The Four Stages of Enlightenment (I): Translation/Rotation




One of the greatest things about fly fishing, in comparison with other sporting activities, is that it can be practiced through our whole life; old age not really being a serious obstacle. In fact one of my fishing buddies is 70+ years old now, and it takes some serious effort to follow his rhythm on the river. Paradoxically, aging as a fly fisher is a sort of advantage, as it is the passing of years what makes our experience and technical abilities grow.

I think that, apart from extreme distance presentations, the same is applicable to fly casting, an activity in which you never stop learning and improving. In my view, along this path there are some significant milestones, like steps in the ladder of proficiency. Thinking about it I distinguish four of these “stages of enlightenment”. There are probably more, and you surely will have your own list if you reflect about it; feel free to comment your views.

So let’s go with the first stage of enlightenment. Continue reading

Bloody L (bird’s-eye view)

Bloody L is the name that Simon Gawesworth gave to that line configuration in which the anchor of a Spey cast is at right angles with the rest of the fly leg of the D-Loop. It is a very inefficient anchor shape as it wastes energy from the delivery cast as the fly leg of the delivery loop tries to lift the anchor from the water; it may make the fly to fall short of its target.

Here is a bloody L in full glory, although it didn’t make that short cast fail. The dolphin nose is a nice one, though.

Follow Me, Please!




Forward phase of an oval cast. Photo by Álvaro G. Santillán


Look, if you just let your arm drop by effect of gravity, you send the fly ten meters away effortlessly and accurately.”

That is my way of showing how easy it is to make a pick up and lay down cast—elbow forward style— at the most usual trout fishing distances. However, something comes to my mind in those instances, something that I never say to my student:
If it is so easy, why did it take me so much time, effort and frustration to do it properly?” Continue reading

¿De qué hablamos cuando hablamos de rotación tardía?


Golpe de lanzado

Llamamos golpe de lanzado al movimiento que describen nuestro brazo y mano impulsando el talón de la caña durante el lance. Así, hablamos de golpe de lanzado trasero (el que manda la línea por detrás de nosotros) y de golpe de lanzado delantero (que manda la línea hacia adelante).
El golpe de lanzado tiene dos características fundamentales:

  • Debe ser un movimiento acelerado, es decir, la velocidad del talón de la caña debe ir aumentando
  • Se compone de dos elementos diferenciados: traslación y rotación.

Continue reading