How to Fly Fishing for Bass like a Professional Even If You Are a Newbie

Fly fishing is something I have always done. However, I have been more and more into the same the past few years. During my vacation, I had the golden opportunity to hone some fly-rod-specific techniques. To be honest, I learnt quite some great lessons when it comes to fishing for these critters almost daily.

Unlike carp, bass are present in all forty-eight contiguous states -- even in Hawaii. Bass consume readily. They can be fished for most months of the year. With the dawn of flies such as ‘Schmidterbait’ and ‘Game Changer’, it has never been easy to target bass fish by using the long rod.


Largemouth and smallmouth bass may be the most popular gamefish in America -- and for good reason. The stocky, hard predators smash flies as well as lures hard. They thrive in both rivers and lakes as well as in an array of different environments. You can get them from environments such as urban rivers to wilderness backcountry and from Maine to California. It does not matter whether you reside in New York City or Sacramento, most probably; there is bass fishing near to home.

​In this piece, I want to share some incredible lessons on how to fly fishing for bass. I have learnt these great lessons during my course of fly fishing for the same. By the end of the post, you’d have learnt valuable lessons on how to fly fishing for bass. Read on.

​Step By Step Guide On How to Fly Fishing for Bass

​Step 1: Leaning the basics of fly fishing for bass

Before setting out on any form of fishing trip, you will need a genuine license issued by the state. Each state’s requirement is unique. Additionally, some wilderness areas attract more tax restrictions or greater prohibitions/restrictions on fishing compared to others. Violating your state laws can land you in trouble. Therefore, it is prudent to comply with all rules and regulations in any area you intend to fish.

​Step 2: Purchase or borrow quality-fishing gear

​When it comes to fly fishing for bass, you will require specialized equipment. You can opt to purchase low-cost equipment or borrow gear if you are on a budget. At this point, here are the basics you’ll need:

Step 3: Choosing effective flies

Different types of flies exist. Each one is designed perfectly to mimic different aquatic invertebrate. The best part about fly fishing is that you can always purchase pre-made flies at various fishing supply stores. Alternatively, you can make your own. The following are some of the aquatic insects/invertebrates:

  • Damselfly/dragonfly
  • Leeches
  • Midges
  • Terrestrial hitches
  • Stonefly hatch
  • Caddisfly hatch
  • Mayfly hatch

Step 4: Learn how to tie your dry fly

Some people prefer to make their own fly. However, be aware, doing so can be time consuming. You need several types of fur, feathers, skilled hands, and good eyesight. Check out this video on how to make your own fly.

Step 5: Learn how to tie your fly knots effectively

Whether you are buying or making your own fly, it is highly important to know how to attach it to your line. This ensures it stays on for long. Avoid tightening any knots until the fly is securely in position. Ensure you know how to firmly secure a fly before casting into a river.

Step 6: Know the right place and time to fish

It is important to understand Bass habits during every season. For instance, during lower temperatures or winter, bass only bite when the lure is directly in their strike zone. They tend to be erratic during fall. However, they feed closer to shore when the temperatures drop. Summer and spring are the ideal fishing conditions because the fish will feed closer to the shore during early morning hours. Later in the day, they move out to open waters around creek structures and channels.

​Step 7: Casting and Reeling in bass

If you have got room (clear bank without any low-hanging trees), always use a two-stroke. Two-stroke is the basic casting method but it needs some clearance behind and above you. Ensure you have ample room prior to attempting the cast … low tree branches may easily snag your line thus costing you your fly.

Check out these techniques to help you catch your bass like a pro.

Step 8: Hook a fish

After getting a bite, you will definitely need to hook a fish. Failure to do so mean the fish can easily escape your line. Ensure the tip of the rod is low in water. The line should be as taut as possible. Additionally, securely set the hook inside the mouth of the fish.

Avoid yanking the top tip towards the upwards direction. Ensure the rod tip is close to water especially if your new catch tries to bolt upstream. Keep on stripping away the line until that time the fish will tire itself out. If you are pulling in a large fish, palm the reel. It simply means you apply pressure using your palm on the reel in order to prevent spool from running out.

Step 9: Net the bass once it is tired and is in shallow water

After hooking your fish, it will start to fight. Furthermore, it might try to swim downstream or upstream or jerk your line around as it tries to get free. The important thing is to allow it to tire itself out. As it does so, make sure you move your rod accordingly and then reel it in.

Step 10: Keep your bass as you wait to enjoy your catch

What more could you want than to look forward to enjoying your catch after netting it…

Helpful tips and tricks

  • Never ignore artificial worms and creature baits
  • Weights and scents might increase your chances of landing a fish
  • It is prudent to solely depend on artificial lures --- for instance, a great crawler might also produce spectacular results
  • Do not get discouraged if you are unsuccessful at catching fish during your first time


There is no doubt that learning how to excellently fly fish for bass is unquestionably an amazing introduction to the fly fishing sport. I personally believe that it is best to begin out just on a pond with panfish or bass rather than on moving water. Smallmouth and largemouth bass fly fishing is an incredible way of spending a quiet afternoon. The good thing is that many people have this kind of fish close home. Therefore, it is a great way to be adventurous and try out newfound skills right away.

Check out this video on how fly fishing for bass to learn more on the same.

How to Fly Fishing for Bass like a Professional Even If You Are a Newbie
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