Elliptical Casting 4
Fly fishing pioneer Hans Gebetsroither invented elliptical (or oval) casting, mainly to fish for trout and grayling in his home rivers in Austria. American Lee Wulff, who adopted the style, was more of an all rounder. He fished not only for trout but also for bass, tarpon, sailfish, marlin, steelhead, salmon and many other species.
Because of his eclecticism, Wulff had to use heavier tackle, which meant he had to change the grip and the way of casting because his pointer was often not strong enough. One of the reasons that oval casting is less popular in the USA is perhaps because Wulff used not only different techniques and also because his aim was to fish all waters for all species, rather than simply be an instructor. However, with modern day tackle (light, change of grip form) everyone can now use elliptical casting, at least if they are fishing for trout.
In the ever-evolving world of fly fishing, it’s good to see a range of styles being created, talked about and adapted over time and continents, and elliptical casting is just a great example of such an evolution.