Spey casting originated in Scotland in the mid-1800s. The name comes from the River Spey in Scotland and was developed so one could successfully cast on a large river with little to no backcasting room.
With the line laying straight downstream the first step is to strip in the shooting line until the fly line is near the tip of the rod. The shooting line is allowed to lay at the instructor's feet in the water.
Start smoothly with the back cast with the rod held at a slight angle towards the near bank. Note the bend in the rod indicating that the rod is being loaded but not excessively. The tip of the rod will describe a smooth arc throughout the back cast.
Sweep the Rod back to the 10 oclock position keeping the front end of the line on the water to "Anchor" the cast. The anchor is the line laying on the water in front of the caster creating a D Loop behind and the rod is in the firing position. Note the distance from the instructor to the anchor which is about 8 or 10 feet.
With the rod now loaded, pull down with the bottom hand, only guiding the rod tip with the top hand, creating momentum in the line. It launches off the water and forward with a nice "tight" loop. The line is released allowing the fly line to pull out not only the rest of the line but the shooting line as well.
Cast across the current and slightly down stream roughly at a 45 degree angle. If depth is desired, make a full upstream mend of the line off the water to release the water's tension and allow the fly to sink. Let the fly come under tension and allow it to swing across the current and hopefully into a fish's view. Take a step or 2 downstream and repeat the process.
Check out this presentation from Spey Nation as Andrew Moy from Tight Lines Fly Shop in New Jersey demonstrates the basics of Spey Casting. Andrew will run through the basics of how to spey cast and get you spey fishing in no time!
This is part 1 of Andrew's spey casting demonstration given at Spey Nation 2011 in Pineville, NY. Where to grip the cork, firing position, and roll casting are touched on in this clip. Check out www.speynation.com for more info on this special event and www.tightlinesflyfishing.com to schedule a lesson with Andrew.
Spey Casting and getting started with spey and switch rod casting demonstrated, by Walt Geryk, at the 2009 Spey Nation II. Spey Nation is an annual event held on the Salmon River New York that brings together two handed casters with no experience to advanced professionals. These experienced two-handed fly casters are eager to share their knowledge in helping all become better at this sport.
Part 1 of 2012 Spey Nation, featuring Eric Reed of Beulah Fly Rods, Patrick Ross, Nick Pionessa of the Oak Orchard Fly Shop and Simon Gawesworth.
2012 Spey Nation overview Part 2 of Spey Nation featuring Tim Rajeff
Check out Michael Mauri explaing swinging the fly, setting up the cast and
Will Turek's simple and effective instructions on how to properly form a D loop.