Perry's poke, where to place the anchor?


Tropical member
Hi all,

I was curious about how you cast Perry poke style? when using Skagit head.

1) Where you would place your anchor to optimize the cast? "Optimize" means more efficient and esay to cast if the obstacle is not the problem. or if it is the problem, how you deal with that?

Do you place the anchor as close to you as possible? I used to place the anchor in front of me about 10'-5'. The further away I feel get more difficult...

2) Another question is how big the D loop you pull back behind you?




Purveyor of fine hackle, wine & cigars!
The Perry poke is more of a recovery cast, for when you screw up your D-loop. It's also a good way to setup the direction of the cast, so sometimes you want to use it more often.

I'm not sure that you actually need it too much when you're casting a Skagit line, since the head of the line is so short that you can usually place the anchor pretty accurately. I use it more often when I'm casting my mid-spey or some of my Hardy lines, basically the longer lines.

For your anchor, you want to place it about a rod's length away from you, and have it line up in the direction that you plan to cast. The only time you might want to place the anchor farther away, is if the speed of the water is really fast, but plan on a rod length away from you.

I'm no expert, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn! :clown:

Hope that helps!
Bill :cool:
I agree with the above post that you want to put the anchor in the normal place, about a rod length's out.

For mid to longer lines I use a pp as a recovery cast, or when I don’t have room for a proper D loop, or to "chip" a cast out low to the water (works good for windy situations), or when doing a large change of direction. It seems to me that with a skagit line you almost have to do a pp when doing a single spey and it works great with all the casts. It helps you slowdown, line your cast up, get a good water load, and pop it out there.


New Member
Recovery is all I will use a PP for. The cast uses a lot of water and makes a lot of noise. If you are proficient with a two hander a PP is a great tool to save a bad cast. If you are just learning how to cast a two hander I would not worry about spending too much time learning how to save a bad cast, I would first learn how to make a good one. It’s a extra move that is not necessary much like a snap T.

Rob Zelk

I swing, therefore i am.
I set my anchor so it makes it lies in its horse-shoe shape slightly upstream inline,"pointing," where you want to casts, and about 10-15 feet away from me at the furthest point. I use the perry poke all the time if I can, I just like using it. Its liesurly to use, and if you do it right, I think the noise generated isn't half as much as the snap T and if you always set up the cast upstream of you, you are already past the fish you may spook. I believe it generates just as much, probably more, power as a double. As for the D loop, I'd say it depends on your rod and what length line you are throwing; how far you throw your anchor out also depends on your length of belly.


Tropical member
Thanks for the responses! I appreciated!

It is nice to know poepl also use it as recovery cast...

Like Rob said, This is my go-to cast too. 90% of time I use it with striper fishing.
I use sink tip and heavy flies. For the big boulder and pocket waters. This is a wonderful cast.
Splash or not...the fish deep in the water seems doesn't care much...



Active Member
I set my anchor so it makes it lies in its horse-shoe shape slightly upstream inline,"pointing," where you want to casts, and about 10-15 feet away from me at the furthest point.
"Horse-shoe shape?" (Tongue in cheek here) Nooooo, Nooooo, noooooo.:hmmm: That will set you up for a 'Blood L.' Line/cast has to be straight over the top of line in the water. Parallel line(s) if you will; 'A' right over the top of 'B.' Anchor should be a rod lenght (+/-) out in front (or above) you; remember the '180 degree rule' of any cast.;)


Active Member
To build on what Fred said:

First of all, the Perry Poke is much more than a recovery cast. Done properly, it sets everything up for the 180 degree rule. I prefer the anchor to be off my shoulder. Although if backed up against the brush, you have no choice but to place it out in front of you. I also try to place it, or let the current bring it down to me, somewhere between one rod length and one half rod length away. This can be tough in fast water. If it gets too close, dump the cast. Let it go by. Reset the anchor further upstream.

Don't try to rush this cast as it depends on the sustained anchor. Assuming a 15' sink tip, at least half of the tip can be laying in the water at the completion of the D-loop. This is a radical departure from the "kiss & go" style of casting. Those big, fat Skagit lines have enough mass to rip a sink tip and big fly out of the water and send it on its way.

I don't understand all this concern about noise generated by any of the water borne anchor casts. Especially the upstream anchor casts. The fish are nowhere near where all this is happening.


New Member
Never said anything about scaring the fish, just said it makes a lot of noise and I am not say the PP is not effective, just saying it crates a lot of extra movement. Right rod, right fly line makes it possible to get the fly fishing with out making three casts. A properly executed single or double spey is really all you need. There are times when I will use a snap T but only when longer casts are needed. Don’t get me wrong it is important to know all the different casts and not become dependant on the easy ones. Once I learned the snap T the single spey was all but lost until I had one of my mentors gilt me into regaining proficiency. If the Poke works for you than I can see no reason not to use it, as far as the anchor goes, for me it is no different than anchor I use for normal casting.:beer2:


Calvin Fuller
I guess I may be confused... Maybe there are two different definitions of "Perry Poke" isn't it an "upstream" shoulder cast during an "upstream" wind? (with Skagit Lines) Not just a recovery cast. I would think it would eliminate the Snap T (a.k.a. Snap Tip with Heavy Flies) on an upstream wind.


New Member
The Perry Poke was developed, invented, discovered or what ever you want to call it during a bad cast. It was a recovery move that created more load with the short lines being used on the Skagit and caught on because of its effectiveness. This all happened way back before any of the modern day two handed lines came out. The first time I saw the technique (because you really can’t call it a cast) was while fishing with Ed Ward on the Skagit. He was fishing the first Sage 7 weight with one of his home made lines. I tried to cast his system but it was too much of a difference from what I was using (Burk 14’ 9 weight). He used the Poke on every cast but thinking back he would have had to. Think about it, 4” intruder + a long sink tip on a very soft and short 7 weight. Ed had mastered his system and was fishing the way he wanted to. It just took the extra move, the Poke to get it to happen. So unless things have changed this is how I remember it. The poke comes after you have set the anchor. I set my anchor the same for all casts. After the anchor has been set you start a D loop. Before completing the D loop you lay (or stick) the line back down on the water at the anchor point to increase line stick. You then go back into the D and send the cast. The hesitation allows the sink tip to penetrate the surface adding even more load to the cast. I was fishing one of the first wind cutters and a long rod and found I did not gain any advantage by using the poke. How ever I did find that when I failed to feel the proper load as I was creating the D I would place a poke and was able to recover the cast. It is highly effective in adding more load but still for me more movement than is necessary. Efficiency is the key and if the poke gives you that, than who’s to argue.


Calvin Fuller

Good explination. I new it was used as a recovery cast, however I also thought it could just be used as a regular cast for an upstream shoudler cast with an upstream wind.
Marty just gave a pretty good explanation of the Perry Poke. Which was named after Carl Perry. And, as stated, was originally a recovery from a single spey gone bad. There is also a variation of the cast that adds a poke to a snap-t. George Cook calls it the wombat cast. Extra moves, for sure. And an interesting story on it's development. But I'll leave that for George to tell.

Rob Allen

Active Member
i thought skagit lines were too short to have a bloody L :D

I completely agree, though many won't that the perry poke is a recovery cast and i think for someone learning to cast it is gonna be a crutch you'll lean on too much and never actually learn to cast.

However if you insist upon adding another step to your casting to slow things down i recommend Hugh Falkus'es contrived loop it is far more effiecient and far more powerful it's basically a way to turn a single spey into a double spey but with much more power.

here is my best explanation of how it is done.. form river left.

1 right hand on top

2 lift your anchor as though you are doing a single spey but underpower it anchoring the line just downstream of you as though you were doing a reverse double spey.

3 underpower a forward stroke slightly downstream this should set up a perfect anchor downstream of you for a left shoulder forward cast 90 degrees across the river.

when done right it is much more fluid and powerful than a perry poked snap t or perry poked single spey..

but then why not just shoot off a single spey?