Welcome to the Sexyloops Flycasting Video Masterclass. Here you will find all the flycasting secrets I know. They’re not really secrets however, but something that if you want to know, you will learn and if that’s you then welcome aboard!
And if you are still not too sure, then all I can do is speak for myself, when I tell you that being able to cast fabulously well has made an enormous difference to my enjoyment in all that fly fishing gives us.
You can of course settle for whatever level you want. But all of you (well most of you anyway!) can aspire to be tremendous, jaw-dropping, awe-inspiring fly casters. The only difference between achieving this and simply being good, is how much time you devote to playing with the fly rod.
I will try to liven up and improve upon these video tutorials. After all, 5 whole years has passed since we originally filmed them. And I’ve seen some of the results… not all have been entirely expected!
But don’t let that put you off. 🙂
As well as comprehensive lesson plans (it’s funkier than it sounds) AND the option to expose yourself on the Board (please wear socks) – with these videos, and our help, you too can learn to cast like the best.
What you will find, maybe, is the uncanny ability to control the line, roll it into a loop, and send the fly – and line – to precisely where intended. Forming a controlled loop is really what good flycasting is all about – hence “Sexyloops”.
You will know when you’ve acquired a taste for it, because you’ll want to cast in strange places; in the dark, or in places where there are no fish (I know a few places where there should be fish but aren’t!). There is perhaps no greater feeling than finding yourself on a mountain top or cliff edge (being careful not to fall over) and throwing the line clean across the skyline.
For me it is completely absorbing. Fishing-wise there is no comparison really, particularly when it comes to sight fishing or taking shots at moving targets, but even when “fishing the water”, good casting shines through and makes the day more pleasurable and more successful (for the truth is, even “blind fishing” is fishing to where you think the fish are).
Distance, accuracy, line control after loop formation (Mends) and the Roll Cast family (Speys) are your four key disciplines. Master these four and you will be a very rare caster. Many excel in only one or two disciplines – and within their specialist discipline they are often amongst the Fly Casting Greats (it’s a long list!).
My favourite flyline for flycasting is the Scientific Anglers’ Mastery Expert Distance. The Sexyloops Thunderbolt is a close second (it’s the old TCR Taper). I love long belly lines, particularly the (very much forgotten) Double Taper. It’s difficult to really open up with a short headed brick-of-a flyline and you are hampered when it comes to Presentation Casts (at middle-distance fishing range anyway). I practise with 4, 5 and 6WT lines for fun, as well as with all the gear I regularly fish.
The original idea was for you to download these video tutorials onto your smart phone or tablet and take them to the river/ practise field/ cliff and watch them while training. I think you can still do this.
Don’t rush through them however. Just getting past the Essentials Level can take a couple of years. And some people never get through them all (but everyone can). Spey Casting and Presentation Casts each will take many years to master. Distance is an ongoing thing – I haven’t peaked yet (Lasse, and everyone else in the World Championships, note well!). I’ve spent fifteen years competitive distance casting and I’m always learning and improving.
But I think if you follow these lessons, ask questions on the Board and practise often, then you too can become a truly excellent fly caster.
At the very minimum, you should learn a clean Pick-up and Lay Down Cast, Reach Mends, good solid overhead Accuracy Stance, well-balanced open-stance Distance Casts with smooth Double Hauling and tight loops. (If you don’t know what any of these are yet, then don’t worry!).
You should be able to comfortably – at a stretch – cast 100ft. This will take some practise but it teaches you very much else besides, particularly in giving you some of the skills required for both dealing with strong winds and taking quick challenging shots.
You should have a respectable cross-shoulder distance and into-the-wind casts. All the Spey casts you need. Not necessarily performing to a high level on delivery but at a bare minimum for line repositioning moves. You will need the Collapsed Cast, effective Roll Casts from both shoulders and Curved Casts (overpowered – also both shoulders – and occasionally underpowered). A Puddle Cast is a very useful slack line addition that is very-much underrated. And that’s about all!
That will take you to approximately level 2 of the Sexyloops Academy.
But first is level 1… to borrow a term from my good friend, Bill Gammel – who you will hear much of later:
1 The Essentials Level
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