Rhody Fly Rodders


Peter Nilsen

Leading the Way in the Saltwater Fly-Fishing Revolution

  • 95 pages
  • Softbound 9 x 7
  • All color

This charming little book celebrates a half-century of the Rhody Fly Rodders, America’s oldest saltwater fly-fishing club, started in 1963 in Rhode Island, whose influence in developing and spreading the gospel of tidewater fly casting extends far beyond the crashing waves of the Ocean State.



Fifty prominent members and their original fly patterns are profiled, from founders Harold Gibbs and Al Brewster on. Tack-sharp closeups of the flies for striped bass and bluefish are artistically photographed, and are presented with recipes and notes on tying and fishing.

Author Peter Nilsen grew up in Newport, Rhode Island. He was introduced to the salt by a very caring grandfather, who showed him how to cast a surf rod, bait a hook for tautog, and the fish the rocks off Newport. After fly fishing for wild trout throughout America, he “came home” ultimately to fly fishing for stripers. Peter enjoyed a 40-year career as an award-winning art and creative director in the advertising business. He is a talented illustrator whose exquisite line drawings add to the visual narrative of this fine book.

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“50 years of history—congratulations from all saltwater fly rodders. Much of all saltwater entrenched in ‘The Rhodys.’ When the new sport needed guidance to survive, they were there. Now, 50 years later, they are still guiding the sport’s evolution while never forgetting its traditions. They stayed vigilant throughout the years to ensure saltwater fly fishing’s success, with camaraderie, exchanging ideas, and counsel to the industry. For that I say a heartfelt THANK YOU!”


“Anyone interested in writing the history of saltwater fly fishing in the Northeast should contact the Rhody Fly Rodders. My earliest experience fly fishing the surf was with the two founding members, Al Brewster and Harold Gibbs. This club did much to pioneer our sport. Congratulations Rhody Fly Rodders on your 50th anniversary.”




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