by Aaron Goodis

As fly-fishers we all know how important fly-casting is to our sport. Yes its true, we will catch fish regardless of casting skill. But lets face it, to achieve great catching success we need a good cast. No, wait! We need a great cast!

I am fortunate to make a large part of my living through teaching folks fly-casting. I meet all types: from beginners to those with advanced casting techniques. Everyone I teach shares two common things. First, they are all good people! Second, every person (including me) can use a tip or two when it comes to fly-casting. One very cool thing about fly-casting is that none of us really ever stop learning. No matter how much we cast and fish, we will all struggle at times and we will all have those great days when it seems as if our casting has jumped up a few notches.

If you are really intent on getting better with your casting one of the best things you can do is take a one-hour lesson with a seasoned fly-casting instructor, having those trained eyes on you can make a huge difference in detecting subtle aspects that need to be tuned up. In the mean time here are a few quick tips to get you started.

  • Look for slack. You need full tension from fly line to fly rod in order to make a good cast. Slack can kill a cast fast so beware of a slack fly line. Create as much tension and momentum as you can.
  • Watch your rod tip as you make the forward and backward casting stroke; the fly line passes the rod tip forming a casting loop. The line will follow the rod’s tip-path through the casting stroke. A straight path (painting the celling) with the rod tip will help to form a narrow loop. If your casting loop is very wide remember to paint the celling.
  • Power smoothly and stop firmly. Fly-casting needs some human power to help it all work, as you make a casting stroke be sure to provide some power just besure to make that power as smooth as butter. The rod tip will stay nice and straight through the stroke as long as you’re not all jerky with your power. Stop the rod firmly on either end of your casting stroke. The stop is vital; it helps the rod unbend quickly, giving your fly line all the speed it needs. Powering smoothly and quickly then stopping the rod firmly will help your casting loop take shape and gain speed.

These are only a few of the fundamentals that make great effortless fly-casting. Check back for future blog posts covering topics in more detail. As always you can reach me at www.aarongoodisphotography.com

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