Posts Tagged ‘casting.

21
Nov
11

Fly Fishing: The Agitated Angler Is Conflicted

The Agitated Angler recently wrote about his friend seeking ‘how to’ advice upon how to fly fish. Read his sincere remarks on the awesome responsibilities in disrupting/improving another’s life. Also, note that often passed on defective casting gene…I know I have done my fair share with three sons.

 

01
Oct
11

Fly Fishing the Philippines: Serenity at Sunset

Chest Deep and Nice Casting at Sunset in the Philippines  

Fly Fishing in the Philippines: I couldn’t find an explanation re what the fly fisher was angling for…but the sunset and lapping waves looked pleasant enough. His casting stroke is nice and he is shuffling his feet as the surfaces shifts. I have a friend, who just returned from the Islands. He says there is some excellent fly fishing to be had in the Philippines. Of course, he didn’t elaborate.

Well, in light of the typhoons that just caused death and destruction in the islands, this prior post may seem in poor taste. I wasn’t aware of the storms. However, I will leave the post for a more serene time.

23
Jul
11

Beginning Fly Casting: Take a Lesson

Casting with Cushion Under Arm

“Some teach no movement in the wrist, or no movement in the elbow or no movement in the shoulder. Some teach the old method of holding a book pinned between the elbow and the body so as not to drop the book. Some use an analogy of pulling a light chain down to turn on a light. There are all types of devises and theories that were created in the past in an attempt to restrict the movement of those three joints in one way or another.

In establishing the certification program the Federation of Fly Fishers is attempting to standardize and improve casting instruction across the country. During this process a study in fly casting is emerging that is gradually clarifying the most important basics and how they can best be taught. This process is ongoing.

One fact that is becoming increasing clear is that each of us have unique body mechanics which must be taken into account.”  Floyd Dean…FFF Master Fly Casting

Fly Fish Louisiana

For the better part of my fly fishing life, I taught myself. No, that isn’t really true. I didn’t really teach myself. I adjusted. I tried to present a fly to a target and attempted to adjust the stroke to get it, the fly, there. I had no idea how my casting stroke looked. I tried to make sure I didn’t catch grass or trees behind me and out front, I wanted to land the fly ahead of the fish and entice a take. That was it.

Years later, at a shop, I stood looking at a rod in the shop. I did the usual tip shake. I looked at the handle and judged how it felt in my hand. I looked at the color…nice. All you really need to fork out a tidy sum? Not really. The shop owner said let’s string it up and have you cast it out in the parking lot. Well, I resisted as it was akin to taking a car for a test drive. Pressure to buy…just looking…thank you.

Well, there I stood in the parking lot with rod in hand and I proceeded to cast. My the rod loaded so sweet and I snapped that piece of yarn out there easily. Then it started…the casting critique. Hmmm? I was defensive at first. I didn’t need any stinking critique, thank you.

Fly Fish Louisiana

But, the shop owner, an accomplished guide, could immediately see my faults (tailing loop) and started the process of teaching me drift and a softer forward stroke…. It was my first impromptu lesson. Since then, I have had others, especially with a two hander. I don’t mind now. But, my bad habits are pretty well established. I study more on line now. But, wouldn’t it have been nice, way back, to have had lessons?

So, I advise you to take classes. Several. Be patient as each instructor pushes you, and your stroke, this way and that and learn the basics, the basics that always apply regardless of your (or the instructor’s) personal quirks. Take a lesson..take more than one.

Also, when you take on the effort to teach others, make sure you know what you are teaching. Your prior lesson(s) will help you impart the correct advice. Encourage the newbie to attend fly casting instruction events (FFF sponsored usually) and/or visit their local shop.

13
Jun
11

Fly Fishing How To’s: Just get it there…….

I often refer to my fly tying creations as ‘impressionistic’ creations. This is an admitted copout for my less than tidy tying style, BUT my creations do catch fish….historically, quite a few. 

So it is with much of fly fishing. You can throw the perfect cast and know all the bug’s entomological names, but in the end you must make that fly (impressionistic or perfection) present in the most natural way possible given the stream or lake’s configurations.

I am a self taught fly caster. Any shop owner that stands beside me as I test a rod would tell you my casting faults: tailing loops, over powered forward cast, etc etc etc. Coupled with a fully fused right wrist, I am not a great caster. So, my efforts have always been how to present the fly to look real and equal to others drifting by or rising through the water column.

By all means have casting lessons, study videos, read articles and books about this cast and that, but in the end presentation is critical to it all. Mending, reach casts, curl casts, your position in relation to the fish or likely holding water are more important than your throwing 70″+ of line or looking like a piano metronome.

04
Jun
11

Fly Fishing: Tandem of Yellow Sally Nymph & Green Rockworm?

I recall last Summer having good success along the riffles of the McKenzie River while fishing separately a nymph (Large Hare’s Ear, size 8-10) and also a Green Rockworm Larva pattern. I am going to experiment in the months ahead with dredging a shorter line, while offering two flies at once through the riffles. I will probably stay with a larger, weighted, Gold Bead Head, Gold Ribbed, Hare’s Ear for the Yellow Sally Nymph (Family Perlodidae/Genus Isoperla) and a version of the Green Rockworm larva (Caddis, Genus Rhyacophila). The Jersey Angler provides a worthy pattern for the Green Rockworm and some good pictures of the larva and his pattern The Cooper Bug.

Employ the standard nymphing rig, cast/lob/sling with a more open loop to avoid tangles of two flies, strike indicator if you use one and split shot (that would be a mess wouldn’t it?). Certain Czech Nymphs would also provide excellent pattern options for the Green Rockworm Larva.

I suggest the two patterns in one offering because they inhabit the same waters and are equally vulnerable to drift and are active during the same span of Summer. If the two fly rig is two cumbersome then keep both insects in mind for subsurface presentations, and of course, watch for the activity on the surface as Caddis come off or the Yellow Sally comes off (if you research the literature re Yellow Sally’s ’emerging’ it is often said then crawl toward shore or up onto rocks to hatch as most Stoneflies do…. however, there are some members of the Yellow Sally that emerge out of the water like a Mayfly on the run…I witnessed this last year on the McKenzie River and commented re that back then). Regardless, have your Elk Hair Caddis and larger, cream colored wet fly or Stimulator like patterns available for surface activity too.

02
Feb
11

Mike Kinney (Word Pictures for the Drift)

I have to recommend, again, Mike Kinney on FB. His ability to provide small snippets of imagery via his words is perfect. If you are a beginning fly fisher chasing steelhead, whether with a single hander or two hander, you owe it to yourself to read each paragraph and visualize the process. Also, he takes some nice photo’s. Mike has been around a long time, but his recent posts on FB are excellent.

07
Jan
11

Spey Casting Basics….Sloooooow

Tim Johnson @ Steelhead Chaser provides a short reminder re spey casting: go slow and then even slower. As I read that, I envisioned my own casting strokes. I could see jerky lifts, fast sweeps, and rushed applications of power to the butt or less appropriately to the right hand at the top of the cork.

I was admonished with the same advice by Matt McCrary on prior outings: ‘Slow down’ ‘easy’…..

A refresher is always good. In my case, it is beginning basics and I am in the process of building the pathways, building solid basics. Watch Youtube spey casting vid’s by say Mike Kinney or Ed Ward and notice the easy, SLOW, movements. Even they watch-feel their casting stroke.




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