“The distance between your head and your hand can be a long way”

Mel Krieger

what a nice way to say “what i think i’m doing isn’t really what’s happening”, something many if not most of us are guilty of when it comes to fly casting (and a lot more… )
see, and just as an example, i had made no plans whatsoever to make an enormous, five minutes-to-take-apart series of knots in my fly line in front of all those people while doing a casting demo. dumb brain…


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A Christmas Present from the Queen

A True Story by Jack Gartside

“As I approached the moat I looked this way and that to make sure there was no one around, joined the two pieces of my rod together, and with one flick of my wrist sent the little brown fly I had tied to my leader out into the middle of the moat, where I could see two very large trout swimming slowly about, waiting for the tourists to show up, no doubt. The Unsinkable Molly Brown (my name for the fly, tied from mink scraps scrounged from a Soho furrier’s trash) must have looked like a crust of bread or perhaps a piece of sausage or something else good to eat and the trout lost no time in coming for it. The smaller trout got there first, inhaled the fly, and I set the hook. Then it was off to the races. It took me around the moat twice before I was able to land it. At least five pounds, I figured. A very nice trout, indeed, which I quickly released. And just as quickly I unjoined the rod pieces, hid them under my long winter overcoat, and casually walked away.”

click here for the whole story

‘specially if they look like sausages !…

Fly Casting- “DON’T look at the branch” !!!

because what invariably happens is we’ll cast our fly right into it… *

as a follow up to Turn Around ! where the subject was about looking where our fly line is throughout the cast, this time let’s see how we can use our vision to not only stay out of trouble but to cast the fly exactly where we want.

an example i always bring up with students of all levels is: ‘if i want to throw a ball at you and hit you on the nose, i’m not going to look at your feet !” see the point ?

since childhood we are conditioned to look where we throw things and fly casting isn’t any different. however, while casting we don’t always have the luxury of a nose to aim at. we’ll have to be a bit creative, sometimes picking out a far away object as a cloud or maybe a treetop. it doesn’t matter what but find something specific to look at and focus on just that and your fly will go there.

in the case of obstructions such as the branch above on the bank we need to train ourselves to NOT look at the fly snagger but in a nice, open snagless place instead. if the casting space is between two trees, concentrate on some object in between and behind them. this usually is a bit more difficult as we all have lost flies to trees and have those memories deeply engrained. i guess we could call it a form of ‘fear’, the apprehension of loosing yet another fly but fear not ! once we practice this a bit and get used to selective visual aiming we’ll find it quite amazing how easy and safe it is to cast in situations where we didn’t dare cast before, opening up a whole lot of fishing possibilities.

the important thing to remember is that in throwing, and casting fly lines is a form of throwing, our body automatically reacts, adjusts and compensates to deliver the object where the eyes are focused. trust your body to do the work that your eyes are telling it to do.

* yup, the pic wasn’t staged. i unwillingly reverted to looking at the thing i wanted to avoid as described above and bingo

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of Course Knot

normally, when doing a casting course and demonstrating, the idea is to do your best as possible while trying to get the message through to all the participants. sometimes things don’t go as planned and that’s a good thing as it makes for a lesson where it’s not only the students that learn.

even when i’m not on the teaching stage i always believe that on the larger scale of things i really don’t know much at all, always considering myself to be an eternal beginner. here’s proof…


what better way to start off a new blog than with a royal fuckup ?

i had just missed a fish for the 15th time in a row. the place was literally filled with grayling and arctic char. hooks and reflexes were sharp but for the life of me i couldn’t hook up in that spot.

the mojo came back soon enough but it leaves one thinking, hummmm…