How to Mend Your Line While Nymphing

silver creek

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Here are the two posted videos. I will use them for an expanded discussion of line mending.


YouTube



What follows is an explanation for the newbies who may be unfamiliar with mending and the reasons to mend, and a review for experts. A line mend is a repositioning of the fly line. In this case, the mend is called an ON THE WATER MEND (OTW) because the mend occurs AFTER the cast and AFTER the fly line has landed in the water. The video above shows one type of ON THE WATER MEND when nymphing with a strike indicator.

Unless you are casting directly upstream or downstream in a seam of identical flow, the cast will always CROSS a section of water moving faster or slower.

If the section of water is traveling downstream FASTER than the water the indicator is in, the un-mended fly line will form a DOWNSTREAM curve (a “U” shape pointing downstream). This will cause the indicator to be pulled downstream (downstream drag) by the faster water and therefore faster than the flow that the indicator is in. To prevent this DOWNSTREAM drag, MEND UPSTREAM with a “U” shape pointing upstream.

If the section of water is traveling downstream SLOWER than the water the indicator is in, the un-mended fly line will form a UPSTREAM curve (a “U” shape pointing upstream). This will cause the indicator to be held upstream (upstream drag) by the slower water and therefore slower than the flow that the indicator is in. To prevent this UPSTREAM drag, MEND DOWNSTREAM with a “U” shape pointing downstream.

This is the ”LAW OF THE MIRROR IMAGE MEND”. Make the SHAPE of the mends the MIRROR IMAGE of the the un-mended line which is crossing the differential flow and is causing the drag.


YouTube



This video demonstrates the IN THE AIR MEND (ITAM), which occurs between the rod stop of the cast and before the line unfurls and falls onto the water. The mend repositions the fly line in the air, and the fly line falls on the water already repositioned to correct for the unequal water flows. Again the ”LAW OF THE MIRROR IMAGE MEND” applies. Make the SHAPE of the in the air mends the MIRROR IMAGE of the the un-mended line which is crossing the differential flow and is causing the drag.

Notice the video demonstrates the rod tip movement in a geometric single plane - either to the RIGHT and back to center or to the LEFT and back to center. This is how the mend forms in a right curve mend. After the stop, we move the rod tip to the right and then back left to return it to the center. As the loop moves down the line it transmits this right then left line displacement so that the line curves to the right and then back to the center as it falls to the water.

The location, depth and length of the mend depends on the following:

1.The sooner we move the rod tip after the stop, the closer the beginning of the mend will be to the leader.

2. The further to the side we move the rod tip, the deeper the mend or curve.

3. The longer we keep the rod tip to the side, the longer the curve will be.

Notice the video demonstrates the rod tip movement in a geometric single plane - either to the RIGHT or to the LEFT.

If we do move the rod to one side and not move it back to center, the result is a “REACH MEND.” We “reach” the rod tip to the right or left and then follow the line down with the rod tip, to form right and left reach mends. Reach mends are the first mend a beginner should use and are the most common of in the air mend. It gets more complicated as we add the additional rod movements into the mends.

Think of in the air mends as occurring in a 3 dimensional space over the water.

The rod tip can be moved in 6 directions along the 3 axes (X,Y,Z) which form a three dimensional space. So the rod tip can be moved right or left (X axis), up or down (Y axis), backward or forward (Z axis), and in any combination of these direction simultaneously or in sequence. Stick with me here because after this it gets easier.

The simplest mend is the reach mend which has been described above. The right reach mend I described, is a motion of the rod to the right and down. So a right reach mend is a combination of a sideward and a downward motion following the line.

But even with a "simple reach mend" an expert caster can perform wonders. Here is Jason Borger performing an extended reach mend across a river to fish the other bank





A puddle or pile cast Pile / Puddle Cast is actually a mend in the downward direction. The rod tip is immediately dropped to the water after the stop and the highly angled cast dies piling up the leader in a puddle. By moving the line immediately down into the water, we kill the cast. It is actually a downward reach mend! I doubt that many of you have ever thought of the puddle cast as a downward reach mend.

A tuck cast is actually a mend in the forward and up direction. We push the tip forward and up after the stop, and that sends an upward “wave” of fly line down the cast. It creates more vertical space for the fly to tuck under and back. So the tuck cast is a forward and up reach mend. If your cast does not bounce back and under with the standard overpowered tuck cast, reach the rod up and forward immediately after the stop.

A downstream parachute cast is a slight upward motion of the rod tip so that the fly line hangs down from the rod tip like a parachute. So the parachute cast can be thought of as an upward reach mend.

Even the traditional ON THE WATER (OTW) mends are combinations of rod tip motions. The hump mend is an up and down mend that throws extra line into the drift. The standard right OTW mend moves the rod tip up and to the right to reposition and add line to the drift.

With OTW mends in the the first video, it is obvious that the angler is ADDING FLY LINE into the mend. What is not obvious is that for ITAM , you also MUST ADD FLY LINE into the mend. Consider that a mend is placing SLACK LINE into the cast. If we do not add this extra slack fly line to account for the mend, the fly will fall short of the target. This takes practice and adding the correct amount of slack line to form the mend AND to hit the target is a learned skill. So practice your mends. They look easier than they actually are because of the slack line requirement.

Through these examples above we realize that every mend can be described as a motion of the rod tip along the three axes. So if you will think of mends as just movements of the rod tip in combinations of the 3 axes of motion, you can conceptually see how these mends are interrelated and work to reposition and add slack strategically to where it is needed.

Read, learn, practice, succeed.

Copywrite 2007. Please do not reproduce without permission of the author.
 
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scoutm

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Silver - great post!! Lot of good information. There are videos of the other techniques you described (reach mend, parachute cast and pile cast) included in the video series that my post came from.

I highly recommend viewing each of the 3 to 5 minutes tips. There's a lot to learn.

[ame="https://youtu.be/O6uHddBAH7g"]https://youtu.be/O6uHddBAH7g[/ame]

[ame="https://youtu.be/14njsZy47qg"]https://youtu.be/14njsZy47qg[/ame]

Another one of my favorites as the curve cast. It kind of blurs the lines between casting and mending but I can see how it could be extremely useful in rocky pocket water.

[ame="https://youtu.be/B5_PhMOUMUA"]https://youtu.be/B5_PhMOUMUA[/ame]
 

corn fed fins

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Good instruction.

The piece of guide string known as the S.J.W. is as painful to my ears as "it" is to the knights that until recently said "NI!"

"Ekke ekkke ekke ekke ptang zoom boing" now go hook a fish with....a fly!:D
 
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