What Is The Future of Fly Fishing?

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Photo by Louis Cahill

Photo by Louis Cahill

Have you heard the term “Fly Fishing 2.0”? Do you know what it means?

If you do you might be ahead of me. Whether it’s marketing, zeitgeist or a true sea change in the nature of the sport one thing is for sure. Fly fishing is changing, but into what?

The signs are all around us. Let’s take you for example. That’s right you are part of ‘Fly Fishing 2.0’. Your are sitting in front of your computer, or tablet, or smartphone reading about fly fishing while you probably should be working. The enthusiasm for fly fishing on the internet is almost unreasonable. Just a few years ago the idea that you could visit a site and read a new article on fly fishing every day of the year would have seemed crazy. And yet, here you are.

If you had a parent, or grandparent who fly fished, they had no such outlet. Fly fishing was whispered about, if that. Now the internet is full of sites where you can read about fly fishing, watch videos and look at cool photos. This is not just a function of the ubiquitous Internet. There are hundreds of times as many folks into conventional fishing as there are in fly fishing. Do a quick Google search. There are far more fly fishing sites online. Why?

Perhaps fly anglers are a more tech savvy group. Maybe they have more time on their hands. I doubt it. Personally, I believe it’s raw passion, but I may be personalizing the issue. Whatever it it is, it’s real and it’s powerful, but to what end?

It’s fair to say that moving out of the media closet is bringing more people into fly fishing. That’s a great thing. New folks discover fly fishing every day and as they matriculate into the community they bring with them ideas and aesthetics from their other passions and interests. These ideas broaden the base of an already diverse fly fishing community. Diversity is good but does diversity mean dilution? The culture of fly fishing is changing, but is it for the better?

The first time I recognized this migration it was the ski bums. If you live in the west and work in the ski industry, you end up with a lot of time on your hands and some pretty good trout water all around you. It was natural that ski bums would spend the summer being trout bums. Naturally, they brought with them some of the culture snow skiing.

As a result, the pace of fly fishing accelerated. The soundtrack changed. In the media, if not on the stream, fly fishing began to take on some of the trappings of extreme sport. Some of that is valid. Anyone who has ever gotten sideways in a class four rapid has certainly felt a rush of adrenaline. That rush exists in our sport but it has been commonly oversold, particularly In fly fishing videos.

It’s hard to express the more spiritual (for lack of a better word) side of fly fishing in video without reinventing Ambian. On the other hand, some film makers in the genre Have spun out of control and are producing ‘fly fishing videos’ which amount to fifteen minutes of jackassery with no actual fly fishing. It’s hard to make compelling videos but at some point you have to recognize that you’re driving a square peg into a round hole.

The creation of the ‘fly fishing celebrity,’ fueled largely by the video production arm, but present in all of the media, is down right surreal. There have certainly been anglers who I have admired, and possibly endowed with superhuman powers, over the years. Guys who wrote books and set an example I worked to follow, but they were just fishermen who tried to share their knowledge and experiences. I guess what I’m saying is they were neither Johnny Knoxville nor Paris Hilton, and those archetypes are now alive and well in fly fishing.

Perhaps a more natural path to fly fishing is through conventional fishing. I think most fly anglers started off with conventional gear and many continue to use both. More often however, once an angler discovers that the fly rod is their calling, the serious tackle starts collecting dust. Among those folk are some who have come over from the world of competitive bass fishing. I had the chance to talk with one of these guys the other day. Zac Cassill who guides at Alaska West. Zac left a promising career in professional bass fishing to be a fly fishing guide.

His vision of fly fishing is one where competition is positive, bringing new anglers into the sport through competitive fly fishing. I’ve always been pretty vocal on the subject of competitive fly fishing. I don’t care for it and any incarnation of fly fishing that resembles professional bass fishing is my worst nightmare, but talking with Zac, it’s hard to not be caught up in his passion and enthusiasm. Especially on the subject of conservation.

It turns out that’s why he left the competitive bass fishing world. “Competitive bass fishing is completely driven by the manufacturers,” he told me, “I was an outcast for supporting the idea of a ban on lead, an idea the sport should be fully behind.” I’m not crazy about the idea of competitive fishing but we can use more guys like Zac in the sport any day.

If you’re getting the idea that I’m concerned about the future of fly fish, fear not. I’m actually really excited. I’m not afraid that the Johnny Knoxvilles or Mike Iaconellis are going to change fly fishing. I have the greatest faith that, in the long view, fly fishing will change them.

That’s the beauty and the power of fly fishing. It is a pursuit which changes you. It opens your eyes to the greater natural world and to your place in it. It will ultimately break down ego. It will supersede competition. It does not give rise to Jackass or UFC. It gives rise to Project Healing Waters and Trout Unlimited.

That’s my vision for the future of fly fishing. A future where the hearts and minds of the fly fishers come together around conservation and community. A future where we preserve, protect and embrace our differences as we do our common interests. A future where ego and self interest are replaced with respect and service. That, I believe, is the natural evolution of fly fishing and regardless of the soundtrack, that’s a video I want to watch.

Louis Cahill
Gink & Gasoline
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47 thoughts on “What Is The Future of Fly Fishing?

  1. “I’m not afraid that the Johnny Knoxvilles or Mike Iaconellis are going to change fly fishing. I have the greatest faith that, in the long view, fly fishing will change them.”

    The most important line in this post, and the most hopeful.Thanks.

    • On the exact opposite side of this argument. The Knoxvilles and Iaconellis have always been around. The Knoxvilles are the guys who are going out and pushing boundaries, catching bigass marlin and tuna on fly, the guys who travel to far flung international places at great peril for fish (Latest example: GeoFish).

      As for the Iaconellis, they’re the guys like SCOF, FatGuyFlyFishing, they’re the guys who are so incredibly passionate about the sport, it’s infectious. It’s every scout camp Councillor who has gotten a summer of kids hooked on flyfishing, it’s every guide who invoked passion from a new angler.

      These guys are not the majority in flyfishing. But Knoxville is not the majority in entertainment, and Iaconelli is not the majority in the Bassmasters. They and their incarnations have been around forever, and it’s important they stay around, but they are not the mainstream thing.

      • Your point is very well taken, Dan. We need the pioneers and the folks who will push the boundaries. No argument at all. I only look forward to when that enthusiasm is redirected from self-aggrandizing to more beneficial purposes. But as you say, they’ll always be around.

        Your reference to the SCOF and FGFF guys makes me smile. Dave and Steve and Alex are some of my very favorite people and I have nothing but admiration and appreciation for what they’ve done for the sport. And having spent a fair amount of time with them all, I’ve seen how fly fishing is molding them right back; subtly, and in a good way.

        Thanks for making a great observation.

  2. The quest for “fly fishing celebrity” is the one component of the recent rise in social media popularity that has been a negative. More often than not, that quest results in too much being given away, locations that previously had to be earned are ruined through reckless exposure on videos by the ego driven nuevo crowd, all for reasons of self promotion.

  3. I see some positive changes and some negative going on. Last night, I was fishing a stream in VT where I rarely see another fisherman. While I was fishing one hole, 2 guys parked beside me and waded into the stream right above me. If this was a big-name stream somewhere in MT or PA or CO, it might be different. But, I’d bet there were no other fisherman on this river for miles in either direction, despite it just appearing in a new book as one of the top 50 streams in the northeast.

    On the positive side, within VT, we have had a few guides and other professionals emerge who willingly share information and fishing locations with others. The tight-lipped old ways are transforming, as people help each other to improve and find fish. The flies that I don’t tie myself are tied by some local guys. We have a small local company making quality rods and reels. Guides who are genuinely nice people rather than just there for the profit.

    I am a ski instructor in the winter, and I get your comparison to the ski bum culture. But, my best days on the water are still times to be alone (or maybe with my wife or son), in nature, the rhythm of the cast, and hopefully a few fish to the net. If that ever disappears because the sport is too popular, I’ll either move far away or I’ll find something else to do. Having two very expensive hobbies (fly fishing and skiing) is already a financial drain on the family’s bank account, so if one is no longer enjoyable, I’ll move on.

    As for celebrity fly fishermen, I just give them a wide berth. This sport is my downtime, my relaxation after hours spent week after week in the corporate world. Yes, I fish in a couple low key tournaments here in VT each summer. But, even those tournaments are about the social side of the sport, not caring if I actually win anything or not. Well, that’s how I view them.

  4. Luis,

    You touched a nerve with this post.

    The reason we do not need fly-fishing media stars is because we see what “competition” has done to the once enjoyable sport of bass fishing. A Jimmy Houston or Roland Martin or “Fish” Fishburn of fly-fishing? No thank you.

    I am fortunate to have a place on a lake in South Carolina. Who are the least respectful boaters? Not jet skiers, not booze-cruisers, not wake boarders…but bass fisherman. You get a guy in a fancy jumpsuit with a glitter boat, 250 Merc.on the back, he is gonna zoom by folks docks at about 55mph, 25 feet from the docks. Usually wearing his wind shield helmet with the human skull silk-screened on the front. In his mind, he IS Roland Martin, going to catch him a hog. He is probably a pretty nice guy but he bought the stereotype.

    Lets not sell a stereotype in fly-fishing. Lets just let people do what they want to do. Fly fishing shouldn’t require listening to Imagine Dragon’s Radioactive or it’s just not fly-fishing dammit! Listen to what you want to, drink what you want to and take from it what you want to.

    Fly-fishing should be what you want it to be. Lets not sell a stereotype or I will need to find something else to do.

    • Spot on! I understand that companies have to produce sales somehow, but in the end I think the stereotypes they push end up alienating more people than they are getting on the bandwagon.

  5. I agree whole heartidly with this article infact its a great way of explaining a principle in enviromental polotics. (The tragedy of the commons) If you put in a park nobody has the time or passion in this case to use it they are likely to not take care of it or even vote for the care of it. The more people you get vested into this sport the more you should see active members in its society. A diverse society of fly fishing is a healthy one and hopefully a protected one. Those characters in in bass fishing are fun to watch and for younger generations to emulate. I won’t lie I make satiracal comments about bass pros all the time and I think it makes the sport more approachable. Even if the kids throwing an alabama rig at the local fishing pond he/she is learning something. I for one love hank pattersons youtube channel he’s a true fly fishing comedian and charcter much like a knoxville self-depricating and probably having fun doing it.

  6. The young guns are young guns, yes they will mellow with age. The hot spotting has always been a tight rope walk for those trying to make a living in the sport since the advent of the magazine, but the social media has amplified the problem a thousand fold. The thing I see though that it’s not the Iconellis and Knoxvilles that are the problem, it’s that socially awkward, self aggrandizing, egotist, that is splashing information, that should be earned all over the internet. What I have been surprised with though is the skate boarder cross-over, somebody explain that to me and I’ll be happy for the rest of the week. (well maybe most of it)

    • The skateboarders are your young ski bums that Louis refers to in the post. I think the biggest reason for the crossover is that fly fishing, among other things, like rafting and skiing, gives you a damn good reason to enjoy the outdoors with friends and family. If you live here in a mountain town there are only so many activities to do. Fly fishing just happens to be a popular one.

      It’s safe to say that almost everyone that visits this blog daily is in search of an adventure. We hear all the stories and we, (young ski bums) are here to make our own.

      • I get that crossover with snow boarders but I know some in the Midwest and East, that aren’t into snow sports. And I may have been a little over reactive and mean spirited with my ego maniacal comment. Truly a lot of the hot spotting done on the internet is just plain ignorance of the implications and impact might be.

        • Not a skater or skier, but I suspect the crossover is about mastering a skill. I suspect anyone willing to put in hundreds of hours learning a skate trick would be interested in the creativity and skill involved in fly casting and fly fishing.

          • Nope…it’s about mastering your 15 minutes of fame. Skate boarding can happen on ANY piece of pavement. Fly fishing at least takes water. P.S. I grew up skating and surfing. I saw SOOOOOO many posers from the mountains come out to my local beach…I think the same thing happens in fly fishing—tourists.

      • Grew up skating in Los Angeles, now I live in Montana and guide. I am just as passionate for fly fishing as I ever was for skateboarding. Skateboarding was an escape for myself and my friends. It got me outside, taught me to be creative with my surroundings, kept me focused, calmed my soul. It’s a hard thing to understand for someone that doesn’t skate, but the sound of my wheels on smooth concrete was sublime.

        After a long day sometimes I would catch myself staring at my board, marveling about how this simple thing, a wood board, two trucks, and four wheels could make me so happy, and provide so much fun. I get that same feeling today when I look at my rod all rigged and ready to go, or my boat anchored up, hovering in inches of water. My friends and I would take the bus all over southern California to skate new spots, and a lot of times that tired old cliche of “it’s not the destination…” rang true. Instead of finding new skate spots these days, I’m constantly looking for new water on my days off.

        My brother introduced me to fly fishing when I was at my peak of skateboarding. I found something new that required coordination, creativity, and fed my wanderlust. More importantly, it got me off the streets and out of the city.

        I’m not exactly sure what the cross-over is, it’s going to be different for everyone, but I think the commonality is “soul”. It’s a cheezy thing to say, but I can’t think of any other way of putting it. Whether I’m spending hours skating a hip on some schoolyard playground or spending hours casting to a pod of fish eating tricos on the Missouri, the feeling is the same. The satisfaction I find in both is personal, hard to explain, but makes perfect sense to the next guy that gets “it”.

        • That says it all. I even get the audio part. The white noise of the water helps put me in that “zone”. Okay I can be happy the rest of the week, thanks.

        • Hallelujah! What you just did right there ^ ^ ^…awesome.You could not have said it better my friend. Skateboarding, skiing, and snowboarding are art and so is casting a fly line. They are all outdoor activities that you can do all day long with endless challenges and creativity. They get you outside…living life.

  7. I know that a great amount of the fly-fishing community dislikes the direction of some of the fly-fishing videos out there (dub-step soundtracks and other shenanigans). However, for the first time I can show people who do not fly-fish these videos and they say “Cool, can you take me fishing?”

  8. Some of you may be old enough to remember Ernest Schwiebert, author of Nymphs and Trout. A heck of an artist, painter and fisherman, most of his stories included a reference to a chilled Bordeaux and some fine French cheese he was eating stream side before the blue-winged olive hatch. He would then catch fish with his Payne bamboo rod, decked out in his Iceland wool sweater and his tweed hat. It was fine and there was nothing wrong with it except that it intimidated a lot of people from trying to fly-fish. I gotta know latin too? He became the stereotype of what a fly fisherman was supposed to be. So some people didn’t try it.

    Maybe we don’t need a special hat, beer, wine, bong, song, rod, snowboard, decal, ice chest or tweed jacket to be a “real” fly-fisherman. Maybe we just need to enjoy nature in whatever way we please as long as our way is not held up as the best or only.

    • Ernest certainly was flamboyant but wow could he fish. He had an incredible ability to determine when trout were switching hatches and hatch stages. I’d never seen anything like it. And his mastery of his chosen bamboos was poetry in motion. The last time I fished with him was a week after his father had passed away. We sat on the bank and he told me stories of his father, an incredible man who published his last book at age 90 and had written the italics in four languages including Hebrew. I really, really enjoyed his company and found him very far from the “snob” I had stereotyped him

    • Ernest certainly was flamboyant but wow could he fish. He had an incredible ability to determine when trout were switching hatches and hatch stages. I’d never seen anything like it. And his mastery of his chosen bamboos was poetry in motion. The last time I fished with him was a week after his father had passed away. We sat on the bank and he told me stories of his father, an incredible man who published his last book at age 90 and had written the italics in four languages including Hebrew. I really, really enjoyed his company and found him very far from the “snob” I had stereotyped him

  9. Fly fishing does need all of the aforementioned people to some degree, but what I really think it needs now is a voice telling you that there are fish right in your backyard. It may not be the prettiest place to fish (sometimes it actually can be), and the fish might not be the biggest, but there is fishing close to your home. One thing that really bugs me is how much fly-fishing culture is so “trip” focused. When I walk into a local fly-fishing retailer, I’m asked “Where is your upcoming trip going to be?”, not “How’s the fishing?” When I tell them I caught bass and bluegill in a creek 5 minutes from the shop, they are shocked. Maybe if people fished close to home, their local fisheries and water quality would be better because it would have more advocates. I live in a medium/large sized city that has it’s own chapter of Trout Unlimited, when the nearest trout stream is almost a hundred miles away. I bet most of those folks don’t know they can catch bass and carp from a creek 30 feet wide down the road from where the meeting is.

    I admit I’m a sucker myself for the extreme fish/location-porno vids, but so much media focus seems to be put on this at the expense of your local stream. He is demure about it, but Gierach’s underlying message is: “Pick up a rod (any rod!), find some fish (any fish!) close to you, and get your ass on the river.”

    …Or maybe its good that these locations don’t get any pressure. But then when the river is silted up and filled with pcb’s, nobody will give a shit.

    • “Gierach’s underlying message is: “Pick up a rod (any rod!), find some fish (any fish!) close to you, and get your ass on the river.”

      I couldn’t agree more with this weather you or John says it. I live in Atlanta Georgia and I have found some pretty out-of-the-way spots for alternative species near me. But here’s the thing, we don’t talk about local streams for a reason. I’m sure you enjoy fishing your local stream for bass and carp. G&G currently sees about 100,000 readers per month. How would you like to see them all at your local bath stream next week? I hear your frustration and I agree with it, but in an attempt to be responsible, we are going to maintain a pretty strict no kiss and tell policy. I hope you understand. We get a lot of requests for content about where to fish. It would be easy content for us and people would like it, but in the end would it be The responsible thing to do?

      Our policy is pretty straightforward. We talk about streams by name only when we think they are known by absolutely everyone. The hidden gems that our readers enjoy we would like to see remain hidden. At least to those who are not willing to do the work to find them on there own. And isn’t that half the fun of Flyfishing? Finding your own secret spots.

      Keep tearing up those bass bluegill and carp. We won’t tell anybody.

      • Keep up this good policy. If people aren’t willing to find that pond a hundred yards from their house, they’re just not trying hard enough anyway.

  10. Here is the other side of the coin. One local fly shop owner is convinced that some people are getting the same pleasure from watching a fishing or fly tying video as we get from actually making the cast of twisting the thread. If he is right I wonder what that does to their sex life?

    • I don’t know about their sex lives, but folks like that don’t help anything. Diluting themselves and whatever they are interested in.

  11. I feel that the future of fly fishing should ideally include more direct personal participation by anglers in the many opportunities for habitat and watershed restoration, research support through “Citizen Scientist” training and activities, supporting wild fish restoration, environmental and ecological projects and education etc. If we are to have any hope at all for our wild fish species and their waters, we need to focus more of our time and energy on preserving, conserving and restoring them. The need for field volunteers in many programs is great. Mentoring new fly fishers in the game should include a strong element of environmental and ecological education and involvement beyond just catching fish.

    In my “perfect world” we would eliminate the hatchery mentality and replace it with stewardship through personal participation. Here in Washington state we have some good things happening in this regard. Washington State University has it’s Water Programs, Beach Watchers etc, and Washington Dept., of Fish & Wildlife oversees the statewide Regional fisheries Enhancement Groups. These programs are restoring wild salmonid habitats and there are many millions more juvenile fish moving out into the sea each year because of this. And along with those fish come the birds and other species, native plants etc., that help to build a stronger ecosystem.

    Your state has an Agricultural Extension Program, A Fish and Wildlife Department, and many environmental organizations that work to support wild fish and their habitats. Do something meaningful and get involved. Then you won’t be so worried about what other people are wearing, or saying or doing.

    Here is one example of what a small number of committed individuals can accomplish: http://www.nosc.org

  12. I personally think the future might be a little brighter if “the industry” manages to pry itself away from $1200 fly rods, Kamchatka, Steelhead, GT’s in the Seycheles, Bones on Christmas Island, $12 nippers, and videos with rap music. There is a lot of good fishing to be had right in your own back yard. Go chase species of fish that no one cares about with affordable gear. You might have a lot of fun. You don’t need a passport to go fly fishing. You do need to stare at the trees, take a kid with you, and sit on the bank eating a cheese sandwich with your phone off.

    • Spot on Steve! I live in Mexico City, not exactly known as the trout fishing capital of the world, but I got my ar-e out of bed early on Sunday and nipped up to a stocked lake close to the city yesterday and had the lake to myself for a few hours before the hordes turned up with their spinners and bait (don’t get me wrong, to each their own). Was it easy because it is stocked? No, I had to work it out and eventually got tuned in. Yes, I like to go to the Caribbean when I can, but if I want to just get a session in because I need to “go fishing” I take what’s on offer and make the best of it and enjoy it.

  13. Great article Louis. I think you’ve definitely touched on something we all have an interest in. But beyond the new generation of fly fishers use of social media and their selfies, I think included should be a discussion of flyfishing, technology and detachment from Nature.

    I’ve been fly fishing and guiding for over thirty years and I guess I would be considered an “old timer”. I have seen the ebbs and the flows in the sport and I believe that time will weed out the “fly fisherman” that are in the sport merely to post pictures of their own face, their cooler or their rod. How about the fish? Fly tying videos on Youtube with a speed metal soundtrack? Really? I like punk rock but I don’t want to tie to it.

    As much as I don’t understand younger anglers obsession with themselves and having to document on video everything they do, my concern is that these “fly fisherman” are really missing out on the thing central to fly fishing: Nature. I’ve seen it plenty with customers. They’re more focused on their GoPro shots or their Instagram accounts than their surroundings. The truth is, humans cannot truly multi-task. You can do two things at once but you can’t do them well. Something always takes precedence. And unfortunately, I believe that for some, it’s technology over Nature.

    I believe that wilderness and fisheries conservation is based on usage. Having more people fly fishing is good because it gets them into those environments and they’ll have an interest in protecting them.

    But if Nature is nothing more than a background for a video, than those “fly fisherman” simply are not fly fisherman at all.

    • Capt. Pete I have to respectfully disagree,

      I suppose that I am one of those new school anglers that post pix all over instagram, make videos, and listen to punk rock that you are warning us about.

      If you wanted to take the anti-technology argument to its logical conclusion you would not be fishing at all because that distracts from the nature watching. Most millenials got into flyfishing because they were into nature in the first place! They didn’t set down the xbox controller one day and decide that they wanted to take a bunch of selfies in Montana with fish.

      I think that most of the people you are talking about post pictures of fish because fish are inherently cool. They post pictures on the internet because they caught something memorable and they want to share the moment with their friends. Many in my generation care deeply about protecting fisheries, the opposition to pebble mine going viral is an example. It’s the stodgy old white guys that want to increase habitat for an invasive exotic species, the landowners that put up no trespassing signs, and groups that are directly damaging the eological sustainability of our rivers that we should be railing against. Leave the millenials to their devices.

      I haven’t reached level 10 jaded fly fishing guide yet as I have only been guiding for 7 years. I’m going to continue to make dubstep flyfishing videos and post badass fish on my instagram because its fun and my friends are into it.

      Also, I am a captain as well, but I don’t feel the need to post it all over the internet to legitify my points.

  14. Louis: Great thoughts on this topic. But, “matriculated”? Seriously…you can spell the word so at least look it up so you know what it means. Also, Lefty Kreh and other earlier fly fishing writers, if they possessed superhuman powers, were endowed with those by their Creator, certainly not you! Perhaps you ascribed or attributed those powers to them. Your thoughts are great but if you’re not sure of a word maybe look it up or use a thesaurus if you’re just not quite coming up with the right word.

    • Whisky, Tango, Foxtrot

      I seriously do not understand where this comment comes from. Perhaps if you’re going to criticize you should get your facts straight.


      —verb (used with object)

      to enroll in a college or university as a candidate for a degree.
      to register (a coat of arms), used especially in Scottish heraldry.

      As in, “To begin with, I turn back time. I reverse it to that quaint period, the thirties, where the huge middle class of America was matriculating in a school for the blind.” – Tennessee Williams, from the glass menagerie

      “There have certainly been anglers who I have admired, and possibly endowed with superhuman powers”

      when I say that I endowed them with superhuman powers, I am acknowledging that this is a construct I have superimposed on individuals. Obviously no one has superpowers, whether Indelde by me or their Creator. That’s why they’re called superhuman. I have, in my mind, and out them with superhuman powers. That’s called creative license. Get it?

      Send me a postcard from super literal land sometime.

      • I was at the Great Waters Fly Fishing Expo in Bloomington MN the day Lefty did his lecture on casting. Gravity has no power over his back cast. He puts no effort at all into 90 foot casts. He hooked his fly line around the lady in the chair and landed the fly behind here just like he said he would.

        I was there. He’s superhuman.

  15. IMO (and I’ve only been doing it for five years so I haven’t seen a lot of change) is that lots of people get attracted to it because the over production done on these videos sells them on how cool it CAN be. I’m in the daily business of crafting/selling an idea/brand/image/message so its a bit of a love hate relationship with media. On the one hand, it can be good for manufacturers—it creates a large base to sell to. But the number of rods/waders/flies sold won’t save fly fishing. IMO it’s more people using a resource that will protect. You can sell MILLIONS of rods and MILLIONS of rods can never hit the water.

    I’m concerned the over production of media and it’s always on nature attracts people who are content to live vicariously through the postings of others. Hell they can stay connected to fly fishing 24/7 and fish maybe once a month?

    Maybe the future is all breadth and no depth. Lots of clothes to wear, lots of flies to tie, lots of blogs to read, videos to watch and hardly any fishing being done. Mile wide and ankle deep.

    I’d rather we get a few die hard, resource conserving, pebble mine saving, fish till it hurts anglers than a million once and a while anglers who care only for a grip n grin. It’s the former that will spend way more time and money furthering the industry and saving it IMO.

  16. In the end, we’ll all – at some point in our distant selves – see it all comes down to “it’s just fishing”. We’ll realize that there is no Mecca, no Holy One, no Holy Ground, No Better Place than right here. But we’ll have people perpetually producing video, shooting shots of themselves and posting selfies until they realize that a the fish they are holding is as easy to catch as the next fish, that the fish they caught in New Zealand is as easy to catch in Russia, Norway, Canada, or even the USA. In the end, that self-importance of youth fades as we discover that life is so much bigger than fly fishing but we can’t have our lives lived without fly fishing. And so very little of that has to do with the perpetuated mindlessness of the self-absorbed egos in this so-called 2.0, which in its own right is simply an article hosted on this site and based on the self importance of trying to remain relevant to perpetuate its own future, though we all know it’s only for a time.

  17. I’ve followed this blog for what seems like a year and I don’t recall an article eliciting this much feed back. What I got out of reading these post is that there are a lot of mixed feelings when it comes to our sport. Why not, it is after all a very personal thing that we do. Joan Wolfe is credited with the following and I paraphrase: At first the fisherman just wants to catch a fish. Next, more fish and third, bigger fish. Finally, he just wants to fish. Sounds like a good destination to me.

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