Video Tip: The Keys to Making Delicate Presentations

Welcome to our ninth installment of “Ask a Fly-Fishing Instructor,” in which we answer readers’ questions about their biggest fly-casting problems. A few weeks ago, reader “Steve” wrote,

Thanks for the great tips. My problem is with presentation. Usually my flies land with a splat. What would help achieve a more delicate presentation?

In this lesson, Peter shows how the secret to a delicate presentation is in controlling the rod tip. If you drop the rod tip too early on the presentation cast, the fly line doesn’t roll out completely and instead “crashes” to the surface. Instead, the rod tip should stop at or around eye level to let the loop roll out. Only then should you lower the rod tip. Tell yourself, “Stop, then drop,” and you should get a better presentation.

You can run into a similar “splatting” problem if your casting stroke is angled downward toward the water. By keeping the line moving more horizontally, you give the line time to roll out above the water’s surface, which lets the fly flutter downward more gently. Once you’ve got the basics down, it’s time to put Pete’s lessons to work by practicing on your own lawn.

If you’ve got more questions for Peter, post them below, and we’ll address each casting problem in a new video.

7 thoughts on “Video Tip: The Keys to Making Delicate Presentations”

  1. I love these casting tips, I wish they were done more often.

    Casting angle is important, it’s an overlooked part of casting well and consistent.

    “Steve’s” problem could also be that a) his leader isn’t build well or b) he’s “punching” it — throwing tailing loops or c) both.

  2. Hi Pete.
    I just finished listening to the podcast with you and Tom. By the way, I too practice my casting a lot! My neighbors get a kick out of me casting out on the front lawn.

    Sometimes I have the problem with my fly kicking to the left at the end of the cast. This usually happens when I am casting a bigger rod, say a 6 or 8wt. I’ve watched my back casting and it seems to be on plane and I haven’t noticed me twisting my body when I am casting. I have also watched my wrist to make sure that my hand is also staying straight. The only two things I can figure out are:
    1. I am applying too much “pop-to-a-stop” at the end of my forward cast, or over powering.
    2. My leader may not be configured correctly for the size of fly I am using.
    Anyway, any advice or suggestions you might have would be greatly appreciated.


  3. Hi Phil…
    Thanks for your series on casting here and on YouTube. I’m returning to fly fishing after about a 10 year layoff. So, the videos and explanations, really help.

    Much thanks!!

  4. Pingback: Tippets: Good Presentation, Groundwater Management, Clean Water Protections | MidCurrent
  5. Great tips !!
    Much appreciated
    I’ve learned soo much from the staff @ Orvis
    Keep em coming !!

  6. In reality, you don’t need to hire a designer to create a scientific presentation; you can do it just fine on your own. This is something I’m familiar with, as I gave one when I graduated from graduate school. Because I already know where to get high-quality and incredibly creative presentation and design templates, such as . It was quite beneficial to me, and I am convinced that other children will benefit from it as well.

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