Fixing Tailing Loops - Fly Fishing Forum
Art of Casting Analysis, refinement of the cast

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Old 07-01-2004, 12:21 PM
LabanTayo LabanTayo is offline
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Fixing Tailing Loops

When I start aerializing more than 40 ft. and gaining line speed, I start to get a really bad tail. I'll drop the tip and inch or two at the end of the forward cast to let the line go over, but the tail then collides with my line. The only way I can prevent a tail is to cast an open loop, but I loose distance and accuracy. I have this problem with everything from a midge on a 4 wt, to a bass bug on my 8 wt.
I finally figured out the snake roll last week. I was doing it on my 7' 6" 3 wt. and moving about 30 ft of line. Not much distance, but its a start.
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Old 07-02-2004, 11:40 AM
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Dana Dana is offline
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What often happens when we try to cast longer distances is we overpower the cast, "hit it" too hard in an effort to put more energy into it. This then manifests itself as a tailing loop. Without watching you cast it is difficult to know exactly where this is happening during your casting stroke. The solution to all tailing loops with longer casts is to increase the distance the rod tip travels (use a longer casting stroke) and make sure that you are applying the power smoothly with a gradual acceleration to a stop. Also, you need to be very smooth with your double haul, as any jerkiness can also cause a tail.

The best video I've seen that teaches distance casting and helps you clean up tailing loops while distance casting is George Roberts's Saltwater Fly Casting. I have it and can recommend it highly. You can reach George through his website:

http://www.whitemouseflyfishing.com/

Another good one that I've grabbed recently is The Art of Advanced Fly Casting with Chico Fernandez.
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Old 07-02-2004, 01:39 PM
LabanTayo LabanTayo is offline
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Dana,
Thanks for the tips. I definetely am overpowering the stroke. Do you recommend drifting? I noticed that it helps, but right now, I am working on too many other factors of casting correctly. I'll start drifting once I smooth it all out.
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Old 07-02-2004, 02:12 PM
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Dana Dana is offline
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drifting

yes, drifting will help extend the stroke, but I think a really good thing to try is to shorten up your line and really work on a nice smooth application of power. Then, little by little, add more line until you are casting as far as you want to without tails, remembering to extend your casting stroke as you add more line to the cast (and BTW--keep in mind that everyone tails sometimes!).

Where do you notice the tails happening in your cast: early on (soon after you stop the rod on the forward stroke), or right near the end (close to the point when the line/leader junction turns over)?

the interesting thing about casting is that, the more line you have out, the less actual effort you seem to need IF everything about your technique is sharp. When I was doing my Spey certification I had the pleasure of watching Brian Niska ("Whistler" here on the board) cast an entire 5 wt line with a perfectly pointy loop, perfect turnover and no tails. Brian is a Master Certified casting instructor and his single hand casting is beautiful to watch, and what is most interesting to me is that he doesn't really look like he is trying very hard to throw all that line. His technique is flawless, so he really doesn't have to wear himself out pounding the line out there.
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Old 07-02-2004, 03:39 PM
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Good thing that this cameup as I've been having the same problem and it is frustrating me. But like you said I've been cutting down on my distance and it seems to help. So thank you for the info it will be used wisely.

Jim
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Old 07-02-2004, 04:08 PM
LabanTayo LabanTayo is offline
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Dana,
My tail starts "early on (soon after you stop the rod on the forward stroke)".
Am i waiting too long on the backcast before I start my forward cast?
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