Three Tips for Casting in the Wind

Use these trick shots when the wind is up.

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Angler fly fishing
Harness the wind for even greater success. Jon Whittle

Don’t fret hitting the flats in breezy conditions. Instead, learn to harness the wind to deliver your lure to the target in challenging situations. Here are three nifty trick shots to get you on the road to casting greatness.

Crosswind Shot

When a strong breeze threatens to carry your lure into foul territory while fishing a shoreline, adjust your aim for a crosswind cast. As the artificial lands, raise the rod, let out some extra line before engaging the reel, and allow the wind to blow the slack toward shore. When you begin the retrieve, the line will pull the lure into perfect position for a long, parallel-to-the-cover presentation.

On the Swing

In clear, shallow water, fish are sensitive to nearby splashes. So, cast a light lure 15 feet or more upwind of the target (depending on wind strength) and let the breeze sweep it into the strike zone. Close the bail when the lure hits the water and keep the rod high to track the line’s trajectory. If the lure is on a collision course with the fish, crank the reel a couple of times. If it’s going to drift just out of reach, point the rod at the lure as it approaches the target to add some slack and extend the swing just enough.

Spinnaker Cast

When the wind blows 90 to 180 degrees off your bow, don’t risk spooking a fish cruising straight at you or tailing ahead of the boat by landing your lure in front of it. Instead, cast a safe distance to its right or left, keep your rod tip high, and let line pay out of your reel for a couple of seconds after the lure touches down. Allow the wind to create enough belly on the line to pull the artificial in a right angle when you retrieve, resulting in an intercepting presentation.

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