The Tarantula Double Haul

February 22, 2016

It isn't necessary to be able to cast 100' to have a great saltwater trip, in fact it isn't even essential to have to Double Haul.  The Double Haul is a technique that involves using the off hand, left hand for most of us, to increase the bend in the rod during the back cast and forward cast which creates a massive increase in line speed, energy, and distance.  That kids is also how the big boys deal with wind.  What wind?  Ha.

Let me repeat, you don't have to be able to cast 100', 80', or even 20' on your saltwater trip to have fun.  I know a guy that could barely cast 15' and he seemed to have fun. As long as he had a pina coloda in his hand.  How many fish do you want to catch?  Because if you show me a guy that can cast 100' I'll show you somebody that is likely to put the most fish in the boat and trophy fish.  Not every day, not every situation will demand immense line speed or distance, but some will. 

Also, casters capable of long sharp casts don't just cast at any fish or the first fish they see.  Especially with Bonefish, if you have range and control you'll find yourself high grading pretty quickly.  You'll get good at selecting larger fish, particular species, and not just out there trying to survive out there.  

While fly fishing isn't competitive we all like feeling good about our cast, and our control of the environment.  Knowing that you can reach out and touch that Bonefish, Permit, Tarpon, Trevally, Redfish, or whatever is pretty cool.  Also, consider the radius logic.

The true power of distance.

A caster with a max effective range of 40' (very common).  By effective range I mean 2-3 false casts max and the fly must be delivered.  This caster operates in a striking radius of 80'.  

A caster that can effectively place the fly at 80' with 2-3 false casts (YES this is very possible).  I personally take no more than 3 false casts most of the time, sometimes 4 at very long range.  Things fall about when I get to false casts 4 and 5 has an effective radius of 160'  !!!!  That simply gives you more targets and better range!  Its math not ego talking here guys.  

Granted the conditions on the flat can be cloudy and you may not be able to see 80' all the time, the casters ability to deliver a fly fast becomes more pronounced.  Better distance casters deliver a fly faster and more accurately.

The Tarantula Double Haul

Here is a video that we found on the internet of one of our guides that we like to fish with in Ascension Bay.  There isn't much catching in the video, but the casting is great and it does capture the romance of the adventure.  Notice how relaxed his body is.  With good form you'll be able to make long casts with little effort.

There are lots of ways to increase your range you'll simply become a better fly fisherman and if you are anything like me, there is great reward in feeling and watching a fine fly cast.  I love watching an aerodynamic loop race downrange and not give way to even the stiffest wind.      

  1. Awesome video. We had a casting competition this year with all of the guides from Casa Viejo Chac and Tarantula won the distance casting portion. He is a beautiful, graceful, and very powerful caster. It makes me want to be a better caster and it really makes me want to return to Ascension Bay and spend more time with all of the great people there including Tarantula and all of the other guides!! Thanks for sharing!
  2. Very cool! Thanks for sharing Joe. Tara makes it look so easy. I spent 3 days fishing with him when I was down there with one of your groups last month and soaked up all I could. He gave me some tips that improved my casting game considerably. He and the rest of the guide crew at Casa Viejo Chac are amazing casters and thy seem to really enjoy sharing their knowledge if you ask. Can't wait to get back there again next year (maybe for two weeks)!