The world's best flyfishing site.

Casting Stateside

is that a wind knot I see?
...a bit of a demo
email hocus pocus
High Noon
Hanningfield moment
team building
absolutely no idea
working flat out
would you ask THIS man for advice?
an Ibis?
bit of surf
fly by night
pretty cool image
Noosa asooN

I've decided to use this email here, since many people comment on my grip!

I told you I liked your site before, but I have to tell you it is the funniest damn thing I've seen in a long time. And informative. If you ever make it to Montana, look me up and I'll float you down the Bighorn or something.

Question. Why do you turn the reel out to the side so much when casting? It reminds me somewhat of our American gangster movies when they turn the pistol on its side before pulling the trigger. I don't know the purpose, but it looks kinda sexy. (I'm married to a woman, so don't get nervous :-) If you build rods, it seems to go against the purpose of finding the spine, right? Clue me in please.

Randy Olson
Sidney, MT

Paul replies:

Hi Randy,
thanks!!! :-)))
I turn the reel to the outside because I use a lot of wrist on the drift and it's more comfortable that way since it keeps the reel out the way. I could say that it keeps the line from rubbing against the spine on the backcast, which it does, but that's not why I do it.

It does go against the spine with the spine thing. If you built your own rod then you could change this - I did this with one of them, by shifting the handle to 90 degrees. In fact with a four-piece rod you could just rotate the butt.

With most rods it doesn't make any difference, I always try casting though the spine and then rotated to see if it matters, if it does then I cast through the spine. I only find a difference with old rods - esp cane or glass

See you in Montana sometime :-)))

ps this link is a good one: Get a Grip and here's another.

Randy replies:

Thanks for the response.
I totally forgot about the friction factor with regard to the rod rubbing the line. I turn the reel out myself, but only on long casts, and then only on the forward drift as I stabe the rod forward. I suppose it makes sense to do it all the time as long as the line doesn't kick left or right at the end of the cast. I will do some experimenting with your ideas as soon as it warms up around here.


I haven't actually replied to this point, but while I was pasting this page together I thought that perhaps I should :-)

If the line kicks to the side at the end of the cast is has to do with "tracking". Tracking is the horizontal path of the rod tip. If the rod tip follows a curved path, and excess power is applied, the loop will kick over on itself as it straightens out. Learning to track the rod tip in a straight line path is not easy, in fact as I've discussed on the Board, what you think is directly behind you is not, and the only way to fully appreciate this is to cast along one long straight line, one which travels both in front and behind you (like the touch line on a rugby pitch - make sure there's no one playing). Start with the flyline lying straight out along the line, and make a backcast, allowing the backcast to fall and see where it lands. It should land on the touch line. If you have never tried this before it will probably land at least 20 degrees off to the side. Casting to an imaginary fixed point that you "think" is behind you is not enough, I have caught myself looking at the wrong point; it is a very rare caster that manages to cast both backcasts and forward casts in plane. I now spend a lot of time working on tracking.

Of course, for more advanced casting, we do use overpowered loops to form curved casts on the forward presentation, and to flick the flies up on the backcast to avoid brambles - Paul

I've used this image of the backcast before on site; it shows good tracking (as you'd expect:)) and was shot in Spain last year by Alejandro of the CNL - thanks :-))

Return to whence you came
Return to home page