It begins in the shop of the rod maker. The time spent designing. The ideas thrown around about materials and components. They are all personal choices to both the rod maker and the customer for whom this 9’ 5wt magic wand is for. Blood, sweat, tears, and anguish over the smallest details goes into the build, an expression of the artist and an extension of the angler. The rod maker is an artist, and art is self-expression. It is their way of giving to those around them, of making their peers hopefully feel a little of what the artist feels.
It continues on the first time the owner first sets eyes on his or her new fly rod. They pour over the details, taking in all the hard work, the perfection of the wraps, the gloss of the finish. The feel of smooth cork in their hand.
But it is most likely found in no greater amounts than on the water, in the hands of the angler. The angler stands knee deep in a slow current which calms the soul and ignites the imagination both at once. The rod is held at his side, as if he were standing there taking in the view with an old friend. He strips line, estimating what he believes to be enough to reach his desired distance, where the fish of his dreams lays in wait. Even the fly tied to his tippet. The fly he agonized over the night before, selecting the perfect hackle, the correct size and color. Even the tiny fly is part of it.
The cast is quite possibly the part of it that everyone feels, even the non-fishermen. The grace in the movements. The sway and the arch of the rod as it is loaded by the line on the back cast. The loop. The flow of the line as it unrolls elegantly before the angler and is rocketed forward racing through the guides before its energy is finally spent, the fly falling quietly to the water’s surface.
As the fish rises and sips in the delicate dry fly and turns for the bottom, the rod is lifted and dances in the angler’s hand. It dances because it is happy. Fly Fishing, is emotion.