Journey Through Fly: Casting – The Fine Tuning 1
By The Angler
We have covered much earlier, how to cast a fly. I also did mention then that we will look at fine tuning our cast in the future. When an angler cast a lure, bait, or fly; many a time the angler tries to get bait, lure, or fly as far out as possible. Distance equals area of coverage. The further the distance, the wider the coverage. The wider the coverage, the higher your chance of a fish seeing your bait, lure, and fly; and in this case a fly.
So, how do you get your fly to go further? While fly fishing is an art, there is also a lot of science in it. Apart from physics, the rod and line that you are using do make a difference. First let us take a look at the art; the movement of your rod and line.
[ As it makes the U-turn, a loop is formed. If you pay attention to your line you will see the loop… ]
Illustration 1: Rod movement during the cast.
Movement Of Rod
In very simple terms, the movement of the rod is in a horizontal back to front to back to front movement. The movement is in a straight line; unlike casting a bait with a spinning outfit or a bait-casting outfit where the rod movement is more of a curve. Take a look at the tip of your rod. Imagine moving it back to front to back to front. Imagine your tip drawing a straight horizontal line in the air… see illustration 1.
The above covers the basic movement. But your rod tip is not rigid. I am sure that your rod tip bends as you are moving your rod in a back to front to back to front horizontal movement. This action of your rod tip is very important.
Let’s add a dash of physics into the equation. As you move your rod, the movement creates a force that pulls your fly and lines out of your rod tip. Commonsense says that the more you move, the more lines leaves your rod, the further the cast. Am I right? But commonsense is not necessarily right here. The more lines you have out the harder it is for you to control them, and thus you may not be able to get a good efficient cast. So, there is a limit to how much science is applied…haha.
Movement Of Line
Next we look at how the line moves. Every time you push your rod in one direction the line and fly follows that direction. As the line and fly comes to the end of its movement you move the rod in the opposite direction. This causes the line and fly to make something like a U-turn and then head on towards the direction that you have moved your rod towards.
As it makes the U-turn, a loop is formed. If you pay attention to your line you will see the loop. What’s important here is the size of the loop. The loop can either be big or small. For distance we want an efficient line movement. To do so we want the loop to be as small as possible. Small loops also means better control… See Illustrations 2 & Illustrations 3.
Illustration 2: a big loop.
Illustration 3: Smaller loop.
I shall stop here for now to give you time to practise perfecting the movement of your rod and the controlling of your line. Practise by first focusing on the rod tip to ensure that it indeed is moving in a horizontal straight line. Then focus on the movement of your line. Try to get your loops to be as small as possible. In the next issue I will give you the secret ingredient. See you then.