Fly talk confuses and intimidates most rookies (and a lot of
non-rookies too). To remove some of the mystery and provide some
translation, we've created an angler's glossary. At the very least,
it can help you avoid feeling like an ass at your local fly shop.
Adult: The period in an aquatic bug's life when it has wings.
Back cast: Just as you'd think
when the fly cast extends behind
Backing: Used to take up space on the spool before the fly line is attached
(usually braided Dacron). It really becomes important in fighting larger fish
(when a hog rips off line, you'll want to make sure you have plenty of backing).
Baetis: Common type of mayfly. It's small (size 16-2). It's delicious.
It's like Hershey's kiss to a trout.
Bamboo: The classical fly rod material. Yeah, it's still in use, but
wouldn't you rather fish with the stuff they build airplanes with?
Barb: The part of the hook that enables it to not slip out of the fish's
mouth. Many times it is law to crimp these in certain waters (see crimping.)
Barrel Knot: Same as blood knot (see blood
Bass Bug: Term used to identify a group of surface bass flies usually
tied with buoyant materials. If you've not taken a hog on a bass bug, do it.
It's cardiovascularly challenging.
Bass Bug Taper: A weight forward floating
fly line with a short front taper. It allows wind-resistant bass bugs to be
tossed more easily.
Blood Knot: Commonly used knot for tying two
pieces of monofilament together; the best knot for construction of a knotted
tapered leader; also called the barrel knot.
Breaking Strength: Force required to
break a single strand of unknotted monofilament, usually stated in pounds (example:
6 lb. test).
Caddis: One of the most important aquatic insects imitated by fly fishermen;
found world wide in all freshwater habitats. Also the most important aquatic
state of the caddis is the pupa, which is its emerging stage. Caddis flies are
also the most common fly that many fly fishing companies use in their logo.
Not Reel Pure however. We've broken the caddis mold!
Callibaetis: Very common form of mayfly that is found in lakes - often
called the "Speckled Wing Dun." Callibaetis are usually found in sizes
16 & 18. Get yourself involved in one of these hatches. It's like watching
Casting Arc: The path that the fly rod follows during a complete cast.
Pay attention and get this right. It makes all the difference in a good cast,
and an ear piercer.
Clinch Knot: Common knot for attaching a hook, lure, swivel, or fly
to the leader or line. Remember
the lighter the line, the more twists are
required to have a strong clinch knot.
CDC: Known as "Cul de Canard" which translates to "butt
of the duck." Anything but mere butt feathers, these feathers are very
wispy and contain oils that make them waterproof. Excellent material for tying!
Co-Polymers: Mixtures of various nylons and plastics have an above normal
breaking strength. It's tough. It's durable. Important for a long day of flogging
Crimping: Method used to pinch the barb down on the hook. Allows for
a less damaging experience for the fish, and is law on catch and release quality
Cruising Fish: Fish on the move in search of food. If you sight them,
get your game face on and place your cast in front of them. If done correctly,
get ready and don't get too wacky and pull the fly away before they completely