I like fly fishing. And fly tying. I might even like the tying part more than the fishing... especially in February.
I'm pretty new at this so there's no expert advice here. Instead, I'll share some images of the flies that others and I have tied, some descriptions of the gear I like, and some pointers to online resources for fly fishing and tying.
Fly fishing is, for me, a great way to get out and be in the natural world. I love casting to a rise, the sight of water droplets on an old bamboo rod, the feel of the sun on my back as the mist rises from the water, the sounds of the stream, the conversations about wooly buggers and tippets and spawning browns. I mostly practice catch & release but once in a while I'll practice a bit of catch & cook. Trout caught on a paddling trip are definitely the best trout of all.
My gear is a collection of newbie trials and errors and includes a 5wt Orvis Silver Label full flex rod, a 2 wt TFO rod, some William Joseph and Fishpond paraphernalia, and whatever I could afford on ebay. Most works fine, some doesn't work at all. As I said, I'm pretty new at this.
Fly Tying is addicting. No kidding. And the flies have really cool names... Ratfaced McDougal, Wooly Bugger, Tup's Indispensible, Royal Coachman.... you see? I use a Griffin Montana Mongoose vise clamped to an Oasis bench that I won in the monthly drawing on FAOL. I light it all up with an Ott-Lite so I can see what I'm doing. For me the secret of fly tying has been to have fun and to avoid impossibly high standards. Don't get me wrong, I try my best. But for me my best is good enough. The absolute best way for me to learn has been a combination of getting together with local tyers, following Al Campbell's online tutorial on FAOL, and joining fly swaps. Have a look at some of my flies.
Fly swaps I've hosted:
FAOL Rod Building with Al Campbell
Catskill Flies Stream Conditions (Roscoe, NY)