Keep Oakland Beautiful Points of Interest remind us of how interesting and beautiful Oakland is and why we should care about protecting it.
If I say, “Oakland,” what’s the first thing that pops into your mind? Is it ‘fly-fishing?’ I’m betting it’s not. But, did you know that Oakland is home to two world-class fly-casting ponds?
The Leona Casting Pools are located in McCrea Memorial Park (4469 Carson Street), in the Redwood Heights district. The two pools are large, but only a couple of feet deep. A grid is painted on the bottom of each pool, there are numbers on the edges, and colored rings float in the water to help practicing fly fishermen (and fly fisherwomen) assess their casting distance and accuracy. Interestingly, there are no fish in the pools since the pools are only intended for the practice of fly-casting.
The pools have been used by the Oakland Casting Club since they were completed over half a century ago. This club, about 100 members strong, includes some of the finest fly-casters in the world. If you go to the casting pools, one or more members of the Oakland Casting Club may be there and, if asked, they might offer advice about your casting technique.
The park itself has a quiet, rural feel, even though it hugs Highway 13. Tall trees mute the traffic noise and create a shady enclosure. For those who may not be into fishing, but want to relax and enjoy the woodsy setting, there are several benches as well as picnic and bathroom facilities.
Whether you’re hip deep in a chilly stream or just practicing your technique at the casting pools, fly-casting is a relaxing way to spend some time. Just watching a pro artfully snap that fishing line, so it whirs and dances in the sunlight, is a thing of beauty.
Keeping Oakland Beautiful is everybody’s business.
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