Is this Cheating? Part 2 [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Is this Cheating? Part 2

08-04-2010, 11:06 AM
To the those who say trolling with a fly is not flyfishing. Most only know about Walton or even further to Bernes.....but our history is more telling and even up to 1878, from England. I was reading about shotguns in a well respected and popular book of the day on all sports. Some of you may know about it..."British Rural Sports" B) Stonehendge. Mine is a 14th edition which used to come out every couple years. You should have a look at these volums and look on ebay or Abe Books and get one...facinating reading and very detailed on all outdoor sports. I t is so deatiled that my edition is about 6 inches is what the beginning of the Flyfishing section says:

"Sect.2 - Varieties of Fly-Fishing
Natural Fly - Fishing consisits in the use of various living flies, grasshoppers, etc., which are found on the banks of rivers and lakes. It is practised by a process which is called DIPPING, but chiefly in such situations as are so much overhung with bushes as to preclude the use of the artificial fly. In these spots the water is generally still, and there is no possibility of offering the lure in any other position than a state of almost entire escence. Hence all imitations are easily discoverable; and the real fly and grasshopper, etc. , are the only surface baits which the fish will take.
Artificial Fly-Fishing, on the other hand, consists in the use of imitations of these flies, and also of the other fancy flies,by means of an elastic rod and fine tackle, and by a process which is called whipping. All fish which will take the one will take the other kind of lure, but not always with an equal degree of avidity, as we shall hereafter find; but as the principal is the same in both cases, it is better to treat of them together, rather than to go over the same ground a second time."

So get off your high horse and do the research if you opinion is intended to put down someone. This book is done as a reporting type book and tells what the practises were at the time.It is what people considered not an opinion from the Walton Society. I even suspect die hard fly tyers and casters of the time understood that it was about catching and the "Art form" unfortunatley is a product of the 20th century and is without foundation except with self proclaimed elitiest. There I said it. What do you think of that.?

08-04-2010, 11:44 AM
......Oh forgot to say that this soley my opinion. I would not have asked the question not because it did not have to be asked , but I already knew the answer. I prefer to use artificials that I tie, but - would never considerer it "cheating" although THAT was the question. FishHawk said it well. On another forum I called the purists "flatist"...the world is still flat despite evidence to the contrary. So I did lower myself to a type of name calling for which I appologized. Yet, the elitist program has never been supported by relaible evidence, and I have more evidence to show...not others opinions by "reported" practises....purist will never bend in there opinions..that is long as opposing views are stated. I think that the expanded thinking should be concidered the " Neo-purists. - had to post a new reply and have typos here because of this GD blackberry and I can not edit. Edit...I was able to for the first timem..I don' have the energy to go back for others...sorry

08-04-2010, 01:10 PM
Probably modern flyfishing began in the time of Halford who wrote a very strict aesthetic code for trout fishing on the chaulk streams, he was rebuked by Skues who also set down a set of rules. This was all about sportsmanship as opposed to catching, we've gone way beyond all that and now it's considered perfectly kosher to do most anything as long as it's done with an artificial fly and a flyline. For those of us who call ourselves flyfishers, we will fish with flies because that is a rule we choose to follow. If you want to catch fish with bait, great, it just isn't flyfishing, and therefore I guess it isn't really cheating unless you call it flyfishing. My final .02

08-04-2010, 01:39 PM
I think it all makes for interesting conversation. When I got into to the sport just a short 5 years ago I didn't really think about the idea of "purists" or much about the history of fly-fishing. I think it is neat to learn about it though.

Learning and having a good time have been the constants that has kept me into this so far not so much any idea about pre-defined codes or rules (get enough of that in regular life). I enjoy it b/c I like learning from folks that know more and have more experience than me, and I like applying and testing that knowledge in a way that leads to a more clear understanding and develops my own skills. A nugget of history from a book I didn't even know existed is cool...the guy who took a moment to suggest I do something different with my leader and share why...very cool, some thoughts about what makes a certain type of place good to fish and why, awesome...chatting with a guys who have been doing this for decades is just great stuff. It is fun, interesting, and I learn something every time.

Some day in another 28 years or so when Im as old as the mayor :hihi: I hope to be sharing things that Ive learned over the years and I hope over the course of that time I manage to keep it light and fun. If I find myself in the Chesapeake on a hot night and my hand-tied creations arent working, hopefully Ill think hey, some guy I ran into once told a story about a jig-head and some crab on his 10wt

08-04-2010, 02:17 PM
Fishawk is pure, don't know about the mayor. :wink:

08-04-2010, 02:34 PM are too much(wink) thanks for the, I can not go so far as to claim that :alford is when modern flyfishing started. I think he did live around the time that Stonehenge published his books. My memory is not clear and I do not have my books here in Chatham. Jon also said "probably". I think that Halford was more known for his developments in the dry fly area and Skues was the numph man....just from memory...but several significant contributors lived during that time....Stewart for one....and I have some original rare books from people like Evans...other names escape me for the moment...but I was most certainly check out your claim. Boy is this hard from the mini keyboard. The reference to these individuals limits a fuller understanding of flyfishing beyond dry and salt water and othe freshwater fishing or salmon and, and I will check it out...if they had a code of conduct it must have applied to his small group of buddies.....and then grew from there applicable to the "sanctified" dry fly...

08-04-2010, 09:28 PM
After 28 years of doing it, I still have no idea of what ' fly fishing' is.

Neither do I care.

I fly rod :biggrin:

08-05-2010, 09:34 AM
I will add, it may depend on where you are. If you drag a streamer while paddling to shore I you canoe in a "fly fishing only" pond in Maine you aren't flyfishing and are subject to the wrath of the chub patrol. You must be casting and stripping for it to count.

08-05-2010, 12:48 PM
I have learned more about the history of fly fishing the last few days than I have the 5 years I have ben using a fly rod.
Very interesting to learn the history behind the game.
One more question for the history buff's.
Fishing for Steelhead on the Erie trips I see some guy's using some very long rods and using live bait. The reel looks like a fly reel but is much bigger. It's action is very smooth and the line just feeds out without any pulling of the line from the reel.
Someone told me this type of fishing orginated in Europe but I hven't seen any information.

08-05-2010, 07:26 PM
float rod/reel. Long rod and a free spooling reel for virtually drag free floats for upward of 100 feet. the bait or fly, but commonly brown trout egg, hangs vertically from a float as it drifts in the current. It is an incredibly effective method. This method was fostered by Canadians on the Great Lake tribs. I have fished side-by-side with them using a fly rod and they kicked butt as a result of the long drag free floats.

08-05-2010, 08:23 PM
oh God....material for another it cheating to use a Blackberry instead of a desk top?
Life is too short, not enough time to figure all these issues out. :wink:
Guess in the meantime, I will just go fishing using an implement that was far more expensive than a spin rod but for some reason gives me great satisfaction despite catching less fish in this manner..........go figure :Eyecrazy:

08-06-2010, 02:03 AM
Using a spoon fly is cheating, right?

Spoonfly User (when in Florida) in Waldport

08-06-2010, 06:56 AM
I was asked to guide a group of fly guys from Boston on the Hoosie in Conn. Before we started fishing I was asked what fly would I recommend , "Wooly Buggers is the hot fly ."
I got the reply ,"I don't use those things it's cheating."
Well , after I proceeded to hammer the fish the guy who made that comment came up to me and said,"Give me a couple of those Buggers." :eek: :lildevl: :smokin:

08-06-2010, 08:32 AM
Bill, that's the extreme flatist view because there are a select few who only believe that only the dry fly is true flyfishing... A practical example of how absurd this really is. I am going off shore today for a few hours off south beach and , BECAUSE of fishing conditions as we know at this point we will be dropping the flies overboard, getting them down hopefully avoiding the dog fish, 30 feet at a minimum and jig the fly with the fly rod on a moving boat in the current. Also with a "bullet head fly I tie with a lead head covered with epoxy in the shape of a big sand eel.

Dble Haul
08-06-2010, 08:37 AM
float rod/reel. Long rod and a free spooling reel for virtually drag free floats for upward of 100 feet. the bait or fly, but commonly brown trout egg, hangs vertically from a float as it drifts in the current. It is an incredibly effective method. This method was fostered by Canadians on the Great Lake tribs. I have fished side-by-side with them using a fly rod and they kicked butt as a result of the long drag free floats.

I have often heard of this method referred to as centerpinning...I agree that it's pretty impressive in regards to the lenghts of the drifts that can be achieved.

As for the rest of the material in these cheating threads, I could care less how somebody else fishes, as long as it's legal.

08-06-2010, 09:47 AM
Mark...I think that is the ultimate point as FishHawk and some others are saying and what I am saying...."I never give anybody Hell, I tell the truth, and they think it's Hell." Harry Truman

08-06-2010, 11:18 AM
For those who maintain an active interest in the "cheating" conundrum , may I suggest a book which delves into this subject, Fly-fishing Heresies by Leonard M Wright. It is a trout fishing book, but I think that salt water anglers would probably enjoy it, it's very well written as well as being historically informative.

08-06-2010, 11:26 AM
If I'm outdoors and "doing something" I am one happy camper. Whatever floats your boat, legally. Here's what I really want to know. Did Pete get those braces removed yet. And John. Where is the little Chatham Bars cup? When wearing the cap you must have a 'wee dram' to go with it! Pinky finger out.


08-06-2010, 12:26 PM
Thanks Jon...I have that book... I also have several hundred I accumulated while work on my and David Seybolds project on "The History of the Saltwater fly" which will 30 interviews 300 pages already done and about 400 flies... I can not remember, and will have to look back but a great book on "The History of Flyfishing in America", also Goodspeeds and Radcliffs works should not be missed since they write about early developments...Flyfishing as we know TODAY was and is an evolutionary process with many forks in the road. I will want to discus those early chalk stream people and those who flyfished on the Cornish coast at the same time those "wealthy" trout guys were making news

Phil..those teeth are real and I made the unforgivable mistake of wearing the fez outside of CAC...but it all worked since no other flyfishers or spinners had the chongos to fish in our spots or elbow in. I think It
it funny that you remember our initiation with sipping from antique CBI coffee cups with required pinky extended...those were our mental days. BTW.. I picked up an interesting first edition at the Chatham antiques show yesturday. A book by the son of Charles Darwin I think ,called "The Tides". Looks complicated and published in the late 1800's. I will report back.

08-06-2010, 01:15 PM
....One other thing... As Tom Pero, of WildRiver Press and Publisher of "Fish and Fly" told me...when I was reporting my reseach and trying to trace the trail of the saltwater fly, to guard against the use of OPINIION expressed by many authors, and look to what the PRACTISES were, not what they thought but w hat they did. This is why the interviews were so crucial especially when I asked people like Stu Apte, Mark Sosin, Al Brewster, Steve Huff, Lou Tabory, Russ Chatham, Steve Raymond, Lefty Kreh, etc....etc....what is it you DID?,,,,not, what do you think? sorry for the name dropping.... History is about reported facts.... There are a ton of opinions as to why Hitler invaded Russian... But know one disputes the FACT that his army did.

08-06-2010, 01:50 PM
The primary reason I mentioned Halford and Skues was to emphasize that they were talking about a code of sportsmanship as opposed to something that was just about catching. I'm sure your interviews revealed a lot, and that is precisely the sort of stuff I find important, it is all about learning what it is about this sport that one, as an individual , finds rewarding. It has been repeated many times that a beginner simply wants to catch fish, then progresses to big fish and then starts to develop standards for how he likes to catch his fish, this evolution is what makes flyfishing an interesting and intellectually challenging lifelong pursuit. Understanding where you are in the progression and knowing where the real rewards for you as an individual is the key to the sport. My quip "everybody gotta have a code" is an allusion to that, although in direct response to your silly list of rules.

08-06-2010, 04:29 PM
I have no problem with all that and I like to think that the silly rules were meant as a joke...taken as such or not...THe "code" is fine...but This , I thought was about something other than just catching...I though that was clear , in fact you just stated it when you said people develop standards as your third stage ( I can not go back and quote you)....Although we were talking about ajusting to conditions to catch fish,which is about is still part of this code...- am talking about elitism.....I find such "judgments" about other right on point...I fish and don't catch many times on NM...and still love the walk and the hunt and the casting....but my code is my code and I don't tell about it nor do I put down....I fear you have made my point for me . Over and out

Dble Haul
08-06-2010, 06:46 PM
Mark...I think that is the ultimate point as FishHawk and some others are saying and what I am saying...."I never give anybody Hell, I tell the truth, and they think it's Hell." Harry Truman

I like that Truman quote!

08-06-2010, 08:56 PM
Thank you, I think we've come full circle. Good luck with your book, David Seybold seems like a really good guy, I had a very nice conversation with him about ten years ago in Bill Hunter's shop in New London, I also enjoyed his anthology of fishing stories he did some years before. BTW did you get an interview with Jack Gartside? Just hoping.

08-06-2010, 11:04 PM
I first met Dave when he took my advanced flyfishing school we ran one year at Fishing The Cape...and have been friends ever since. I did not formerly interview gartside but have his 5 significant flies and material I have from notes. He was a member of the Boston Fly Casters with me. I have good stuff, for example the 4 Deceivers that Lefty tied for me that evolved over the years rom the first to the present. I have other great interviews with Bill Curtis, Edson Leonard, Boyd Phiffer, Bob Popvics, Ken Bay, Dick Brown, Ken Abrames , those come to me as I type.