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    We have a lot of talk about fly rods. What was you first fly rod adventure? Why did you start using a fly rod, and what was you first fish you caught on it?

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After reading every copy of Field and Stream I could get my hands on , I saved my lawn mowing money and went to the local hardware store on the main drag in my little town and bought my first fly rod, it was a Berkley glass rod 8' long, a reel and line and I was in business. Sure , I already had a casting rod ,but this was different. Dad and I fished a lot together , and I was ready to catch as many fish as he did with his fly rod. The focus of fishing was bream, we fished Old River down in Louisiana, the Achafalaya basin, and lake Martin on the coast, in Arkansas we fished Lake Conway,Lake Millwood, and Bull Shoals and countless other rivers and lakes. So here it is 41 years later and I'm still using the same methods as I started with, although The equipment has gotten a little nicer, after I closed the trunk of the car and seeing about 8 inches of my first fly rod sticking out, now I sport a 8'-6" graphite 5-6 wt. rod with floating weight forward line, and florocarbon leader run through a porcupine quill, supporting a live cricket on a #8 long shank hook. I never use flies untill I run out of crickets. The feel of the fish on one end of the line and your hand on the other end of the line, feeling every twitch of the fight is magical to me.While my line hand feels the tug, my rod hand lead the fish away from the snags and the line goes under my index finger on the rod grip as a brake. I guess is hard to teach old dogs new tricks.

LotF,R, Great, now a question when or if you run out of crickets what fly would you use?
Well when I'm all out of crickets, I use either a small foam spider with rubber legs that floats on the surface , in white color, " also great for smallmouths" or a Bream Killer that sinks below the surface, that I guess would look like a cricket to a bluegill, in black. These two would be the first thing I would reach for but I also have a good selection of flys that look like all kinds of nasty looking bugs and worms that I have collected from all over, some of these would work on trout .Presentation is important, you have got to make that fish think that your bug has just fallen off that tree limb and he has got to get a free meal before his buddy sees it and eat it.
I posted a reply to this but can't find it.

When I was 16, I was given money for christmas to buiy a fly rod. I knew nothing...just got a Master fly rod and had 7wt level floating line. Some guy at kmart told me "this is what you need".

Christmas day I was in mississippi and used it for first time. On first cast,,which only went 10 feet, a bass jumped on the black popper that I had bought.

It wasn't until I got bac to new orleans and went to the golf course ponds that I realized I was really going to need practice with bringing the fish in once hooked.

Honest...I am still struggling with that..my right hand has been operatedon a bunch of times and it is hard to use.

But that first day in Mississippi...after that, I was hooked on fly fishing. I can cast pretty good.

Looking forward to that new rod...
Golf course ponds can be a lot of fun, as long as you can duck the balls. Something about water is like a magnet at a golf course. Distance of a cast is not always the important part of fly fishing it is putting the fly where the fish is!!!!!
Oh yeah those golf courses are also private property and I got caught one time and a free ride home in police car..bike in trunk. Ha..those were the days
UH, OH!!!! Now thats funny, don't care who you are thats FUNNY!!!!!
Great and now we know, your inspiration to the popper was your Dad!!!!!! Now you are the POPPER KING, and make the best poppers money can buy!!!!!!
Nice setup Steve. I'd love to catch pounders on a 1 wt. My first use of the fly rod was catching speckled trout under birds in Louisiana.
I started with a fly rod in a pond close to the house in preparation for trout fishing in Montana. First fly rod teacher was readers digest do it yourself encyclopedia. I thought all flies floated on top the water. Got to a pond with no trees around just trying to learn to cast it. 10 to 20 feet was as far as I could get it. Since there wern't any trout here didn't figure I would catch any thing. After about 20 min. a pound and a half bass hit my fly I had fly line hung up in the grass around my feet and in the water. For the next 3 hours I caught bass and green sunfish almost every cast. I have been hooked on the fly rod ever since!!!!! Now I fish with the fly rod exclusively, even if the fish aren't biting I am working on my cast!!!!!!!

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