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Into the wind
Versión en español
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-- Introduction
different styles
the grip
shooting line
power snap
loop shape
across the wind
into the wind
with the wind
side casting
underhand cast
Belgian cast
different lifts
backcast shoot
basic roll cast
roll cast variations
off the shoulder
dynamic roll
Spey Casting
double right
double left
single right
single left
spey fishing
switch cast
snake roll
fly first
mending line
bow and arrow
rotating thumb
tip kicks

This is how it normally is taught: high backcast, high backcast, high backcast. With a normal no-wind situation what we are trying to achieve with the forward cast is for the line to straighten out some three or four feet above the surface of the lake, hover for a fraction of a second and sweetly drop onto the lake. Try this into to the wind and what happens is the line goes out straightens and instead of sweetly dropping, blows straight back to your feet. So what we do is tilt the cast. By angling the backcast so that the line straightens at an angle above the horizontal we can get the line to cast such that when the loop unfurls and straightens on the forward cast, the line is on the water. This is how most instructors teach into wind casting.

And how do we get this high backcast? Quite simply the most effective technique is to consider the elbow on the backcast:- instead of travelling forwards with the elbow as we would normally do during the lift element; tuck up. In other words the elbow should move backwards and upwards slightly. What we are actually doing is changing the angle which our hand travels through when we make the backcast: we are forcing our hand (and rod tip) to travel at angle much closer to the vertical than we normally choose.

Don't forget to drift.

OK, a high backcast is important. But what we should also be saying is: narrow loop, narrow loop, narrow loop (on the forward cast). Eliminating the hover on the forward cast is not nearly as important as throwing a tight loop.

Putting a haul into the forward cast tightens the loop and gives us that kick we often need.

Often the leader fails to straighten. To counteract this try:- putting a heavy or slim fly on the point, or; stopping the shoot with the left hand so that the leader kicks over, or; (in gales, typhoons and hurricanes) the triple-haul: put an additional haul in just before the flyline straightens.

One thing I have often heard, is that one should attempt to cast 'under' the wind. The theory is that it's less windy the closer you get to the water. Of course there is actually wind down there, which is explained by the fact that there are waves on the water surface, and although it is true that there is less of the stuff, you will certainly never be able to get 'under' it.

However, when attempting to get out into Force 9, there is something to be said for sidecasting. It's not so much that it keeps the line close to the surface, as much as it keeps the rod away from the verticle (where it can get blown about something interesting like). When side casting angling the backcast upwards takes out that forward hover. A very real advantage to sidecasting is that if the leader doesn't straighten, it lands in a curve and not a heap.

Control is key to casting into the wind. Tighten up; tuck up; try casting with the dart-thrower's style. Really concentrate on keeping the elbow in-line with the shoulder. Casting into the wind helps tighten up style and loops, as soon as you try to force the cast you fail miserably. The wind is not particularly tolerant of sloppy loops.

Practice your loop control by casting into the wind... then when you have to fish into the wind you can put a smile on your face.