Tuesday, 16 December 2008

moulin rouge pike fly

Just tied a new pike fly, here's the ingredients:

Hook: kamasan 6/0 uptide
Body: mink zonker strip, llama hair, red sparkle
Hackle: taken from a red feather boa at a moulin rouge themed christmas party.

Monday, 24 November 2008

a spot of winter piking

It's been ages since I last got out on the banks but, I managed a couple of short Piking sessions this weekend. I had originally planned to try a few pike flies I'd been knocking out but, with the wind & the freezing temps I didn't fancy stripping a wet fly line through icy fingers so opted to chuck some plugs about.

Monday, 1 September 2008

shizzle my mizzle

Anyone who looks at this blog is going to think I only post when I bag a lunker but shit has been conspiring against me this summer and it's been nearly 2 months since I last pulled on my (rancid) waders, so it was with great delight that I ventured out into the glorious August mizzle.
After a barren couple of hours after a barren couple of months I was seriously thinking I'd lost my mojo and just as I was contemplating finding a screen to watch the return of the prodigal son SWP to MCFC I hit a rich vein of form teasing out fish after fish from the faster riffles.

What a belter! Bring on September!

Wednesday, 2 July 2008

Tuesday, 24 June 2008

A reason to like Big Brother?

I've found a reason to like Big Brother - It gives me a legitimate excuse to leave the house & go fishing at 9 when the wife insists on watching it.

Again had a really enjoyable last couple of hours fishing into the dark, striking at splashes & hoping to connect to a monster fish.

Saturday, 21 June 2008

Twilight trouting

God I love this time of year!!!!!

Jibbed out for an after the Portugal Germany game on Thursday & had a fantastic hour targeting rising fish in the twilight. The slower glassy smooth glides that have seemed to be devoid of fish so far this year came alive in the perpetual dusk.

The fishing was electric but, the midges were worse than anything in Scotland. It was great to be able to thread a new fly on in the light after being snapped by a lunker but, the midges drive you to distraction, so much so that I missed a number of takes whilst scrathing my head. I'll be back this weekend armed with hat & jungle formula!

Monday, 16 June 2008


The first of the day after finally getting out of bed about 2pm
A heron like Tom stalking his quarry under the trees.

Wednesday, 11 June 2008

Monday evening

Had a couple of hours wading the river on Monday evening, wasn't sure what'd be doing as it had been 23 during the day & the bright sun was still on the water till 8 o'clock, with this in mind I opted to try some tree covered tunnel like sections. There was plenty of fly activity on the water with a hatch of little up winged Olives occuring which the trout were sipping down in the shaded riffles, so I decided to try out a little Sparkle Dun I'd tied.

The sparkly tail is meant to represent the shuck of the emerging fly as it sits in the surface film waiting to fly off thus making it an easy & tempting morsel for a waiting trout.

The fly worked really well accounting for all the fish of the evening, I did try a little Deer Hair Emerger but, they didn't seem interested but were quite happy slashing at the sparkle.

Leeches! - Found these blood sucking little bastards while turning rocks looking for bugs. I should start collecting them & practicing a bit of bloodletting, I believe it's making a comeback in the NHS.

Tuesday, 10 June 2008

Dirty Old Town

Ahhhh bucolic Salford! - Spent an enjoyable evening down the ship canal with Mike last week among the Herons, Waterfowl & freely rising fish, the calm waters were only intermittently interupted by a booming cox from one of the sweeping skiffs - surely a scene more reminiscent of Henly than Pomona Docks!

Is this a first for the ship canal? - a dry fly caught roach (pic courtesy of Mike - Manchester fishing fiend blog)

Tuesday, 3 June 2008

Mayfly Time - Ullswater

Here's some pics from the New Zealand lads reunion weekend on Ullswater. Myself, Rich(Leeds) Elksy(Stoke) & Tom Spent the weekend camped out on Ullswater in anticipation of a decent hatch of Mayfly.
We canoed over to a little secluded bay in the newly acquired HMS Bob Woolmer and set up camp for the weekend. It's been a while since we went feral but, we slipped into the old ways with ease. In the pic you can see HMS Bob in the foreground, Rich in the back ground setting up a tarp & the 'fridge' is just off to right in the lake.
The view from camp looking down Patterdale - truly stunning!
Friday nights evening meal consisted of grilled Rainbow Trout & baked potatoes courtesy of Tom & his Dad fresh from Ghyll Head earlier in the day.
After waking up to sausages & beer for breakfast & a flat calm Ullswater we decided to make a trek up to a hill Tarn for a cast.
There was a shed load of Caddis crawling all over the place.A beautiful little Tarn brownie.
Later that evening back at camp, Tom spotted a nice brownie sipping mayfly off the surface from his vantage point perched on a rocky bluff & managed to drop an Adams right in its tracks and bagged this superb Ullswater Brown!


Wednesday, 28 May 2008

bank holiday drought

Social commitments are starting to get in the way of my fishing! With a mix of cricket, bbq's & visiting family my only angling opportunity this bank holiday was sneaking out onto the river at half six saturday morning. There wasn't much happening by way of surface activity so I experimented fishing my newly tied psycho caddis on a top dropper with a little green goldhead benieth. The tactic worked really well with the fluoro-caddis acting as an indicator and all the fish falling to the nymph.
The weather is gloomy & shite in Manchester at the minute but, I'm like a coiled spring waiting to pounce on the first fishing opportunity!

Tuesday, 13 May 2008


Here's some pics from the boys weekend in Abersoch. The tranquil fishing trip soon degenerated into... ...booze fuelled watersports
My arms & back are now completely goosed.
Looking forward to some fly fishing.

Tuesday, 6 May 2008

Geek chic

Spent the last week on the Cote D'Azur & after an unsuccessful couple of evenings seeking out suitable trout rivers under the thinly veiled guise of looking for restaurants with the missus, I was resigned to just spending a bit of time knocking out some flies in anticipation of a return to some on-form water back home - for which I was called a geek!

Thursday, 24 April 2008

Reward 4weighting

Finally, a couple of warmer days on the bounce has given me the chance to try out my new little brook rod with some of the dries I've been knocking out over winter.
These fish bend a 4 weight double
P.A with a lunker
Beautiful orange spots

Friday, 4 April 2008

1st of the season

While walking the hound in the morning I noticed a few Gnats buzzing around in the park so knew I'd have to get out that evening to try out some new emerger patterns I'd been tying before the predicted cold front blows in & plunges us back into wintery conditions just in time for the weekend.
There wasn't a great deal of surface action going on, but I saw the odd shy dimple under the far bank vegetation & this was enough to rig up & nice fine tapered leader connected to an Elk hair emerger I'd tied onto a klinkhamer hook, the fly worked perfectly with its Spartan like mane sitting high in the water with the tempting buggy body benieth.

Thursday, 28 February 2008


Went out to exorcise the demons of another unsuccessful trip out nyphing for Grayling by chucking out some big lures for dem dare toothy urban critters. Tried the big Perchy streamer again & immediately had a take that once again just let go & another fish taunting me by eye balling it all the way in to just below my feet!A change of fly was in order - this new fly, being a lot smaller & lot lighter, was a comparitive dream to cast but, that was by the by, the main reason in the switch was to use a less fussy lure where there'd be more chance of the Pike taking the hook than it's teeth setting into the fur n feather...
& it paid off, knicked it sweetly in the scissors!

Thursday, 21 February 2008

The Sequel

Returned to the river the next day with my Pike fly set up - a 10 ft 8 weight airflow rod, 8 wt airflow 40+ shooting head line loaded onto a spare cartridge from a cheap greys reel, all bought off the internet for about £60, the rod even has a life time warranty which may prove useful chucking these huge Pike flies around.Started punching this big Perchy looking fly out into the tail of the pool, which feels a bit like casting a bath sponge on string when you're more used to chucking out small dries. A few casts later as I was watching the lures action as it neared the bank a decent Pike shot out of the murk and hit the fly, the rod bent double & I was into a fight but, just as I had it beat & was reaching for the net the fish just seemed to open its mouth & let go of the lure. The same thing happened on two more occasions, I think this may be due to the fish grabbing the streamer material and the hook not setting properly - before my next trip I need to look at modifying these flies.

Wednesday, 20 February 2008

Working lunch

Stole an hour at the river the other day in the bright afternoon sun and spent it searching out the weir pool with a little Rainbow Trout Rappala. The action was superb taking three pike in around half an hours fishing, with each getting progressively larger. I saw the last two fish hit the lure just a few feet from the bank - great fun! This has spurred me on to get out again in the next few days & tackle them with my heavy fly set up...

High Peak

Tried out a new stretch of water at the weekend up in the High Peak, I knew it would be tricky with over night temperatures down in the minuses, the water running gin clear due to the absence of rain for over a week now & the daytime conditions of bright low sunshine casting shadows wherever you waded... I was right, we both blanked, although we did have a top day out exploring a new water in the sunshine.
We spent the day searching the likely looking riffles & pools with heavy nymphs to no avail, I tried to convince myself that our lack of success was due to another angler who had been wading the same stretch prior to us. It was encouraging to see a small hatch of olives mid afternoon but, they failed to bring any of the Grayling to the surface & reveal their whereabouts to us.