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Martin James award-winning fisherman consultant,broadcaster,writer


Book Review Spey Casting Simon Gawesworth Stackpole books

If your a salmon and seatrout angler, then no doubt like me you have noticed a resurgence in Spey casting, which started back in the middle 1800's. I feel we shouldn't be surprised. Long gone are the days of heavy greenheart and bamboo rods, which have been replaced by the new space age material of graphite. Today we have 14 ft and 15 ft rods that are a dream to hold and use. Probably the biggest change in the use of two handed rods has been in saltwater fly fishing area. Today anglers are using these rods for shore fishing in search of striped bass and bluefish. In Florida anglers use the long rods for tarpon fishing.

With the growing interest in Spey casting several American rod builders have designed and manufactured a double handed rod. Thomas and Thomas of Greenfield Massachusetts who I work with have been the leaders in this development.Their remarkable selection of models with rods from 10' to 16' in weights from 6 through to 12.

Spey casting is an art and a skill. Once learnt it stays with you for life. Without doubt one of the worlds greatest Spey casters is English angler Simon Gawesworth who at the time of writing is based in the United States where he works for Rio lines. So great is Simon's knowledge of how rods should work, that he has designed a range of lines to match many of today's double handed rods.

A good Spey caster makes the subject look like poetry in motion. It's a difficult subject to master, but given the correct instructions from a qualified teacher, it can be done. There are several qualified instructors around the country, including a great lady teacher Sue Parker Telephone 01559 371879

We can also learn from books, providing the text can be easily followed the reader, and the pictures are of top quality. Books on Spey casting in the past, left the reader asking more questions. We now have a book that will help you Spey cast. Stackpole Books have just published Spey Casting by Simon Gawesworth. A tome of 286 pages. The book covers all the two-handed casting methods, the switch cast, single Spey, double Spey, snake roll, snap T, Devon switch and many other types of casts. Some of these casts have been developed and perfected by Simon himself.

There are over 200 photographs, 140 of these show Simon demonstrating the different casting techniques with a white rod made by Tom Dorsey of Thomas and Thomas to aid you the reader to follow the rod action which is so important. To supplement the photographs and quality text are many black and white drawings.

Spey Casting Simon Gawesworth Stackpole books ISBN 0-8117-0104-2;0-8117-0129-8 This book I can highly recommend to all who wish to master the art of Spey casting. Its should be available from all good book shops

Martin James Fishing