By Bob Garber, MCCI
Single Hand Spey Casting
I’m sure most have heard of Spey casting and wondered what it is all about. Visions of long rods, long lines and wide rivers and fisherman holding the rod with both hands may come to mind. While that vision is true there is no reason to be intimidated by the thought or because of the lack of the equipment to get into it. The thing that many do not realize is that Spey casts are not limited to two-handed rods. The Spey casts can be performed with single hand rods to the great benefit of the fly fisherman. If you think about it, Spey casts are nothing more than a dynamic roll cast with a change of direction thrown in. There are numerous types of Spey casts and which to use is determined by wind direction, current direction and which bank you are fishing from.
Let’s look at an example of where a single hand Spey cast may be used. Imagine you are wading along the left bank of a stream with an upstream wind or no wind at all. While we are imagining, throw in some brush and trees along the stream bank to complete the picture. Now we can start, you have to make a cross stream cast where your fly will drift down and back across to the left bank, downstream of your position. How would you make that first cross stream cast? Then in order to make another cast after the fly has drifted downstream, you need to make a decision of how you are going to make a pickup and recast across the stream again for another drift in the most efficient way that you can. Do you pickup the line and false cast while turning to the direction you wish the cast to go? Lets think, remember the brush and trees? Do you strip line in, in order to make a pick up and recast? This is the type of situation where using a Spey cast will help you solve the dilemma and make a more enjoyable day on the water. It will be more efficient, less tiring, safer and you will be more confident with your casting.
When you need to make a pick up and change directions try to do as safely and efficiently as possible. This will eliminate fatigue, the possibility of spooking the fish or snagging yourself, which can ruin a day of fishing needlessly.