Electronic Fly Fishing-Too Synthetic?


Posted on June 03, 1999 at 22:26:18:

Electronic Fly Fishing-Too Synthetic?

by Gary D. Scavette


A couple of weeks ago I met an old timer who informed me that he would of probably never owned a telephone if it wasn't for his daughter now living away who insisted on staying in touch with him. "When I want to talk to someone I walk over and knock on the door" he enlightened me. It made me stop and think. Certainly the telephone has changed the world. Few of us today are without one. Did it make things better or worse? How will other technologies today affect our lives or our hobbies?

Imagine pushing a button and finding out complete up to the minute information about a river, what's hatching, what patterns are most effective, presentation techniques, where to fish, and how to get there from Bangor. Or imagine opening the mailbox to find five or six pieces of mail that describe where to find stripers along our coastline as well as the techniques to catch them. What if you were considering the purchase of a new piece of equipment and asked a question regarding its dependability only to find that you had twenty responses to your question the next day from individuals that already own the equipment?

By now most of you realize that I am referring to the information superhighway or internet. Good or bad it appears that the internet is here to stay. Much like the telephone. Millions of anglers worldwide turn to it to receive fishing information daily. You do not have to be a computer guru to effectively navigate the world wide web and experience its usefulness. Here are a few useful internet resources for the fly angler.

Bulletin Boards

Designed for you to post questions or subjects for discussion. Each main topic or question can be followed up by numerous replys. Bulletin boards are a great way to get your questions answered. Your posting may be read by thousands of other anglers each day. Some bulletin boards even allow you to post a picture of your catch! Here's a popular Maine fly fishing bulletin board to check out:

http://www.tnt-web.com/maine_ff/wwwboard/reports.html



Chat Rooms

This resource provides a great way to have discussions with one or more other anglers simultaneously from anywhere in the world. You simply type and see it on your screen as do the other participants in the chat room. This is a good way to have an ongoing discussion of a particular topic. There are many fly fishing chat rooms on the internet. An example would be:

http://www.flyshop.com/Chat/



Mailing lists

This is a general interest group that may focus on a specific aspect of fly fishing such as streamer fishing , striper fishing , atlantic salmon fishing………etc. Once you join a mailing list by submitting your e mail address you have the ability to send and receive messages to all members of the group. The beauty of mailing lists is that they focus on a specific group of people that all have a common interest. It is more personalized than a bulletin board. If there are 25 members in your group they are the only 25 who get your message not the entire world! Most mailing lists allow you to remove yourself from membership at any time. This is a Maine mailing list for striper enthusiasts:

http://www.maineweb.com/northeastanglers/mesn.htm



There are other avenues that anglers use for electronic communication but I only mentioned a few of the more popular ones to get you started if you choose to go online. In addition there are many thousands of websites both commercial and non commercial that focus on the topic of fly fishing.

The Big Picture

As a physics teacher by trade I have always marveled in technology and supported its advancement.. On the other hand the memories that I hold closest are of the simple things. The hard work needed to find that trout hole is what made the first trout such a rewarding experience. The great people that led me into fly fishing by the hand as a youngster influence my every stroke of the fly rod today. These authentic experiences could never be matched by anything on a computer screen. What would happen if I saw the GPS coordinates of my sacred trout hole plastered on some world wide bulletin board? I don't want to think about it. Sure the internet is a great tool but don't let its usefulness take away the important things.


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