Written by: Paul Procter
It’s grim up North...not!
Based at Inverness, our northern-most guide Hamish Young is reaping the rewards of a mild winter and settled spring. It seems his local lochs that are usually held in the grip of winter until early May have been producing trout since April. The best part is these are fat fish that are full of beans and consequently punch well above their weight. Hamish has reported several decent fish which have breached the magical 2-lb. barrier that in anyone’s book is notable when it comes to wild trout. Given he uses a 10-foot, 4-weight Access, these fish have certainly put a bend in the rod. Here, Euan Innes proves that Scotland isn’t all that grim as he’s about to return a cracking early season brown. Find Hamish at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Chalkstreams Running High
Our man Dave Martin reports that both the Test and Itchen are still running a good few inches above normal. Open hatches have meant increased flow rates too, which hasn’t helped when it comes to fly presentation. That said, David managed to put his clients amongst a fair few trout. Morning sessions were dominated by nymph fishing with a #16 PTN producing fish more often than not. However, after lunch the fabled Mayfly stretched their wings, making for great surface sport, especially on the more cloudy days. Whilst flow rates make for challenging fishing right now, come the summer Dave reckons these streams will be thankful for this extra water. Find David at: www.goflyfishinguk.com
Fly of the Month:
Stuck Shuck Mayfly
In the grand scheme of things there’s hundreds of mayfly patterns out there, so what makes this one stand apart? Well, natural mayflies are a fair size. If we copy them to the letter, they require a large imitation. Therefore, artificial mayflies dressed with traditional hackles that sit proud of the surface aren’t always easy for trout to seize. This Stuck Shuck version however, sits in the film making it more likely to be nabbed by trout. Those CdC fibres aren’t so much there for buoyancy, but more to soften the outline of this pattern, to give it a certain “buzz”. Although a Stuck Shuck comes into its own when mayfly emerge, such is the fly’s profile, at a pinch it has a place when female spinners lay spent at the surface. A must-have fly for anyone venturing out where mayfly are likely to occur.
Black Gnat Bonanza
Reports are flooding in about the recent falls of black gnats. Almost a miniature Hawthorn fly in appearance, black gnats are a terrestrial that can be found swarming along the banks of rivers and lakes. Our Yorkshire ace Steve Rhodes has been experiencing tremendous falls of this small black insect when the trout have gone positively daft. Initially, Steve’s clients were doing well with appropriately sized imitations. But, where gnats carpeted the surface, Steve upped the ante by selecting a much larger fly in the form of a detached foam bodied Hawthorn dressing. Standing out in the crowd now, trout homed in on this imitation like no tomorrow. Find Steve at: www.goflyfishinguk.com
These boots are meant for walking…
Despite being marketed as an entry-level wading boot, the new Encounter Boot is perhaps one of the most comfy I’ve worn recently. Better still, the synthetic uppers don’t retain water, so they remain light when wading and are quick to dry. The traditional felt sole offers superior grip when negotiating streams with football-sized polished boulders or exposed bedrock, which has a finish like black-ice! A cushioned insole means you can walk for miles without your feet becoming fatigued or cramped. I’d initially thought of them more for travel, or as a back-up pair of boots. However, I instinctively reach for them whether gearing up for a full day of guiding or just enjoying a few hours on a local stream.
2014 Schools and Courses
Orvis have a great range of Schools and Courses lined up for 2014 which cover all aspects of fly fishing. So whether you’re a beginner or more seasoned rod, chances are there’ll be something for you. As well as appearing in their catalogue, dates and venues can be found on the website here.
For further information and bookings contact Sporting Adventures at Orvis.