March 28th, 2005

Casting Reminder
By James Castwell

"Ah Spring!"

"Ah Nuts!" the connection? Your casting.

Over the winter some forget a few of the little things, others start out with little experience under their wader-belts at all. I am reminded of a very common problem which is perfectly natural but holds back many from becoming darn good at casting. Especially casting over thirty feet.

Now, given, most trout are fished to and caught well under that distance, but a lot of fly fishing is done at greater distances than that. Or at least, if a guy could cast farther than that, he would. Here is a picture of a guy casting. You probably have seen pictures like this for years, looks really great. His arm way up and out, looks like a statue or something. The problem is this. To make a rod function well you need to stop the rod. Period.

Now, if you have not done this before now, I am serious, I want you to, as you are reading this, do a little experiment. Hold your right arm like you were going to hammer something. Ok, now put your left hand on your right bicep and make the hammering motion with your right arm. Notice how you can feel the right bicep work? Ok, now raise your right arm straight up in the air and while still holding your left hand on the right bicep, make some hammering moves with your right arm. Nothing, right? With the arm up, the bicep does nothing. Is that not the main muscle you use to stop the rod? Certainly is or at least, darn well better be.

Here is another picture, happens to be of Dave Micus casting into the light surf. Pay particular attention to the position of his right arm. As perfect a casting form as anyone could want. And if you give it some thought, why is he doing it that way? Because it works that way! Dave is coming through like Mike Tyson with a body shot. Power, controlled and stopped hard. That cast went a country mile. And so will yours. Here is a reason maybe you aren't doing it like that though.

Most of the old rods, some cane, all fiberglass and a lot of early graphite were soft. That is, they bent a lot. To make them perform better we would often try to make them longer by extending our arm. For some casting it helped, a longer lever gave us some added distance. But when it comes to stopping the rod, it impedes our progress. Learn to stop the rod hard, within reason, no matter how long the cast. It will give you more line control and much better casting.

Remember this too, people will watch you once you get better. They pay no attention to the poor casters, nothing to be learned from watching them. Get used to the audience and then try to pass the information along. ~ JC

Till next week, remember . . .

Keepest Thynne Baakast Upeth

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