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Book Review - "Fly Rodding the Coast" by Ed Mitchell

Book reviews 


Fly Rodding the Coast: Ed Mitchell   


When I first started chasing Bass around on the West Sussex coastline the one barrier I had was getting hold of the correct information, after all the sea is a big place and putting a fly in the middle of it seems to be more of a game of chance than certain probability. 


Most of the articles and literature were based around traditional sea fishing, spinning or beach casting for Bass and as a fly fisherman there were only elements of what I read that seemed vaguely relevant. 

By chance I stumbled across the works of Ed Mitchell whilst surfing the internet and over a short space of time we had begun a correspondence which was both interesting and valuable as so much of what Ed Mitchell writes about could so easily be based in West Sussex. 


The book, “Fly Rodding the Coast” is one of the most comprehensive books on the subject of Striped Bass fishing I have read. As a saltwater guide I found his observations invaluable and having travelled to Massachusetts and Connecticut and fished with Ed it became obvious that the synergies between our two foreshores and the style of fly fishing whether it be for Atlantic Bass or Striped Bass were unbelievably similar. 


I have always been guilty of using books as reference libraries and not as a means of relaxation – I have probably read less that a dozen fictional novels in my life, maybe I am a realist and escapism seems to be a betrayal of time and yet Ed Mitchell seems to be able to paint not only an interesting story of the beach which can be used as reference to our own foreshore but also his words eloquently portray a pure passion for the sport which has moulded his whole life. 

The information has been garnered over decades and is still being pieced together. The sea is an evolving landscape and in the words of Mitchell: 


“Coastal fly fishing is a game of complexities acted out across that vast stage where land and sea meet, where fresh and salt water mingle. It’s the seasons. It’s the tides. It’s the sun, moon, wind and waves woven into a rich and shimmering fabric of interconnections”  


Fly Rodding the Coast by Ed Mitchell is published by Stackpole Books is not only one of the most valuable reference books you will need when approaching your foreshore but it breaks down that daunting open void of chance into a calculating game of self reliance where the fly fisherman meets Bass and more importantly why.



Available from the Publishers Stackpole Books or for more information email