Casting Tip of the Month - Casting Accuracycourtesy Atlanta Fly Fishing School
I personally use the thumb on top, and that is what we recommend at our fly-fishing school although we review various grips. Accuracy comes not so much from a certain grip as it does from the path the rod tip takes as it moves forward and backward through the casting stroke. Whether you use the finger, the thumb or a V grip, the key is to keep it hidden from your target tucked behind the cork and the reel pointing at the target through the entire casting stroke. The best way to become an accurate caster is to practice casting at targets such as Frisbees thrown out on a lawn. Vary the distances and angles of your targets and try to drop a yarn fly as near to them as possible. A great substitute for Frisbees this time of year is the fallen leaves. Walk around your yard or a park and pick out leaves and patches of grass to try and drop your fly on. Concentrate on making the tip of your fly rod follow a straight-line path away from (back cast) and toward (forward cast) the target. It is important to practice this accuracy game by casting in different planes such as the overhead cast, the sidearm cast and the across body cast. In this way you will be prepared to make accurate casts in a real streamside scenario. Most of our mountain streams dictate an accurate presentation to be successful but rarely allow a basic overhead-casting stroke due to trees and foliage. Practice your accuracy in different planes before you hit the stream, and you will have the skill and confidence to place your fly where you want it regardless of the ever-present fly catching rhododendron and mountain laurel. Practice may not make your casting perfect but it certainly will make it better.