The Advantages of Fly Fishing Compared to Lure Fishing

Fly fishing is a great method of fishing that is enjoyed by thousands of people worldwide. There is something about wading through shallow streams and rivers out in the wilderness looking for fish and then casting a fly on top of them in an attempt to make them feed.

Fly fishing is a solitary pursuit with the angler attempting to outwit the fish and make the fish think the artificial fly is a mosquito or insect that is safe to devour. It is a method of fishing that involves a lot of skills that can take many years to build up and develop.

The challenge in fishing is catching fish on the lightest tackle possible so you can do battle with the fish and have some fun. When using heavy lines fish can simply be dragged to the bank, which is not fun, but since fly fishing often uses very light tackle the angler usually experiences a lot of feeling when playing fish caught on a fly. Whilst you can fish light with a lure fighting a fish on the lure is simply not the same as fighting one on a fly.

Fly fishing is more of an art form, and as such it is very rewarding catching a fish on the fly, especially when it is a homemade one. Lure fishing does not have the same aura about it and it is a much more mechanical method of fishing.

Fly fishing is a visual method. The angler casts the fly and then watches it, waiting for the fish to rise and take the fly. This waiting process can get very tense, especially when fish rise to the fly only to ignore it and decide not to take it once it gets to. Because of this fly fishing can be very tense and is an exciting method of fishing. When lure fishing the angler seldom gets to see the lure, therefore there is no anticipation or the “will it or won’t it?” factor, and the excitement only really begins when the fish is hooked and the fight begins.

A fly can be used in extremely shallow rivers. Some rivers are exceptionally shallow, almost to the point where it seems impossible that a fish could live, let alone swim around freely in, yet despite this, there is fish present. In these types of water lure fishing would be impossible as the lure would sink to the bottom and be dragged back to the angler on the retrieval which is likely to scare the fish rather than entice them to attack the lure.

Because a fly is fished on the surface of the water or just below the surface it is an ideal method for waters that contain lots of rocks, such as fast-flowing rivers and streams. Rocks divert the flow of water and create natural eddies and pools which often attract much fish. A fly would simply float on the surface of the water and would never get caught up in the rocks. Lure fishing in these conditions would be difficult and probably not possible since a lure would snag up and possibly result in a line break, rather than catch a fish.

Fly fishing is a more traditional way of fishing and it is more nostalgic than lure fishing and it is this that attracts many anglers. Whilst the fish caught on a fly may not be as big as fish caught with a lure the fight is more fun as they tackle is generally that much lighter, but then again it’s not the size of the fish in the fight but the size of the fight in the fish, therefore fly fishing is a very rewarding form of fishing.

Andrew Lang

I inherited my passion for fishing from my late father. I often write about my experiences with trout fishing, inshore fishing and deep sea fishing.