Fly-fishing enthusiasts fit to be tied
FLY fishing is in Graham Blight’s blood.
For more than 50 years, he has been testing his skill against trout in Tasmania’s lakes and streams.
And he says few things in angling compare with the feeling when he lands a fish on one of his own flies.
“The biggest thrill a fly fisherman can have is to catch a fish on a fly they’ve tied themselves,” he said.
Mr Blight, and others like him, are looking to share their passion.
After a break of about 13 years, the Great Lake Tie-In is back, with organisers hopeful of a strong turnout for Saturday’s event.
Mr Blight said the tie-in was a chance for fly tyers to catch up with each other and share the art of fly tying with the general public.
Tasmania will host the 2019 World Fly Fishing Championships and Mr Blight said excitement was building in the angling community.
“Tasmania was the first place that trout were introduced to, so we’ve got a history of over 150 years now of trout fishing in Tasmania,” Mr Blight said.
“It was the old English gentlemen that introduced it to Tasmania.”
Mr Blight said the sport had evolved over the years, with the introduction of synthetic materials to make flies, new fly patterns and fishers catching different species using flies.
“These days, it’s not just trout that people can catch on a fly ... there’s a lot of saltwater fishing that goes on,” he said. “Everything that’s out there can be caught on a fly rod. The ultimate challenge is to catch a saltwater fish on a fly.”
But Mr Blight said flies were “predominantly the same” as they had always been, and feathers and fur continued to be used.
More than 20 fly tyers from Tasmania and Victoria will be demonstrating their skills on Saturday.
The event will be held at the Miena Community Centre at Great Lake from 10am to 4pm. Entry is by gold coin donation and the day will also include a junior tying bench, cane rod building with Bill Lark, and art, photography and trade displays.