Fly fishing Single Spey casting, Double Spey casting, Switch casting, Roll casting, fly casting tuition

Spey casting tuition and instruction

Introduction to Spey casting

spey casting scotland
Good Spey casting depends upon the angler being able to make a smoothly shaped aerial "D" loop with minimum water contact.

Spey casting, switch casting, roll casting, these fairly ancient methods of fly casting have attracted a great deal of attention and popularity in recent times due them being "rediscovered" by anglers internationally. In Scotland most fly fishermen fished and covered the water to the best of their ability using the Spey cast, Double Spey cast, Switch cast and roll cast as necessary. Their names and origins are somewhat irrelevant, the derivations of them are lost in the mists of time. The first time I heard of the Spey cast it was mentioned in a book and being young and keen to learn I asked my father what it was. His reply was "it's just an ordinary cast". It was in fact just one of the many and varied casts that anglers made on the river without thinking. Glass fibre and later carbon rods brought salmon fly fishing with two handed "Spey" rods within reach of a far larger angling public. Combined with plastic lines they made casting much easier, less tiresome and with the new technology the Spey cast itself developed and improved. Shooting line was very limited with silk lines but several modern long belly weight forward lines depend almost entirely upon this technique for distance and without doubt the cast itself has become much easier to learn as a consequence, and it has changed to cope with different line and rod types. Styles are wide and varied but to be successful there are certain substantive rules that must be adhered to regardless of style - the rules of physics. Everyone is built differently and it is the instructors job to help them make the cast in the method best suited to them and eliminate any fly casting faults.

Spey Casting Made Easy DVD by Ally Gowans - learn the essentials of efficient Spey casting.

This is good news for the modern angler of course because it enables him to cast and fish in places impossible by other methods. Perhaps the most eloquent complement ever paid to the Spey cast was written by the late Mr. George M. Kelson after describing the different methods of casting, he gave the Spey this striking eulogy:-

"Fishermen are now sufficiently at home with various systems of casting to have formed one particular conclusion. What is this one particular conclusion? 'That the achievement of any individual cast is an art, and from the very nature of it. The achievement of the much coveted Spey," the highest art of all, is an art endowed with an irresistible fascination peculiar to itself, and so enjoyable that I may leave it without further comment. But, in truth, the "Spey" is to fishing what words are to thoughts, for without it certain waters cannot be commanded, and without words certain thoughts cannot be expressed.

To sum up - What is the chief end of the system? The "Spey" system's chief end may be briefly put thus - "That men who are practically conversant with all the circumstances which render the cast necessary and with all the various ways of making it, are so far removed from the struggling rank and file as to frequently meet with the highest success on pools which, to others, are positively unfishable".

So even in these far off days different styles and techniques were recognised and it gives me great satisfaction to be able to teach anglers the secrets of the many techniques and benefits of good Spey casting, knowing that their fishing enjoyment will be greatly enhanced.

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Copyright 2007 Alastair Gowans AAPGAI and FFF Master and THCI, APGAI. All rights reserved.