Buying a fly rod
Casting for stripers in a salt pond in Rhode Island..
Fly Casting 101
Well, maybe 102
Ed Jaworowski once mentioned in one of his books that there is a large grey area of mediocre casters. The reason for this is that many were taught wrong in the first place. We see this quite often, the brain memory is transferred to muscle memory and once it gets there it is very difficult to reverse. This is the reason why many will make a 40ft. cast and never improve for the rest of their lives.
We don't have anything to gain from you consulting us except the satisfaction that you are casting to the best of your ability. The way trout fishing is done today, you don't even have to cast! Actually you don't even need a fly line. However, the day may come when you want to fish a lake, large river or the ocean. Picture a guide telling you there is a redfish at 10 oclock about 60 feet away and you look at him and say "Are you kidding me?" Picture yourself starting the cast with an 8wt. rod in your hand and the fly in the other hand with 10ft. of line out of the rod tip. How do you load an 8wt. rod beginning with 10ft. of line and reach 60ft with two backcasts? Try it and see! This is what we mean by fly casting. If you can't do this, it sometimes helps to overline the rod by two line sizes to begin with more grain weight loading the rod. The rod will certainly be overloaded at 80ft. be we are not concerned with this.
I can assure you that a rod that is rated for an 8wt. line will cast a 7, 8 or 9wt. The Scienfic Angler solution is to offer you a line like the Titan that says this line is made two sizes heavier. Even though it says 8wt on the box, it's actually a 10wt in disguise.. People seem to readily accept this and it is one of my favorite lines for casting big fliesl I am sure that guides love to see you with this line. The Wulff Ambush line is also amazing. People love to blame the guide for not getting them close enough to the fish. The guide doesn't know your casting ability unless you tell him or her. A saltwater guide won't fail you, you just have to be up to the task. overlining is not the total solution. The line also has to have the correct front taper for quick loading of large flies.
My casting is stuck at 93ft. which tells me that I am violating one of the fundamental casting rules. Now I can't think of a place in the world where you have to cast 93ft to catch a fish. In the ocean on a skiff or the beach, but the 93ft. will get me 60ft in a fishing situation. Lefty also reminds us that most rods today are better than the caster. Absolutely true! All of the casters I've seen can't bring out the full potential of a TFO Pro lll rod and yet they believe a more expensive rod will cover their mistakes. Many also resort to the "double haul" to cover their mistakes. Won't work!
We often look at big water and say: "I'm really going to have to put more effort into this cast. Stop! At that moment the cast is ruined. Many casters ruin the cast by casting with too much effort. I once witnessed a guy that casted so hard that he broke the tip of the rods.
We have read books on how the brain works and have consulted Psychiatrists and teachers to determine the attention span of young people and how much info they can absorb in a certain amount of time; We have read books on pitching and hitting and we apply these mental techniques to our instruction. The brain memory becomes muscle memory and once this happens, it is very difficult to reverse. If you are making mistakes, don't reinforce them by practicing; In fact, you shouldn't practice too much anyway. Don't fall into the gray area. It's like a black hole.
In summary -
Many grip the rod to tight. You should hold the rod like you're holding a small bird.
Many put too much effort into the cast. The less effort you use the better the loops and the cast will be.
Many do not realize how they place their feet.
Many do not cast the rod on a level plane
Many will not be able to bring out the potential that the rod has built into it.
Cast smarter, not harder.
Master the fundamentals and distance and proper loops will follow.
No constant acceleration throughout the cast. People confuse constant acceleration with constant speed
I recently watched a video of a guy casting the old way and claiming he was making an 100ft cast. The camera only showed him and not the cast. How do we know it was a 100ft. cast? Well he showed you the backing connection. As if he didn't cut some line off of the reel! I could tell that it wasn't a 100ft. cast!. Now why would he want to do this? If I casted using his method I would be worn out in 15 minutes. Your shoulder would also be injured after a few years.
The only way to cast farther is to move the rod a longer distance on a flat plane at ever increasing acceleration.