Any Which Way


So, I’ve been asked a number of times on facebook and elsewhere if my upcoming casting book focuses primarily on a vertical (overhead) casting stroke/style. No. I just haven’t posted pix of other stroke types yet. I cast with and fish with whatever gets the job done in the way I want to get it done. Here’s an except from the book that explains a bit of my approach to strokes/styles:

The vertically oriented Foundation Casting Stroke will be used to directly build the Overhead Cast. Then, the Foundation Casting Stroke will be angled (tipped to each side) to create various forms of the Side-Arm Cast, the Cross-Body Cast and the Across-The-Head Cast—all of which are casts made at orientations other than vertical. Following the various angled casts will be the Elliptical Cast, where the arm travels back and forth in distinctly different planes. Along with the changes/combinations of plane, the movements of casting will be both tightened and stretched out, with the casting arm traveling along both shorter and longer pathways.

In 2001–2002, I assisted Dr. Tim McCue with a survey on the incidence of fly-casting injury among casting instructors (subsequently published in the journal, “Wilderness & Environmental Medicine”). Out of that survey came a number of findings, including one showing that casters who utilized multiple casting styles (overhead, elliptical, sidearm, etc.), had the lowest overall pain incidence of any group.

So, by starting with the Foundation Casting Stroke, and then using that to create a collection of other strokes, you can hopefully build a highly effective, and lower stress casting environment that covers many angling needs.

In Search of the Perfect Loop

I mention a lot of friends and fellow casters/instructors in Single-Handed Fly Casting. One of those friends is Christopher Rownes. I’ve known Christopher for years, and always enjoy watching his casting videos (they aren’t as much about instruction as about enjoying casting for its flow and beauty). If you are an instructor or caster who loves the flow, check out a little of Chris’s work here:

On “The Board”


Hanging out with my old pal, Paul Arden, at his casting/fishing Board for a week starting tomorrow (Monday the 18th). Stop by and chat if you get the chance. The Board at SL has been a hotbed of fly casting (and fishing) discussion for many years, with some serious “nuts and bolts” stuff going on regularly (poorly supported fly-casting dogma and pre-conceived notions don’t tend to last long there).

SHFC – Image Layout Begins

jborger-shfc_8-9Into the image layout for “Single-Handed Fly Casting” now (and for the next few weeks). Illustrating each chapter first and then dropping everything in (and further editing text, too). Have a sample of a spread from Chapter One shown here. The illustrations you see are what you can expect throughout. Grayscale vectorized pics based directly on photographic frames (most shot at 60fps, some at 200fps and 240fps). This approach lets me isolate what needs to be seen without extra clutter, and also makes what you see quite accurate.

A Quick, Slow-Mo C

The video that I shoot as the basis for line drawings is often fast and dirty. All I need to see is enough to make the drawing, and who cares about the rest. That is exactly the case for the video that I have been shooting for “Single-Handed Fly Casting.” But…I just bought myself a new platform ladder and it allows for better, more stable camera angles in a variety of situations. So, I figured it might be of interest to post at least one video sequence shot from the ladder, while capturing at 720p/240fps.

The sequence shown here is of the C Pick-Up, a skill that has a relationship to the Snake Roll in the D-loop world. I have shown it in a basic, “here’s how you do it” form, plus a more “real world” scenario starting with the rod tip high and slack in the system. Sharp-eyed observers may note that my forward cast loop is relatively open. That’s what I refer to as “an actual fishing cast.”

Hope at least a few readers find it interesting. One of these days, I’ll bite the bullet and shoot video to really show as video, all pretty and everything.

SHFC Update: Fix, Baby, Fix…


Starting to get feedback on Single-Handed Fly Casting from outside readers. All of them are English-as-second-language speakers/writers. Their feedback is very helpful in cleaning up concepts and adjusting word usage. If they can’t understand what I’ve written, without the use of images, then I need to think hard about fixing things. In other words, my text has to make sense to people other than native “American-ese” speakers. That is especially key for this book, since the majority of pre-orders are currently from fly fishers residing outside the U.S.

It is my desire that the text is approachable by readers of all casting levels, with only minimal moments of “huh?” involved. SHFC is not “light reading,” that’s true,  but hopefully it won’t seem too heavy in how it goes about explaining the information.

Techie, Geeky Fly Casting Biomechanics Stuff




As many readers already know, I’ve been involved with 3-D motion-capture of fly casting for some time (since 2004). My focus in the sessions has been caster/rod/line interactions, but the real scientists involved have also looked deeply at biomechanics. For the geeks out there, here are a few links to some of the freely available publications that have came out of various motion-capture sessions.…/okeefe_isb2005.pdf…/allen_isb2005.pdf

One More Last Cast

By the way, if you’re a casting instructor and not reading Aitor Coteron’s One More Last Cast blog, you need to be. Aitor and I have known each other for quite some time, and for years he has been quietly amassing all sorts of slow-motion video and in-depth looks at casting.

Aitor’s work is mentioned numerous times in my upcoming casting book, and his videos are free for all to watch. Just go in with an open mind, as you may need to leave some traditional outlooks on fly casting behind once you start to read/watch.

Foundation Casting Stroke (a.k.a. FCS)

My friend, Marc Fauvet, asked for a video of the Foundation Casting Stroke (as discussed in Single-Handed Fly Casting). I happened to have a nice, fresh one sitting on my system. Marc now has a full post up on his blog, The Limp Cobra.

There is a lot more to say about the FCS in SHFC chapters two and three. It’s a casting stroke that has origins way back in fly casting, but I present it in a way that allows a caster to use his or her body to assist in self-teaching. I also use it as the basis for the other casts in my SHFC book (even Spey? Yes, after it gets some modification along the way).