Journey To Fly: Perfecting The Cast
Last issue we took a look at how to cast; at the most basic for a beginner. This time we will look at fine tuning that basic form. I believe that it is utmost important for you to get the form right before moving forward. The reason is to ensure that you do not pick up bad habits that later becomes hard to break. After all, I am sure that you want a good cast all the time instead of a good cast some of the time.
Other than to practise your movements, one thing to look at or pay attention to is the size of the loop that your line is making. Most beginners will create a rather large loop and it is ok especially when one is only learning the movements. But to cast well it is good to try to reduce the size of the loop to a minimal.
We get a larger loop because our timing and the degree of the direction that our hands move in (usually done unknowingly). There are two things here that I want you to pay close attention to.
First, the opening of the line. Catching the timing here is important. Wait for the line to roll open completely and once it has done so, push the rod in the opposite direction. If you push your rod in the opposite direction before the line is completely open you will get a distorted loop. If it opens up and you’ve waited too long before pushing the rod in the opposite direction, the line drops low and when you push it forward, it goes upward.
Of course this happens to all anglers, even those who have been casting for many years. Sometimes focus is lost during the cast and this happens. The trick is to get it back in line by adjusting your movement.
Second is the degree of your rod movement or trajectory of movement. If your movement is upwards (slightly) your line will be flowing upwards. And if that movement is followed through with a straight horizontal movement, the loop becomes bigger. This is where paying attention to your movement comes in. Take your time to move the rod in a horizontal movement at as straight a line as possible.
Casting a fly.
The Final Cast
This is where you allow your line to flow out of your rod, carrying your fly to where the fish is. There is a little trick here that you can use to get better distances. This trick needs practice as well. To get better distance you will want your rod to flick (or shoot) the fly lines out. This can be achieved by stopping the rod abruptly on the final movement (the forward movement where you let your lines out). This abrupt stop allow the rod tip to flex a little more and then shoots the line out with additional force.
Practice these until you are satisfied with the loop size as well as when you can confidently do the abrupt final cast. These will go a long way in helping you to cast your fly out. Stay tuned for our next part (Part 6) in the next issue.