New Airflo SuperFLo Fly Lines – Coming Soon

The word on the street is Airflo have a new fly line coming – The SuperFlo.

Rumored to be non-ridged, Airflo have developed all-new FLO technology which enables the running lines to be slimmer and slicker than any competitor product. The lines are also softer and more supple than ever before, yet they remain tangle free in all weather and temperature conditions.

Airflo SuperFlo fly line hero cast!!

Airflo SuperFlo fly line – Hero cast!!

For a taste of whats to come, check out Airflo’s SuperFlo fly line trailer film:

Airflo SuperFlo lines will be available from Fishtec in the next 2 -3 weeks. There will be two models to start with: Stillwater & Presentation.

SuperFlo sit at the premium end of the fly line market and will sit above the Airflo SuperDri ride fly lines as a new range, rather than replace them. Prices to be announced.

Airflo SuperFlo Stillwater

The Bridge to a New Season By Rene’ Harrop May, 2019

Rather than a single month to designate the gateway to a new season, the conditions required to accommodate the emergence of temperature sensitive aquatic insects nearly always span the end of April and the beginning of May. Of course, I am referring to the high country of the Rocky Mountains where seasons ignore the conventional norm.

May Rainbow

Though blue bird whether can be a feature of April, precipitation in the form of snow is just as likely as rain and nighttime temperatures routinely dip below the freezing mark. At well over a mile above sea level, a morning frost nearly assures that caddis and most species of mayflies and stone flies will not be on the trout menu for that day. Toward the end of that month, however, the budding of vegetation along the edge give announcement to the true end of winter.

Baetis On Airflo Elite

Generally speaking, crossing over the seasonal bridge into May brings entry into the time when each week seems to host a new arrival from within the food groups that drive the sport of fly fishing. This is a time of celebration for the dry fly enthusiast who craves deliverance from the exclusivity of fishing flies that seldom exceed size eighteen.

Though smaller Baetis will continue to reign as the dominant and most reliable hatch, there is comfort in knowing that within the first few weeks of May the little olives will be joined by early caddis and March Browns in size fourteen and sixteen. This is in reference to the Henry’s Fork where size twelve Gray Drakes and the giant Salmon Flies should appear by month’s end.

Salmon Fly

Late May is also the period when ice leaves high elevation lakes like Henry’s, Hebgen, and Sheridan. By that time, most seasonal closures have ended and the toughest challenge is deciding where to fish on any given day.

While April twenty nineteen is ending with considerable snow remaining above six thousand feet, there is fishing to be enjoyed along the length of the Henry’s Fork right now and much more to come as time moves along. Though high water on the rivers is very likely to come into play it should bring only temporary disruption to a season that looks very promising at this point.

Spring Brown

Breaking Free By Rene’ Harrop

In the Rocky Mountain west we have trout, and we have trout because we have water. But before either can exist there must be snow, and this year there has been a lot.

When combined with frigid temperatures, a record snowfall has extended the confinement of winter far beyond what is normally experienced on much of the Henry’s Fork. Breaking free from that restraint has been a slow process that continues to suppress much of what is expected at the end of the long, cold season.

Ready To Go

Only recently have we left the period when iced rod guides, chilled legs, and stiffened fingers are not the condition of a day spent on the water. Fortunately, the improved temperature that brings relief to that discomfort has also caused recession in snow depth. Together, these elements have allowed welcome improvement in the ability to access and enjoy the river.

Starting Small

While early Baetis have yet to become a factor, small showings indicate that significant hatches are not too distant. However, small dark stoneflies join reliable midge activity in filling in for the first mayflies of the year.

Spring Brown

Spring Brown

As the water warms, productive fishing opportunity is not lost on bright days when surface activity can slow. Small nymph and larvae patterns can fill in nicely for dry flies on days that might be a little too pleasant for hatches that favor cool and overcast days.

It is spawning time for the rainbows of the Henry’s Fork and most anglers will avoid disrupting this important spring ritual. Less sensitive to the sanctity of renewing life are the big brown trout of the lower river. Pestering their spawning cousins is an act devoid of conscience but so too is the human temptation to capitalize on the visibly aggressive marauders. An egg pattern or streamers will almost certainly gain the attention of a hungry spring brown.

Watch Out For The Egg

Watch Out For The Egg

While winter remnants continue with a serious volume of snow being most prominent, it appears that we finally have turned the corner on a new season. And the freedom that comes with spring could not be more appreciated.

New Airflo Airtex Pro Fly Fishing Clothing Review – 2019 Range

Airflo have launched an exciting all-new range of fly fishing clothing for 2019 which we feel are destined to become best sellers. In this blog post we take a closer look at the Airtex Pro garments.

Airflo Airtex Pro clothing

Featuring a wading jacket, ¾ jacket and a bib & brace trousers, this range has been thoroughly tested in the worst of the UK weather over the autumn and winter months.

All Airtex Pro garments are made of a robust 3 layer material that is extremely durable, fully waterpoof and yet still retains a high level of breathability. Pockets and D ring attachments have been cleverly thought out for maximum usefulness.

Airflo Airtex Pro fly fishing jacket in action

Airflo Airtex Pro 3/4 fly fishing jacket in action

Airtex Pro Wading jacket

There is no denying that this is an eye catching garment. Like everything in the Airtex Pro range, they have been styled for functionality as well as striking good looks. The jackets are dark grey, with carbon panels.

The material is a 3 layer, of a breathable, fully waterproof material. There is no lining, which is good as there is nothing to absorb or hold excess water when deep wading. What is noticeable is how durable it feels and looks – just like a set of breathable waders. You can tell that any water is going to instantly bead off. In our tests the jackets have proved to be totally reliable.

The hood is well designed so you can fully adjust it with several draw cords and toggles. It can also tuck away neatly inside the collar when not in use, which is Velcro closed.

Airtex Pro Wading Jackets - hood up and hood down

Airtex Pro Wading Jackets – hood up and hood down

The wading jacket has 3 D rings – one on the back for a net, and two on the the lower front for wading staffs or other accessories. Cuffs are fully adjustable and keep water out, and all zips are waterproof.

Airtex Pro Wading Jacket Net Ring

Airtex Pro Wading Jacket Net D Ring

Airtex Pro 3/4 Jacket

With exceptional good looks the Airtex Pro 3/4 jacket stands well above the competition.  Again it is a solid 3 layer, with taped and re-enforced seams throughout – guaranteed to keep you dry.

This 3/4 length jacket is perfect for the bank or boat fishing angler with it’s longer cut, which covers the top part of the leg and rear even when sitting down. It has a simplified design, with 2 x exterior chest and 2 x hand warmer pockets. Like all Airtex pro garments, the main zip and the pocket zips are all fully waterproof.

The chest area and adjoining pockets have been streamlined allowing you to wear a life jacket or fully loaded fly fishing vest over the top with ease. The 3/4 jacket has been sized to fit over a mid-layer, such as a warm fleece. Arms are cut to allow easy casting, with storm cuffs providing protection from water ingress.

Airtex Pro 34 Jacket - hood down and hood up

Airtex Pro 34 Jacket – hood down and hood up

Airtex Pro jacket adjustable storm cuffs

Airtex Pro jacket adjustable storm cuffs

The hood is another strong point – easily adjustable and designed to fit over a cap, it provides brilliant protection from the rain, even if it is blowing into your face. It doesn’t fold into the collar like the wading jacket, but it does sit neatly in place when not in use, allowing you to concentrate on fishing.

Airtex Pro Bib & Brace Trousers

100% waterproof and made of the same 3 layer breathable taslan shelled material, this great set of bottoms will compliment both of the Airtex Pro jackets.

Perfect for boat and bank fishers, they are designed for unrestricted casting and movement. The main zips, pockets and leg gussets are all designed in such a way to offer full protection from the elements, while being extremely easy to slip on and off.

Airtex Pro B&B with detailing of storm flap and leg gusset

Airtex Pro B&B with detailing of storm flap and leg gusset

The elasticated braces are fully and easily adjustable, allowing you to spend the day in complete comfort. These overtrousers also sit high up the body, completely protecting you from wind and the elements at your back when combined with one of the jackets.

How much?

Priced at £99.99 per garment (combo price any two for £179.99) the Airflo Airtex Pro fly fishing clothing represents outstanding value for money. Airflo Airtex Pro clothing can be purchased here.

Airflo Airtex Pro clothing special offer

Tata Open Fly Fishing Competition – 2019 Eglwys Lake

Eglwys Nunydd is a 260-acre lowland reservoir in Margam near Port Talbot, Wales. The reservoir provides water for the nearby steelworks and is a Site of Special Scientific Interest due to its fertile environment and diverse birdlife.

Eglwys Nunnydd reservoir

Eglwys Nunnydd reservoir

Angling at the reservoir is controlled by the Tata Game Angling Association, a friendly and very welcoming club of around 100 members that celebrated its 50th year in 2016. The club welcomes anglers of all abilities and is keen to promote fly fishing to all. Tickets are now available online, from the Fishing Passport.

Good rainbows are stocked throughout the spring into Eglwys

Good rainbows are stocked throughout the spring into Eglwys

An open fly fishing competition will be held at Eglwys lake on Sunday 19th May 2019.

Competition registration will be from 8.30 am and competition will be from 9.30 am – 3.30pm.

It will be a “Hidden Pairs “competition for seniors and will also have a separate competition for juniors (up to the age of 18)

There are a good number of prizes including £500 (to be divided up) donated by Tata PLC a free senior season ticket for Eglwys 2020 and also a free season ticket for a Junior.

Airflo/Fishtec have donated a full starter kit for the junior part of the competition and Smyfly have donated two vouchers £30 and £20 to be spent on their web site. We expect many other items to be donated by sponsors as we get closer to the date.

A nice bag from Eglwys lake

A nice bag from Eglwys lake

Fly Fishing For Pike With Airflo Fishing Tackle – By Ben Fox

If you fly fish for pike and predator species then you need serious tackle for the job. This fishing tackle review by all-round angler Ben Fox takes a look at  the great range of predator fly rods, lines and leaders available from Airflo.

Pike have always held a fascination with me, the biggest, basest, most beautiful predator in  UK freshwater and after years of targeting them on lures, deadbaits and the like I have finally ventured into pike on the fly. But I needed some specialist equipment. Luckily, Airflo are a one stop shop for all things fly fishing, pike included and I have now found my ideal set up.

Ben Fox Fly fishing for pike on a canal

Ben Fox Fly fishing for pike on a canal

After using the Forty Plus Expert lines from my trout fishing set up for the first few months with little to no issues, I did find I sometimes struggled to get out a longer line with a large heavier pattern into the air. I had assumed, wrongly, that this was just something I needed to work on.

Enter the Airflo Forty Plus Sniper fly line. An aggressive taper, short head, big fly specialist, predator line. Coupled with the excellent Airflo Bluetooth Nano 9” #8/9 weight fly rod, the 9 weight intermediate line was a dream to handle, the line matching with and loading the rod perfectly. I also had the Airflo titanium predator polyleader to replace my usual fluorocarbon leader to the wire trace, I’ll go into to more detail on this later.

Enter the Forty Plus Sniper fly line....

Enter the Forty Plus Sniper fly line….

The Sniper line range

The intermediate is an ideal all-round line for canals and smaller waters where fishing at great depth isn’t required (have a look at the Di3 and Di7 versions if you need to get deeper) so it was spot on for my test session on a local canal. There where two main areas I wanted to look at with the line, its ability to handle big, heavy, air resistant patterns and its ability to cast in tight spots (hoping the reduced head would help with this).

First however, I wanted to get an idea of how the set up handled with a pretty standard sized fly. A 2/0 perch pattern is one that has taken some sizeable pike for me in my short pike fly fishing career. My first impressions where good, the line didn’t struggle with the size and weight of the fly and the polyleader aided the turn over as I started to cover all the likely looking spots where pike like to lay in ambush.

Casting with the Forty Plus sniper line and Airflo Bluetooth fly rod

Casting with the Forty Plus sniper line and Airflo Bluetooth fly rod

The line behaved well with both standard and oval casting styles and only requires a short amount of the head to be outside the tip to sufficiently load the rod and shoot the running line. The line had ticked my first box – it can cover the distance required with minimum back cast making it ideal for the often cramped spots you find on UK canals and rivers.

Next for the big stuff. I had with me some tandem flies tied using two 5/0 hooks joined with a clip and a good heap of flash added to that. Heavy, wind resistant, big! Exactly what I usually hate and struggle to cast. No issues, the line didn’t struggle, feel unmanageable, loose contact with the fly or fail to turn the fly over. It felt like more than a good enough match and gave me the confidence to fish the larger heavier patterns I would usually shy away from. This has led me to buy both the floating and Di3 versions of the line and it won’t be long before the Di7 joins the ranks and I can confidently target pike in any situation!

The leader:

The Airflo titanium polyleaders feature a solid welded loop, a top quality wire trace and a strong, reliable snap swivel. The wire trace is welded expertly onto the leader with minimum disturbance to the taper and provides a strong connection which you can trust to hold.

Airflo titanium predator leader

Airflo titanium predator leader

The leader material is stiff which eliminates the possibility of kinking and aids turn over, something that for most is a must when it comes to pike on the fly. The clip used to attach the flies is solid, admittedly it did take me a while to figure it out but once you do it’s easy to use and seems impossible to split, bend or break, allowing for fast changes on the bank.

The quick change clip on the predator leader

The quick change clip on the predator leader

Kinks in leaders are a nightmare for any angler targeting toothy predators and especially while fly fishing, I believe a good wind knot would put a lasting kink in any leader. So of course after I add a few tailing loops to my cast one appears right next to the snap swivel. I expect this to be game over and another leader needed but the leader had barely changed and straightened well after being unknotted. The connection to the polyleader was solid, as tested by several sizeable snags, and the breaking strain (30lb) was more than enough to pull my fly out of the various detritus found in the canal. Sadly, I didn’t get to test it on a fish on the afternoon of the photo shoot for this review but I’m sure it will handle even the biggest pike comfortably.

Too summarise:

If you’re thinking of trying your hand at pike fly fishing I cannot recommend these lines and leaders enough, combined with the Bluetooth Nano rods and a selection of pike flies you really can’t go wrong. They’ve changed my pike fly fishing!

About the author

A qualified guide and fishing instructor, Ben Fox is based in Yorkshire but operates throughout the country. An all-round angler proficient in many disciplines, quality angling coaching or a guided fishing trips can be arranged via Ben’s website here.

Ben Fox with a magnificent fly caught pike!

Ben Fox with a magnificent fly caught pike! Source Ben Fox Facebook page.

Total Fishing Gear Now On Instagram

Carp and coarse fishing tackle innovators Total Fishing Gear (aka TF Gear) have recently created a new Instagram page!

Here you will find the latest TF Gear fishing tackle news, as well as fish catches by high profile sponsored angler Dave Lane and the rest of the Total Fishing Gear team. With an emphasis on high quality ‘on the bank’ images, the TF Gear Instagram page seeks to  inspire anglers to fish. If you are a fan of carp and coarse fishing why not give them a follow?

Follow them here: @totalfishinggear

TF Gear now on Instagram

TF Gear now on Instagram!

5 Top Tips For Keeping Your Bivvy Warm In Winter

With winter at it’s worst keeping warm in your bivvy whilst waiting for that illusive run is key. Our tips explain how you can keep yourself comfortable in even the harshest conditions!

Tip 1. Insulate your floor – the ground is your worst enemy in winter. Moisture, cold and damp rises from the floor up. Always use a groundsheet, and if you can layer the floor of your bivvy with an insulator such as an old piece of carpet or a thermal blanket. You can also strategically place items of luggage around key areas of your bivvy to keep drafts down.

All set up for winter angling!

All set up for winter angling!

Tip 2. Keep dirt and moisture out – Ensure you keep your muddy and wet boots outside your bivvy. A bivvy mat really comes in handy for footwear storage and to help rid any excess dirt or mud.

Bivvy mat

Bivvy mat – a winter carpers best friend

Tip 3. Heating – Many anglers are using bivvy heaters in order to stay warm in winter. When using heaters, safety is a major concern as carbon monoxide poisoning is a real threat. Some of these, like the candle powered Nash bank Life heater are perfectly safe and easy to use. A hot water bottle is another essential, again with no safety risk.

Nash bank life bivvy heater

Nash bank life bivvy heater

Tip 4.  Select your swim with care – Swim choice and the positioning of your bivvy within it are a major consideration. Unless it is the lake ‘hot spot’ a very exposed swim with the wind howling onto it may not be the best choice. A sheltered swim may also be a good spot to find carp holding in a thermal refuge. Make note of where the wind is blowing and angle the front of your bivvy away from any prevailing cold winds. Also make use of any trees and vegetation in your swim that could give you a wind break or potential shelter from rain.

Tip 5. Clothing and sleeping bags – Your own body heat goes a long way so ensure you have the correct thermal gear for the job. 4 and 5 season rated sleeping bags are a must. A good bedchair cover is another addition that you should not be without. Thermal underwear, hoodies and a waterproof jacket are also ‘must haves’. A great bit of winter kit for sleeping in is the extremely warm TF Gear onesie.

tfg-chillout-onesie

The TF Gear Chillout hoody – perfect for cold weather carping!

For more warm clothing tips, including layering, check out our blog post here.

New Gear – Airflo Thermotex Pro Puffa jacket

Fishing clothing review: Robbie Winram of Trout Fisherman magazine takes a closer look at the new thermal garment from Airflo – the Thermotex Pro Puffa jacket.

This jacket is one of the ‘insulated’ designs that is becoming so popular, not just for fishing, but a whole range of outdoor pursuits.

It comes in a stylish steel-grey with highlights of bright yellow and wouldn’t look out of place on the high street or in the pub. It is made of polyester with horizontal baffles throughout the body and sleeves, and although the face fabric does not have a DWR finish it did fend off a light shower. But this jacket is all about providing warmth and even if its synthetic insulation does get soaked, it will still keep you warm, unlike natural down or feather which don’t retain heat when wet.

Thermotex Pro Puffa

Thermotex Pro Puffa

A full-length single zip has a good size storm baffle behind it, and it tucks away into a neat fabric chin guard to prevent chafing. The fixed hood has a bright yellow lining and has an elasticated cord and toggle lock adjusters to fine-tune the fit around the face.

The tail ends of the cords are concealed inside the jacket so they don’t hang loose. There is also a cord/toggle system on the back of the hood although this gives minimal adjustment and in fact the hood works better over the top of a peaked cap or hat.

There is one chest pocket and two waist pockets, all with zips and decent size, bright yellow pull tabs and cords. The sleeves finish in simple elasticated cuffs and at the bottom of the jacket is an elasticated cord with double toggle lock adjusters. Again the cords are retained inside the jacket and don’t hang loose. On the inside there are two very deep open-top pouch pockets for light accessories.

Available in sizes M to XXXL.

Verdict: The jacket is windproof and very warm but also breathable so will vent off any heat before it builds up. It glides over base layers so doesn’t restrict your casting action.The perfect garment on those crisp cold winter days or can be used as a mid-layer underneath a light waterproof shell.

Thermotex Pro Puffa jackets from Airflo are available here.

The new Airflo puffa jacket

The new Airflo puffa jacket

5 New Years Fishing Resolution’s For 2019

2019 is going to be a great year for fishing!! We all have New Years resolution’s, but how about some fishing ones? As an angler, these suggestions should hopefully improve your fishing year to come.

1. Fish more often

Did you fish as much as you had hoped for last year? Probably not. So set aside a target number of days to spend on the bank this year. For example, a minimum of 5, 10 or 20. Tick them off as you go so you know how many you have done. Tip: Why not tell the other half about your target, whilst she’s still in a festive mood?

2. Visit a new venue

Visiting a new water can change your mindset and get you thinking outside of the box. It’s always worth making that long drive to a place you’ve always wanted to fish, but have never visited. Instead of ‘maybe next year.’ plan a day and get in the car and do it when the time comes.

Dedicate a day to visiting a new venue

Dedicate a day to visiting a new venue

3. Get somebody into fishing

Our sport needs new members, so why not take somebody with you? A friend, child or relative might appreciate fishing and it could lead to a life long passion. So why not dedicate a day or two for sharing and instruction this year rather than for yourself.

family fishing

Image source: Tide Lines
Letting the kids come with you is a great way to catch their interest.

4. Get involved with a clean up

Whether you area member of a carp syndicate, an angling club or simply on a day ticket our rivers and lakes need a bit of TLC. Even if its a few hours of your time sweeping the bank with a bin bag, a clean up makes your venue a much better place to fish and inspires respect from others.

A river clean up. Image: Wandle trust

5. Take stock of your fishing tackle

The New Year is the perfect time to check through your fishing gear. Make a resolution to give it a good sort out – be ruthless and sell or giveaway the stuff you never use, or if it is past it’s sell by date chuck it out. If find you need near fishing gear, then indulge yourself – it’s better to have everything ready for 2019 than not.

It’s 2019 – time to sort out this mess and treat yourself to some new gear! Image: Ifish.net