In perhaps the best fly fishing story of 2021, that garnered the least attention, was the discovery that “advanced fly fishing” was being practiced on the River Jordan 13,000 years ago, predating existing historical evidence by thousands of years.
Researchers discovered bone hooks, with barbs, some appearing down to a size 10, carved sinkers and weights for fish traps or nets for larger species. And trout were also a target. Researchers found evidence that the Natufian people were fishing with nets 20,000 years ago. Around 15,000 years ago they started using fish hooks and two thousand years later had discovered fish would hit a lure fashioned on a hook.
You can read the full scientific paper on the discoveries here