Being doing quite a bit tying recently , no fishing though the weatheres been shocking! Got some size 4 longshank hooks today so thought i'd tie some big G&H sedges, i'm hoping they could stir up a few stubborn fish next summer.
The art of trotting is something i havent done for a few year now. Brian was keen to try out his new centrepin , so we were planned to go to a river, but as we were passing rivers most were high and sure enough when we arrivved at the river it was high and carrying some colour . We decided to go a few miles down the road to its parent river. A huge powerful river ,The Tay! It was a fine day a few fish caught, lots more lost, Brians pin worked great and he took the lions share of the fish (the poaching bastard ousted me out my swim) , i even had a go of it ,and must get one!
I'm quite chuffed with attraction offered from the shell sequins (fish gills ) so thought of the idea of a oval gill plate , 150 mixed colours for about £1 off ebay, these ones are 19mm long . As soon as they arrived i wanted to try a roach pattern , so made a kanekanlon baitfish with the appropriate colours basically white, silver blue a wee dash of right orange at the throat bit holoflash a and a red epoxy eye on a holosilver "gill plate". Cant wait too give it a swim!
Took the dog for a walk along the canal, it looked tempting for roach as a few were dimpling on the surface. Went home cleaned all the mud off my wading boots from yesterday, and watched the F1 at Abu Dhabi, which was ok , Lewis Hamilton won. As soon as the race finished i jumped into action, grabbed the net, , and pike gear (cause i wasn't really prepared for roach fishing) lead for the dog and we were on our way with only a few hours of light left . I had packed only 3 flies a pink one , one based on the "fire tiger" colouring, and a flash fly. I had a tiny jack on the fire tiger .
Eyes bigger than his belly!
Then a brace on the pink before calling it a night, as darkness came over. Slow -slow retreives was the tactic of the day and a wee countdown of 15 on the intermediate.
Me and Brian had a pike trip planned involving the float tubes. On Friday night we mutually decided to wimp out and go for some grayling instead. So on Saturday we were southbound. But nearing our destination the puddles got bigger and sure enough, the river resembles milky coffee. So we decided to try the wee grayling burn closer to home which looked perfect. so armed with bigger than usual rods we ascended on the water working our way through with a bug and dry. We found a riser i rose it twice then it never came up again. Then brian hooked up wit a 12oz ish in his favourite pool .
I managed a few baby grayling , funnily enough in my favourite pool on the dries later on but we both missed many fish. Just nice to get out really!
The Trout season seems to be long gone now, a month today it closed it's doors. Today saw a touch of frost on the ground, one of the first frosts this year. Grayling tend to be a species we link with cold frosty days so it was off for a few hours to see if they were biting. It wasn't till after mid-day i got there , i was glad to see a tad of clarity in the water although it was far from clear. So it was on with a glister nymph and a size 12 dry, i scaled down my nymph today to a 14 , and to cut a long story short that was the fly of the day , although i wish I'd spent a bit time at the tying bench prepping some nymphs with a bit more sparkle armed with them i think i could have had a busier day .
A few photos.
I got a link for synthetics from someone on a Forum, this stuff is a bargain, almost identical to other crinkley nylon synthetics , the tackle shops sell, but for the same price (actually maybe a £1 or so less) ,and a lot , lot, lot more! It's marketed not for fishing though but for hair . As soon as i got my hands on it i flung together a fly sealing the eye and gill plate with uv gel.
I couldnt resist but to try it out, casting it is easy, the action is superb being just that little bit limper that some other crinckly synthetic type products. The Pike seemed to agree as well!
even the micro jacks wanted a bit!
After half a dozen pike the fly was still in good shape!
My only regreat now is i didnt buy more colours , i would like to get a grey and an olive, theres no shortage of colour choices must be about 100 from naturals to neons!
Had a morning free so, went and had another shot at the canal as the gear was still packed and ready from yesterdays trip. Clear sky's and very cold this morning , used the big flash fly again , but the pike hadn't really woke up, maybe the temperature was a factor?
I did manage a few takes though fishing the margins , in some areas , but only had one fish , Counted down to15 then started a slow retrieve on a intermediate when it all went tight. A nice jack.
Could'nt decide what to do today go for the grayling , the pike or a bit Coarse fishing. Ive got a fly tying night , tonight being the first night i'll have to get myself organised so decided to go up the canal , it's a nice to ring the changes , and it would just be nice to familiarise myself a bit more with the rod i built recently. The water has been very coloured with all the rain recently but today there was a wee bit clarity , not clear by any stretch of the imagination but clear enough to catch a pike. There was only one fly for it flash flies. The first flash fly had a hint of mettalic red at the head, quickly i had a take, then lost a good pike around 5lb, thanks to leaving my net yards down the bank. I then caught it's wee brother.
Takes though did dry up, i tried a popper, but no joy ithen tried a monty Flash fly , an d started getting a wee bit action , some good surface slashes others just casual pounces. I only had 3 pike though in the few hours i was there , so theres plenty left for next time.
Another day , again on the grayling, the water was peaty despite being lower, a handful of grayling on a nymph, the nymphs had a little added sparkle , and a few lost on a big dirty polly. A few good trout returned mainly in the second part of the day, lost one very good fish that i think was a seatrout.
When i walked the dog this morning the trout were piling up for spawning in my local burn. So the day was planned for a trip to the local grayling water in the afternoon. I didn't get there till just before 2pm, and was a little surprised to see the river in spate, with the water very dark. The fishing wasn't great, i had more trout than i did grayling , after rising several fish losing or missing them i hooked my first grayling of the day, a triumph in it's self in the conditions.
the amount of takes made it worth persevering the bigger slower pools were better than the fast ones , i hiope to get this stream in good condition soon. When I reached the top of the beat, i met Douglas from The trout fly he'd had a few small grayling and trout too. We blethered down the road about fishing, herding some boisterous bulls on the way , and finding a horse shoe, which i gave to my son. I then said goodbye to Douglas whilst i went over a few pools I'd left. But to no avail, so far the horseshoe hasn't worked it's charm ! Maybe next time!
We said goodbye to the trout season on Thursday, my last trip was the previous Thursday and i failed to get out again because of the lousy weather. But the season never truly finishes. A magnificent creature known as the lady of the stream keeps us going through the winter , yes it's grayling time ,until that time when the trout once again become fair game mid in March, an introduced species of which i'm glad of there prescence .
well there has not been many gaps in the rain but yesterday was dry , through the night we only had lightish rain, so i thought I'd chance it.The water looked OK, it was brownish , but it always is. a little bit higher though than i like it. some of the deeper pools which can be great were just to coloured to fish well the pools less than a foot deep however seemed to fish OK.
in my first pool of that description like that i hooked and lost a fish definitely a grayling too. in the same pool i then dropped one on a nymph. never mind plenty more water.
A wee rise in the next pool, and i had a Parr, i was concentrating on the head when at the side i saw a rise. Turned out to be a grayling , got it on a CDC and elk. i netted it then put my net down, unfortunately i forgot my lanyard , it was on my rucksack at home , i remembered to grab the magnet but forgot that side, so i was using a bit of nylon , mistake i just about lost my net so i scoured the bottom, in panic getting a wet arm in the process, i eventually found it. phew.that could have been a pricey mistake, McLean weigh nets ain't cheap at £60 . Anyway heres the first grayling of the day looks like something had a go at it's tail.
continued upstream and it was a usual story though i did come across the odd dimple riser, which i used a smaller single fly caught a few tiny wee grayling ,nice to see for the future.
generally i was using NZ style, then it hit me NZ style for me anyway isn't the way to go for grayling, a much better , method is a short dropper, it hit me of course when i rose a better fish. Trout today were not a problem avoiding though i did have a few. Next time I'll be better organised, and learn from the routine mistakes i made today, hopefully the next time the water will be clearer and lower it will bring a lot more water into play.
Looks like Ive had my last cast for the Brown trout this season. I planned to go today(Sunday 2nd) but the rain last night put an end to that idea. It has been very wet over the last month and trying to get any sort of fishing in has been difficult. Anyway back to Thursday.
A muggy day, we seem to be having a bit of a heatwave , the river was low enough to fish but still annoyingly carrying a tinge of colour and the leaves were coming off the trees. So i went big! Size 10 dirty Polly with a cased caddis hung underneath.
as the day progressed i lost my last peeper, had to go too Gold head pheasant tails but it didn't really hamper the catch rate, with around 30 fish, nothing big, just steady sport and at times though just too predictable.
The trout i feel are now ripe for spawning , and maybe should be left to do there thing. I think I'm a bit fished out as far as there concerned too, i need a change! Grayling next!
Went to my favourite river yesterday, just to get it in before the season ended. On arrival it was much higher than i expected but still crystal clear. The flats at the bottom of the beat were even moving and had the odd riser as there was a hatch , not huge but a few flies trickling down , enough to bring up a fish or two here and there which is a rarity, atleast most times ive fished it. I caught my first fish in the flats,on a CDC and elk, the flats are not a place i normally spend anytime in usually finding the better quality fish in shallower faster water but conditions dictated.
on the flats
So i heading further up the river i met my usual haunts ,some of it was fishable , some was not crossing the river was dodgy in places but the further up the river i got the easier it got as the river shrunk as tributary after tributary was lost. pools that are normally ankle deep were up to my waste , it's a challenge finding the fish in these conditions, but they are there , and once in my stride i was doing ok. i ended the day with around 20 fish a couple just under 1.5lb , and a good few pounders.
Two bigger fish incidents, one where a trout rose in a calm side stream area at my fly but never stuck (NZ style problem), and another where the nymph seemed to snag when i hooked up and i got broke, oh there was one other strange incident , i hooked a wee 3/4lb brown and a bigger brownie seemed to follow it even have a go at it, I'm suspecting it was it's male suitor for spawning though which is just round the corner now. My wading boots gave up on me the sole (not just the felt sole but the rubber/foam stuff) came away , i knew it was only a matter of time , i will invest in a decent pair very shortly.