In last few years, I have seen more and more people get into the spey casting. I started spey casting about 5 years ago because of the big striper river down south, soon, I joined the speypages, a great internet forum for people that fish spey. A lot of great veterans that are willing to share their experience, history and better yet, amazing fishing stories. I enjoy and learn from this site a lot. Sometime I do put my thoughts there just to return the favors that I have been receiving from the past few years.
Spey cast is not a easy cast to learn, if people tell you spey cast is so easy, so simple. They are lying! Unlike overhead casting, A simple looking spey cast, does, involved a lot of learning, from basic mechanics to fine tuning power control. You will know it is not that "simple" by look at the confusions and frustrations on the internet forum.
A frequently asked question is "what is the best line to use?" many people are search for the magic line that can make a perfect cast, can help you to launch a laser sharp loop and catch a big one. Unfortunately, this question will only lead to another level of different questions! What rod you are using? what style you prefer to cast? what fly you are going to throw?.... ha... for beginner... it is a overwhelming situation. People are search for the magic line? Situation like this...."what weight of line for this particular rod?" It is 500 grain for me! "It is 650 grain for me when I use sinktip, but sometime I use 450 grain with polyleader for dryfly action!" What?? what? people get lost, discussion get into debating and even worse... turn the internet into a war zone...very sad!
are there magic line? or magic cast? Be honest with you, I don't know?! But if there is a real magic one. I can be careless. why? (you know what I going to say...) because even a magic line, it needs good hands to cast it! and good hands need a good brain to coordinate them! Old philosopher said "" instead of give you a fish, rather teach you how to fish!" this is so true in spey casting, especially, for spey rods, it always have a huge window of line weights which means it will cast a wide varietis of lines. Truth been told, I have a rod that has a very sensitive feel on hands. Sweden brand - Guideline LeCie 13'7 8/9 lines. Normally, the manufacturer recommend about 550 grain line. But I cast it well from a low spectrum 270 grain all the way up to 540 grain. You might ask why use so different lines? "Different horses for different course!" a wiseman once told me! Different line for different situation, and they are all magic lines for their casting and fishing scenario to me. What I try to say here is there is no need to find "a" magic line, I sincerely encourage new comers to build their casting from focus on casting mechanics and practicing. Train a brain is much better to train hands, train hands is much better than searching for a magic line. Dr. Way Yin, a famous spey casting instructor and neuro-physician once said: " if you figure out "why" it works, then, you will figure out "how" it works ". this is so true! I like to teach a new comer "how to fish" instead of just "give them a fish". This is the beauty of this sport! Doesn't it?! You figure out the principle and you customer design a recipe for your fishing scenario. Believe me, it is another level of satisfaction! so stop searching for a magic line or a magic cast. But start to learn the basic and principle. There are several spey casting DVD I highly recommended beginner to start with. First, The art of spey casting - A film by Jeffrey Pill. What a wonderful DVD! The best value spey casting DVD ever produced! 20 world famous casters demonstrate their casting basic and secrets, I mean, WORLD FAMOUS! Goran Andersson, Al Buhr, Simon Gawesworth, Andy Murray, Way Yin Nabuo etc..... Second - The Skagit master 1 DVD - featuring Ed Ward. A skagit casting style guru teaches the foundation and principles of power skagit casting. It is a very distinct way/style/a new principle to cast heavy fly. I highly recommended if you fish heavy fly very frequently.
I am a biologist grew up with a fishing rod in my hands. I have been fortunate enough to embrace my love of art and science in my career. Most of my free time were well spent in the nature, either studying bird behavior or chasing variety of fish with fly rods. My favorite art medium is watercolors, I love the natural and spontaneous feel created by watercolor pigments. I am currently a post-doctoral research fellow at Harvard University. Welcome to my website. Mark