When you’re chasing bonefish on the flats, you should do whatever you can to minimize your false casts. When you recognize a potential shot at a fish, you need to get the fly out there quickly, and false casts are the enemy of getting your fly out there quickly.
There are more direct ways to communicate the point about false casts, though…
During our first season of operations at Andros South, your fearless editor had the opportunity to spend a day fishing the West Side with a senior statesman of the fishing lodge world who will remain nameless. This very experienced angler wasn’t the guide that day – he was a guest of ours and the two of us just went fishing together.
He’s a super guy and a truly great flats fisherman, but he gets awfully excited when giant bonefish swim at the boat. With your editor on the bow, our Dean of the Flats couldn’t help himself.
“Lay it down!”
“Too many false casts! Too many false casts!”
“You’re too late! Too many false casts! You missed him!”
“He’s right there! Lay it down!”
“Too many false casts! Too many false casts! Too many false casts!”
It wasn’t subtle, but the point was very well made. False casts are the enemy of quick presentation. If you can cast 40 feet, chances are you can cast 40 feet with no false casts, and you can catch an awful lot of bonefish at 40 feet (on South Andros, at least).
You’ll have much greater success if you minimize your false casts, and the number of false casts you need is probably lower than you think.