Saturday, 13 August 2011

Gavenny Rod Co - thanks Matt

I went down to the brook the other day to try out a new toy.
This rod is a beautiful work by my friend Matt Davies at the Gavenny Rod Company in Wales.
Matt has a blog you should visit..

I am delighted and amazed by the quality of modern bamboo rods
This one is a hexagonal bamboo, six feet and eight inches.
Built to throw a #3wt line the rod has a cigar grip recessed at the butt to take the reel on a cork seat, thus saving weight and avoiding the need for a butt cap and saving more weight.
The ferrule is bamboo on bamboo and the fit is beautiful.
On her first day out the set of the ferrule was about 3mm long but as the day progressed the ferrule bedded in and by the end of the day it was a perfect fit.
I must admit I was a mite cautious with regard to the ferrule and how it would perform under stress.
It turned out that the rod is really fast, she handles a line perfectly for small stream work among jungle terrain.
This fine rainbow came to hand quickly and fully under control.

Thanks Matt for a beautiful rod

Saturday, 16 July 2011

Small stream Brown Trout

This is the prize for the stealthy angler on a small stream.
Combined with light tackle, small flies and camouflage against the background
 you may meet a resident of the dark corners under the weed. 
#22 Caenis; #18-20 Baetis; #16 Purple Duns and #14 Caddis fooled the fish.

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Damsel without distress

Summer brings beauty on display
Here is a beautiful Banded Demoiselle

This one is a male; his female counterpart displays an olive bronze tint.

Sunday, 10 July 2011


Here is a place where trout live.
They are fond of security and food.
This pool has thirteen inch fish which sip caddis and spinners from the surface.
Do not disturb or your catch will be nil.

  Forty years ago I rebuilt this river after it was dredged.
It is now a very beautiful place to spend an afternoon.

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Spinner on a reed

The beauty of nature sorrounds us;
respect it and care for it or we lose it

Sunday, 26 June 2011

Upside Down again - USD Red Spinner

This is a design I have been using since I refined it in 2003
It is the EasyPeasyUSD, so named as it is simple to build.
The wing is soft enough to fold down and hook fish effectively
... well most of the time anyway
The footprint on the surface is excellent and it is an extremely versatile floater for upstream or down.

Time for Caenis and midges

These are on size #20 Mustad 1665 hooks, barbs flattened

Despite being on the small side, if you degrease the tippet these present
a very clean surface image and they make for good hookups too.
The big-eye hook allows use of 5x mono.

Saturday, 25 June 2011

IIFF 2011

I have prepared a box of specials which will be auctioned in benefit of the Dibney River Conservation Trust
who run the Irish International Fly Fair at Killyleagh, Co. Down, Northern Ireland next weekend.
All in aid of an excellent cause - the restoration of the local Dibney River.

The box contains Reversed Parachute emergers from #22 Caenis to #8 Mayflies
and some Partridge and Orange, Black Spiders and Clear Cure Goo Caddis;
a couple of French Partridge Mays and some Olive nymphs.

For further details of the show, see

There are some serious talents coming from across the planet
 to help our restoration efforts for which I thank you all;
 see you there, Roy.

Friday, 24 June 2011

Iron Blue Emerger

This little guy is built using a natural Iron Blue Dun hackle
The neck came from Cookshill Fly Tying and it is a thing of rare beauty.
I will endeavour not to lose these in the trees

Iron Blue Reversed Parachute emerger
The hook is a size #20

Monday, 13 June 2011

Blue Winged Olive emerger size #18

This Blue Winged Olive emerger is often effective in the evening in summer.

I tie a dozen colour variations of the BWO from size 16 to 22.

Sunday, 12 June 2011


It is again smutting time as the days grow longer and warmer toward midsummer.
The fish have had time to fatten up and are now taking advantage of nature's generosity.
As they sit sipping flies from the surface trout become engrossed with minutiae.
Here is a design which gives the all-important presentation,
 sinks the tippet on impact for clean presentation of a struggling bug stuck in the surface.
I fish this on 5x tippet and am confident of takes - if I can get the fly on target.
Here is the deadly smut on a size #22 larva hook.
  This one will be a reliable tool for the next two months.

Wednesday, 8 June 2011


Here is a little caddis fly I caught the other day
A stunning beauty 7 millimetres long

Saturday, 4 June 2011

Summer time - time for a Tup's Indispensable

A Tups on an 18 iron with 5x tippet does excellent work on a summertime small stream

Thursday, 26 May 2011

Under the Mayfly

Here is a recent pic of the underside of a male dun
Ephemera danica, freshly emerged from the nymphal case.
A size #10 mayfly hook should suffice

Monday, 16 May 2011

Mayfly Time

Some mayflies in a box
Some represent nymphs, some emergers, then duns.
Later in the day watch for spinners

Watch the fish to see which stage they are eating,
choose a matching artificial. 

You may be rewarded with something like this

Friday, 6 May 2011

Reversed Parachute Ephemera danica emerger

Reversed Parachute Ephemera danica emerger
Mustad barbless #10
Put floatant on the hackle, degrease the tippet.

This is an extremely effective presentation for mayfly hatches.
Tie to match the size and colour of your hatch.

Sunday, 1 May 2011

Ephemera Danica time

I saw this little beauty today, she is early this year.
There was a strong hatch with fish feeding on nymphs, emergers and duns.
It looks like being a fine summer; hope yours is too.
I'm off to tie a stack of mayflies for my next trip.

Friday, 29 April 2011

CCG Caddis flies

It is warming up a bit and I saw my first Danica of the season on Wednesday.
I have a boxful of Danica which I will be overfilling in the next few days.
Meanwhile I have been getting my motor functions back tying dry caddis flies
Hooks are size 16 to 10
Bodies are hare'sear dubbing with optional hackle ribbing
Hackles are cock hackle over hare's ear or just hare's ear picked out
Wings are partridge or grouse set with a layer of Clear Cure Goo
then cut to shape.

Monday, 18 April 2011

Lars Andersson fly box and Reversed Parachute midges

This is a beautiful fly box by Lars Andersson, Sweden, one of the finest craftsmen I have ever met
The box and its contents are destined for a friend,
here is the interior, midges size 14 and 16
on Hyabusa 371

Sunday, 10 April 2011

5/0 Spey fly

Thought I should try a different classic
This a 5/0 Spey Fly

Thursday, 17 March 2011

360 degree fly views

Herman de Gala has just added some of my designs to his excellent website

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

Mustad #14 4XL
orange quill
barred grizzly dyed golden olive
black Metz
black and green Hares'Ear+
Blue dun hackle tips

Knotted Midge
It is a mating pair of midges which will lay flat on the surface,
 the hook point only hanging through the meniscus at 20degrees.
The top pic is what the fish sees,
 the lower is from above from one side
The hackle on the bend is larger than the front hackle
 as the fly has more mass at the bend.

UpsideDown Danica Spinners

Ephemera Danica Spinner

Size 10 Hyabusa 270
Tails - pheasant tail fibres
Body - porcupine guard hair
Wing - Puglisi fibres (grey) mixed with TMC AeroDryWing (black)
Hackle - black
Thorax cover - pheasant tail fibres
Thorax - DaziHaresEar

Sunday, 27 February 2011

Mating Mayflies

Avon Special meets EasyPeasyUSD
on a hopper hook

Alan, it's a pair of mating mayflies constructed from a quill bodied Avon Special at the rear combined with an EasyPeasyUSD to create a fly which floats like a cork, always lands upside down, hooks up efficiently with sparse wings... and is more effort to tie than it's probably worth.
It is a piece of art and a fine challenge on a 2x size #16.

Friday, 25 February 2011


Pike streamers to seven inches on 4/0 hooks.

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Fly Tying Clips

I have sent some flies to my friend Herman de Gala 
 who has just added some of my designs to his excellent website
Check it out and have a 360 degree peek
I am in esteemed company.
Thanks, Herman

Thursday, 27 January 2011

Here is a simple process for making shrimps
This makes a durable fly
Contents- squirrel tail
plastic strip
6lb mono
Clear Cure Goo

Saturday, 22 January 2011

Clear Cure Goo - Orange Quill

Here is an extremely durable version of Mr Skues favourite Ephemerella
on a #16 hopper hook
Reinforced with Clear Cure Goo acrylic
this fly should last for weeks.

Freeflow Shrimp #14

Unweighted Shrimp -
for the occasion where I want it to drift free with the flow

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

You can run but you cannot hide

These are not supposed to be camouflaged.
They are supposed to be eaten.
They will be going to my mate Shawn in Australia.
His fish have eaten the first hundred.
Four down, nine hundred and ninety six to go.

Monday, 17 January 2011

Missing flies

I am in a fly swap
the first two sets I sent off went AWOL in the mail
This is Set #3
Wish me luck

Friday, 14 January 2011


Another favourite fly
the Snipe and Purple
Purple Pearsall's silk and an under covert feather.

This is a fly which I have used to great effect
on cold and stormy days, it certainly lives up to its reputation.

However, my fish prefer this one
Pritt's Dark Snipe
This is the same fly built from
Purple Pearsall's silk and an outer covert feather.
It is easier to tie too.

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Partridge and Orange

Here are some Partridge and Orange.
This is one of the best flies ever.

It is deadly fished singly upstream
or as middle dropper in a team of three.

Size 14, Pearsall's old 6A, partridge hackle. 

Monday, 3 January 2011

Flat Spent Spinner #16

This is my Flat Spent Spinner
Tied on a #16
View from below on the left
from above on the right.
This fly lays flat in the surface film.

Saturday, 1 January 2011

Happy New Year 2011

Hello folks, it's 2011, have a great year

Here is a little something I designed in the mid 1970's
the Avon Special Emerger
Happy New Year