Tag Archives: guide

Fly Fishing, the different stages of development in an anglers life cycle

I meet fly fisherman from all over the world and I have found over the years that almost without exception they are wonderful people. Maybe it’s just one of those pastimes or passions that people with certain attitudes gravitate towards. After all they are out for a good time on the water for one reason or another.

There seems to be a progression of development in a fly fishermans life, it’s a bit like Maslows hierarchy of needs in a fishy way. Certain requirements need to be fulfilled before the angler can gain the next level. Here’s my theory:

Level 1:      I just want to catch a fish, anything will do.

New Zealand Fly Fishing Expeditions

New Zealand Fly Fishing Expeditions

Level 2:      I want to catch a lot of fish.

New Zealand Fly Fishing Expeditions

New Zealand Fly Fishing Expeditions

Level 3:      I want to catch a big fish.

New Zealand Fly Fishing Expeditions - 13lbs of NZ trophy brown trout

New Zealand Fly Fishing Expeditions - 13lbs of NZ trophy brown trout

Level 4:         I just want to be out on the water, catching a fish is a nice bonus.

New Zealand Fly Fishing Expeditions

New Zealand Fly Fishing Expeditions

Level 5:          I am a dumb arse guide!

New Zealand Fly Fishing Expeditions

New Zealand Fly Fishing Expeditions

Now the interesting thing about this theory is that many anglers make it to level 4 bypassing level 3 but I don’t think many make it to level 4 without first obtaining  levels 1 and 2. Most that make it to level 5 at some point want to be back at level 4 and almost always level 3 comes into play no matter where you are at in the progression.

Did I miss any levels? Where do you fit into this progression? Use the comments and let me know.

My father (who is a great fly angler) has a saying: ” Man with hands in pocket feels cocky all day and man with fly in water catches fish”. As a guide I have my hands in my pocket all day (usually to stop being bitten by sandflies) so  I don’t often have my fly in the water. Maybe he’s just telling me in his wise old way that I am a cocky prick and it’s time to go fishing with him soon!

New Zealand Fly Fishing Expeditions

New Zealand Fly Fishing Expeditions

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