Classic Pro Tips: How to Make Good Short Casts


Written by: Phil Monahan


Based on what you see when folks are trying out new fly rods at a consumer show, you might believe that fly-fishing requires super-long casts all the time, but that’s simply not true. Sometimes, the fish are quite close to you or the boat, and you have to make a quick and short cast. For instance, when you’re fishing up one of the mountain trout steams we have here in Vermont, you rarely have more than a couple feet of fly line out beyond your tip top guide.

One of the keys to making a good short cast is actually counterintuitive: to load the rod, you have to make a slightly more aggressive “flick” or “pop” on the forward cast than you would if you were casting more line. Second, a shorter, more compact casting stroke will help get the line to roll out. Finally, make sure you’ve got a nicely tapered leader tailored to the fly you’re using. Put all these steps together, and you’ll find that short casts are a breeze.

2 thoughts on “Classic Pro Tips: How to Make Good Short Casts

  1. social small streams

    Thanks for the video. I fish small streams where I’m on my knees casting with five foot of fly line out. I go try a rod out at the fly shop and cast thirty foot of line because I don’t want to look stupid casting from a kneeling position like I actually fish. When I take people out to fish my favorite small stream the first thing they do is cast twenty or thirty foot. I tell show them how to cast short and they start catching fish instead of spooking them. Thanks again for this video.

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  2. Pingback: Tippets: Transitions, Truck in the Trinity, Technique of Short Casts | MidCurrent

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