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Old 08-13-2013, 10:44 AM
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Default Test Casting...

For the first time in years I have been reevaluating my existing quiver, adding a few rods and considering some new ones. I just recently bought an older1990's Scott G 906/4 and a wonderful Echo-3 10' six weight streamer rod. That has led to much lawn casting in my front yard, trying different lines on each rod, compare one to the other and on and on. I also tried the new Scott Radian and have been getting used to my new (to me) Sage Z-Axis 9' five weight.

When it comes to test casting on the lawn my first temptation is to go for distance, find the limit of the rod and my casting technique. Then I realize I am usually way beyond where I usually fish and shorten my cast down to 25'-40'. At this point I play an accuracy game, trying to his exact spots at various distances and angles. If the wind is blowing, all the better for seeing how the rod, line and my casting deal with it.

How do you guys do it? Do you put a lot of emphasis on distance? I find that I can't help but be impressed with rods that cast far easily even though I never, or very rarely need to cast beyond 40-50'.

John
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Old 08-13-2013, 10:53 AM
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Default Re: Test Casting...

I am not a great caster but I do really like being able to stick a cast right up against a log or between boulders. I really enjoy fishing cover and force myself to get accurate with where the fly goes. I seldom find myself with a lot of line out there. I usually try to sneak up on cover or a seam in the water and make a good presentation that I can control. However, if you have ever seen me cast you probably wouldn't want to emulate me...lol!
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Old 08-13-2013, 11:34 AM
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Default Re: Test Casting...

Lawn casting is great. It reveals a lot about a rod/line combination and allows one to work on stroke and timing issues one ignores while intuitively fishing. I like to start as short as possible to find what amount of line is required to load and feel the rod. I like to reduce stroke power and tip travel incrementally to the find the minimum needed to generated a well formed loop. Randomly pick spots to hit accurately with the wind coming from different directions and, ultimately, because it is fun and reveals a rods limitations, work longer distances until I hit the rods or my limits. With a new rod, I will try several different lines. Some rods are forgiving of line design and cast everything OK but usually one or two bring something special to its performance; other rods can be temperamental and really react differently to line weight/design characteristics. This line fine tuning pays big dividends while fishing and most of my active rods have a dedicated reel/line match up for optimal balance and performance.

Lastly, many fly fishers don't practice their casting and it shows. All other stroke sports, golf, tennis,...serious participants work with a pro to refine their technique. Pro baseball players, younger and far more athletic than many of us, work in the batting cage before every game. We had a very successful Physician accompany us on his first ever bonefish trip. During the winter he had regaled me with tales of his marvelous exploits in Montana and told me of his diverse experience. Arriving in the southern Bahamas, I was dismayed to discover the patheticness of his casting acumen. A few hours of lawn casting spread over a few weeks could have had this fine gentleman prepared to hit the ground running; instead he handicapped our group by requiring on-the-flats coaching instead of fishing.
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Old 08-13-2013, 12:20 PM
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Default Re: Test Casting...

"How do you guys do it? Do you put a lot of emphasis on distance? I find that I can't help but be impressed with rods that cast far easily even though I never, or very rarely need to cast beyond 40-50'."

Same is becoming the case with 2handers, hence the explosion in popularity with 'switch rods.' Most popular length is 11 foot, and never seen anyone actually 'one hand' cast the things. You get out much beyond that 40-50 foot range and the fish had better hook himself.
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Old 08-13-2013, 12:30 PM
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Default Re: Test Casting...

I always go for distance, but do practice short casting also, but main focus is 18-25 meter. I have never measured my cast. Being a saltwater angler theese distances are normal.

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Old 08-13-2013, 12:58 PM
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Default Re: Test Casting...

Quote:
Originally Posted by krikau27 View Post
I always go for distance, but do practice short casting also, but main focus is 18-25 meter. I have never measured my cast. Being a saltwater angler theese distances are normal.

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At some point I would like to take a trip to Alaska and fish for salmon, right now I'm purely a trout fisher, 100% Montana, 90% Rivers and streams, 10% back country lakes.

I just bought a 90's era Scott G 9' six weight and spent the last few hours lawn casting with markers out at 40', 50', 60' and 75'. For fun I brought out my TFO Lefty K Pro model 9' five weight, old Scott G 9' four weight, Sage Z-Axis 9' five weight and an Echo-3 10' six weight I just bought. The Echo came with a nice Bauer Lohr reel and some grey weight forward line ( I assume 6 wt).

I was casting into a slight head wind, maybe 5-10 mph. It was interesting, except for the Echo, all of my rods died around 60', but up to that distance the four weight Scott held up with the heavier, faster cousins. I tried four lines on the Scott six weight, that grey line that came with the used Echo 6 wt., an older Cortland 444 peach colored six weight double taper, a 5-6 weight Wulff TT, and a SA five weight GPX. The line that seemed to work best with the Scott was that five weight GPX, that will be my first choice when I fish it. I did a lot of practice casting to odd points between 20'-40', the most accurate rod for me was my Scott G904/4, but that might be because I fish it the most.

John
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