NEWS, VIEWS & REVIEWS FROM FLY FISHING SNOWDONIA
In Part 1 I gave my basic definitions of the component parts that make up a cast. In Part 2 I expanded on some of these definitions as they relate to a basic cast.
In this post I'll cover a few more advanced definitions. These are: Stroke Length, Drift and Mend
Stroke length (the distance the rod handle travels during the acceleration stroke). Extending the stroke length allows you to increase the duration you are accelerating the rod (and by definition the line the rod is dragging behind it), building up more speed prior to the abrupt stop. Increasing line speed is important if you want to cast further.
Increasing stroke length in the forward cast can be done by extending your arm further during the casting stroke and/or introducing drift after the back cast.
Drift (the repositioning of the rod after the acceleration stroke on the back cast). This is achieved by moving your arm, and the rod up and back (think of the leg of the figure 7 or a backslash /). This is not aggressive or extensive, simply a smooth, subtle movement of the rod after the stop.
Creep The opposite of drift, however drift is good and creep is bad. Creep happens after the stop of the backcast and is the unintended forward movement of the rod before the start of the forward acceleration stroke. Creep deprives the caster of stroke length and is detrimental to the forward cast.
Mend (manipulating or repositioning the line after the acceleration stroke) A mend can be performed to deliberately add slack to aid presentation and/or extend the length of time your fly can be fished drag free. A mend always happens after the acceleration stroke either before the line touches down or once it's on the water.