On the Fly: Best laid plans | AspenTimes.com

On the Fly: Best laid plans

A Bahamas bonefish

For many anglers, preparing for a trip across the globe or the next state over is almost as fun as the trip itself. Fly-fishers are (for the most part) detail-oriented people, so nothing gets the juices flowing like looking over maps, tying the recommended flies, researching guides and going over equipment.

We all want to control as much as we can, especially if the trip is far and the main objective is checking off another bucket list of fish. We can prepare until the cows come home, but oftentimes we must be ready to let go and see where the experience takes us versus sticking to some predetermined script we’ve made up for ourselves.

I see this unfold here at the fly shop all the time. A guy just traveled a long way to fish one spot on a certain river during a specific hatch, and the kicker is that the hatch is late, the river is blown out, or the spot has been taken over by a gang of other anglers.

Convincing that person that all is not lost can be a daunting proposition. Nine times out of 10, if they heed some well-meant advice, they end up finding a new river and hatch that was even better than they planned for. Consider the angler here to fish the Fryingpan BWO hatch in late June and finding out the twilight green-drake hatch on the Roaring Fork River is the stuff of dreams.

This happens on saltwater trips, too. The saying “no sun, no fun” is pretty much true, and when visibility is challenging on a flat or estuary, you’ve got to figure it out. You may have tied 50 crab flies for bonefish but end up only using the two blue-water flies for tuna you brought during the whole trip. Hell, you may not even get to cast, even once, on a cloudy day on a saltwater flat. Many a gray day has been passed exploring local villages, snorkeling or just relaxing in a hammock under a palm tree. Make a plan and be prepared to think outside the box, and remember, you’re not at work — it can’t be that bad!

This column is provided by Taylor Creek Fly Shops in Aspen and Basalt. Taylor Creek can be reached at 970-927-4374.

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