Last Sunday morning my wife decided she just had to go to local huge shopping centre to pick up a frock or something for a christening in the afternoon – I decided to take the boy for a walk and then had a moment of pure genius – we can go and feed the swans down at the park – it just so happens the North Glasgow Casting Club meets up on Sunday mornings for a bit of rod waving shenanigans.
Just what do you call a group of chaps practising fly casting anyway?
The casting club is a cracking idea – to learn to cast you have really got to see someone cast very well – you can then copy them and ask questions galore. There is also the opportunity to try everyone’s rods (ooer) before you go out and splash out cash on a new one – very worthwhile actually – I am reminded of when someone told me Fulling Mill rods were good – I got one without casting it and hated it – in fact every one of my pals who tried it did not like it either – I eventually sold it to someone from a forum – I heard later it snapped while being cast!
There are also qualified casting instructors on hand however they will not give you full one on one lessons – they will give you pointers – invaluable pointers even and that is pretty neat. If you do then decide to take a couple of hours casting lessons you will know the guy giving it and he will have a feel for what you need to concentrate on.
The casting club is pretty unique as anyone can turn up and is very informal – I have been only the once however constantly hear about its progress on all the various forums and from pals. On nice calm days it is busier however you might find that if you attend on a windy day it will be less busy and you will get more out of it – generally peoples casting goes to pot with a bit of wind.
Anyway, so there I was watching Alberto and another guy casting away with a new Orvis Helios rod – “Have a bash at that” was the offer – I cast – what followed was a disection of my cast, where I had went wrong and what I could do to rectify it – I have heard these guys are very patient – turns out if you are pals wth them they are ruthlessly honest and blunt. “Less Power, less power – put your hand in your pocket” and “Look at that tailing loop – you wanna know what caused that?”
My pal Campbell then turned up with his son and I took great delight in ripping his casting to shreds as well ” Oh my GOD – he has the creep”
So what did I learn? Well for a start I need to correct my own creep that is causing my tailing loops - the way to correct that is to use “The Drift” – this is when on the back cast instead of creeping forward (which is bad) you let the rod drift back ever so slightly. Obviously I need to practice this a bit!
After a while my wife turned up and caused much hilarity by getting a wee bit of fur caught up in the boys buggy and then walking over to the car – just so happened the wee bit of fur was attached to a line, rod and reel.
I think this is a great way for someone to learn how to cast a fly – sure there are some great books and DVDs such as…
However after you have read the books and DVDs heading off to see guys in action where you can ask questions is invaluable.
What can I say – learning to fly fish has never been so accessible to so many – the group meets on Sunday mornings between 1000 and 1200 at Knightswood pond – after 1200 the local model boat group have the pond booked – Seemingly they are a bit unsporting and do not like people casting towards the boats!