It's day five of a weeklong Permit fishing adventure in Belize and my crew of 10 fly-fishermen has yet to hook a single fish. As the sun beat on the water and the high winds tangled my line for umpteenth time I began to ponder what draws us to this sport. As my boat bobbed along in the shallows, I set down my rod in exasperation and took out pen and paper to memorialize the important facts that I had learned about saltwater fly-fishing.
13 Fly-fishing Secrets You've Never Heard Before
1. If it doesn't take 12 hours, three modes of transportation and over $1,000 out-of-pocket to get there, the fishing can't be any good.
2. They call it a vacation in the sun, but if you allow yourself to enjoy that fact you will find second-degree burns in places you didn't know the sun could reach.
3. Excuses, excuses. If the light is right, the tide is too low. If the tide is right, the wind is impossible. If the wind is right, you're not saltwater fly-fishing.
4. If your clothes aren't made by Columbia, Orvis or Simms you will likely scare the fish away.
5. Your flies can look exactly like real live bait, but they are not allowed to smell like live bait or you are cheating.
6. To determine wind speed, multiply your rod weight by three.
7. If you jump a tarpon on a fly rod but lose it, you get credit for failing. But if you catch a 100-pound tarpon on a 10-weight spinning rod, you're still a loser.
8. It requires a second mortgage on your home to be properly equipped to achieve a grand slam in fly-fishing.
9. They call it a sport, but you in fact burn more calories taking the dog for a walk than you do saltwater fly-fishing for eight hours.
10. The process of doing the same thing day after day but expecting a different result describes both insanity and fly-fishing.
11. There are more than 5000 species of delicious fish in the sea. Saltwater fly-fishermen seek out only those that are impossible to find and terrible to eat.
12. Know why they're called fly-fishermen? Because women are too sensible to participate in such nonsense.
13. Fly-fishermen are the most optimistic people on earth. They wake up each day believing they will accomplish something no man has ever done before. Imagine what could be achieved if we all lived each day like that.