The Snap T Cast – Spey Casting 101

The “Snap T Cast” is a two directional cast. One in which the fly will anchor on the upstream side of the caster. Therefore this cast provides a level of safety when you encounter an upstream wind. This will prevent you from wearing an “Intruder Fly” earring. This cast also is good when you encounter limited backcast room. This cast can be set up with a minimal “D-loop” behind the caster if necessary.

The “Snap T” cast was developed by Pacific Northwest anglers, George Cook, John Farrar and Dec Hogan. It is used as an alternate to a “River Left”, “Single Spey” cast. This cast is quite east to master and is great for when learning to spey cast.

Here’s a video by the late and great Bill Lowe showing you the “Snap T Cast”



When to consider using the “Snap T” 

  • Upstream Wind
  • Limited Backcast Area
  • Makes little disturbance on the water
  • Minimizes line positioning and maximizes fishing time

Situations when to use a “Snap T” cast for a Right Handed Caster

  • Single Spey From “River Left” with an upstream wind over your strong shoulder (Right Handed)

  • Reverse Single Spey from “River Right with an upstream wind over your off-shoulder (Kackhanded)

Fundamentals of the Snap T Cast

  • The principal of the Snap T cast is to bring the rod and line partially upstream, then imediately “snapping” the rod to the starting position in a “>” move.
  • The “snap” will flick the remaining line, leader and fly upstream.
  • After the fly lands upstream at the anchor point, the rod is swept around and upstream and circles up and into the forward cast.

Here’s the steps involved with throwing a Snap T cast

  1. While standing on the left bank, “River Left”, Start with your normal hang down length, (hang down is the amount of line out of your rod tip when you start a cast), laid out straight at the end of the dangle. Face your shoulders in the direction of the forward cast and hold the rod tip low to the water surface with your right hand on top.
  2. With the rod tip in a low position, sweep the rod from left to right on a slight incline eventually rising close to 30 degrees from the horizontal, or about at eye level.
  3. The rod inclines on an incline sweep and rotates about 90 degrees from the start position, (basically pointing straight across stream). Without hesitating, the rod tip is redirected downstream and back towards the starting position (or back towards the downstream bank) with a “V” shaped “snap” This “snap” drives the remaining front portion of the line off the waters surface and to the anchor point slightly above the path of the forward delivery.
  4. After the “snap” is made there is a slight pause as the line leader and fly position to the anchor point, about a rods length upstream and slightly forward of the caster.
  5. As the fly anchors, the rod sweeps upstream low to the horizon until it crosses the path of the intended cast. In a continuous motion the rod drives back to drive the “D” loop or possible a “V” loop, 180 degrees from the target line. The rod circles up to form a “D” loop and then smoothly accelerates into the forward cast.

Get out and practice until you’ve got it right.