Individual taste in books varies as much as the favorite rod or fly.  With that in mind, we hope to review books and videos from the ever-growing fly fishing world, and share them with you.  Books will be the best of all worlds, new and old.  Many of the old books are now available in reprint, and the wisdom contained is timely today.  Others can be found in second-hand book stores, or by mail order dealers. As we find videos we feel are outstanding they will be included. Be assured, reviews are based on what we have actually read or viewed, and due to that fact, may not appear weekly.

September 11, 2006

Two-Handed Fly Casting, Spey Casting Techniques
By Al Buhr

Reviewed by Ron Eagle Elk

When I started noticing that my hands were really tired after casting a 7 weight rod for a few hours I figured it was time for a trip to the Doctor's office. Sure enough, I've got arthritis in my hands. Casting a 5 weight and under isn't too bad, but a 6 weight and up are almost impossible for me anymore.

The guys at the local fly shop (now out of business) talked me into a really nice 14 foot 9 weight two handed rod to take the stress of casting off my hands. It was the fall of the year, salmon and winter steelhead were getting close and that rod would be fine, coupled with a good line and reel.

That's when I started to run into this wall, headfirst. I took a couple of free lessons from the fly shop guys, just before they closed their doors, and ventured out on my own. Casting a two hander isn't as easy as the Pro casters make it look on the DVD's or in the books. Did I mention DVD's and books? I have a bunch, some pretty expensive, but they all seem to assume you already know something about casting the really long rods.

Book cover

All this time I've been waiting for someone to simplify the techniques of two handed casting. Someone who remembers that we really don't already know how to make a D-Loop and execute a flawless forward cast. Well folks, Al Buhr has invented the better mouse trap of spey casting. His new book Two-Handed Fly Casting is top notch all the way through. Not only that, but the 12x9 landscape format sure looks good on the coffee table.

The book begins witih a discussion of rods, lines and leaders, breaks the cast down to it's fundamental parts and walks the caster through all phases of the cast. There is even an exercise to allow you to get the feel for the rod loading.

Casting Photo

That is followed by well illustrated and photographed step by step lessons in the casts with a two handed rod. Close to twenty casts used under different conditions, each cast building on the one before it. Simplified so that even I can understand it.

There is also a great section on solving problems with the cast, faults and corrections, and as a bonus, sections on fishing with a two handed rod and different fishing situations.

Author Al Buhr

This is a very well illustrated book. The drawings are clear and to the point, the photographs are flawless and overlaid with additional diagrams that clarify not clutter the photos.

This book is going to add more pleasure to my spey casting than any other book or DVD has come close to. Considering that the hardbound book is only $35.00 and the softbound version is just $22.00, this one is a bargain that should be in your hands, not on the book shelf. ~ REE

Two-Handed Fly Casting, Spey Casting Techniques
By Al Buhr
Hardcover; 80 pages
Size: 12 x 9 landscape format.
Hardcover ISBN: 1-57188-396-7 $35.00
Soft Cover ISBN: 1-51788-395-9 $22.00
Published by: Frank Amato Publications

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