Swedish version


Right foot in front gives better accuracy when casting

Tips for the coming season
By Niclas Andersson

  More often we happen to fish for fish that stand in tricky positions and where you have to cast very accurately. It may be places where thecurrent creates difficult locations to get a good fly presentation, or fish that eat near the surface and thus get a very small field of view. But there may also be situations when fishing in still water, when, for example, to place the fly in a small hole between the leaves in a “filed” of waterlilys. All of these situations require very precise casts, and there is actually a fairly simple method to increase ones "target accuracy" and get the fly to land exactly where you want.

  Usually, we stand with our feet next to each other when we cast on normal distance. For longer cast, we move our feets away from each other. A right-handed fishermen pushes forward his left foot in front of the right hand (left hand throwers do the opposite). The different ways to place your feet clearly shows that body position affects the cast, something we may not always be aware of.

  To reach the full precision of the cast that I mention initially, we can draw a parallel with darts. The darts require the highest possible concentration to achieve the best precision in every throw. A right-handed dart player stands often with the right led in front of the left - that is completely "wrong" compared to our normal casting position at fly fishing. But why then places dart players their feet so? Well, it actually gives the highest precision.

  The same thing happens if we actually also do that when casting short to meduim distances and when we demand the highest precision!

  So even though it is still a little time before spring makes its intrusion and the waters will open again, I recommend a head start of the fishing season with a little casting exercise on dry land. Try to cast for very small targetzones and note that position of the feet actually has its importance!

A small insect catching net gives you an idea of todays drift

  Make an insect catching net

  Although the fish are not always selective, it hardly reduces the chance to catch the fish if you have a fly that imitates the insect found on or in the water that day. Additionally, it's always more fun to fish with your own flies that have a real insect as a model. So you have to find out what the fish are feeding on. For this, of course, many times the use of sight and simply try to see what hatches or floats with or on the water. But to completely rely on vision may be questionable, since it is difficult to see a small insect in the far distance. Furthermore, you can not always see through the water, for example, if the angle is shallow so visible beams are broken and it just creates a lot of reflections or if it is dark or if the water is heavily colored by humus. Often you also want to keep the insect in your hand in order to study them in detail, if we are to have them as a model when tying imitations.

  An easy as instructive way to find out what's on the water or operate in its surface layer is to use a insect catching net. Such net may vary in size and consists, as the name suggests, of a fine weaved net, in which each short side is attached to two pins of appropriate length. The pins act as handles when you hold down the net in the water. A smaller net, 30x10 centimeters, with two short sticks you can roll up and put in a pocket on the fishing vest - and is therefore always available. . But you can also make a larger net with longer sticks, and where the pins may protrude a few centimeters in the lower edge, so you can stick them into the ground. Such a net can be 50 centimeters wide, and then it can be necessary to support it against the bottom, because the water pressure against the net otherwise make it difficult to keep in place. Although such a net can naturally roll up, but it requires significantly more space and therefore more suitable for larger insect inventories, while the small net is intended for general fishing.

  It is very easy to make a catching net by yourself. Mats Christensen from Gothenburg, for example, has a catching net, which he secured between two Chinese chopsticks. But a couple of flower sticks or similar will also work. Mats uses two different catching nets, one is black and relatively rigid while the other is light beige and slightly softer and more dense. The colors complement each other and you can see easily in both bright and dark insects, while the fine mesh also get with the smallest organisms.

  When you use your new catching net, so be sure to try some different locations in the water at different depths. Can also be a good idea to bring a entomology book with which you can identify the larvae, nymphs, pupae and winged insects you catch. That way you will learn more about what fish eat, while providing great inspiration models for later when you sit and tie your imitations.

  A good tip is to use the net in the places where the stream forms “foam” on the surface of the water, as it usually is here you will find the largest insect concentration.

Tailing glove gives a good grip of the tailfin

  Tailing glove

  Many fish will escape at landing, because we "forgot" the net at home. But often the real reason why we not bring the net with us when fishing is that it is takes up to much space among all the gear you “must” bring. Most often the net get tangled in the bushes and branches as we move on land, and when we stand out in the water the line get tangled in the net.

  The alternative is to carry a cotton glove, which of course does not take up more space in your pocket, but delivers an incredibly good grip when lifting a fish around the tail. Salmon fishermen have been using such a glove for a long time, but it works just as well when it comes to get a good grip on a stocked rainbow with nagged tail fin.

  Cotton gloves can be found in sports stores that sell hockey equipment, as these are worn under hockey gloves. Just make sure there are no small plastic bumps on the gloves, as they give the opposite effect, ie, the fish becomes slippery as soap. (Common on garden gloves)

  Tailing-glove works great, but it is not recommended if you intend use catch and release, because the fish's spine can be damaged by you tailing it - whether you use glove or not.

Text & photo: Niclas Andersson 1999 ©



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