Fly Fishing with Lee Powers in Delaware
So Fly: Fooling fish with feather and fur
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To describe Powers as a zealot would be an understatement. Although 30-odd years my junior, this husband and father of an infant son probably logs more time on the water each year than I have in my entire life. What’s more, he devotes several hours each week to tying his own flies (I have never tied a fly in my life). He has fishing licenses in seven states, and one of his favorite fishing days is Super Bowl Sunday, because he’s sure no one will be on the stream. (As for the cold February weather, he says, “There’s no bad weather; only bad clothing.”)
And, of course, he is strictly a catch-and-release angler; he hasn’t kept a trout since he was a teenager. Last fall he spent half an hour trying to revive an exhausted brown he had caught. Moving to “a more oxygenated side stream,” he says he held the fish upstream so water could flow through its gills. There is genuine disappointment in his voice when he reports, “I’m not sure what happened, but the fish didn’t make it.”
Powers is one of five or six friends who gather most Fridays after work for bull sessions at Terry Peach’s shop, A Marblehead Flyfisher, in Centreville. While this group is made up of expert anglers, Peach says he has seen “all skill levels and all demographics” during his eight years as owner of the shop. “Some are addicted to fly fishing and fly tying and they fish or tie at every free moment,” he says. “Others fly fish a handful of times per year.”
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