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Come on in - the water's lovely!!
Yes, at last, after the horrendous summer heat and drought it's finally cool and wet again - so time to get on (or in) to the water once again. In recent years September and October have produced some of the best fishing of the year and there's no reason to suggest that 2018 will be different. 
It may even be a little later than usual on the big reservoirs which are only now cooling from their summer highs. Smaller waters will respond a little faster to the cooler nights. Turning to the rivers, salmon catches on many of them peak at this time of year, trout are still active and grayling also start to come into the picture more significantly. 
Saltwater species are also still very much on the agenda, especially bass, which will be my principal target as I head down to St Mawes this weekend for the Kilchoman Saltwater Fly Fishing Festival. The weather forecast for Cornwall looks good and there are serious cash prizes this year as well as all the usual opportunities to learn more about this branch of fly fishing from the experts. Personally, I'm looking forward to trying some new prototype 'Sea Snakes' and wrasse tempting flies that I've tied up. I'll let you know next time if they work! I don't know if it's too late to join the party but try calling Amelia on 01326 279278 if you're tempted. (And please be aware that because of this event, the office will be closed over this weekend - 28th - 30th September. Back for business as usual on Monday 1st October.)
Sea Snakes and wriggly wrasse tempters.
Will they work? I don't know but I'm going to have fun trying!!
Flies and Tips for the next few weeks:
Stillwater Trout - Daddies, Hoppers, Minkies, Snakes (the Snakelet in all its colours is hugely popular with customers all over the country) and don't forget the faithful washing line set up - small Booby on the point and Diawl Bachs and Crunchers on the droppers. Also a Black & Green Tadpole can work wonders. Don't forget Selectafly's Top Performer selections offer you the best examples of each fly type whilst also saving you money - and in our 'How to and Where to' section you'll find some tips on how to fish the Washing Line method if it's new to you. 
Finally, an approach that works wonders for me at Grafham and elsewhere is what I called my 'each way bet' in a magazine article (we caught a lot of fish that day!) This combines nymphs on the droppers with a Snakelet on the point, usually fished on a midge tip or full floating line. The Snakelet works well with a slow retrieve so the figure of eight that suits the nymphs is just fine - but do try speeding up a bit from time to time if things go quiet. Here is the sort of team that I use (note the size of the little Snakelet against the size of the nymphs - no problem casting these!):
That new marabou tailed Diawl Bach is proving very popular (also in brown)
River Trout - Again Daddies and Hoppers and, if there's nothing rising, the reliable beadhead Hares Ears and Pheasant Tails can always work, particularly in their subtly different versions. And if you need to go even deeper try a Peeping Caddis or a Czech Nymph.
Grayling - Why not pick up a Grayling Selection - our 12 best sellers for these lovely fish, at a useful discount to the individual flies.
The Grayling Selection from our
'Top Performers' range
Salmon - Think red and orange at this time of year and maybe put a bit more speed into your fly by casting squarer without an upstream mend, or add a steady retrieve.  Flies we wouldn't be without right now include the Ally's Shrimp, especially the RS Squid version, the Red Frances, Calvins Shrimp and my own creation - the Lapdancer (previously the Flame Shrimp but now back to its original name after protest and lobbying from a party fishing the Garry last week who caught 7 of their 10 fish on this fly fished on a dropper). Sadly we currently have very little stock - they pretty much cleaned us out following its success! Incidentally, this was one occasion when it wasn't a case of "well, they would catch all their fish on it because that's what they were all fishing with" - the fish picked this one out and it's not the first time it's happened.
A few of my own late season favourites.
Other colours can work too!

Fluorocarbon - As some of you will already know I am rather fussy about what leader material I use, so I was interested to read what Kevin Porteous, from the team that won the hugely prestigious Airflo Spring Invitation competition at Rutland, had to say after their success:
 "To win a competition of this magnitude against the calibre of anglers competing our tactics had to be spot on. Leader choice was critical in the clear water, It came down to choosing a clear strong Fluorocarbon that we were confident with, I opted for the new Fulling Mill Masterclass while the rest of the team used Grand Max Soft Plus." 
These thoughts echo my own thinking - sometimes choice of leader material doesn't matter but sometimes it does, a lot. If you're tempted to try either of these excellent materials my advice would be to choose on diameter rather than breaking strain - 0.22mm Soft Plus sounds heavy at 10.4lbs but the same diameter equates to 6lb Maxima or Fulling Mill World Class fluoro.
Wherever you're headed and whatever species you're fishing for, we hope you'll be out fishing soon. As always, Tight Lines when you do, and very best wishes,

Martin and Jessica
 

 
 
 

 

 

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Selectafly, 9 Dukes Ride, Gerrards Cross, Bucks SL9 7LD United Kingdom

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