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Old 03-10-2011, 09:05 PM
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Default Leader too light?

I've been practice casting a new 9 wt. fly rod I plan on using this summer in Belize......got to be able to cast 80 feet into the wind. I'm having trouble turning the leader over. It just clumps down with the end of the fly line. I only had very light weight 6x leaders I use to fish trout in the high Sierra. Could the leader being too light cause this or am I missing something. Never had that problem before.
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Old 03-10-2011, 09:08 PM
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Default Re: Leader too light?

Kind of hard to diagnose with out seeing your cast. What size fly did you have on? A heavier leader can't hurt either!!
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Old 03-10-2011, 09:56 PM
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Default Re: Leader too light?

You need to consider a few things when practicing casts with heavier equipment. Buy a leader that will be the size you are going to cast on the water, make sure you stretch it out too so it doesn't coil. I would also cut the hook off of a Clouser or a fly that will weigh as much as the flies you will be casting and tie it on. Casting a lone 6x leader and casting what I just said will make a huge difference.
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Old 03-11-2011, 09:36 AM
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Default Re: Leader too light?

The ability to cast 80' into the wind is handy for sure, but you can catch plenty of fish if you can cast accurately 60' into the wind.

A 6x leader definitely could interfere with turnover, but if you're practicing with something that accurately represents what you'll be throwing down there, it shouldn't matter all that much. I say that because a typical bonefish fly will have a bit of weight that should sustain the fly's inertia and help it turn over.

For a practice fly, grab something with some weight and cut the point off or bend it up against the shank. A Charlie, gotcha, clouser, or even a weighted bugger would be good. The brighter the better, so you can see where its landing.
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Old 03-11-2011, 04:36 PM
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Default Re: Leader too light?

I build all of the leaders that I fish with and I learned pretty quickly that the proportions of the leader are very important to the turn over of the fly. I agree with everyone about the 6x being your deter ant on turning the fly over but it could also be the leader that you are using. I would do what these guys have mentioned and use the stuff that you will be using on your trip. And I mean use exactly the same gear.
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Old 03-12-2011, 12:12 AM
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Default Re: Leader too light?

Is the leader extending and then recoiling back when it hits the end of your cast? Or is it just landing in a pile in front of your line? The former would probably requite a lighter hand on the forward cast. I'm no casting instructor, but I have a tendency to overpower even shorter casts and the leader will reach its maximum length and then snap back into a pile on occasion.

If your casting to bones, the issue really comes when you cast like that and your weighted fly will swing down and slap the water with a bit of force and scatter the fish.

Otherwise, you might want to try a stiffer leader.
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Old 03-12-2011, 12:11 PM
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Default Re: Leader too light?

Not meaning to direct aspersions on anyone's claim of casting into the wind or distances that can be obtained when doing so but I do have an observation to make on the leader quandary. Pushing a fly line into wind much above 5 mph is more like work than I have ever enjoyed and topping that off with trying to straighten a leader out like a pool cue at the end of over 70' of fly line when casting into a stiff wind is hard to master.

However; this can be done and on occasion I have to do so in order to stay in the game here. What you need first is a very tight loop in the cast in order to attain your range. Once range has been acquired the final forward cast must be opened just a bit and as the loop reaches its terminus the rod must be stopped sharply and drawn backward with an upward motion just a tad.

What the move I describe does is to flatten the end of the presentation loop essentially tightening it and adding speed to the terminal end of the tackle. This quickening at the right moment will give that leader & fly the final retro burner needed to straighten them out provided the wind is not too harsh. When the wind becomes too heavy other methods of reaching fish should be used. With the chop created by wind I have found that you can get much closer to a fish than possible on a calm day and so eliminate the need for distance exercises.

Now that almost sounds like I know what I was talking about doesn't it? I just read that and even I think that makes sense

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Last edited by Hardyreels; 03-12-2011 at 12:59 PM.
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