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Devon School of Fly Fishing Team blog

Archive for August, 2010

Fly Fishing Guide

Thursday, August 26th, 2010

I was lucky enough to be on the water with Mike Weaver recently. For me, he is Mr Devon when it comes to fly fishing. He wrote the book that I just keep coming back to and it is the book that has inspired so many of my fishing adventures. It is a little hard to come by these days but if you ever get a chance to buy it don’t miss it as it is a great read!

The Pursuit of Wild Trout

It seems that fishing is in two halves at the moment. Black gnats are the main item on the menu in the morning and caddis in the afternoon. We have had great fun on the river skating caddis at both trout and sea trout and I was on the water with Peter the other day where we saw a nice sea trout move. I really like to get the fly moving to provoke an aggressive response and we managed to get one but not the hook up. We stuck with the large G & H sedge and cast it upstream and worked it back with short sharp strips. It was great to see that we managed to get responses for even the smallest of fish and if you are on the water give the stripped fly a go. It might just bring something up!

Peter had fished stillwaters here and further afield he had searched for salmon in Alaska and Canada but was a newcomer to small stream fishing for trout. He soon picked up that you don’t need to throw a long line and was catching fish on both dries and nymphs.

Peter and a Taw trout

It was great to have Mike back down again this year. Although it was a whistlestop visit with the family he managed to get out on to the water. As time was short we managed to hit a few pools and catch some fish too. I am ashamed of some of the things we threw into the deeper pools and I hope you’ll keep it our secret Mike!

Mike having cast one of my nasty flies!

Ian and his wife Mandy wanted to learn how to fish a river and so we were happy to oblige! Ian was a former Pro Golfer and it came as little surprise how quickly he picked up casting a fly rod.

Ian ready to strike

Fly Fishing in Devon with the Devon School of Fly Fishing Fly Fishing Tuition, Guide and fly fishing lessons

Meteors and Sea Trout

Monday, August 16th, 2010

It has been great to have Emma along on my last couple of sea trout forays. The last was on Thursday as I had got in from guiding Trefor and we had seen a really nice sea trout take to the air towards the end of the day. It was one of those fish that gets under your skin a bit and eating dinner I was still sort of thinking about it when Emma asked if I fancied popping out for a few hours. That clinched it and I knew exactly where we were heading!

Trefor ready to strike!

We sat by one of my favourite pools chatting whilst scanning the water as darkness fell. There wasn’t much going on despite it being a time when fish often show themselves on the Taw. We headed upstream a bit and I popped a few casts into another pool called Junction. It felt like I’d had a small pull but I wasn’t sure if it was from a trout or not.

Having fished it out we walked back down to my favourite pool and I popped a few casts out. There is a nice spot where a non fisher can watch everything happen and that is where Emma perched. I fished the pool and we saw a really good fish move and despite covering it I didn’t get a pull. Just as I was considering changing flies I heard a yell from Emma. I wasn’t sure what it was about but she’d seen one of the early meteors that the news said would be happening. It was almost perfect timing as the  clouds had lifted giving us a perfect view of the night sky.

I thought this is one of those chances not to miss, so with both of us laying on our backs watching what was just an amazing sight as we saw our first meteor shower. It was just one of those rare times where fish had to take a back seat but being next to the river with a rod strung up and ready I was well placed just in case anything did happen in my favourite pool!

Derrick on a 1/2 day casting course

The fish are still biting but the cooler temps have meant that early fishing has been not as productive. But as the sun climbs then it just switches on. The set up has generally been a small black klink early on and then caddis patterns as the afternoon gets under way. As we move into late afternoon and early evening time I have been switching to bigger stimulator patterms to try and tempt and early sea trout to slash at the fly!

Fly Fishing in Devon Fly Fishing tuition, guiding and fly fishing lessons with The Devon School of Fly Fishing

Fly fishing in Devon, bamboo and CDC

Monday, August 9th, 2010

We still haven’t had any real rain to speak of but the fish have still been biting and the best of the fishing has been towards the late afternoon when we have had great caddis hatches at 3.30pm or so. It has been good to see fish devouring caddis pupae as they try and make a dash for the surface of the water. I was guiding Henry, John and Mark last Thursday and it looked like the omens were good  but the wind got up and we experienced micro hatches when ever the wind stopped. I was with Henry when this happened and we saw three really nice fish come on the feed for just a very short time. This was time enough for Henry to land a nice 11incher!

I have really been trying hard with CDC flies of late. There is little doubt of their fish catching abilities and I like that they fit in with the simple-to-tie family of flies. The downside of their effectiveness is that one fish is enough to put them out of action for a bit so I have had 3 lined up on the fly patch and make a quick change after a fly has weaved its magic on a fish. At the moment a green dubbed body on a Varivas 2200BL hook has been the winning combo for me.

Superfast and South Creek

I met up with Richard (RFH) last week and we had a day fishing. He is on a wating list of a club I belong to and I thought it would be nice for him to have a fish there and also he has been asking me about one of Luke Bannister’s excellent superfast bamboo rods. I am lucky enough to have a couple of his rods and even luckier to have No2 in the production line of the Superfast series. When I spoke to Richard I said I’d bring my rod along which he could fish and I would fish my treasured South Creek rod. We decided it should be a bamboo and dry fly day.

RFH and fish!

The fish were obliging and we caught plenty. RFH provided a most excellent bbq and the pork and apple burgers were outstanding! Fly Fishing in Devon Fly Fishing tuition,lessons and guiding- The Devon School of Fly Fishing

Flying in for some fly fishing….

Sunday, August 1st, 2010

I had a call from Barry who was keen to take his team of Nina and Tony out to try fly fishing for the first time. I was only to happy to help and asked where he was coming from. It turned out they were from Chichester. He had a plane and had checked out that we were only a few minutes away from Eggesford Airfield so they could pop down do some fly fishing and also have a team lunch at the hotel.

They all picked fly casting and fly fishing up quickly and really got into it. It is unusual and great to see 3 people all pick it up so quickly. As they were a team we also had a bit of fun with who could cast the furthest and accuracy competitions. I seem to remember Nina won the distance but think it might have been Barry who was most accurate. It didn’t really matter as it was just for a bit of fun.

Tony, Nina and Barry

The weather on Friday was a little murky and Barry had been keeping an eye out on the low cloud (apparently not good news for flying but good for fishing!) but as we ended the gloom lifted a little and I gave them a lift back to the airfield as it was on the way home.

The cool?!

As we walked to where the planes were parked ( I hope that is the right phrase) I saw what looked like a vintage plane and I was even more excited when Barry told me it was his plane. Being a child of the 70’s I had grown up building Airfix models and can still remember a lot of the planes I had built and seeing a real one up close was pretty cool. It turned out it was a German training plane built by Focke-Wulf. This thing looked great and sounded even better as it took off taking the guys back to Sussex.

Heading for home!   Fly Fishing in Devon Fly Fishing tuition, lessons and guiding in Devon