Learning Fly Fishing: Orvis Fly Fishing 101

by Justin on May 24, 2013

Orvis Fly Fishing 101

Orvis Fly Fishing 101


My girlfriend and I recently had the opportunity to learn something we had been wanting to learn for a while: flyfishing. We took a Flyfishing 101 class that is taught for free by Orvis. It was a lot of fun! Our instructor was Tim. He taught us how to cast out and also where to cast. You do not want to cast right in front of a fish but rather upstream to the current will pull the fly down and possibly catch the attention of the fish. We spent probably 30-45 minutes outside practicing casting in the lot at Orvis. (I wonder if people thought it was weird to see people casting in a parking lot?) We each also had a fake fish we were supposed to try and hook. Instead of a fly the end of the line there was a piece of velcro and the fish had the other piece of velcro. We had to “hook” the fish. I caught the fish once or twice. It’s harder than it looks. Honest.

Cortney learning how to fly fish

Cortney learning how to fly fish


When we went back inside we learned the two basic knots every flyfisher needs to know: the double surgeon and the clinch knot. The double surgeon was new to me. I had not tied that before but we picked it up quickly. I should also add it was a small group. Just three of us learning total so there was a lot of hands on time. The clinch knot I had used before but I didn’t know what it was called. It’s the knot my Dad showed me to tie at the end of normal fishing line either to keep the hook on or to tie to the end of a swivel. It was fairly simple but was a little bit harder to do using actual line that is more of a thread that frays rather than a fishing line.

In the end Tim showed us the line of rods offered by Orvis and explained the costs and everything with the sets and getting started. At first fly fishing might seem like an expensive sport but you have to think about how much you pay for other hobbies. It’s really no more expensive. Their starter rod and reel was a little over $200. Much less than a pump action shotgun would cost. I am looking into getting a lost cost starter rod and reel and giving fly fishing a try. I should also mention that Orvis offers a “Fly Fishing 201” class that is also free to sign up and attend.

If you’re in Cincinnati here is a link to the Orvis retail store that lists hours and contact information. A quick call and they can tell you when the next Fly Fishing 101 or 201 classes are being held.

Want to see a couple more pictures? Click here to view my Orvis Fly Fishing 101 photo set on flickr.

Do you fly fish? How did you learn? Please feel free to share any resources to help other new fly fishers. Thanks!

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