I recently tried the Airflo Skagit FIST 510 grain head on my Beaulah Classic 12’6″ and found it to be a little fussy to cast compared to my floating Scandinavian shooting heads or floating Skagit heads with 10 to 15′ sink tips. I spent a little time getting used to the FIST with a 10′ 90 grain sink tip and a non weighted to a moderately weighted fly. My best casts by far came when I used a Double Spey with a high, very slow sweep.
Its a very easy cast to pull off and it doesn’t take much back casting room, which worked out well since I didn’t have much at the time. There is no real acceleration involved in the sweep, or peeling, ripping or tearing the line off of the water. Just a high, gentle sweep that provides a large enough D loop with very little effort.
You end up with a pretty light anchor using this cast and it flies well. You can punch the forward cast out there a little, in fact, if you really want to jack it out there it almost requires a little extra on the forward stroke since the D loop is only decent sized and not as big as it might be if the sweep were flatter and maybe just a tad zippier. But Skagit heads are so bulky they really don’t require much acceleration to make a decent cast, so with the high, slow sweep you get a decent enough D loop to get the job done with minimal drama precluding the forward cast.