My Kind of Fly –Dan Atkinson
Well, thanks to Frank for the nomination, the way the weather has been in the last few weeks, one would think an ice bucket has been emptied on us all!
As many members know, my passion is river fishing for Trout and Grayling and my own fly selection has evolved to contain a selection of patterns which represent the various hatches/falls of fly throughout the season. As we are now in spring and what I personally think is the pinnacle of the season, I have included here a selection of flies which I rely on for the majority of my fishing through the spring months.
March and early April see hatches of Large Dark Olives and more recently on my club waters, March Browns. Then by the end of the month, the Grannom appear in huge numbers (not easy to contend with!) along with Olive uprights and Iron Blues; it’s not uncommon to have all three Mayfly species hatching at the same time! Then depending on the average air temperatures we will see the Black Gnats which can provide some sublime dry fly fishing also.
Left to right:
LDO paradun, Olive Copperhead nymph, Waterhen Bloa, March Brown emerger, Grannom pupa, CDC olive Dun, CDC Iron Blue, Black Gnat, Shuttlecock midge.
The potential results in spring…
And the next nominee for My kind of Fly is…..Paul Little
My Kind of Fly – Frank Bainbridge
Thanks to John McGorrigan it appears that I’ve had the dubious, or is that enviable , honour of being the first to be nominated for the LFD “ Ice Bucket Challenge” which entails producing an article on my fishing ‘successes’, plus photographs of my successful flies, so I thought I’d do a piece on early season boat fishing on Ullswater for wild brown trout.
For those keen on a good read , and some great experiences of wild brown trout fishing, I would recommend a couple of superb books…
Trout from a Boat by Dennis Moss
The Loch Fishers Bible by Stan Headley.
Both these experienced anglers give advice on technique and patterns which have proved very successful.
As a rule of thumb—early season trout will be located close in to the shore line …big trout can be found in 6 inches of water ( OK 150 mm for the metricated) so both the boat angler and the shoreline angler would be sensible to fish close in. No need for 30 yard (metre) casts over deep water.
A floating line can be used but I would certainly go for an intermediate or a very slow sinker for the first 8 weeks or so or until the water warms up a bit and/or the buzzer hatch gets under way.
As for the flies—well a general pattern such as a gold ribbed hare’s ear, possibly with a gold, copper or black bead head should get some interest on the point.
Gold Ribbed Hares Ear Hutch’s Pennel
An emerger midge pattern—such as a Black Spider, Black Pennel, Hutch’s Pennel or Blae and Black has proved OK on the middle dropper.
And a pattern which produces some disturbance should be used on the top dropper such as Bibio, Zulu, Claret Bumble .
Bibio Green Tailed Bibio
Now all you need are the right weather conditions…..a warm South Westerly breeze, overcast conditions, oh come on …you’ll just have to struggle with what you get…..
Best of Luck and tight lines.
And the next nominee for my kind of Fly is ..Dan Atkinson
My Kind of Fly – John McGorrigan
This is going to be like the “Ice bucket challenge without the water” for the members of Lakeland Fly-dressers. Hopefully a bit of Fun. If nominated please contribute.
I first came across the Deer Hair Emerger through Bob Wyatt’s wonderful book “what trout want” . He described his flies as ammunition. These were working Flies. These were flies to catch fish, one after another.These were flies built to last and quick to tie. What was not to like?
I tied them up as bob had described and I caught fish. Lots of them. But they didn’t last , not like Bob described them. I wasn’t doing something right.
At the BFFI in 2014 I watched Hans Weilenmann demo the split thread technique I decided to use it for my DHE. More to practise the technique more than anything else. Indeed with Hans parting words “practise does not make perfect – perfect practise makes perfect” still ringing in my ears and after watching his DHE 2.0 variant on YouTube, I decided to experiment.
The dubbing caught between the thread fibres would add strength. Rubber legs were added as an additional attractor and the hares ear body had added orange hares ear and black seals fur at the thorax. I use other colours as well particularly Olive hues which work well.
The result is above – My go to fly – It can bring them up, you can use it as an indicator for a nymph hung below, and even with splitting the thread takes only minutes to tie. It wont win the fly dressers competition.
Hook – emerger size 12 – 16 (you can go lower than 16 but use snowshoe rabbit rather than deer hair)
Body – Hares ear
Thread – dark brown or Black
Thorax – black seals fur or ice dub
Wing – Deer hair
Legs – silicone legs
Key tying point
Tie deer hair in forwards, wax thread and wrap around deer hair to trap well and create taper. After creating the body pull hair upright, tie in front, then wind thread through the deer hair to trap again. This makes it virtually bombproof.
For the next round I nominate ……………Frank Bainbridge – good luck Frank – three weeks to go!!