The long tail cast on is the normal cast on I use unless the patterns states otherwise. To do the larger amounts of stitches needed I do the following. Use two skeins of yarn. Yes two skeins, tie a slip knot with a loop with both the yarns held together slip it on the needle. This does NOT count as the first stitch, now you have a "tail" and a working yarn. Cast on as usual, when you are finished and have the right amount of stitches (count them again just to make sure) then cut off one of the skeins.
Now just continue to knit the pattern. When you get to the last stitch, the one that has two loops, take it off and unknot it. Now you have no excuse for not doing a long cast on for an afaghan or sweater.
There is also a cable cast on which will help as well, Very Pinks has this video that will help you.
There is also the backwards loop cast on as well. I bet you didn't realize there were so many cast ons. I know of many people that have been knitting for years and didn't know so you are in good company. Is always good to learn the different types of cast ons. You never know when they will come in handy like the middle of the work or to hide the cast on. Each is there for a different reason.