Fly fishing

The Beginning of the Season – Fish of the Week 04/02

The fishing calendar rolls with some traditional markers and it’s time to get some particular things out of storage. I will always try to cast when the water is not frozen and Scotland has fishing to offer every month but February/March/April is that start of the season where all sorts of things happen things and fishermen are itchy. if they took time off for Christmas and New Years.

More and more salmon rivers opened up, the Tweed and Forth landed fabulous fresh fish in the first few days. My colleagues looked a little green around the gills at the fishermen who had already caught. Hopefully I’ll have a rod somewhere in February, there’s a big fish waiting to be caught and a devon box that needs swimming!

This weekend, however, there’s snow in the air and rugby on TV, so I think I’ll settle in and tie up some flies for the start of trout season. I read an article about trout and salmon years ago that has stuck with me ever since, the author worked his way through the 5 Nations sleeves tying his favorites for different parts of the season. I don’t have the willpower to fill boxes like he did, but for at least a weekend I’ll set about refilling a few of the models I always use and lose. Finishing a streak of matches with a row of Bibio Hoppers, GRHE, PTN, CDC, Buzzers, and Shimmy Black Tadpoles or Fritz which, let’s face it, would cover me 90% of the time.

When games are on the wire they are usually simple lures or very messy flies produced or left in the vise but this year I will try more Winged Wets and delicate Northern Spiders provided the games Don’t get too uptight, I really liked tying spiders for Grayling, so I’ll try to get some Greenwells Glories and Partridge & Orange. It’s always worth getting expert advice or at least taking a look at someone else’s homework with any skill. Tyers like Davie MacPhail, Barry Ord-Clarke or Tim Wood offer fantastic information, I’ve acquired a few books over the years for Benchside reference although my fly tying is functional at best and I probably have at least one method or alternate hardware in any given model. Being able to see for yourself how it’s supposed to look in the flesh on a show, on video or in print is invaluable, even if you have to squint a bit on your own efforts to make them look good.

Fish of the week – 04.02

This week’s Fish of the Week winner is Charles Jeffrey with the first fish off the Dee. Charles was fishing a Double Dressed Willie Gunn on a float line with a 5ft intermediate head when this gorgeous fresh springer caught his fly and snapped the duck for the season.”