Welcome to the Sexyloops Flycasting Video Masterclass. Here you will find all the flycasting secrets that I know. They’re not really secrets however, but something that if you want to know, you will learn and if this is you then welcome aboard!
And if you are still not sure, then all I can do is speak for myself, when I tell you that being able to cast well has made an enormous difference to my enjoyment in all that fly fishing gives.
You can of course settle for whatever level you want. But all of you (well most of you anyway) can aspire to be tremendous, awe-inspiring fly casters. The only difference between achieving this and just being good, is how much time you devote to playing and practising with the fly rod.
I will try to 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, with these videos, and our help, you too can learn to cast like the very 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 you 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). Fishing asides, there is perhaps no greater feeling than finding yourself on a mountain top or cliff edge and throwing the line clean across the skyline.
For me it is completely absorbing. Fishing-wise there is no comparison, 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 both more fun and more successful (for the truth is, even “blind fishing” is fishing to where you think the fish are).
Distance, Accuracy, Mends (line control after loop formation) and Speys (the Roll Cast family) 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 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 secondhand I prefer it for fishing (it’s the old Sage TCR Taper). I love long belly lines, particularly the (almost forgotten) Double Taper. It’s difficult to really open up with a short-headed, and often over-weight, 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. If you bought the APP I will be making these videos available for you to download.
Don’t rush through them however. Just mastering the Essentials Level will take a lot of work. And some people never get through them all (but everyone can). Spey Casting and Presentation Casts will each 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, like everyone else in the game, I’m always learning and improving.
I think if you follow these lessons, ask questions on the Board and practise often and well, then you too will 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 it gives you some of the skills required for both dealing with strong winds and taking quick challenging shots.
You should have respectable cross-shoulder distance and into-the-wind casts. All the Spey casts you need. Not necessarily performed to a high level on delivery but at a bare minimum you need them for line repositioning. You will need the Collapsed Cast, effective Roll Casts from both shoulders and Curved Casts (overpowered – also both shoulders – and occasionally underpowered). The Puddle Cast is a very useful slack line addition that is very-much underrated.
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
Do you have a question? Join the Board by sending me an email firstname.lastname@example.org and for this topic, post here: