Friday, 22 June 2012

The Salmon Fishing Forum Fly Swap

With the arrival of the Grilse on many rivers, I have taken part in a fly swap on The Salmon Fishing Forum. The Theme for the fly swap was "Grilse Flees".

Having read back on some old posts from another forum, I came across a lovely looking fly tied by well known fly tyer Ross MacDonald. It was a Thurso Dog. This fly was just the ticket for Grilse and hopefully it will do the business for the guys who each get one of my flies. I'll look forward to hearing of any success.

Here are a couple of pictures of the flies I tied up for the swap.

I really like this fly and hopefully it will catch me and the others a few fish this summer.

A group shot of the 10 flies ready to be posted. Looking forward to seeing what the other guys are tying up.
Here is dressing I used for the Thurso Dog.

Tag: Oval Silver
Tail: 2 Pheasant Topping (I've used yellow cock hackle)
Butt: Glo-Brite 12
Body: Black Floss
Rib: Oval Gold
Hackle: Blue
Wing: Chartreuse Bucktail/Lime Green Krystal Flash over Orange Bucktail/Orange Krystal Flash
Head: Black
Jungle Cock

Saturday, 16 June 2012

A Good Day On The Don At Manar

Charlie was out on the River Don today at Manar and he managed to land a couple of spanking fresh sea-liced fish. One was a lovely Grilse about 6lb and the other was a cracking summer salmon around the 10lb mark. Both fish were taken on a gold bodied Sunray Shadow with a 4" wing.

Two more fish were landed and a further two lost by another rod. One of his fish was also a sea-liced Grilse so it looks as though the Grilse have arrived on the Don and almost bang on time for a change! Let's hope the run is a good one and we see plenty more where they came from over the next few months. Charlie informed me that one of the fish he lost was a beauty. Sounds like a great day was had. All fish were released unharmed.

Here are the pictures Charlie sent to me this evening.

Charlie with a lovely fresh run Grilse from the Upper Wood Pool. The fish had two goes at the Sunray before hammering into it! Excellent stuff!
Off to fight again another day.
A 10lb "Bar of Silver" from the Long Pool. Again, this fish took a Sunray Shadow, but this time it got smashed from above. Heart stopping action!
Bracken and Archie enjoy themselves outside the hut at Manar.

Monday, 11 June 2012

Mackenzie DTX And Orvis Demo Day

On Sunday, the Aberdeen District Angling Association hosted a demonstration day for Orvis and Mackenzie DTX at their Bothy on the banks of the Dee in Aberdeen. There was a good turn out to see 3 times World Spey Casting Champion Scott Mackenzie give a very good presentation on his range of lines and rods. He was also on hand for most of the day to give advice and casting lessons to anyone who needed. Ben Dixon from Orvis, Banchory was there too and he was showing the many youngsters who turned out how to cast single handed rods. He, along with Scott Mackenzie were involved in the distance casting which was good to watch. Some huge lines were being thrown across the Dee by some talented casters both amateur and pro. Regular Trout & Salmon writer, Paul Proctor was due to give a demonstration but he was held up and couldn't make the event which was a shame. In the Bothy itself, there was fly tying demonstrations by the Orvis fly tiers. Always interesting to watch and to pick up new skills and ideas from two very good fly tiers. The youngsters seemed to enjoy being taught  how to tie up their own flies.

As always Stuart, Julia, Jim and John put in a lot of effort to make the day possible. The bacon and sausage butties always go down well along with a cup of tea or coffee. These people give up their spare time to put these events on and a big thanks to them for a good day.

Here are a few pictures from yesterday.

A selection of the many rod and line combos available to be tried out.
Scott Mackenzie gives ADAA member Eddie Allan some advice about his shooting head lines. He was only too happy to help and was on hand all day to answer any queries.
The ADAA Bothy. I took this photo as I was leaving about 2pm. Still a good number of people taking advantage of the free casting lessons and advice.

Sunday, 3 June 2012

My First Fish Of The Season

I was lucky enough to be back fishing at Lower Blackhall yesterday. With good overcast conditions and a river dropping nicely after a wee rise on Thursday, our hopes were high. The water was sitting at about 1' on he gauge and the water temperature was 53f.

We tackled up about 9am and I opted for my Rio UniSpey with a 10ft slow sink tip. I tied on one of Charlie's Silver Stoat's Tail variants. Charlie went for his Mackenzie DTX G2 Spey Line, 10ft slow sink tip and a pattern of his own making. Eddie fished a full floating set up with a tiny Pussy fly.

Charlie and I headed over to the Kinneskie side to fish the Sheep Dip, Whinney Brae, Bohore and Sandy Haven. Charlie chose to fish one of his favourite pools, Sheep Dip and I went in at the neck of Whinney Brae. After only fishing for 20 minutes or so, I had a very subtle take of my fly which, initially I thought was a parr. That was until I lifted into it, suddenly the fish took off! I was praying I didn't lose this one and finally get my season started. After a dogged fight for 5 minutes or so, Charlie expertly netted a 5lb Salmon covered in long tail sea lice. I could now relax and enjoy the rest of my day's fishing. We carried on through the pools without another touch so we headed down to Bohore.

Charlie let me go through the pool first. The main lie is on the far bank between the steps and the pipe about 2/3 the way down the pool. I covered this area without success and was just coming to the end of the pool when I had a thumping take about half way across. This was a bigger fish than my earlier one. As it was hooked at the tail of the pool above some fast rapids, the only way the fish could run was upstream. That it did but with pace, and lots of it! I was reeling in my line as fast as my hand would go and still my line was not tight. I finally caught up with the fish when it was opposite where I was standing, then all of a sudden it turned to head back downstream and that was the last I felt of it. I didn't see the fish but it was a super take and felt like it had some weight to it. Looking back, maybe I should  have hand-lined to keep up with the fish as it might have been quicker than reeling but who knows. I had lost the fish and I can do nothing about it now. You win some, you lose some. We fished on down the beat without joy but we were seeing a few fish but they had their heads down and were heading up river sharpish.

After lunch Charlie fished the Blackhall side and myself and Eddie headed up to the Whinney Brae and Sheep Dip pools to give them another go. The three of us fished all afternoon with only parr and smolts to show for our efforts so we called it a day about 6pm and headed off to the Banchory Legion for a few pints and a bite to eat.

Here are some pictures from our day. Finally a picture of a fish caught by me!

My first fish of the season safely in the net!
A quick picture for the scrap book.
A nice picture of the head before releasing the fish back to the river
Charlie launches a nice line on Brown's.
Bohore Pool. I lost the fish at the tail of the pool just above the fast water flowing between the two jetties.