Traveling tough terrain can be seen as a metaphor for life. And for fly-fishers it means going places few even think of.
Adventure fishing travel is one of those tough "terrains". Twenty years ago signature destinations like New Zealand, Kamchatka, Belize, Chile, Argentina, and the Seychelles were thought of as "out there" and they were - and still are - "out there". But today, off road means Tierra del Fuego, Georgia's rugged Caucasus Mountains, Turkey's Ihlara Valley (valley of the monks), and the vast glacial terminus of the Greenland coasts. It can also mean a tough, hidden part of your local home creek. I always recall Lee Wulff's poignant quote, "Going all over the world doesn't make you a top fisherman, it makes you a top traveler." Still, few anglers turn down the chance to test unfamiliar waters and today's mantra for the adventure geek is "further".
Today's mantra for the adventure geek is "further".
Species hunting is another off road "terrain", that is to say, chasing fish with the fly that are not on the usual smorgasbord of trout, salmon, bass and the menu of typical salt-water targets. In this realm fish like the Tucanare - the so-called "peacock bass" and the Arctic charr still hold my attention and a place in my future. But, further, off road fish like Inconnu, Aruana, Lenok and Masu salmon weave threads of wonder through my imagination. The mantra for the species hunter is "finer", not necessarily bigger, and aesthetics is still a primary consideration.
Well beyond adventure and species hunting I would encourage the new world fly-fishing guru to explore the ecology of your destination and the taxonomy of your target fish. As much as the two prior "terrains", this exploration may be the toughest because it will reveal to you the impacts man has made there.
And it may not be pretty.
The day of the vacationing fly-fishing tourist is over. The day of the knowledgeable fly-fishing advocate is just beginning. - WES:::