The fine art of fly fishing alive and well in Walton County

February 28, 2011

Jason Stacy ties a shrimp fly. Lori Ceier/Walton Outdoors

Old Florida Outfitters fishing guide a true master of tying flies

In our fast paced world, it is reassuring to know that a few great sports stand the test of time. One popular ancient sport, fly fishing, dates as far back as the 2nd century.

The fine art of fly fishing is thriving in the Walton County area thanks to Freeport resident Jason Stacy. Working at Old Florida Outfitters in Santa Rosa Beach, Stacy is the shop’s in-house expert on the sport. Not only does he instruct a fly fishing school, he also offers a guide service and is the fly tying expert at the outfitter.

Old Florida Outfitters offers the right fly to catch a fish. Lori Ceier/Walton Outdoors

Fly tying is the process of producing an artificial fly used by anglers to catch fish in shallow water. Fly-tying is a process of binding various materials to a hook using thread such as chenille, rubber, feathers and foam. The design replicates various insects, reptiles or crustaceans that fish feed on.

Fly fishing since he was 12-years old and now in his 30s, Stacy has become a master of his craft. Growing up in northeast Alabama, Stacy started tying his own flies out of necessity. With no outdoor outfitters for miles, he started tying his own warm water popper flies to catch bass and bream. Reading books and watching videos, Stacy honed his skill over the years.

There are several types of water environments in Northwest Florida; warm, salt and brackish, making it a challenging decision to find the best fly needed to lure a fish in its native habitat. Stacy knows which ones work and the Old Florida offers a large variety to choose from.

“I see what the fish are biting and come back and tie,” Stacy said when explaining that different seasons of an insect’s development are a key factor in deciding what fly to use.

If you are interested in learning more about fly fishing, contact Jason Stacy at (850) 534-4343, or visit Old Florida Outfitters at 6 WaterColor Blvd., Suite 101, Santa Rosa Beach.

Old Florida Outfitters is an Orvis certified outfitter and offers a large selection of fly fishing tackle along with a wide variety of outdoor gear and apparel.


For more information on Old Florida Outfitters, go to:
For more information on Shallow Water Expeditions, go to: