While it doesn’t see as much practice as traditional bait fishing, cast net fishing can be a useful technique. Cast nets are ideal for catching bait fish to use later, or to catch certain fish that won’t bite a baited hook, such as mullet. Learning to throw a cast net isn’t easy, but with the proper technique, even beginners can have success. Here are a few expert tips to properly throw a cast net:
1. Keep Lead Line Untangled
One common beginner mistake is forgetting to make sure the lead line is untangled. Once the hand loop is attached to your left wrist and you’re holding the net in mid-air, shake it to make sure that the line around the bottom of the net isn’t tangled. A tangled lead line may prevent the net from opening.
2. Take Time Coiling the Net
Coiling the net is one of the most important steps, so do it slowly. For best results, coil the net slowly over your left hand in a backward motion until half the net is over your left hand while the rest hangs down. While you do this, keep checking the lead line to make sure it isn’t tangled.
3. Keep Coils Tight During Transfer
Once you’ve grabbed the other half of the net and split it in half over your right hand, you must transfer the rest of the net to your left hand, which is where many beginners have problems. Rolling the remaining net over your left thumb for accuracy, make sure all coils remain as tight as possible. You’ll know you’ve done this correctly if the net’s skirt bottom has two piles at different heights, the higher one being the pile you’ve rolled over your left thumb.
4. Use Your Teeth
While it’s possible to use a cast net without your teeth, using teeth makes the process much easier. Hold the lead line (without the weights) in your teeth, then grab the portion swinging from your teeth with your right hand between your ring and pinky fingers, with your palm facing upward.
5. Don’t Over-Throw
It’s not how hard you throw the net that matters, but rather balance and technique that are key. Once you have the lead line in hand and the part of the net on your left arm rolled onto your right palm, cast the net while keeping your lower body as still as possible. (How to Throw a Cast Net) Ensure you’re balanced before throwing the net, as cast nets work best when the motion comes from your upper body only. To get used to the casting motion, you can rotate your upper body without releasing the net.