Ok im going to get this out the way first because it’s top of my what a complete doughnut list and this kind of thing really pisses me off an ultimately damages the image of our sport, if you don’t want to read this then skip this section.
I was browsing the net looking at pike flies (yea sad I know) and I came across this picture below what a disgraceful way to treat a fish , my first thoughts were obviously a trout angler who knows no better but then I was shocked to follow the link to of all things a match angling website that had an article on pike fly fishing now I’m sorry but I can’t think of anything worse that a pike fly fishing article written by a trout fisherman for a match angling website , for one they hate pike with a vengeance and usually knock em on the head , I was intrigued by why on earth this had appeared on this website, so eager to see if I could learn anything from this idiot I followed the link to the full article Jesus I wish I hadn’t
Now as anyone knows I sell pike flies now and again and to be honest I really don’t care where you get your flies from if you do indeed buy them there are some fantastic guys out there tying flies and there is some absolute garbage out there that falls apart after a couple of fish that are made by trout company’s in Africa (hello arkwrights mill) in fact these things are probably designed to fall apart as Mr corporate fly company wants you to keep buying them I mean come on people what does the guy in a hut in Africa know about pike , I’ll tell ya jack crap that’s what , and this leads me nicely back to this bone head and his article because then I found this picture
Ok so even the entry level pike fly fisher will have done some digging around on the internet for information on how to rig up pike flies or even asked in a forum somewhere out there in internet land I mean if your embarrassed about asking these kind of questions you can sign up using a fake name and folks are usually very forthcoming in the fly fishing world when it comes to helping newbies out , so really there’s no excuse for the dogs breakfast rig above as anybody would have told him the correct connection to use .
What this jackass has done is simply not bothered his backside and just thought “dhu that looks right” when in fact the clip above will fail at some point that’s 100% certain any kind of pressure from a decent or even smaller jack will just pull this open and hey presto Einstein you’ve got a pike swimming around with a new piece of jewellery even worse if it has taken it deep down unbelievable that this guy is also pluggin his own made in Africa cheap garbage pike flies.
No don’t get me wrong I really don’t care where you get your pike flies from all I’m concerned about is not getting a bum deal from, A-flies that fall apart after a fish , B – getting them from people who know jack about the species as Cleary this nut sack doesn’t know anything about pike or predators so please be carefull out there and don’t listen to some of the tripe that’s written out there especially from this village idiot ,
Now clearly I can’t name companies due to legal reasons but please be very careful when you buy fliesonline . Please feel free to share that picture at the top it’s a disgrace and it’s most defiantly not a pike flyfisher
And so to fishing I had a day out with wonderful fishing buddy and fellow heavy metal nut job conan last week, we have been on about fishing together for a while now and he was very keen to catch his first pike on the fly so I was more than happy to help him out and we finally got out on the water on a fine but somewhat windy day and as luck would have it, it was blowing in completely the direction I didnt want it to but I thought we would still give it a shot and if all else failed I had a secret weapon to try , so the boat was loaded up and we headed to a couple of spots that I knew he would get a fish or two and get him over to the dark side
No sooner had we done a couple of drifts conan was into his first pike on the fly and you can tell by the look on his face he was somewhat impressed at the fighting abilities of these fish even small fish give you a good fight I think he can now see what I was banging on about conan new pb pike 7lb ……that’s another one converted then see ya next week pal
A new spot to try time I think , we had 13 fish to the boat so I wanted to rest the area for a bit so I decided to try a shallow area that leads into a drop off , always a good feature when pike fishing so we headed of and found the spot I wanted , I changed the fly over to a big natural ken capsey tallywacker design although mine had a loose spun deerhair head this thing looks awesome in the water and really creates a whole loada noise and perfect on a slow intermediate line over shallow water
I tried this fly for a while but seems like they weren’t having it with the big flies so it was back onto the small gliss and glint patterns , strange this place they seem to prefer tiny flies as straight away I had a follow , ok you could argue that the fish was already in area after seeing the big fly swanning about just under the surface but I just think they like smaller patterns here , probably due to the number of sticklebacks in the place that they gorge themselves on who knows that’s fishing nice spot though will try it again , so by the end of the day we had 13 fish in the boat and maybe 30 plus follows to the side of the boat , conan was impressed and converted to this style of fishing , I suspect I may have unleashed a beast there as he left my house he was mumbling about hooks and materials all in all a great day in great company
So here’s the little fish catching machine they were all going crazy for nothing complicated just a small around 4 inches long (small by pike fly standards) well if that’s what was catching them well that’s what I’m going to use, if you haven’t used gliss and glint plus before it’s like sf fiber but a lot softer and I believe more movement than sf , I still use sf now and again and im certainly not discounting it as a material but for my needs deercreeks gliss and glint plus suits me a lot better and to be honest I’ve had more success with it than sf with the predators
A thorny topic of debate times 2
Ok so just to get the cat amongst the pigeons and purists spitting there breakfasts all over there screens here’s a thing I do when I’m going from one area to another I stick out a trolling fly yes I know I know it bears little resemblance to any kind of living creature but it works ,
What I do is have a spare rod set up with an intermediate line and a trolling fly then I set off to my next location I can slowly drag this behind the boat and a lot of the time I will pick up bonus fish now this sometimes can make the difference between blanking or not and I would rather catch something even if it is a bonus fish on one of these things.
Now ok so not technically fly fishing as a point of order the method is quite simple once under way a few casts to launch the thing sideways away from the boat (not out the back)and strip a good length of your main fly line off . Almost down to the backing then the line will be taken up by the speed of the motor (2 in an electric) and will hoover a few feet of the bottom in 10 ft of water right out the back of the boat, the faster you go the shallower the fly will run the slower the deeper it will run, always have your rod pointing at the fly and your drag set so it’s not going pull the rod from your hand when you get a hit , by doing it this way your other hand can control the outboard so when you do get a strike you can kill the engine and hit the fish in a split second although with circle hooks the fish hook themselves anyway.
*I think this is quite a valid way to catch fish on a fly rod although somewhat unorthodox a method
Debate times 2
Circle hooks yup circle hooks I really don’t understand why more anglers don’t use them for predator flies in this country I mean ultimately they are the most fish friendly hook out there and that’s what we want minimal damage to our prey so I find the lack of use of circle quite surprising, I think the main reason is they don’t look like a “proper hook” in fact fast flies had to give a guy a refund because he said the hook point was bent and simply wouldn’t accept that was the design of the hook , he was even directed to a video explaining the use of the hook but he still insisted that it was a dodgy hook ,
I use circle hooks quite a lot and find they make fantastic fly hooks but it’s going to take a while to change people’s opinions but take a look at the pictures where is the hook position is I have found that this is pretty much standard when hooking fish and isn’t that what you want every time a clean hooked fish that can be realised very quickly and without damage.
Circle hooks come in loads of sizes and various wires from lightweight to the heavy tuna circles (too heavy for pike flies) and the picture below you can see there is enough shank to get enough material on, you know all those times when a fish throws the hook well this hook considerably cuts that lost fish total by a very large margin.
The only down side I found was that they are not really suited to traditional fly boxes and are better in compartment boxes , but this is only a small problem and most people can fit a compartment box in their bags or boxes give them a try I’m sure you’ll be pleasantly surprised
Diamond hard uv completely tack free still amazes me how good this stuff is, if of course you want something that is still tacky after curing please Google bug bond
See ya on the water
(Doing it longer than some people have been on the planet in a cave in Scotland)