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Preface · Preparing to Cast · Seeing and Being Seen · When the Excitement Starts · The Hookset and After · When Day is Done

The Hookset and After

False cast away from the fish, especially with slow moving or tailing fish. This will keep the fly line from spooking the fish. Cast away at a 45 to 90 degree angle to the direction that the fish are heading.

If it is windy, make your false cast holding your rod as parallel as possible to the plane of the water. The wind's friction with the water lessens its velocity in the area 3 to 4 feet above the water's level. This casting technique makes it harder for the fish to see the fly line and allows for a very quiet presentation since the fly does not drop from much height.

Never cast too early or begin to cast when the bonefish is out of your range. Be patient, know your comfortable casting range. If you try to make too long a cast and your fly falls short, it will take too long to cast again and the bonefish will have moved on.

It is better to cast too short and hope the fish sees the fly, than to cast too long and spook the fish. In nature, prey never moves toward a predator. Never place a fly so that when retrieved it moves toward a bonefish. Predators chase their prey, they expect their prey to be moving away from them. When confronted with an approaching fly, a bonefish will change roles, from predator to prey, and flee. Few fish can leave a flat as quickly as a bonefish.

Generally, a tailing fish has his head tipped down and is already occupied; consequently, the fly must be dropped very close to him. In contrast, cruising fish can see a fly from a much greater distance and the fly can be presented further away.

Learn to strip strike..Trout fishermen, (there are lots of us), usually raise the rod tip to strike a fish. This technique when used on a bonefish will quickly remove the fly from its field of vision if he has not eaten the fly. The strip strike keeps the fly in the bonefish strike zone and will give you a second chance. A 1 to 3 foot strip strike done firmly by the hand not holding the rod accomplishes the strip strike.

When retrieving your fly, point your rod tip directly at the fly. This allows the fly to be imparted with the proper action.

Lift your fly line quietly and slowly off the water to initiate another cast. DO NOT use the initiation of the back cast to load the rod tip. Many beginning anglers do this to allow themselves to make longer casts or to cast into the wind - this noisy lift off will almost always spook bonefish.

Do your homework before going fishing. Learn to cast accurately and quickly. Do not false cast excessively. Learn to make 2-3 false casts playing out line with each cast then shooting your line accurately to the fish on your last cast. As well as wasting valuable time, repeatedly false casting over a fish in an effort to "measure" distance and accuracy often spooks fish as they repeatedly see the fly line whipping in the air.

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Preface · Preparing to Cast · Seeing and Being Seen · When the Excitement Starts · The Hookset and After · When Day is Done


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