TRUSSED UP LIKE A TURKEY
had to be done sometimes I just get the urge to tie something that takes a stoopid amount of time to make ill sit at the vice for bloody ages making a single fly for no other reason than I had an idea well I just had the idea that I wanted something in natural but I wanted it not only big but I wanted it with plenty of movement and to act like a dying fish when stripped , I had the idea in my head the night before while watching some tediously boring cooking programme on the TV , well I wasn’t watching it the wife was ive no idea why as I cant remember the last time she cooked me Caramelized pears with Braised pork loin starter followed by Roast of lamb with a home made balsamic reduction followed by Steamed Lobster
Filet Mignon Roasted duck with raspberry glaze and finishing of with a nice Cheese soufflé and all cooked and ready to eat ten mins after walking in the front door like this woman on the tv has done anyway it must have been the lobster that set me about thinking about fishing flies and I only had another 15 mins of this cooking show before scooby doo came on so with the pattern in the drawer in my head marked “tie tomorrow” I watched scooby and went to bed
in the morning the pattern was still buzzing about in my head so I had breakfast and headed to the vice where after an interesting couple of hours I came up with the patterns above and below kinda based loosely on a flatwing and a deceiver I think it came out ok but of course the test is getting the 10 inch beast wet (more on that later)
hook - 6/0
tail – chartreuse/white saddle cape
belly chartreuse/white bucktail
feathers – a combo of metz and grizzled cape
eyes - deer creeks crystal eyes
WATER CALLING TIME TO GET FLIES WET
me and Conan the fly destroyer had arranged a pike trip on wed and a grayling trip on Friday these would be wading around jobs and no boats involved at all (well the boats are off the venue for winter anyway but I can still fish from the shore) so it would be a travel light job 1 rod waistcoat a few packs of flies (that took a while let me tell you) and I would only have to change the rods and flies although Conan was going to be providing the grayling flies for Friday I was actually quite excited
so above is my kit for the pike trip nothing to flash and as regular followers of my blog will know choosing just a handful of flies for a trip is a bit of a daunting task , but I pretty much knew the colour schemes that I needed and being quite cold I wanted flies that I could fish very slow but still have plenty of movement the seed was set.
THE BLAIR WITCH DOUGHNUT BOX
there’s some strange sights in Scotland (not just me and the destroyer) its getting to be a bit of a fishing tradition Conan brings blueberry and lemon curd doughnuts on our fishing trips we firmly believe a couple of doughnuts around lunch time gives you that boost you need to carry on chucking big flies into the evening well that’s what Conan says anyway and who am I to argue with a man who truly knows his doughnuts.
Every wondered what a fly reel looks like that been submerged for years well while I was down looking at the water I found this which a trout angler had obviously dropped in the water strange there was no line on it though hope he hadn’t just bought it and dropped it in the water ouch that would have hurt the wallet
BUY A FLY MISTER
fellow fly enthusiast and up and coming young jedi pike fly fisher conan the fly destroyer has started to tie a few of his own patterns and is slowly filling his spanking new fly box although the chances of it staying sparkly are not very good to be honest and im pretty sure those lovely bits of fluff in his box will a bit battered by this time next year and im sure he will have a few more boxes as well its a downward spiral this game
so we arrived at the loch and what a horrible day it wasn't raining very hard but it was that fine famous “scotch mist” its almost like a fine mist but bloody soaks you right through pretty unpleasant to fish in and not my most favored fishing conditions to be honest but we were here and ready to give it a go more chance of catching something if you have a fly in the water rather than sitting on the couch at home so we donned wet weather gear and headed into the water
the water levels were down by around a meter so we had pretty good access to 90% of the areas we cover by boat on here in fact the picture below where conan is standing I take quite a few that very spot but bugger me it was cold in that water the water was also fairly clear so I was able to go through a whole heap of fly colours although mainly green and olive and work them really slowly , ive found In cold conditions the pike don’t like to expel a lot of energy chasing food but if something comes close enough it will take it as an easy meal and that’s the trick of winter fishing , yes you can catch them on the fly but it can be a bloody hard road but it can be done , perseverance is the word for winter and besides every time you fish a day in winter its a day nearer springtime but don’t beat yourself up if you don’t catch still better being out there trying and if it does get to cold for you there’s always the vice to fall back on and boxes to fill
at the top of the page I had tied a couple of monster flies well mission was a complete success , now its not very often I blow my own trumpet but this is the most life like fly ive ever made it hangs in the water perfectly when stripped it glides from side to side like an injured baitfish when short stripped it hangs on its side on the pause and really does look like an injured fish although the pike didn’t think so today kept me entertained for a while just watching it even doughnut boy was impressed I think I maybe onto something........
look into the sky point your saber and you will be blessed by lemon cured doughnuts
I continued to wade the sides right up the point in the distance casting as I went fishing really slow with the occasional quick tweek to add some life to the fly and create that trigger point that can force a predator to reaction strike but to be honest I wasn’t feeling confident at this point , there was a lot of water flowing into the loch from the hills this is always a good way of keeping them off the feed , I never do that well in prolonged periods of rain dont know about anyone else .
Results today were
fish 1 - dave 0
fish 1 – conan 0
1 lost fly
1 lost fly line
soaked to the skin
fell in a swamp
cracked wheel rim
not enough doughnuts
all in all not too bad a day really oh talking of doughnuts Conan decided to try some voodoo magic and changed into his lucky Mr doughnut outfit , but it didn’t work
below is the result of being out in scotch mist the stuff gets in no matter how trussed up you are in waterproofs
we were due to go grayling fishing on the Friday but after a phone call on the Thursday it seems we had both fallen foul of the cold and wet and were both feeling a bit crap after out soaking and the river was also starting to flood so we but the grayling trip on hold again roll on bloody spring , we have some great targets for next year including a lot of chasing new personal bests and new species on the fly for the fly destroyer in the mean time I think ill be spending a bit of time at the vice …...
PREDATOR BITE IS GO
really happy to say the crew at predatorbite have updated there website and is now all predator flies only and saltwater patterns this is going to be a great resource for those that don't have time to tie there own book mark the site and keep checking back for new patterns and updates .
You may also notice ive started to add a few sections at the top of the blog in the form of click able tabs , the first is a basic guide to pike fly fishing kit , the reason ive done this is because I get a lot of emails from folks who are interested in pike fly fishing but don't know where to start , now I like to reply to everybody who emails me but im sure you'll understand it takes a while to reply to everyone so ive put this up as a quick reference page to those who wish to have a go , now the gear that's in there is the gear I use and am happy with there is obviously a lot of different brands out there but this is just what I use , I will be adding a few sections over the coming weeks including methods and flies to use so please feel free to share these
heres to spring
(a cold cave in Scotland)