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Waypoints

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Dirk le Roux
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Waypoints

#1

Post by Dirk le Roux » Thu Oct 22, 2020 7:13 pm

I've been playing in my casting with what I call "waypoints". As these are mostly the result of repositioning the rod (orientation and tip), the device, technique, trick, is not new. New for me is focusing on the waypoint as a feature, rather than the rod action which produced it, and how its dynamics could be employed to change trajectory, direction and plane. I hope this perspective may open new possibilities for you too.

The trait first piqued my interest in one of Aitor's excellent Vimeo clips. My recent experiments with square snaps have helped me better understand its behaviour.

What is a waypoint? A bend in the line, purposely placed before or during a stroke to influence the line's flight path to benefit the cast. I suppose any propagating bend/kink, a few of which are well shown in Bernd's dangly bits description (BDB), could be described as a waypoint. But those bends often serve more to frustrate than to help a cast. Hence the "purposely" and "benefit" in the definition.

A waypoint makes the line on its fly-side first go to it (duh), which has the practical effect of the waypoint providing a pseudo origin for dynamics occurring on the rod side of it. That way, for instance, an upwardly directed forward cast behaves as if the fly leg flows from down low, instead of up high where the preceding backcast placed it, without tailing:

1_WP sequence.jpg

I think Paul's old extended drift and Jason Borger's Layback, among other rod path and biomechanics advantages, introduce subtle waypoints. They are an incredibly useful ingredient to the overhead, elbow forward style of casting.

How to deploy a waypoint in a cast? Aitor's sequence demonstrates a model version well, and Jason's Layback FP phrases it well, the principles of which you can transpose from those trajectory change situations also to direction change and plane change situations. For me, the fundamental parts are: Pick where in space you want to place the waypoint - usually at the base of the following stroke's intended path; If there was a preceding stroke, drift without pause to that waypoint position, simultaneously adjusting the rod position and orientation for the desired next stroke; There, make the rod tip slowly and deliberately turn the corner into that next stroke, setting the waypoint bend into the cast. It is as if you fluidly punctuate the motion. You almost only need to think it - "waypoint set".

Cheers,
Dirk

Dirk le Roux
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Location: Pretoria, South Africa

Re: Waypoints

#2

Post by Dirk le Roux » Thu Oct 22, 2020 7:20 pm

Here is a composite of Aitor's cast, from waypoint formation to loop formation:

2_WP composite.jpg

You can see that a waypoint does move about in space, though often less than you might expect. Its migration depends on the cast situation and is reasonably predictable. With a bit of practice, you will get to know what initial placing is just right for the desired outcome. The square snaps footage, linked above, can help you analyse typical migration parameters. Keys for me are feed origin; feed direction; advanced exit; retarded exit.

A high bank behind you forcing a high backcast, with the need to shoot level over the water and under the overhanging branches in the distance? Make the high backcast and drift the rod tip to make a waypoint at a lowered base, then make that horizontal forward cast. You may be surprised at its dependability. Deliberately add this lower waypoint after a "straight-up" backcast on a steeple cast, and all goes better.

Want a Belgian cast's forward loop to track vertically? Make the sideways-and-up backcast and immediately drift the rod tip to above and behind you, while adjusting the rod plane to the vertical. Punctuate the waypoint and make the forward cast slightly accenting the stroke as a vertical slash.

Mid-cast, you need a quick direction change to present across-stream? But there is no room for a backcast opposite the target direction? From the preceding up- or downstream stroke, directly drift into setting a waypoint at the base of the intended crossing path, then go for it.

Need to make a low and tight backcast right from the pick-up? Place a bump in the line at the convenient height by first lifting the rod vertically before changing gear into the back-and-even-slightly-down trajectory. The node acts as an elevated departure platform for line freshly picked up off the water.

I am sure that many more creative uses can be found.

All the best,
Dirk

Mangrove Cuckoo
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Re: Waypoints

#3

Post by Mangrove Cuckoo » Thu Oct 22, 2020 10:26 pm

Dirk,

Very nice!

Is the waypoint always set "at" the rod tip, or can it be placed at some point in space distant from the tip?
"Technique is the proof of your seriousness"

Wallace Stevens

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Paul Arden
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Re: Waypoints

#4

Post by Paul Arden » Fri Oct 23, 2020 3:33 am

Hi Dirk,

Very interesting, I hadn’t considered it in this manner before. I have an aerielised switch cast that I use off the roof of the boat. Actually I have two, one conventional (without the water anchor) and the other formed with a snap lift. The one formed with the snap lift holds position far better and makes for a much better (well easier) forward delivery.

I’ve always considered the V that is in the sequence above to be a transverse wave that propagates in the direction of the fly?

Thanks, this gives me some new ideas to play with!

Cheers, Paul
It's an exploration; bring a flyrod.

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Dirk le Roux
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Location: Pretoria, South Africa

Re: Waypoints

#5

Post by Dirk le Roux » Fri Oct 23, 2020 5:02 am

Mangrove Cuckoo wrote:
Thu Oct 22, 2020 10:26 pm
Is the waypoint always set "at" the rod tip, or can it be placed at some point in space distant from the tip?
Hi Gary

If you want a waypoint distant from the tip by the time it is commissioned into the next stroke's dynamics, you will need to create it earlier, though still inevitably cause it by the rod tip. That is the tip of our writing instrument.

As example, and maybe it needs footage confirmation, but I think you can send out the pick-up bump (Paul's snap lift?) toward the fly and wait before starting the back stroke.

Cheers,
Dirk

Dirk le Roux
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Re: Waypoints

#6

Post by Dirk le Roux » Fri Oct 23, 2020 5:36 am

Paul Arden wrote:
Fri Oct 23, 2020 3:33 am
I’ve always considered the V that is in the sequence above to be a transverse wave that propagates in the direction of the fly?
Hi Paul

Bends propagating toward the fly end, yes, waves. In waypoint guise these transverse waves have a specific handy effect. Which is why I call only the useful ones waypoints. I don't know what to call the pesky ones.

In the square snaps, Aitor's breaking 180, in fact most waypoint applications I can thus far think of, their propagation speed is similar to the line's speed but in the opposite direction. Which makes them seem relatively fixed in space. Interestingly, from the Aitor cast's composite you can see that the waypoint and the loop clearly propagate through the line at different speeds, the loop's roughly half the waypoint's.

Cheers,
Dirk

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Paul Arden
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Re: Waypoints

#7

Post by Paul Arden » Fri Oct 23, 2020 8:28 am

Not perfect Dirk. Had to deal with a front coming through so had to put myself between the camera and the loop. These are aerielised “anchors” which is immediately what came to mind when I read your first post today.

[media] [/media]

Cheers, Paul
It's an exploration; bring a flyrod.

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Dirk le Roux
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Joined: Thu Sep 19, 2013 5:09 pm
Location: Pretoria, South Africa

Re: Waypoints

#8

Post by Dirk le Roux » Fri Oct 23, 2020 9:21 am

I'm sure those fit the framework, Paul! These and Gary's question about more distant engagement have expanded the application field in my imagination, thanks.

Up to now, my thinking was more of bends around the pre-delivery rod position. Like the little pausing move opposite to the intended delivery when coming out of a circles-and-shoot exercise. A cocking of the gun before shooting.

I envy you for such moments, Paul.

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Paul Arden
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Re: Waypoints

#9

Post by Paul Arden » Fri Oct 23, 2020 11:01 am

Hi Dirk,

I imagine the waypoint is not only put there by the rod tip but can be cast into position too. Technically it still comes back to the tip at some point of course. I’ll try to make some better video. It’s a bit challenging to do this on my own. :p

When I looked at the snap videos today, I asked myself whether the Snapllft Switch gives a more effective aerielised anchor because the line folds over and stops dead (which is more difficult without the Snap because it relies upon throwing a backcast loop that stalls) or if it’s because when the very end of the line kicks over it creates tension in the anchor leg? It gives me something to play with tonight off the boat roof!

Thanks!
Paul
It's an exploration; bring a flyrod.

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Graeme H
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Re: Waypoints

#10

Post by Graeme H » Sat Oct 24, 2020 12:42 am

G'day Dirk,

I use this technique on most casts these days, even though I have never considered the term "waypoint" before now. I've already shown videos of Matty Howell and Christopher Rownes repositioning the rod tip after loop formation. I'm using the same thought processes to modify tension in the rod leg.

Cheers,
Graeme
FFi CCI

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