and river.
    Dave
    Yup - That's quite a good idea. He would really quite enjoy that.


    Douglas

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Teaching Someone River Fishing

    Doug

    I'd park at the top of the beat and walk downstream highlighting the holding areas, changing currents, drop offs in depth and explaining how you'd generally approach each area. If he's done his homework, (give him some video links and a good book before you venture out), he should get a basic grasp.

    Personally unless there's a hatch on I would start on nymphs, the reason being that most who start on dries believe nymph fishing is a dark art only practised by devil spawn. There's no reason why once he has the hang of it he couldn't swap to a dry.

    Another thing you could do is set his rod up for nymphs and yours for dries and take turns fishing with you to start and catch a fish to prove they are there and then let him have a go with the same rod working up the beat.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Teaching Someone River Fishing

    There is a vast amount of information out there. Books, articles, DVDs, you name it. How to, what with, when, where. Read, watch and absorb. Then go and do it.

    For what its worth I'd start with a two fly leader down & across. That way he'll get used to tackle control at a basic level, casting rhythm and where trout lie. Also, he'll get a few takes and catch a fish or two.

    The technicalities of nymphs and dries can come later.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Teaching Someone River Fishing

    This very much depends on the size and type of river you are intending to fish. The majority of my clients are new to river fishing and I normally start them off nymphing with a very simple rig. Either K&D or a basic indicator set-up. Don't go too long on leaders and get them roll casting. If someone has come from a still water background then you quite often need to impress on them that distance is not important, presentation and accuracy are what counts. The subtly of bite detection is also something that a lot of new river fishers struggle with. It can take a few fish (and a few misses) for people to learn how that little stall in the indicator could be a fish. Also work on how they set. I've seen quite a few small fish thrown into the next county due to an over enthusiastic strike. Get them to think 'tighten-up' rather than 'strike'.
    Start them off in a relatively easy and open part of the river, it doesn't matter if it's not the most productive stretch you know, build their confidence in casting and achieving a good drift first before taking them to one of the better but more technically difficult parts of the river.
    Basically keep it very simple to begin with, stay patient and be prepared to loose quite a few flies and be spending a lot of time undoing tangles and re-tying flies!
    Trying to teach someone in a day what many of us have spent a lifetime learning can be a challenge!

    Cheers

    Andy
    Last edited by andygrey; 13-12-2016 at 08:35 AM.
    GAIA Casting Instructor & Fishing Guide

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