3 reasons why fly-fishing is tops for big, early-season pike



Honestly, fly casting will never be more efficient at covering water than spinning or baitcasting. But it’s certainly just as efficient, provided you fish smart and you’re moderately skilled. If you can throw a fly 30 to 40 feet with a single false cast, you’re ready to rumble.


Spin anglers have to retrieve a lure all the way back before they can cast it again. But once a fly is out of the strike zone, you can lift it up and recast into the next spot, even if most of your line is still on the water. Floating lines are the default choice, but I always carry some sinking leaders or a spare outfit with an intermediate-sinking line. Either option lets you precisely suspend a fly two to four feet deep, an incredibly effective tactic a bit later in the season when the fish are just outside the shallows.

Once you cast into the sweet spot, the fly advantage continues. Since flies are retrieved by hand, the angler has tremendous control over the action. You can try a variety of fast, slow or darting retrieves, all with the same fly. And once the fish hits, you’ve got the line right there in your hand, so you can pull back hard to strip-set the hook.