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Getting into Position to Cast

Let's start with the most important tip of all...
Your first cast will always be your best opportunity to catch your fish! 
Please, always remember this as you read the rest of these hints... 

Once you see rising fish, your goal is to get in position while at the same time not alerting the fish to your presence. So when you spot your quarry, take a deep breath, take your time... think and plan a strategy.
-Plan where you want to be.
-Look for a spot that will give you a clear backcast.
-Avoid wading into unseen or unobserved feeding fish while you focus on your fish.
...these fish will spook and alert your intended fish.
-Prepare your tackle before you get into position.
-Plan how and where you can achieve a drag-free float.
-Plan your approach? Are you going to cast across, downstream or from an upstream position?

Think before you act. 

Getting into position is a skill in itself:
-Before you make your move, check out your surroundings.
-Remember above all, your goal is to get as close as you can without spooking the fish. -When you do move, don’t send out any ripples. Try not to disturb the water.
-Minimize the sound of your wading boots grinding against the bottom.
-Stay low, use shadows, move under overhanging branches if possible.
-Try not to silhouette your body against the sky.
-Consider getting out of the water and sneaking up using shore vegetation and shadows to hide you. This is a great tactic, but if you do this, first mark exactly where the fish were rising. If you don't mark their location you might not be sure where they are once you get up or downstream. Mark the rising fish with a specific bush or rock or log.

These stealthy tactics can be achieved with practice and patience.

-Once your are into your chosen position, your cast needs to be perfect, so don’t make a premature long cast.
-Get as close as you can. Getting close minimizes false casting and the closer you are, the more accurate your cast will be.
-Never false cast while wading. 
Be patient!

Once in position to make your cast to a rising trout, wait for the fish to rise a couple of times before casting. Try to understand his modus operandi. Study his feeding rhythm. Does he feed in bursts or in measured patterns? Is he consistent or erratic? You want your fly on the water when he is ready to come up. Studying the fish will help you achieve this. This is usually more productive than repeated casting over the same trout. 
Again, your best chance is your first cast!

OK, you've made a plan and you're in position. You are ready to make your first cast. It's presentation time. This is when the rubber meets the road!

Next: Your Presentation