Monday, February 26, 2007

Rollin' on the River (not so much)

Sandy and I took the day off and spent much of it at the beautiful Gunpowder. We were just hiking around in the snow, primarily, although I did bring my rod and threw some streamers in here and there. We saw some fish -- more than I expected, actually -- but didn't hook any. I didn't even bring waders, so I was just looking for easy access points from which to drop a fly in.

Today's outing made me realize one thing, and if you want to realize the same thing all you have to do is go to your favorite water without waders: I need to work on my roll casting. Almost everywhere I stopped to fish, I wanted to reach a fallen log or the far bank, and without wading I was very restricted on any kind of back cast. Simple solution, just roll cast, right? Well I guess I spoil myself by just walking out far enough (and likely spooking fish) that I can make a standard cast. I honestly thought I had a serviceable roll cast until today, when I had no other options.


Tom Chandler said...

Ahh, the poor misunderstood rollcast. Left in the closet until someone really needs it, then dragged out dusted off, and cursed when it doesn't perform... 8-)

I wish I could say I hadn't done the same, but after last year's trip to Tennessee - and watching Ian Rutter hammer fish I couldn't reach (with my perfectly servicable roll cast) - I came home and practiced that little beauty.

It paid off.

Could a rollcast find its way into your next woodcut print?

Ed. said...

Well it could, but I'd have to remember what a good one looked like first! Seriously, I don't even know where to start practicing. I think I need to buy a video or something.

Tom, let me ask you, seriously, do different flexes in rods make roll casts easier or harder? I fished with a guy once who was really good at roll casting, I tried his rod and he tried mine and neither one of us could do it worth a damn. Seems like a full flex rod might make that easier, I don't know. I do know that I ought to be better at it with any rod, I just wondered if the flex made a difference...

Tom Chandler said...

I've heard people say slow rods rollcast better, fast rods rollcast better, rods with "hinges" above the grip rollcast better...

You get the picture.

The one generalization I am willing to make is that done properly, a roll cast is a lot like a forward cast - largely effortless.

If you're working at it, you're probably doing it wrong.

Ed. said...

Uh, I'm doing it wrong then.

I will keep you posted on any progress. Thanks.