The Roll Cast
One of the most
common problems that I have seen in my new flyfishing
adjustment from a 20 ' cast ( common in fresh water
fishing ) to a 40 ' or more , needed
on the flats. The fact that you will use an 8wt
to a 12wt fly rod, rather than a 5wt rod, also makes the matter more complicated. There
are certain techniques that will improve your distance, and shorten the time that you
will need to acquire that distance. On the flats, fish
might be moving or are in such
shallow water that a fast accurate cast is needed for success.
The first technique
you will need to learn is to roll cast properly.
We use weight forward floating line where the first 30 ' are weighted. Those 30 ' will make
your long cast possible, given that you use them to load the rod properly. One of the main
mistakes is starting your
cast with not enough fly line past the tip of your rod. If you
start your cast with only 10 ' of
fly line past the rod tip, you will need several back
casts just to get any speed in your line.
Remember, speed + timing = distance, that is if you keep a fairly tight loop. I think that
15 to 20 feet is a good amount of line for
a roll cast, then only 1 or 2 back cast will be needed to complete the cast.
A good practice
technique will improve your casting ability in a very short time. Get familiar with roll
casting, hold the fly in your free hand and feel the fly line as you roll it forward. Do
not allow your fly to touch the water on your backcast, keep your rod tip high (at 12:00 )
and deliver your forward cast at about 10:00.
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