Register now on PaFlyFish.com! Login
HOME FORUM BLOG PHOTOS LINKS


Blog > PaFlyFish.com > The History of Fly Fishing

The History of Fly Fishing

Published by Dave Kile [davekile] on 04/29/2009 (1199 reads)
Author: Bob Bastian

No one really knows when fly fishing first began. It is believed that it existed long ago in ancient times. One of the earliest written references to fly fishing was made by Claudius Aelianus. In 200 AD he wrote of people that were fishing in a river with a hand made fly. He described how they attached red wool and feathers to a hook. The rods they used and the sting attached were each about six feet long. These people were the ancient Macedonians. Throughout history from Aelianus to the present people have been writing about fly fishing, and many thousands of others have been enjoying the sport.

The Princess of Soapwell, English, was an avid fly fisherman. Her name was Dame Juliana Berners and she was a master at her sport. At the time Columbus was searching for the New World, Dame Juliana was publishing an extensive treatise on the art of fly fishing. In her treatise she described the twelve styles of fly and included extensive instructions on how to tie them. She patterns were put into categories by the month that they were used most often.

She also described the rod that was used for fly fishing during that time. It measured about 18 feet long and was very flexible, The rods were made of several different types of wood which added to their flexibility. Their lines were short, by today's standards, and were made of hand braided horse hair. The general rule of the time was that the line should not be longer then the fishing rod. The line was tied to the tip of the pole.

Many fly fishermen of today have used her patterns for the fly. They say they are just as effective today as they were more than five hundred years ago. Several of the more popular patterns include the Black Gnat, the Wooly Worm, the Stonefly and the Whirling Dun.

In the mid 1600's Isaak Walton published his book "Compleat Angler." Throughout history from then on, Izaak Walton has been considered the patron saint on angling, and of fly fishing in particular. In truth, it was actually his friend, Charles Cotton, that had contributed the portion of the book that pertained to fly fishing. The flies and rods described in this book were very similar to those described by Dame Juliana. However, the lines described were slightly different. They were still made of horsehair but were about six feet longer then those of the 1400's. The main difference was that some of the lines were tapered. It is believed that this was the first time tapered lines were described in writing.

In the early 1800's, fishing line makers began mixing silk in with the horsehair. By the time of the Civil War the first all silk lines were made. They were coated with an oily coating which made them water resistant. Horsehair lines were almost never used after that. Occasionally they were found in England up to World War II.

The first nylon line was made in 1948 and from that point forward synthetic materials have been used by most people for fly fishing. In 1952, a technology was created that made an automatically tapered line withe extreme precision.

About the Author:

If you're interested in fly fishing, here's a resource you won't want to be without. Learn the art and craft of fly fishing, and catching the big ones that all anglers dream about! Visit this page for more information at http://www.palalu.com/flyfishing/

Article Source: ArticlesBase.com - The History of Fly Fishing

  Send article

Navigate through the items
Previous article PaFlyFish Jamboree May 15-17, 2009 Where should I fish? Next item
The comments are owned by the author. We aren't responsible for their content.
Author Thread
osprey
Published: 2009/4/29 22:05  Updated: 2009/4/29 22:05
Joined: 04/01/2009
From: Johnstown, PA
Comments: 4469
 Re: The History of Fly Fishing
Good writing man just one thing, you forgot about cat gut leaders, which had to be kept moist to avoid being brittle, i still have an old cat gut leader wallet , it was my grandpaps , had a wet side and a dry side , the dry side was for silk line i guess, istill use it for my maxima mastrepeices.



Site Content
Login
Username:

Password:

Remember me



Lost Password?

Register now!
Stay Connected

twitterfeed.com facebook instagram RSS Feed

Sponsors
Polls
Will you be fly fishing this autumn?
Yes 95% (139)
No 0% (0)
Thinking about it 4% (6)
_PL_TOTALVOTES
The poll closed at 2014/10/31 17:56
1 Comment





Copyright 2014 by PaFlyFish.com | Privacy Policy| Provided by Kile Media Group | Design by 7dana.com