May 18, 2007
By Frances Hamm
Check out more photos from this outing in our Photo Gallery!
I have to say, my first conclave at the new Gulf Coast Council of FFF was terrific, and I got far more than I expected. Not only was there fun, people to meet, and lots to learn, but also there was Lefty Kreh.
Lefty is one of the more renown fly fishers in the U.S. (over 300 books in print), and he has several DVDs out. His specialty is casting, and he attended the Saturday Women’s Luncheon to talk briefly about his latest thinking about casting.
Lavene, Lefty, Frances, and Mary
Lefty allowed as how he had become concerned about the potential for elbow and shoulder injuries with the traditional cast (overhead 2 o’clock to 11 o’clock). He advised a new cast that keeps the upper arm close to the body. The body moves to make the side cast.
All that was interesting, but I was scheduled after the luncheon for a casting clinic. I wondered if any of Lefty’s advice would come into play.
Sure enough, Colby “Pops” Sorrells has worked with Lefty and taught the new style of casting. In 1½ hours, I learned the basics of the new body cast. It is amazing! I have better control and distance AND my arm did not hurt. Pops is a great instructor—get into one of his classes if you ever have a chance. He also writes for several periodicals.
In case you are interested, Lefty and writer Ed Jaworowski put forth four principles of casting as follows:
1. You must have line tension against the tip. Get the end of the line moving.
2. Move the casting hand always with increasing speed throughout the stroke from the first movement, slowest at the start, fastest at the completion. (Speed up and stop.)
3. The line can only go in the direction the tip is moving.
4. The longer the casting stroke, the easier the stroke.
Pops recommended memorizing these principles in order to have them uppermost in your thoughts when practicing casting, regardless of the casting method you use.
Also, a book—Troubleshooting the Cast—by Ed Jaworowski, as well as a DVD: “Lessons with Lefty,” were recommended as being excellent learning tools.