By Guest Blogger Emily
Before flying out to Colorado this past September to visit David’s parents, he casually mentioned a free intro to fly-fishing class offered by Blue Quill Angler, a fly shop in Evergreen, Colorado. David has been trying to get me interested in fly-fishing for years, but I can’t say I ever felt much enthusiasm. Sure, I like to be outside, enjoying fresh air and scenic rivers, but fishing just seemed so… boring. However, I do like to learn things and a free class to appease my husband was a small price to pay.
The class was held on a Saturday morning, so we piled into the truck to drive the 1.5 hours to Evergreen. I would be taking the class with my mother-in-law, Sandy, while David took care of our 9-month old (which truly shows how much he wanted me to take that class). For fun, my father-in-law, who already fly-fishes, also sat in for the first part of the class.
To be honest, I was expecting kind of a hokey set-up, but little did I know about the reputation of Blue Quill, or the depth of knowledge and experience bought by the owner, Jim Cannon, who taught the class himself.
The class lasted about two hours and was broken up into two parts. The first part was learning about the equipment and set-up. We learned how to choose the proper rod weight, and the difference between dry flys, nymphs, and streamers. We also learned about the types of line (fly, leader and tipit) and how to attach them all with the appropriate knots (blood knot and surgeon knot). Whether intentionally or not, my husband always made the knot-tying out to be a mysterious process, turns out it was easier than I’d thought.
By the end, we all had a very good grasp of what was what, and we were eager to try our hand at casting – part two of the class. We all stood behind the shop in an open field, watching Jim demonstrate proper technique and then trying our best to emulate him. I had some prior experience, so it wasn’t completely new to me, but by the end I was able to cast farther and with more accuracy than when I started. What a confidence builder! Of course, after that, I was looking forward to some real-time on a river, which would be later that same week. Would I have more fun? Or more importantly, would I catch fish? Read part 2 of this blog post to find out!