Loading... Please wait...


​Fly Fishing Tips and Tricks: The Fly First Cast

Posted by

So much attention is given to casting distance when talking about fly fishing. Super stiff graphite rods, where a 5wt feels more like a 6wt or 7wt of years gone past. The truth is, casting distance is great for competition and showing off, but for your average trout angler, it’s really irrelevant.

You want to be able to put some delicate presentation casts into your casting bag of tricks. Yes, you need to know the double haul, but getting to know how and when to use the fly first cast is crucial.

Fly First Cast

The fly first cast is essentially casting downstream with plenty of line in hand or at foot. It is a great way to get a drag free drift over a variety of current speeds within a section of water. The challenge here is the fish can see you, they are looking upstream as you cast downstream. Stealth is crucial here, as well as distance.


You don’t want to deploy this technique 10 foot downstream from you. You need a good 40-50 foot between yourself and your target water unless you’re in a boulder garden. 


Get as low profile to the water as you can. Instead of casting between 1 and 11 o’clock, you’ll be casting between 9 and 12 o’clock.

Get the fly up in the air and let it fall gently in front of you, about 15-20 foot. Let the current take the line out gradually to get the perfect drag free drift. 

This presentation is stunningly effective on picky trout. I use this cast routinely in late summer when the water is slows down, the fish spread out, the trout have seen their fair share of flies, and the water is gin clear. 

Tight lines and screaming drags

View Comments

​March Brown Hatch

We are coming upon one of my favorite hatches of the year. Eastern March Browns are found from the Eastern United States to the Upper Midwest. Western March Browns populate rivers and streams from the Pacific Coast to the Rocky Mountains. The two species are unrelated, however they are very similar looking mayfly species.  March Brown from RiverBum.com Western [...]

Read More »

​Fly Fishing Tips and Tricks: Insect Life Cycles

To be an effective trout fisherman, it is necessary to know the life cycles of the aquatic insects in a trout’s diet.Trout are cold blooded. In kind, so is most of their forage aside from the odd mouse a big ole rainbow might take.  During the cold winter months, trout are quite inactive….as are the insects buried [...]

Read More »

​Fly Fishing Tips and Tricks: Water Requirements

There are volumes of books written on reading the water, and thousands upon thousands of illustrations. I really don’t think I need to cover that. However, what I don’t often see is a dialogue of the requirements of the water for the trout.  There are three basics needs from a trout’s perspective. 1. Water Temperature The first basic requirement is [...]

Read More »

​Fly Fishing Tips and Tricks: Rising Fish

Oh baby, when you see or hear a fish rise, an active feeder - the first thing you think is "Let’s go get ‘em!"   We immediately swing our fly to right where we see ‘em rise or to the ripple rings……nothing. We throw again…..nothing. We’ve all been there. Our first instinct when we see [...]

Read More »

​Fly Fishing Tips and Tricks: Drifting Boulders

Over the course of the next several weeks I’ll be writing about some tips and tricks I have learned over the years. I’m organizing a trip for the Salmonfly hatch with RiverBum pro Jim Mitchell, so some tips and tricks on a float trip seem to be in order. When you’re on a drift, much of your [...]

Read More »

The Rainbow Trout

I love rainbows, I really do. These fish are strong, tail walking beauties. There’s nothing like seeing the acrobatic runs of a rainbow on the end of your line. Fortunately, rainbows are the most ubiquitous species of trout with native ranging from North Mexico, the East Coast, Rockies, West Coast and Canada.There are two types of rainbows, generally speaking. [...]

Read More »

Some Basics About Trout

Generally speaking, there are three categories of trout. One category, True Trout, consist of species like rainbows, brown, and cutthroat. The second category known as Char, consist of Brook Trout, Bull Trout, Dolly Varden, and Arctic Char. The last is known as the hybrids. Fish such as Tiger Trout are known to be hybrids. Water Temperature Sticking with the basics here, True [...]

Read More »

The Allure of Trout

I think there has been more written about trout fly fishing than any other form of fly fishing. There are mountains of materials written on individual species, the gear, techniques, and locations around the world.Trout are mysterious and can be notoriously difficult to catch. I’ve had the good fortune of fishing many blue ribbon streams. These fish have camouflage [...]

Read More »

Trout Senses

One of the many reasons we love fly fishing for trout is that they are such a challenge to catch. Trout have excellent vision, their vision path is essentially up and out. When folks say “I hope they are looking up”, well, the fish always are. Whether or not they are feeding and you are presenting the right [...]

Read More »

Sign up for our newsletter

View Cart Go To Checkout