Friday, January 6, 2012

How To Cast a Fly..

It was in the Times of Atari and the great cola wars, a time of termoil in America, Ford Verses cheverolet, Mcdonalds or Burger King..Glass vs graphite.. no one in Indiana even knew about the middle east, gas just miraculously showed up at the gas n'go. But I was aware of none of this, I was eleven and had a bike a fly rod and a copy of the curtis creek manifesto, and thats all I had, Al Gore had not invented the internet yet, youtube was non-existant, and blogs were places in Scotland they went to get peet to fertilize those ridiculously nice gardens they seem to have everywhere. I was casting wooly buggers in the little Spokane river to mountain whitefish that I just couldn't seem to get to stick when I heard a voice behind me, Lord, you are only casting 10 feet and the tightest point in your loop is 19 feet over your head! The 30 something year old know it all then stepped into the silt choked river and walked up next to me.. "cast" I was struck with a bit of terror, "im gonna hook this fool if he doesn't move" I thought, but he was a rather intimidating guy so I did. I lifted my rod and began my cast long before any of my line was off the water, powering back I felt the sudden creepy thud of his hand as he grabbed my wrist and held it, my line shot up and fell all around us snaking in the water between our legs and then down stream. "did you feel that?" he said.. "feel what?" I replied.. "thats my point" He then told me to follow him up onto the gravel road that followed the river took my rod and began stripping line off to begin a cast. I freaked out a little after his first cast as he lifted the rod tip my line raced across the ground like a snake shooting gravel and dust as it lifted.. " your gonna ruin my flyline!" I shouted. He looked down and smiled, "its a shakesphere level line.. it was ruined when it left the factory" he said with a sideways smile. We worked for probably an hour and my cast improved more than it had in a year.. he taught me how to sense the rod and feel the stroke, my loops tightened, my distance improved and my cast all of a sudden had presentation, something it had lacked entirely previously. He dissapeared for a few minutes as I kept practicing my new found talent and then I noticed he was standing beside me once again. "Thank you, I don't really have anyone to show me any of this stuff" I said with a little bit of shame and embaracement in my voice.. " I really don't know anything about fly fishing" He reached over and handed me a Pflueger Medalist 1494 1/2 flyreel loaded with a wf line, "Practice, stay diligent, and trust the proccess.. thats everything you need to know about flyfishing" and then he walked away... I thank him, the first person I ever met who loved flyfishing the way I do, enough to help another fisher improve himself, I hope someday he finds this blog-


  1. funny, after re-living this day, I wonder why he didn't show me a roll cast?

  2. Nice story! I always try to pass on what I know, but who really wants to learn from a guy whose blog is Windknots & tangled lines?

  3. I evolved in flyfishing without any support of a Jedi Master... I think anyone would be happy to have a role model... even if it was only to teach him how to tie a "proper" wind knot!