December 16, 2008
Flicking Tomatoes (And Other Tips)
By Tim Romano & Kirk Deeter
I think a lot of flyfishing books and articles overcomplicate things. Most of the best tips I've learned came from guides who have figured out a way to explain something in in 30 seconds or less. As such, I've been working with Charlie Meyers of the Denver Post on a little "tip book" that shoots straight guide insights without the cumbersome, sometimes frustrating, theories.
Here's a taste:
"Flick the Tomato"
The best casting motion involves a gradual, controlled acceleration to an abrupt stop. Imagine it this way: If you have a tomato stuck on the end of a stick, and you want to fling that tomato into a bucket, say, 20 feet away, how do you do it? If you “whip” the stick, you end up covered in ketchup. But if you gradually fling the tomato off the stick, you might get it there. Same deal and same feel with the fly cast.
"Watch Your Thumb"
There have been countless articles and books written to coach people on the best ways to keep that proper casting plane at “10 and 2” on the imaginary clock face, and in my experience, most explanations overcomplicate both symptoms and cures. When you start thinking about too many moving parts during the cast, you get confused and your problems compound.
The best “homespun” tip I ever learned to straighten out the issue of going too far and/or over-cocking your wrist on the backcast came from Dan Stein, a guide on the Bighorn River in Montana. He simply suggests you keep your casting thumb in your peripheral vision at all times. Lose sight of your thumb, and you’re going back too far.
What do you think? We're thinking about producing some of these with video, and putting them on the site (as in "The Cosmic Mend" several weeks ago).
You have any tips I can steal? I'll give you credit...