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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Central Coast, Cal

    Default keep losing flies!

    So far every time that I have gone out fishing I have lost a fly. Mind you I am a beginner fly fishermen. I've noticed that I lose them on my backcast, either on nearby bushes or rocks on the floor. I always check for bushes before casting, but it seems as though I always manage to snag on something. Is this fairly normal for beginners? What am I doing wrong?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Berks, PA
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: keep losing flies!

    man, when i started I was going through a dozen flys and outting!

    but that will pass, just keep an eye on your surroundings to avoid snags. another thing to watch is during your backcast that you let the line straighten out before starting your forward cast. if the line still has too much of a loop in it when you start your front cast, you essentially crack the line like a whip and it will pop off flies(i speak from experience.) What works for Indiana Jones doesn't work for fish.

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  4. #3

    Default Re: keep losing flies!

    Ant is on the money answer... My first outing was 5 flies and I've progressively gotten better... I still lose about one or two an outing now due to some kind of snag... My first couple times out I was popping off the flies on the back cast.

    Short answer: Yes, it's normal.


  5. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Beaumont, Alberta
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: keep losing flies!

    I think everyone goes through this, but there may be something you can watch for besides the bushes.
    If you are a new caster, you may sometimes get a "buggy whip" effect when you are casting.
    If you hear a SNAP sound behind you, it is because you are dropping your back cast too much. This can snap your fly off if you are using a lighter tippet, it used to happen to me when I was first learning.
    Good luck, it will get easier as time goes on.....Kerry
    Each smallest act of kindness - even just words of hope when they are needed, the remembrance of a birthday, a compliment that engenders a smile - reverberates across great distances and spans of time, affecting lives unknown to the one whose generous spirit was the source of this good echo, because kindness is passed on and grows each time it's passed, until a simple courtesy becomes an act of selfless courage years later and far away.

  6. #5

    Default Re: keep losing flies!

    You will get better. I tend to get sloppy on my casting and have to be mindful about it. Trees and bushes will still get some but so will the fish. It will happen.

  7. Default Re: keep losing flies!

    Just keep in mind as a beginning fly fisherman......if you are nymphing and you DON'T occassionaly get snagged on the bottom and lose flies - you are probably doing it wrong. Meaning you have to make sure you have enough weight on your flies or leader so that flies are drifting off the bottom of the river - where trout do most of their feeding. Anytime you drift your flies and you realize you are never hanging up on the bottom...lengthen distance of your leader/indicator and/or add weight.

  8. #7

    Default Re: keep losing flies!

    Smog, another thing that will keep your flies out of the bushes behind you is to keep your back cast at a slight up angle, and not let your wrist break too much in the back cast. It is easy to let your wrist go, which wraps your cast around instead of keeping it in a straight line. Back and forth on the cast, not up and around. Here is a link that explains it better then I do, it is not the best I have seen, but it gets the point accross.

    I agree and disagree with the point about nymphing, when you are nymphing, I agree you need to have your fly near the bottom, but I beleive you need to not be "on" the bottom. I think a lot of people mean "ticking the bottom" when they say on the bottom. When I was first starting out, I lost a lot of flies on the bottom, and then was told by a friend who fishes a lot that you should lengthen your leader or add weight to get the fly down so you know you can get to the bottom and you know where the bottom is, then take a few inches off, or a little weight off, to that it is about 6 to 8 inches above the bottom and only occasionally (once or twice in a drift) touch the bottom. You will still snag on the plant growth, and occassionally still get stuck on branches, underwater limbs, etc, but you snag less, and I tend to catch more fish this way.

    The belief is that trout don't usually feed on the bottom, they watch the drift, so the nymph needs to be at eye level or slightly above for them to most easily see it.


  9. Default Re: keep losing flies!

    That is a good point to clarify. I used to be of the philosophy of keeping shot very close to my first fly.....mistakenly assuming my flies should be right on the bottom. In actuality - trout prefer to eat "up". ... meaning if you visualize a trout holding on the river makes sense that its more natural (and effortless) for it to simply lift his head up to nail passing items of food than it would be for it to actually eat something off the bottom. Experiment on your own. Also....if you get hung up almost everytime - thats a sign of too much weight...also not a good thing.

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Southeast Pennsylvania

    Default Re: keep losing flies!

    Quote Originally Posted by smog7 View Post
    So far every time that I have gone out fishing I have lost a fly. Mind you I am a beginner fly fishermen. I've noticed that I lose them on my backcast, either on nearby bushes or rocks on the floor. I always check for bushes before casting, but it seems as though I always manage to snag on something. Is this fairly normal for beginners? What am I doing wrong?
    Have you tried roll casting yet? This will help tremendously when bushes and trees are close to your back.

  11. #10

    Default Re: keep losing flies!

    Hey! First post here. My thanks to everyone for a great forum and a great source of info. I've been reading this board for a few years now and learned a great deal about fishing and tying.

    Anyway, I would recommend to any beginner, or anyone else who doesn't already know how to, that they learn how to roll cast. With a series of roll casts I can easily get my line out 50 - 60 ft. accurately while standing with my back literally up against a cliff.

    Like anything else, it takes practice and patience to learn but once you've mastered it the roll cast will become just as important as the basic cast when fishing small streams and rivers. It will also allow you to fish spots you wouldn't otherwise be able to. Riverbanks, brush, trees and even other fisherman become non factors when searching out new lies.

    Once you've learned how to roll cast you can then integrate it into your basic casting. Say you have just finished a drift. You would now normally strip in X amount of line and begin your casting sequence again. With a roll cast you can leave all your line on the water, then roll cast your line into the air, go directly into a normal back cast, then just shoot your fly back upstream for another drift.......

    Simple right?


    practice and patience......

    Fly Fishing "Roll Cast" from The Angling

    ---------- Post added at 12:04 PM ---------- Previous post was at 12:01 PM ----------

    ......or, what Frankb2 said

    damn, I type slow

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