Switch Rods for Salmon

Rene's Last day of the season Salmon

Rene’s Last day of the season Salmon

Well, the end of the general trout season is here and over the last few weeks I have been doing a spot of fishing for salmon on the Tywi. There was a rise in water over the weekend of the 5th and 6th of October so a good opportunity to try for a salmon, and try out my new Airtec swtch fly rod.

I have been using this rod paired with an Airflo V-lite 7/9 reel, a fast intermediate line and a 5ft polyleader. I have to say the setup is balanced and fishes very well, casting wise it’s better than I expected, not having used a Switch rod before. Mostly fishing doubles and needle tubes, the fly line helps carry these heavy flies a long way.

On the Saturday, I managed a day on Golden Grove and on my first run through, hooked into a small Sewin which was returned safely around the 1.5lb mark. I was halfway down the pool on my second run through when the line just stopped dead, lifted, and the line forced it’s way up river. After heading upstream the fish came clean out of the water almost somersaulting resulting in a thrown hook. A clean looking salmon around 8/9lbs in weight. No more salmon hooked that day but did land a few small Sewin.

Sunday’s fishing started well with a couple of small sewin on size 10 doubles, in just a couple of hours. After fishing just quarter of the way through a pool after lunch my line tightened up and everything went solid. As soon as I lifted the rod, I knew immediately that it was a really good fish. After a few solid head shakes and hard thumps on the line, the fish turned and took off down river and was stopping for nothing, my fly fishing rod was doubled over and not even the hardest settings I dare to go on the V-Lite was stopping this fish. There was room to go down river after it, but it was going around the bend and heading towards an underwater snag. Then, the dreaded feeling of the hook pulling out, and a deep sinking feeling, I was gutted. It was a great tussle though and not the first, or last time a salmon will do that to me.

The night before the last day of the season saw some torrential rain falling in the Tywi valley, the river was likely to rise, hopefully not too much but the water at Golden Grove was perfectly fishable even with the water pushing with an extra half a foot of water. I fished the same setup, but without a polyleader, a size 9 Salar Double on the point and a size 10 double on the dropper. There was some colour in the water so the larger flies would hopefully help visibility.

Fishing the same pool as I had lost that fish in the previous week, the line once again tightened as I proceeded around half the ways down the pool. A slight lift of the rod was all that was needed and the fish was on. Fourtounatly for me, the fish didn’t head for sea and stayed well behaved lounging around the pool. A good, strong fish but up a great fight before I managed to get it in the net. A salmon of around 10/11lb which was released and went back strong. I hooked into another fish briefly later in the day and saw quite a few Sewin going through but that was it for me.

A cracking way to end the season and i’m looking forward to the 2014 season already to try some of the new fly fishing tackle from Fishtec, along with giving the switch rod a real good go.

Airflo Airtec Switch Fly Rod

Airtec-Switch-Rod Nantec technology

Switch Rods have been growing more and more in popularity over the last few years, but why? Anglers are always looking for ways to make their limited days on the water easier and more enjoyable, this is where switch rods come in handy. Versatility and ease of use are the key features when it comes to switch rods, whether single hand overhead casting or double handed spey is the order of the day these fishing rods effortlessly hit the mark.

The extra length provide superior control over the fly line whilst also offering a buffer when using lighter lines. Employing the existing pedigree of the Airtec rods, Airflo’s range of 11′ 3″ Switch rods are lightweight, offer great performance and allow you to try out this great new technique without breaking the bank.

Airflo Airtec Switch Rod Logo

Airflo Airtec Switch Rod

Some of you may think using a switch rod for anything other than light salmon or sea trout fishing may be obsered, but if you’re effortlessly throwing 30 yards of fly line with just one false cast, you may think twice! It’s for this very reason that switch fly rods are becoming more and more popular with anglers teaming their lightweight switch rods up with Airflo 40+ fly lines whilst fishing at their local small-water or reservoir.

Ideally used from the bank, a switch rod and shooting head combination can extremely rewarding in the sense of gaining distance. The low line weights and sensitive tips give brilliant control over your line when casting and retrieving, and also when playing fish.

Airflo_airtec-Switch-Rod Butt and Handle

Butt and Handle – Airflo Switch Rod

The extended butt section and lengthened rod handle gives a well positioned casting style whether you’re looking to do some traditional spey casting, simple roll casts or overhead casting.

The Airflo Airtec Switch Rods are 11 foot 3 inch long with three different line weights, 6,7 and 8#. Ideal trout, sea trout and light salmon outfits. To get started, Airflo are also offering a FREE Forty Plus Fly Line with every Switch Rod! Price: £159.99 – See more here

Daiwa NewEra Fly Rods Explained

We’ve heard over the last day or so that the Daiwa NewEra Fly Rod range have rolled off the production line, from their home in Scotland, and are now on their way to shops all around the UK. As Daiwa’s game angling consultant, Hywel Morgan had his keen eye for fly rod technology and design cast over the length development and production of these rods, testing them on every available fishing day. Right where they should be tested …on the water! Hywel promises these rods are worth the wait!

What’s so special about the Daiwa NewEra fly fishing rod range? Daiwa have integrated X45 Carbon to the construction of their blanks, A three layer laminated construction which give you precision, power and performance. The three layers the rod is constructed from help counteract crushing, bending and twisting, helping you deliver your fly exactly where you want it as easily as possible.

The Daiwa NewEra Trout Rod range consists of 8 separate models from a 9′ 5# river rod through to a 11’3″ 7/8# top of the water rod. This impressive range of rods feature everything an angler could look for with dedicated river, small-water, bank and boat fishing rods.

The Daiwa range starts with the 9ft 5 weight – the ideal river fishing rod. Featuring a light and extremely sensitive tip, this fly rod can throw dries at range, fish wet flies down and across and make the most of short range nymphing when trout or grayling are close to the bottom and heavy flies are needed to get down.

All your small still water boxes will be ticked with the 9ft 6 weight NewEra, the perfect rod for stalking with light tippet, fishing dries around reeds or throwing the occasional lure on a sinking line.

For the bank angler there are three rods in the range that may take your fancy, the 9ft 6inch 6 weight, a dry fly or light nymph anglers dream. The 9ft 6inch 7 weight which is the go to bank rod in the range. Then comes the 9ft 6inch 8 weight, great for throwing heavy sinking lines, shooting heads or the occasional trip salmon fishing.

The boat range feature three highly favourable rods, the 10ft 7weight which again is the go to boat fishing rod, 10ft 8 weight when you need that extra bit of power for casting large flies or heavy sinking lines all day long and the 11ft 3inch 7/8 weight which not only doubles up as a great switch rod, but is ideal for top of the water fishing for brown trout too.

Last in the Daiwa Range is the selection of salmon fishing rods, a range of 5 rods starting with a 11ft 3inch 7/8weight switch rod all the way up to 15ft 11wt.

Airflo Streamtec Nan-Tec – Recommended!

In this months Trout and Salmon Magazine Andrew Flitcroft tests and reviews the latest in the 10ft 5 weight generation of fly fishing rods.

By searching the web for a long, lightweight rod, there are numerous manufactures and prices that need to be surfed through to find the best rod for you. Trout and Salmon Editor Andrew Flitcroft gives his personal views on 14 of the most used 10 foot 5 weight fishing rods.

Here’s what Andrew had to say about the Airflo Streamtec Nan-tec rods

This is a great rod and versatile. Even given its heavier five/six rating, with a five-weight line it performed delicately, accurately and was effortless to cast, yet it has a little backbone for longer casts. It casts the six-weight line, too, but inevitably it was not as delicate. I would have no hesitation in recommending this to a bank and/or boat fisherman.

G.Loomis NRX Fly Rod

Every now and again a fishing tackle company comes up trumps and creates, designs and develops something that takes the fishing industry by storm.

The G.Loomis NRX fly rod is said to be by the US and UK anglers ‘the best fly fishing rods ever built’. The NRX is the culmination of what ‘Loomis have been doing since day one, producing rods with the very best laminates, resin, mandrels, components and the know how.

Justin Poe of G.Loomis says –

“By utilizing a stiffer, lighter and higher density carbon married with Nano Silica resin systems, we can provide Steve Rajeff and his design team with a material that provides all kinds of positive benefits to anglers. The rods are lighter, yet more durable, extremely sensitive, and yet stiffer. Obviously we simply think they are the best fly rods out there.”

Now available in ‘Green’ along side the previous Blue, this fly fishing rod will not only make you look the part but give you the absolute edge that’s needed to propel your fly every further and with more accuracy. Which one do you think is the most fetching?

Click here to check out the – G.Loomis NRX trout rod or browse through the site for other versions.

Rutland, How to get deep?

Airflo tackle consultant, Iain Barr, describes how to get as deep as possible on one of the UK’s most prolific trout waters. Using the correct fishing tackle will get your flies as deep and as quick as possible into the fish’s feeding zone.

Rutland Water has got off to a flyer and fish like the one below are very common at the moment. In fact, it’s one of the best starts to a season for a very long time in terms of the quality and number of over wintered fish coming out. In most bags, I have caught more over wintered fish that stocked fish by fishing just a little further out from the shore than normal for this time of year.

But, being in the deeper water you need to get down and dirty as the fish are hard on the bottom, the unseasonably cold weathers has kept water temperatures low and the addition of stagnant water which continues to be pumped in keeps it cool. Ideal feeding conditions! The water which has been pumped in has also made the water clarity fairly poor with about 3 foot visibility in places but this has in no way stopped the feeding frenzy! I have been using the new  Di 7 Airflo forty plus fly line and I have to say its one of the most productive lines I have used for a long time. With just one false cast the head flies out and hits the backing. I’ve been teaming it up with my favourite Enigma #8 fly fishing rod which handles all lines from floaters to the heaviest sinkers on the market. This is the most perfectly balanced of kit going, fact! My boat partner for the day borrowed it and instantly gained an extra 12-15 yards and is now purchasing identical kit, #8/9 Di 7 and #8 Airflo Enigma fly rod.

Due to the water colour and temperature, I’ve been using a short leader 12 foot and two boobies, with just 3/4 foot to the first dropper and 8 foot to the point fly. I have been using Black Boobys to help them stand out in the murky water. White and Pink being the first colours to disappear through the light spectrum, usually opting for the opposite end of the scale will help. When things get a little tough, I have also been fishing a 16 foot leader with two black diawl bachs in the middle which is what this fish took about 100 yards off Gibbets bank near the golf course on the South Shore. Although this fish took a nymph the majority are still taking the boobys, I don’t think the fish can actually see the nymphs so well but spacing the boobies further apart makes a big difference when fishing for pressured fish. With the water still being so cold the fish haven’t yet switched onto the nymphs, but when they do Rutland is going to explode especially when the water clears!

It’s important to get the flies as deep as possible and hang the flies at the boat. Almost all the fish are coming as you lift the flies from the bottom just in front of the boat so ensure the slowest of lifts and retrieves but don’t forget to hang them! If on a leisure day try anchoring with two Boobys and figure of eight retrieve keeping the flies close to the bottom. There are literally big fish coming off all over the reservoir but try about 100 yards off for the slabs and they are coming from almost anywhere!

Best of luck and tight lines!!.

Recommended Iain Barr fly sets:

Essential Boobies

Rutland Heavy Buzzers

Diawl Bachs #10

Grayling on the River Taff

The recent high water we’ve been experiencing here in South Wales has meant fly fishing on the rivers has been a little hit and miss. But the recent high pressure system has allowed the river to drop a considerable amount of height, revealing the pools, creases and hole which the grayling seem to like.

Larger grayling here have been few and far between the last few months, with many yearling grayling feasting on anything that crosses their path. One of my most succesful flies the last few weeks has been a small, simple thread nymph with a small thorax of pine squirrel to give it that buggy, leggy look.

Using anything over a 4 weight for these fish doesn’t give them much of a chance, other than joining the free flying competition when struck into. I’ve been using a Airflo Streamtec Nantec  10ft 3/4 weight fly rod which has a pretty soft tip, perfect for casting long, soft french leaders and playing these small grayling. A soft rod such as the above is the perfect way to get maximum enjoyment out of fish around 7-8 inches in length. A good grayling or trout really pulls when hooked!

Fishing for a few hours can be very rewarding when out after grayling. When a shoal is incepted, I normally try a few different methods and some new fly patterns, you’ll be surprised how many fish will reject some offerings and scoff up others. Maybe it’s just something to do with that particular days feeding habits, but I like to think I’ve found something they like.

Written by Kieron Jenkins