Sunday, January 5, 2014

Zen and the Art of Self-Impalement

     Call me loopster.  Today I traveled down to the docks with long rod in hand.  Not to catch fish, simply to throw some line with the hope of improvement.  Can't say I improved.  Can't say I didn't.  What I can say is that I was thankfully alone.
     Last night I reread the opening chapter of Lefty Kreh's guide to longer casts.  Some sections I read twice in the hope of forming a clear picture in my head of what to do.  My only fear after the reading was that my Albright knot might be too weak and I'd lose my saltwater line should it separate from the backing while I was gracefully moving thirty or forty yards through the air.  I feared needlessly.
     Don't know what it is but I'm always tense when I practice casting.  Fearful that something might go wrong.  Hell, when learning something, mistakes are part of the game.  Nothing to worry about.  It just happens.  Life goes on and over time, things get better.
     As it turned out, my casting wasn't all that bad but I really hadn't envisioned the scene accurately.  Didn't take into consideration that the water out from our dock moves as the tide comes in or goes out.  Didn't consider the wind that's always there.  Didn't grasp the effect of standing three feet above the water.
     On a lake you cast a fly out and retrieve it on the same line.  Not so on an ocean bay.  The cast goes out, the line and fly drift rapidly to the right (or left) and the next cast starts out more or less sidearm.  And a couple of times the combination of wind, side arm motion and inexperienced caster, loops the fly into the rear of one's jacket at about belt level.  Never done that before.  And am happy I wasn't topless.
     On the upside I only had one wind knot.  Actually it was more of a hangman's noose.  And easily untied.  Seems to me Lefty said something about tailing loops.  Can't recall what that was but I figure whatever the mistake was, I did it in spades one time.  Maybe I'll go take a look at that chapter again.

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