A beautifully marked winter grayling caught on the river Dove. The weather was dry with a cooling wind and the water though very clear was bitter cold. The fishing was tough going and served as a reminder that summer grayling fishing is a whole lot more enjoyable!
Fly fishing for grayling can produce great results. This wonderful fish was caught on a size 20 dry fly.
I've been tying a few dry flies that I've found to be exceptionally good for grayling, but also wild brown trout. I don't know if this fly has a name, I call it the NG (Nifty Gnat), apologies if anyone out there has already put a name to this pattern. If you have let me know and I'll credit you.
It's dead easy to tie and and very effective, it's a variant of a Shipman's buzzer and Griffith's gnat all rolled into one:
Hook size: I tie them on sizes 16 down to 20
Thread: Claret with diameter to suit hook size
Breathers: Poly yarn (I've also used foam)
Hackle: Purple (or grizzle) cape top
All materials available from http://www.funkyflytying.co.uk
I love fishing the Dee, I use the river a lot when guiding with clients, but always enjoy it when I'm on the business end of the rod!
I was out yesterday with a friend; the weather was perfect, cool, sunny and very little wind. There were some serious hatches of very small flies but few fish were rising. Fishing with spider patterns returned poor results so I switched to a small dry fly.
The pattern is one of my own making and is proving to be highly effective. I'm not aware of this fly having a name so I call it the Nifty Gnat (see post above for details).
Well I exaggerate not, the fly was awesome, having tried a couple of others that proved lacklustre I tied on a single 'Nifty Gnat' and the takes came fast and furious. My friend, fishing a black parachute pattern with little success, was looking decidedly sick at my change of future. When we moved to a different beat I handed him my rod (I built this on an Epic fibreglass blank and fish with little else on the river) complete with fly and low and behold he too started catching on it.
Well, the weather today was cooler, very windy, but bright and sunny.
I caught a bucket load of salmon parr, it's great to see so many in the river, and in between their splashy little rises to the sporadic hatches and wind blow terrestrials there were bigger fish gently sipping flies from the surface. It amazes me how fish see bugs in among the masses of dead and dying leaves that are blanketing the surface.
I cast a dry fly across one of these rises and a fish takes it, a big fish, it's a grayling and after a tussle it sheds the hook. I carry on down stream and continue to catch parr and smaller grayling. At the bottom of the beat I walk back upstream and gently enter the water again. I wait, and see the big fella is back on station and feeding again. Not wanting to spook it I tie on a small emerger and after a couple of casts it takes it and this time I bring it to the net, and it's a cracking fish!
Out fishing with Deepak last week and he so wanted to catch a grayling. Well we did better than that. His final tally was 5, with a couple of sizable fish, and a few that got away.
He was so excited on catching his first ever grayling he insisted on taking me to the local pub for lunch to celebrate!