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Old 12-27-2015, 12:23 PM
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Default Small water/short cast fishing question

I'm not sure where to put this. Here, fly rods, casting... The answer could cover a broad range of topics.

I was trout fishing with my 12 year old son... We were making the kind of cast that barely gets the full leader out the tip top. There is a fair amount of water like this in my area. You crouch on the bank or duck behind a large boulder and cast anywhere from 5 to 10'. We fish with anything from a small dry to a small double nymph rig. Getting back to my son, he was really struggling with this cast. There just wasn't enough line out to throw the leader and fly. I can make that cast, but was wondering if there might be a better way.

How do you fish this situation? Is there something special to be done with the leader, a special cast to learn, or is this where one of those medium or slow action rods come into play - the rod flexing enough on its own to throw the leader/fly without the aid of the fly line?
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Old 12-27-2015, 12:53 PM
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Default Re: Small water/short cast fishing question

I have a vintage 6'6" Wright&McGill Feather Light that I use specifically in a situation like that.
With a 4DT it will cast with just a foot of line out of the tip-top. With a 5wt line even less.
I've used 3wt lines on it too, but with the heavier line, the less you need to make the cast.

One trick that I learned was to "choke up" on the rod so that with a side arm cast, the reel and grip are behind your back and you're holding on to the blank.

Good for fishin in a "tunnel"

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Old 12-27-2015, 01:51 PM
 
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Default Re: Small water/short cast fishing question

Would a cheap tenkara outfit work or is the stream too wooded?

Why a Tenkara May Be The Best Set-up For Teaching a Young Angler | Field & Stream
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Old 12-27-2015, 01:53 PM
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Default Re: Small water/short cast fishing question

Fish up stream. Wear natural colors. There's 2 cast. One is a short line helicopter cast and the other is a hang down look and chunk cast.
The set up is a 9' 4x and 18" of 4x tipper. Then a dropper 6" below. Spring Baitus - Size 18 or 20 non wieghted. Split shot at the knot on main leader. Some poly yarn indicator up as deep as the water - Up just a little. Don't let fly line touch the water ever. Keep a tight leader. Set on anything is even a little suspect. Set down stream.
High stick nymphing.


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Old 12-27-2015, 03:06 PM
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Default Re: Small water/short cast fishing question

Try having use a using a furled leader. It has a little more weight than a mono leader. Makes it easier to turn over the tippet/fly. Another option is to use a stiffer mono leader like Maxima Chameleon the stiffer leader helps too but, in my opinion not as much as a furled leader.
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Old 12-27-2015, 03:20 PM
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Default Re: Small water/short cast fishing question

"There's a fair amount of water like this in my area"
What you describe is some of my favorite fishing water . . . the little streams everybody drives by where you are sublimely alone in nature.

I think Rip Tide has it dialed in. I use a beautiful little 7' 3wt Hardy Featherweight I got on closeout.
A short rod gives you the room to be creative in your casts, even down to using a bow and arrow cast where I'm sometimes thinking just what am I going to do if I hook one in there?

You might consider a furled leader with about a meter of tippet. I use some from Zen outfitters made specifically for UL fishing. They really help lay the tippet out.
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Old 12-27-2015, 04:24 PM
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Default Re: Small water/short cast fishing question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rip Tide View Post
I have a vintage 6'6" Wright&McGill Feather Light that I use specifically in a situation like that.
With a 4DT it will cast with just a foot of line out of the tip-top. With a 5wt line even less.
I've used 3wt lines on it too, but with the heavier line, the less you need to make the cast.

One trick that I learned was to "choke up" on the rod so that with a side arm cast, the reel and grip are behind your back and you're holding on to the blank.

Good for fishin in a "tunnel"

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.
Yeah Rip... That's it. Except add more pocket water and some large boulders. It is perfect water for that 6'6" to 7'6" rod. This size gives just the right amount of reach in most situations. Choking up on the rod would make things more difficult in THIS water because that little bit of extra reach is helpful.

---------- Post added at 03:58 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:53 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by silver creek View Post
Would a cheap tenkara outfit work or is the stream too wooded?

Why a Tenkara May Be The Best Set-up For Teaching a Young Angler | Field & Stream
Hi Silver,

If you look at my response to Rip... yes, too wooded. A rod of 6' is too short. An 8'6" rod is often too long. I've taken to shortening my leader so I can get "some" line out the tip top to aid in casting. In most cases, nothing touches the water except the fly.

I've never fished a slow action rod. I'm wondering if doing this would help make things easier??

Edit: I should say my son is a competent caster for age 12. He's successfully roll cast to steelhead in New York and does demonstrations for me when I teach Boy Scouts. He's not great, but does have the basics down and throws a fairly nice loop. It's just that short cast where there's no fly line to speak of out the tip top.

---------- Post added at 04:09 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:58 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by fisher46 View Post
Fish up stream. Wear natural colors. There's 2 cast. One is a short line helicopter cast and the other is a hang down look and chunk cast.
The set up is a 9' 4x and 18" of 4x tipper. Then a dropper 6" below. Spring Baitus - Size 18 or 20 non wieghted. Split shot at the knot on main leader. Some poly yarn indicator up as deep as the water - Up just a little. Don't let fly line touch the water ever. Keep a tight leader. Set on anything is even a little suspect. Set down stream.
High stick nymphing.


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Thanks Fisher!

We get too low to the water to use leaders and tippet of that length. We both dress in camo and have all the appropriate gear.

I tried searching those cast and came up with little more than the cast for helicopter movies.

---------- Post added at 04:15 PM ---------- Previous post was at 04:09 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rip Tide View Post
I have a vintage 6'6" Wright&McGill Feather Light that I use specifically in a situation like that.
With a 4DT it will cast with just a foot of line out of the tip-top. With a 5wt line even less.
I've used 3wt lines on it too, but with the heavier line, the less you need to make the cast.

One trick that I learned was to "choke up" on the rod so that with a side arm cast, the reel and grip are behind your back and you're holding on to the blank.

Good for fishin in a "tunnel"
Rip,

Sorry, I read your response then completely skipped over a portion of what you wrote. I normally try to use a shorter leader is these cases. We stay low to the water and don't need much leader. 7' is usually good enough. The part I skipped over is overlining the rod. I haven't tried that. Putting a 5 or 6 weight line on my 7'6" 4 wt, then let a foot or so of the fly line hang out the tip top may make things easier. I'll have to give this a try.

---------- Post added at 04:24 PM ---------- Previous post was at 04:15 PM ----------

Some additional information... I've been fishing these waters with 7' - 7'6" 4wts. Both are more med-fast rods. I recently put together my first 3wt, a 7'6" CT, but haven't fished it yet.

We're both good with tight line nymphing. If we could get a real cast in, he'd be good with that too. It's just when all he's casting is the leader. I struggle with this too, but not nearly as much. Rip's idea of uplining the rod and getting even just a foot or so of fly line out the tip top sounds like it would help cast the leader.

Having never fished a slower action rod, would the extra flex in that kind of rod help to cast the leader at these really short distances? I have enough places where owning a specialty rod designed just for these waters would make sense.
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Old 12-27-2015, 04:35 PM
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Default Re: Small water/short cast fishing question

Quote:
Originally Posted by ts47 View Post
Having never fished a slower action rod, would the extra flex in that kind of rod help to cast the leader?
You can forget about tight loops. That has pretty much gone out the window in favor of just getting it out there
But yeah, you're exchanging tip cast loops with the "power" of a rod that uses it's full length.
In this case it's not the "full" length of course, but you're using more of the rod to make the cast than just the tip.
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Old 12-27-2015, 04:52 PM
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Default Re: Small water/short cast fishing question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rip Tide View Post
You can forget about tight loops. That has pretty much gone out the window in favor of just getting it out there
But yeah, you're exchanging tip cast loops with the "power" of a rod that uses it's full length.
In this case it's not the "full" length of course, but you're using more of the rod to make the cast than just the tip.
So just to be sure I understand what you are saying... A slower action rod would allow me to use more of the rod for these short casts than what a faster action rod that might only get the tip involved in these short casts. So, a slower action rod would be better. Did I get it right?
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Old 12-27-2015, 04:56 PM
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Default Re: Small water/short cast fishing question

Quote:
Originally Posted by ts47 View Post
So just to be sure I understand what you are saying... A slower action rod would allow me to use more of the rod for these short casts than what a faster action rod that might only get the tip involved in these short casts. So, a slower action rod would be better. Did I get it right?
Exactly
That's why it's common knowledge that fiberglass rods are best for this sort of fishing.
That and they're much tougher to break
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