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Fishing the Bung with Super-Dri fly lines

The Bung is a very controversial method of fly fishing, but, who am I to judge what anglers use to catch fish? In my eyes it’s a method used to catch fish. It’s also a method I use on small-waters and occasionally the river when conditions dictate.

This method is basically a float which suspends a fly beneath, giving the angler immediate indication when a fish has then their fly. It’s a superb method on small-waters where fish are heavily pressured. Suspending a fly top, mid or bottom of the water column to intercept fish is an ingenious idea – especially when it’s fished properly – and accounts for many of the larger fish which are captured on small-waters.

A typical bung would be an indicator made out of foam, polystyrene or yarn, just like these fulling mill fish pimps. All these materials have great floating properties to suspend un-weighted or weighted flies. Another alternative would be Airflo Float-Do, a floating ‘dough’ like material which can be easily moved along the leader section to alter the depths.

bung blog Fishing the Bung with Super Dri fly lines

An idea of how the bung works

As you can see from the illustration above, there is a fairly steep angle between your fly line and fly, if a fish takes that fly, there is a lot of slack between the fly line, so a decent strike is needed to set the hook firmly. When using the bung you will see some anglers strike and not register a pull or feel the fish at all. This is due to the depth of the fly and the angle between the fly line.

One little tip I can give is use one of the new Airflo Super-Dri fly lines. The advantages of using one of these new floating lines from Airflo is the ability to lift so much more line off the water, this is due to the revolutionary Super-Dri coating. It repels water and sits extremely high on the surface, allowing less tension when lifting the line off the water than all other fly lines. This, in turn, allows for better hook up rates when compared to standard floating lines, from any manufacturer.

On my recent trip to Garnffrwd Trout Fishery it became apparent to me how good the Distance Pro from the Super-Dri family actually was. It’s a line I’ve been playing around with for a while, but it hasn’t really set itself apart from any other Super-Dri line I have used. Not until this trip anyway. For those of you who have been to Garnffrwd you may know of the ‘weed patch’ out on the far right of the lake – A submerged patch of weed, which sits just 3ft below the surface – just out of reach of most decent casters. This line has a 45ft head, and an extremely supple running line, which lets the line be cast an impressively long way.

Casting big distances with a bung is not only tough because of it’s mass, but it hinders hook up rates at distance because of the amount of line needed to lift from the surface to actually hook the fish. The Super-Dri coating eliminated this problem and hooking into fish at range becomes child’s play. The ability to throw such long distances and fish basically ‘un-fished’ water can change your day drastically, fishing over the top of this island I was lucky enough to hook and land a double figure rainbow trout on a bloodworm pattern! Check out the video footage below:

3 Great Tips For Your Fly Line

There’s plenty of article on ‘how to catch more fish’ and ‘top 5 fishing tips’ out there on the internet, but what about the simple tips to look after your fly line? These three great tips will give you an extra advantage when out on the bank.

What weight is my fly line?

First of all, let’s look at how we can determine what weight fly line you have on your fly fishing reel. We’ve all been there, wondering “Is it a 6 weight? It looks like a 7…”, this quick and simple tip allows you to easily identify what weight lines are on your reels. All you need is a waterproof pen.

Welded loops on fly lines

If you’re anything like us you hate the plastic sleeve which comes in a packet of braided loops. It’s big, clunky and get’s stuck in the rod guides. What you’ll find with this sleeve is your fly line can crack due to hinging which in time, forces you to replace the whole loop. The below method of welding loops, or lines which have factory manufactured loops pro-long the life of your fly line.

Whipping on a braided loop

If you don’t have the facilities to weld your own loops, try whipping an Airflo braided loop to your line. By using thread you can create an almost seamless joint to your fly line. The smooth joint lets your fly line be retrieved with no bumping or clunking through the guides and stops hinging and cracking near the tip of the line. As Hywel says, it’s the best way for fitting a loop to sinking lines, and it’s is also a great way of marking fly lines at specific lengths to fish the ‘hang’ more effectively!

Fly of the Week – Rhyacophila Caddis

fly of the week Fly of the Week   Rhyacophila CaddisThe Rhyacophila Caddis is found in almost all rivers around the UK. It’s a free-living caddis, meaning it doesn’t build a ‘house’. The Larvae like caddis favours shallow riffles and often gets caught in the current and drifts freely downstream, this making them ideal food for trout and grayling. The ‘Rhyacs’ hatch later in the afternoon and the adults can provide some great dry fly action when they return to the water. Tying a Rhyac caddis can be complicated, but here’s a simple little pattern we’ve been using for the grayling this winter.

Attach your favoured hook into the vice, here I’ve used a Fulling Mill Czech Nymph hook. Run your thread along the body to the extreme bend in the hook. Wind a layer of lead into the shank of the hook to add some weight. A tungsten bead can be used but I like these on dropper so a lead underbody is usually enough weight. With your thread, make sure you taper the body to give a slim, streamline effect and ensure you cover the lead with the thread, once the dubbing gets wet, you will get a green glow from the underbody, if you forget to do this, the lead will dampen the colour of the body.

For the rib I’ve used the tag end of thread where I first tied onto the hook. Attach two sides to the fly, FlyBox bleach dyed peacock herl is a great material to imitate the legs. Dub a TIGHT rope of dubbing onto your thread ensuring you get a thin from and back end with a slightly thicker abdomen. In touching turns wind the dubbing towards the eye and pull the side legs along the length of the hook. Secure the body and legs in place with the rib with evenly spaced turns. Tie off and add some black pen to the head of the fly to imitate the Rhyacophila’s wing bud cover.

Fly Tying Materials

Hook: Fulling Mill Czech Nymph 12
Thread: Glo Bright No12
Underbody: Medium Lead Wire
Rib: Glo Bright No12
Body: Rhyac Green Dubbing
Sides: Bleach Dyed Peacock – Chart
Colour: Black Pen

Rare, freaky looking fish caught Sea Fishing!

875355800 26647381ca o Rare, freaky looking fish caught Sea Fishing!

A freakishly looking fish which is said to live over 900 meters below the oceans surface has been snagged by the Nunavut fishing boat is only the second of it’s kind ever recorded near the Hudson Strait, Canada. 

This extremely rare and weird looking fish caused some confusion when it was actually caught but researches have identified it as a super rare long-nosed Chimaera. With so little research undertaken on this species of the Chimaera not a lot is known about their feeding habits or living quarters. It’s assumed these fish live well out of range of human contact in depths between 900 and 2000 meters. The Chimarea is not something you’re likely to hook with your sea fishing tackle!

Nigel Hussey from the University of Windsor, identified the fish as indeed the Chimaera. It was first thought that it was a Goblin shark, a fish which is equally as odd and also as rare. The Chimaera is one of the world’s oldest species of fish which goes by various names including ‘ratfish, rabbitfish, and the coincidental – ghost shark’. But they aren’t sharks. The group branched off from sharks, its closest relative, around 400 million years ago and have remained a distinct, and distinctly odd, lineage ever since and have been basically unchanged since they shared the Earth with dinosaurs.

Like sharks and rays, Chimaeras have a skeleton made of cartilage.

With a long nose, menacing mouth, a venomous spine and a gelatinous grey body the fish is one only to be talked of in spooky sea tails along side those of the giant squid, but maybe not so scary. The Chimaera is largely restricted to deep ocean waters, putting it out of reach of most fishermen and scientists. For these reasons the creature is poorly studied and understood.

Fly Tying Tips – How to tie in Peacock Herl

Even the best peacock herl strands are very brittle so constructing a fly with a tear and rip proof body is a tough task without bulking it up too much. In this weeks fly tying tip we’re going to show you how to securely tie in peacock herl and create a great looking peacock body that needs an atomic bomb to destroy.

This tip was shown to be in a fly tying class probably around 12 years ago and has been saving many of my flies from the death of trout teeth. One way to test how good this method of tying peacock herl is – is to use one fly using this technique and another without, you’ll be surprised how quickly the peacock will break.

They tutorial below is obviously just the peacock body, incorporating this method into flies such as diawl bachs, black and peacock spiders, or practically anything with a peacock body, you’ll strengthen the body tenfold.

Fly Tying Tips – How to Strip Peacock Herl

A lot of fly tiers, especially novices, have trouble stripping peacock herl. Some describe it as an art, to get all the tiny herls free from the stalk, ready to tie your favourite buzzers and nymphs with very realistic bodies. 

As a tier I get asked ‘How to strip peacock herl?’ fairly often – there are many different ways fly tiers have come up with, from using the blade of a scissors to an eraser. Personally I like the old fashion approach:

Fly of the Week – Hares Ear Grub

Fly of the week2 Fly of the Week   Hares Ear Grub

The Hares Ear is probably one of the most used flies within the fishing community, here’s we’ve tied a variant which lends itself perfectly to river fishing and ideal for targeting trout and especially grayling in the winter months. The heavy tungsten bead gives it added weight to get to the bottom quickly into the fishes feeding zone. Hares ears are very versatile patterns, try changing the colour of the thorax and bead, this will change the fly completely.

Start off by threading a tungsten bead onto your hook. Here I’ve used a Fulling Mill Czech Nymph hook, it gives a great grubby look to any pattern and is also a great pupa hook. Secure the bead in place by butting up a few turns of lead and fully securing with thread wraps. Cover the lead body to ensure it doesn’t slip down the hook follow the hook shank down around three-quarters of the way around the bend.

Take a length of gold wire and tie in at the back of the hook. Take a decent pinch of Hares ear and create a tight, tapered dubbing rope which will reach the thorax of the fly. Wind in touching turns and secure in place with the gold wire rib. For the thorax I like to use a contrasting colour such as black, orange or yellow. Dub a small amount of dubbing to the thread and wind towards the bead, securing with a whip finish at the head.

Scruffy Hares ear for Grayling 

Hook: Fulling Mill Czech Nymph Size 10
Thread: Black UTC thread
Bead: Gold Tungsten bead 3mm
Underbody: Medium Lead Wire
Rib: Hares Ear
Thorax: Spectra Dub Glister
Varnish: Veniard Clear

Fly of the Week – Pink Glister Bug

Fly of the week1 Fly of the Week   Pink Glister Bug

Everyone who’s ever caught grayling, know that they absolutely love pink. It’s one of those colours that really stand out when anglers talk about what fly they caught on, if it’s a hotspot, or a fully blow pink grub, pink is usually in there somewhere. This glister bug has proven it’s worth in any grayling fishers fly box, this fly pattern has counted for numerous amounts of fish for myself and others I fish with. I wouldn’t be without it.

I tie this fly with many colour tungsten beads but silver has to be my favourite. Take a bead and thread it onto a hook. Here’s I’ve used a Fulling Mill Czech Nymph size 12. Runa layer of thread onto the shank of the hook, securing the bead in place and bulking up the thorax. Wind your thread onto the hook and cover the lead to ensure it’s securely in place. The pink UTC thread creates a great underbody for the dubbing. Tie in a strip of Large width pearl mylar for the shellback and a silver rib.

Take a decent pink of dubbing and dub into the thread to create an even ‘rope’, tapering slightly thicker towards the head. Wind the glister towards the eye – in touching turns – leaving enough room to tie in the rib and shellback. Pull the pearl over the back keeping it taught and secure in place with the silver wire rib. I’ve added a small piece of pink UV dubbing at the head of the fly to give it a small colour change. And that’s it! Simple, effective and efficient.

 

Giant Oarfish Found Dead in California

Giant Oarfish Giant Oarfish Found Dead in California

Giant 18ft Oarfish Found Dead

An 18ft long Oarfish has been found dead off the shore of southern California by Marine Biologist Jasmine Santana. The rarely seen Oarfish is said to be the likely culprit of many Sea Serpent legends from sailors and deep sea fishermen.

Oarfish have been reported to grow up to 15 meters in length, but the longest recorded and verified is 9 meters long. Rare fish such as these are almost impossible to catch using any sort of fishing tackle as they can dive up to more than 3,000 feet (914 meters) in depth. Because of this sightings are rare and these magnificent fish are largely unstudied.

Jasmine was snorkeling with colleagues when she spotted an unusual shimmer from the ocean floor. As she approached what looked to be a half-dollar sized eye starting at her from the sandy bottom, the uncertainty that the fish was dead dawned upon her, but slowly and cautiously making her way towards the prehistoric looking creature it was distinctly lifeless.

After taking a closer look Jasmine discovered it was indeed the carcass of an Oarfish, the first she has ever seen and a discovery of a lifetime for the Catalina Island Marine Institute (CIMI) employee.

She dragged the eel-like beast from the sea for more than 20 meters until fifteen other adults waded into the sea to help her bring it ashore.

Oarfish are a deep-water pelagic fish and the longest bony fish in the world, according to CIMI. This one measuring a staggering 5 meters in length. Mark Waddington, senior captain of the Tole Mour, CIMI’s sail training ship, said “We’ve never seen a fish this big! The last Oarfish we saw at CIMI was just three feet long”.

The fate of the carcass is still being decided, but Waddington would prefer the fish to be burred in sand until it decomposes and the skeleton cleaned naturally before being reconstructed for display. The fish apparently died of natural causes.

Fly of the Week – Grayling Pink Tag

Fly of the week Fly of the Week   Grayling Pink TagPink, as most fly fishermen will know is a well re-known colour for grayling. The lady of the stream is partial to any fly incorporating a spot of pink whether it’s a floss tail, pink glister thorax or a pink wire rib. These pink bugs seem to work particularly well once the Salmon make an appearance and start their spawning habits. The fixation on pink may be due to the amount of  ‘pink’ eggs being released by the female salmon. Or, in many cases, because a lot of anglers use it!

Slide a tungsten bead onto your hook, here I have used a silver bead; 3mm paired with a Kamasan B170 size 12. Secure your thread onto the hook and butt up against the tungsten bead to ensure it stays in place. Run the thread down the hook until the bend in the shank and prepare the tail. Cut a length of Glo-Brite floss and create a plump tail. I like to wrap the floss around my two fingers 8 times to get a good consistent thickness. You can get 4/5 flies out of each length so don’t throw away the off cuts!

Tie the tail in securely and take three strands of peacock herl for the body. The grayling like a mouthful so don’t skimp on the peacock. Tie the herl onto the hook and wrap around the thread, this will ensure durability of the herl as it is very prone to breakages. Wind towards the bead and tie off at the head. Take a brown hen feather, or in this case, a brown grizzle hackle and secure onto the hook. Two or three turns onto the hook and tie off. The hackle gives a lot of movement and helps the fly fool both trout and grayling in fast, medium or slow paced water.

Fishtec stock a full range of fly tying materials and Kamasan Hooks

Tying Material List

Hook: Kamasan B170 Size 12
Thread: Black UTC 70
Bead: Silver Tungsten
Tail: No 2 Glo Brite
Body: Peacock Herl
Hackle: Brown Hen

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