September 29, 1997
The "Chuck 'n Duck"
An angler said to his doctor, "When I bend
over and swing my right arm over my head
and then whirl it around it really hurts, and if I
then stick my left arm out straight it is even
worse." His doctor said, "Why do you do it?"
"It's the only way I can get my overcoat
Till next week, remember ...
The "Chuck 'n Duck", fly casting, steelhead? Not always a pretty sight. In general,
when using a normally weighted steelhead fly, probably a sink-tip line, and a short leader
not much is needed in the area of "Change of Style." However, steelhead methods vary
some from angler to angler. No, a lot from angler to angler!
There is some reason for that tho. As each run and pool changes in depth and water
speed, things need be changed. Your casting is one of them. Gone are the nice, well
formed loops. Gone is the pin-point accuracy of the delicate dry fly cast. Enter the "lob,
the fling, the heave, the "Chuck 'n Duck."
This cast (if performed correctly) is better accomplished with a slight bend in the
knees; timing here can be crucial. Too late and "Hookus-impallationus" can rear it's ugly
head; not a good thing. Due to the usually excessive weight of the combined offering,
(bomb-type sinking leader, over-weighted bottom-scratching fly, extra split shot or other
lead stuff), the cast must be attempted by a swing of the rod from the area behind the
angler to one in the general direction of the fish.
The action will lob rather than cast the whole mess in a very (and somewhat safe)
large front loop of fly line. Tight loops here are a no-no. Tangle and tail every time. Once
presented the angler must begin many contortionistic maneuvers with the rod to produce
"Mends" in the line, but, I will challenge that at another date.
So, bend those knees, swing from behind, keep your head down, and pitch 'er out