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Devon School of Fly Fishing Team blog

Devon Fly Fishing Guide

As a fly fishing guide the most important thing for me is that my guests have a great day and that they learn something along the way. Even if it is the tiniest thing it might just be something that helps get a great drag-free drift over a fish and is the thing that makes the fish decide to take. I also feel very strongly that I rarely touch my guest’s rod and if I do it might only be to illustrate a point and you can be sure it won’t be cast into the fishing area! I remember I showed Pam a cast when we were on The Test and a fish took. I was mortified and had the fish in and released before it even knew it was hooked!

Anyway, the other thing I try and be as honest as possible with is size of trout. As a guide it is easy to say the fish is bigger than it actually is but what’s the point? It is much better to be realistic and if it were a 12 incher and I said it were a 14 incher it is not doing the 12 incher the justice it deserves and lets face it, for our rivers a 12 incher is still a great fish.

Our guests have been catching a few nice fish of late. Ian has been a great supporter of our fly fishing school and this time he came back with his fishing buddy Phil. I had seen signs of salmon on one of the beats a few days before with Faure and so decided to have a quick look for them. The guys were doing a great job and throwing their flies expertly into position and it felt a really fishy morning! Phil had a grilse follow the fly right the way in and despite me quickly changing patterns this didn’t bring him out again but he later had a sea trout have a go at the fly. Ian fired off a cast at an 8lb salmon we saw too but it wasn’t to be. We decided to hit the trout as it felt as though the barometric pressure had dropped and it worked out a good plan. Below is a really nice fish Ian caught.


As you can see this was a fine fish, Ian and Phil were excellent anglers and no doubt will be terrorising trout in Devon again next year.

Sadly I didn’t get some photos of Guy and Roger who came down from Hertfordshire to fish with us. They were great and the saying I will remember from Guy was ” I am only 73″ it was agreat attitude and despite them both fishing some pretty nice chalkstreams and doing really well they wanted to leave their comfort zone and try something different so we went trouting and even went out for some sea trout. They were great company and really good fishermen!

I have just got in from a great day with Richard who is another great supporter of our school and has visited many times this year from Hampshire. He has just moved home and as soon as the dust settled he shot off down to us for a spot of fly fishing!

He had fished solo on Saturday and done really well catching plenty of trout and even skated a caddis pattern down stream and got bust by a great big sea trout. Today I wanted to show him some new water so headed up to the Top of Beat 5 and picked up a few fish there and then before we had lunch we headed to Beat 2 as he is fishing alone on Tuesday so I thought it would be good to show him. We headed down and came across a pool with a few fish rising, we couldn’t leave it…would you?! Richard fired out a shot and the dry dipped. I thought it was a peal but saw it was a really nice brown as it took to the air. Despite it knowing all the dirty tricks, Richard expertly got the fish to the net. We covered lots on the day as we decided it would be great to  analyse each fishing situation and how we would approach it to maximise the potential. It worked pretty well!



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