Video Pro Tips: The “Ready Position” and Fishing from a Boat


Trout fishers who find themselves on the bow of a flats boat are in an unfamiliar position. Oftentimes, they keys to catching fish in the tropics are 1.) being able to deliver a fly quickly and 2.) avoiding line tangles that can lead to an aborted cast or, even worse, a break off. These aren’t usually important issues when you’re standing in a stream. The speed of delivery is so important in flats angling because everything is moving: the fish, the boat, the wind, and perhaps even the water.

I’ve seen too many fly fishermen drop or throw their fly to begin the cast, but this is both inefficient and can lead to problems that can get in the way of a good cast. First, dropping the fly doesn’t help to load the rod, so it adds false casts to your presentation. More false casts means more time. The longer it takes you to get your fly to the fish, the more likely the chance has passed you by. Also, if there’s a strong wind, dropping your fly means that you’re giving up control of it. The wind could blow your fly into your clothes or into the line hanging from the rod. When that happens, your cast is DOA.

However, if you prepare your line correctly and wait in the correct “ready position,” you can make a quick, tangle-free presentation, which means you’ll get your fly in front of more fish. So practice this transition from ready position to casting, and you’ll find your hook-up rate will increase.

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