Common Casting Mistakes for the Newbie and Beyond

I still have days on the water when everything falls apart. Throughout the season the avid angler changes gear on the regular and it all acts different. One guys favorite rod is the next guys POS award winner and while someone swears by intermediate skagit heads another would rather eat a ghost pepper then be reduced to those depths. Joke: what has two thumbs and hates intermediate skagit heads- this guy, but I digress. We’re all subject to different factors that contribute to our strengths and casting faults and here are a few of the most common I see on the water.

1. Too fast- I know you’ve never been accused of being too fast but in this case there’s something you can do about it. Starting with an agonizingly slow calculated lift on every cast will not only minimize slack but set the pace for a buttery smooth delivery.

Watching a deliberately slow cast unfold. Be like Danny.

2. Creep- this is when your backcast (d loop) hasn’t had time to create the proper load but you are instinctively coming forward on your finale. Simplest solution is slow down. See a pattern? S-L-O-W D-O-W-N just so happens to fit perfectly tattooed across your knuckles and will visible throughout the cast (and every moment of life afterwards).

3. Trunking- this is when you drop your rod in the backcast. It causes all the line to crash on the water and all that line stick is hard to recover from. Like many people I’m guilty of doing it when I’m going to wind up and knock the cast out of the park. To correct it get in the habit of watching your back cast.

A little too much power? Sorry Pete.

4. Too much Power- double the power means double the distance right? While the better you become at casting the more power you can correctly time, just punching things harder only leads to blown anchors and new body piercings. Learn to cast with less, let the rod carry the burden and ease into the strength. Speyoramas likely a little ways off for ya anyways.

5. Bad anchors- there’s no best fits anchor for all casts but my suggestion would be to pay close attention to where your anchor lands right from day one. A little to close it might feel like it’s gonna take your head off or collide with the rod and a little to far could make for a gutless finish, sling shot your delivery upstream or “whip crack” with blown anchor. Hard to build a bridge without a good foundation and the anchor is that.

Spey casting is varied and there are no shortage of issues that can arise when getting starting and beyond. I often find myself saying “I’ve never seen that before.”

What are your issues? What mistakes do you see the most?

How you picture your casts looking.


2 thoughts on “Common Casting Mistakes for the Newbie and Beyond

  1. Nice article Steve.
    I have heard from more than one expert caster that you cast beautifully. Any chance of posting a video? It was be neat to see you fishing one of those great runs in BC that are off limits to us here in the States this year.

    1. Hey Kevin,

      Thanks for the comment. I really excel from boat perch at pointing at rocks and urging people further down the tailout of the run. That said we plan to create some videos demonstrating faults and some others of the corrections. Should be a pretty cast or two in the mix!

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