Standing in a pristine stream casting for trout is like living a post card. Fly-fishing is an enjoyable sport that allows for a connection with the river like no other. However, many people are put off by fly-fishing as the equipment, flies, technique and especially knots may seem intimidating. With some insight and practice, most people can master the basic knots of fly-fishing and take a giant step toward casting for trout.
Fly Line Backing to Main Line
The first knot you will need to learn is the Albright. This knot connects the heavier fly line to the backing. The backing spools onto the reel to provide extra line for fighting a fish as well as a cushion for the fly line. Begin the knot by forming a loop with 2 to 3 inches of the fly line. Feed the end, or tag, of the backing line through the loop. Make 10 to 12 concentric turns around the double main line as well as the backing line. Pass the end of the backing line back through the loop so it follows the same way it entered. Moisten the knot with water and slowly pull tight. Trim excess line with snips.
Main Line to Leader
Use a surgeon's knot to attach a leader to the main line. Begin by overlapping the ends of the main line and leader for about 6 to 7 inches. Form a loop with both lines. Pass the leader and end of the main line through the loop for two to three turns. Moisten the knot slightly and pull tight making sure to hold onto the short ends of both lines. The surgeon's know also can join the leader and tippet lines.
Tippet to Fly
Your line is set up, you've selected the fly and the only thing left is to tie the fly to the tippet. Pass the end of the tippet line through the eye of the fly. Three to 4 inches of tippet line should extend through the eye of the fly. Wrap the end of the tippet around the main line for 6 or 7 turns. Feed the end back down and through the small loop formed just above the eye of the fly. The last step is to feed the end of the line through the larger loop formed by bringing the line down to the small loop above the eye. Moisten the entire knot and pull snug. Trim excess line with snips.
Article Written By Keith Dooley
Keith Dooley has a degree in outdoor education and sports management. He has worked as an assistant athletic director, head coach and assistant coach in various sports including football, softball and golf. Dooley has worked for various websites in the past, contributing instructional articles on a wide variety of topics.