The fly fishing at our Colorado guest ranch is catch and release, so we’re not fishing for food. Why, then, do we fish? Why do people come to our Guest Ranch in Colorado with dreams fly rods in their heads? Why indeed.

Fly fishing is an art.

The first mention of fly fishing in recorded history is said to be by the Roman Claudius Aelianus, in the second century. He had heard of Macedonians luring fish to the surface with colorful imitation flies attached to a line and rod. They apparently took the idea from watching fish surface to consume strange flies that hovered over the water. Undoubtedly they did so for food, as people have been doing for thousands of years.

In the Treatyse on Fysshynge with an Angle, written at the end of the 15th century, the author firmly states the fishing with an angle is the best form of sport – the least uncomfortable and the most pleasurable (when compared with hunting, hawking and trapping). The author goes on to discuss crafting the ideal rods, hooks, floats and lines for various waters and fish.

Fly fishing may not be too taxing, but it certainly requires skill and knowledge, from creating the proper equipment to understanding the fish and fishing conditions in each location. This, perhaps, is why it appeals to so many. Each minute spent on the water with rod in hand is a chance to better oneself. Each cast is a new start.

The guides at our guest ranch, lead by Andy Lee, know the waters and the fish that dwell in them well. They are expert teachers, adept in the art of bringing forth the angler in every man and woman. That said, fly fishing is ultimately a private sport. Only you can catch the fish.

We think that’s why people come here to fish. They want to stand in a gloriously beautiful setting and rise to the challenge of each minute. They feel that somehow, no matter the outcome, just being here and trying their best makes them a little bit better.