By Captain Paul Darby (QRRFISH1), Shalimar, FL
If your not going to use the word casting
then what word do you use?
That's a question I hear a lot and frankly it's
so obvious that it's not just a word, it's a
complete concept in itself. However to avoid
the confusion that deleting the word 'casting'
would have, I had to find a word of greater truth,
to fill the void, that greater truth is 'control.'
Once I changed the word casting to control,
everything about the way I taught and understood
the fly rod changed too. Students instantly picked
right up on the concept of control. They didn't
just like and understand the concept of control,
they embraced it. Consider that if what you're
trying to learn is not casting, but to control a
fly rod, what better word to use than, control.
What is the first fundamental movement with the
fly rod we all wish to learn?
Is it not to project a fly line with a fly rod?
In order to do that you need to take control of
the fly rod. Put yourself in charge, there's only
one grip on a fly rod, yours is the only opinion
that is going to be transmitted to the line.
If I ask you to cast a fly rod and your understanding
of the word casting is related to the spinning rod
we are instantly at odds over terms and understanding.
It is precisely that thought that has lead me to
administer a little graphic illustration to both
students and casting instructors alike. For reasons
that I have neither the time nor inclination to go
into, I won't try and explain why it is that students
score higher on this than instructors. Pardon me for
a moment, I just love the sound of noses going out
Ok now on with the show. It was hot sultry afternoon
down in the panhandle of Florida, deep in the heart of
the Redneck Rivera. A tall dark stranger walked into
my tackle shop. He was packing and looking to get
some answers. "Word on the street is, you're a Casting
instructor," he said, cocking his head.
"Word on the street is wrong," I said, "and unless I
miss my guess, you're either an architect or a fly
fisherman, from the look of that tube your carrying."
He didn't come to discuss condos over cocktails. As
we squared off in the street. I told him to show me
what he had, and after a few near misses, I concluded
he was trying to cast a fly rod.
"Hold on friend, mind if I ask you a question? Do you
know how to cast a spinning rod?"
"Yup," came the answer.
"Well, do you think the fly rod your holding in
your hand is a spinning rod?"
"Nope," he said.
"Then why are you trying to cast it?"
"Well, every thing I been told, read or seen
about the fly rod calls it casting."
"Care to take a little test on your conviction to
that word, casting. If I hand you a spinning rod
with a lure on it that has a lot of treble hooks,
as many plugs do, then ask you to toss that lure
out behind you about 75 feet. Then without reeling
it in, I want you should snatch that lure up and toss
it over your head 75 feet in the opposite direction.
Remember I said, 'Without reeling it in.'"
This I can, and have done with a fly rod. And unless
and until you can do it with a spinning rod. Perhaps
what your looking to learn is not how to, cast a fly
rod but rather to control and perform with one, in
a mind easing and comfortable manner. ~ Capt. Paul
Have a question? Email me!
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