Casting Tip November/December 2015

by: Bill Armon CCI

From Mel Krieger and Lefty Kreh

Mel Krieger along with Lefty Kreh were the main casting instructors I learned from in my early years of fly casting. Lefty neatly outlined his essentials; Mel was not so kind. Below I try to outline what I believe his “bullet” points would have been.

This info is from a book by Mel Krieger “The Essence of Flycasting”. This book should be a must read for everyone who wants to learn to flycast. This book should be required reading for all casting instructors. I strongly recommend you get this book.

So here goes my attempt to give the basics of Mel Kreiger’s essentials. (Forgive me Mel).

There are three main aspects of the cast:       1) The casting stroke. 2) The casting arc. 3) The casting Loop.

The casting Stroke = the entire motion.  The casting arc = the V shaped arc between the stopping point on the fore and back cast. Casting Loop = the shape of the line as it unrolls through the air and off the tip of the rod.

Good casting requires that the forward cast and the back cast work together in a straight line. (Remember SLP? – straight line path of the rod tip). The size of the casting arc and stroke must fit the amount of bend in the rod in order to maintain SLP.

“A good casting loop is formed by decisively stopping the rod at the end of the casting stroke”.  The shape of the loop is determined by the path of the rod tip during the casting stoke. SLP = good loop. Convex path of the rod tip = open loop. Concave path = tailing loop. 

Mel goes on to say,  by correctly applying the speed up and stop you can make narrow or wide loops with both narrow and wide casting strokes.  The greater the bend in the rod the larger the casting stroke must be to maintain SLP.

Mel  seems to belive timing and feel will come with practice. My favorite quote of Mel’s is the essence of teaching is enthusiasm and the essence of learning is repetition (practice). Get Mel’s book and go practice – he was (and is) a great instructor.

If anyone has a topic they would like to see discussed send them to and they will appear in a future newsletter.


Archive of Past Casting Tips

October 2015, The Fundamentals
September 2015, The Essentials
August 2015, The Guru’s Basic Casting Principles and / or Essentials
February 2015, The Most Important Concepts
January 2015, Back to Basics
November/December 2014, Winter Practice
October 2014, Casting Split Shot
August 2014, Aerial Mends Continued
July 2014, The Curve Cast
June 2014, The Reach Cast
May 2014, The Pile Cast
April 2014, The Tuck Cast
March 2014, More Casting Terminology
February 2014, Casting Terminology
January 2014, Tailing Loops (pt.2)
October 2013, Tailing Loops
September 2013, Forming Controlled Loops
August 2013, Identify Your Bottleneck (part 2)
July 2013, Identify Your Bottleneck - Correct Power Application
May 2013, What is Smooth
April 2013, Application of Power
March 2013, The reach and aerial mend casts.
February 2013, Mending
November 2012, Timing, Grip, and Hand/Rod Stop Position
October 2012, 5 things that will improve your casting

Return whence you came.