fly-fishing, the worst excuse to hear for losing a fish
is "My knot broke". I remember a story of what
happened to a fisherman, quite
a few years back while fishing for Atlantic Salmon on
the Miramichi River in New Brunswick, Canada.
It was late one evening after a long day of fishing.
He and his group were back at camp tying flies and
preparing for the next day. One of his fishing buddies
was changing lines and asked if he wanted a new line
on his reel for the next morning. he said, "sure",
and here is what happened. While on the river the next
morning, he decided to fish down below the cabins
away from the rest of the group.
He was told that if he hooked a fish just to call up
and help would be on its way. While swinging a Coburn
fly through the pool, he hooked into a salmon that
went absolutely nuts. Jumping and flipping, the Atlantic
decided to shoot straight downstream almost spooling
While fighting this fish downstream further and further,
a local farmer doing work on his property, heard his
faint "help, help" calls, and went upstream to the rest of
the group and told Vince that he thought he heard a
faint help cry coming from someone in their group. Vince
got in a car a drove down to where the fish had now
taken him. Just as he was getting the first section
of fly line back, he heard tink, tink, tink as the line/leader
knot passed through the guides. All of a sudden, the
knot that his buddy tied the night before gave way,
and he watched the line race out of his rod. Placing
the rod to the side, he jumped in the water and grabbed
his line, hand lining the fish back in. (by this time
the fish was played out). Vince got down and netted
the fish just as the knot broke at the fly. A 15 lb.
Atlantic Salmon, a wet fisherman, and two broken knots.
If he didn't land that fish, we would still be hearing
it today. One of those "fish that got away" stories.
A few key knots are all the average fly fisherman really
needs to know. As different species are fished for,
more and more knots become handy. Learn these knots
well and practice them. The weakest part of the fly
fisherman's equipment is his knots.