For, as we all know:
After the Beast from the East.....
How about a little warmth from the West?
When the wind is in the east,
'Tis neither good for man nor beast;
When the wind is in the north,
The prudent fisher goes not forth;
When the wind is in the south,
It blows the bait in the fishes' mouth;
When the wind is in the west,
Then 'tis at the very best.
Reports of waterside actionAre pretty limited for the time being. A few salmon trickling in and trout too but action in the past couple of weeks much affected by the awful weather. Other parts of the world less affected as can be seen from these two photos of Selectaflies on tour. Last month we showed you a photo of our new Spawning Shrimp bonefish fly - now here it is again, where it belongs, in the mouth of a Bahamian bonefish! Secondly - a huge and stunning rainbow from Chile, one of a number of big fish which approved of a selection of our flies chosen for the trip.
'It looked delicious!'
They don't get better than this
Update from the stock roomMany of the new 2018 flies from Fulling Mill are now here, together with their Masterclass premium fluorocarbon. We're looking forward to comparing the performance of the latter against our current favourite Grand Max Soft Plus.
On the flies front there has been a big expansion of the Snake Fly range with the addition of unweighted full sized (7.5cm) flies and Mini Snakes (5cm) in Weighted, Unweighted and Booby versions - all of these flies in 3 colour options. They look great and we look forward to giving them a swim! Other new trout flies include some super looking Hoppers, Mayflies and other dry flies -plus some lovely buzzers - from the vice of Davie McPhail.
For the salmon fishers, as well as two new patterns from James Stokoe of TV's 'The Big Fish' Fame, we now have a smaller option (size 14) for the recently introduced Zeldas and a couple of neat little Sunrays. Don't head for Iceland without a few of these and they're also perfect for clear, low water conditions here at home.
We also very much like the look of the new Clydesdale pike flies and the big pike tubes.
See all the new 2018 flies from Fulling Mill here - and remember they will all be in our stock the day after they reach Fulling Mill themselves!
Something for everyone!
Outlook and early season Tactics and Tips.The general approach for trout on stillwaters both large and small is deep and slow, with Black and Green patterns very popular. Favourites include the Black Eyed Pea and the Beadhead Cut Throat Black Cat but don't keep doing something that's not working for too long - always be ready to change size, colour and depth if Plan A isn't delivering. Alternatively, try a floating line, longish leader and buzzers, Apps Bloodworms or maybe a little goldhead Eggstasy - perhaps under an indicator to hold the flies at the right depth.
The Black & Green selection from our Top Performer series - 15 flies for £12.95
Stillwaters and RiversOn both stillwaters and even more so on rivers at this time of year it is important to make the most of 'windows of opportunity' time-wise - often around the middle of the day when maybe it gets just a little warmer and the fish suddenly get a lot more active. Don't break for lunch just when it's starting and expect it all still to be happening when you get back to the water! The 'each way bet' nature of the Klink n Dink nymph and dry fly combination makes it a great approach for early season river work. The Jeremy's Oppo and Philip's Nymph complement each other perfectly.
If you're lucky enough to be trying for a big early season salmon deep and slow is again the usual approach and favoured fly colours tend to be black, yellow and silver etc. - patterns like the Dee Monkey and the Posh Tosh. And maybe this is just me but at this time of year I'll be paying particular attention to the steadier flowing 'oily' water than the heavy, broken parts at the head of pools. But - remember that they are fish, they don't read the books, so don't say always or never!
Fly of the monthis one for the river fishers - it's the totally timely and much loved (by both the trout and by us!) Rhithrogena Germanica, better know as the March Brown. Look out for this fly hatching in the next few weeks on large, clean rivers from South Wales to Scotland. Great nymph imitations include the ultra realistic Oliver Edwards pattern and the KJ March Brown Jig whilst the most popular dries these days are the Jinglers, both the original and the March Brown version.
Conservation NewsFor those of you that haven't already read about this you may be as sad as I was to learn that recent findings show that as much as 70% of salmon smolts descending to the sea are now being eaten by goosanders and other fish eating birds. In a way this is really quite an easy problem to solve - being allowed to do it probably rather less so.
Elsewhere, more than 20,000 farmed salmon escaped recently from their cages in Loch Snizort on Skye and into the gene pool (but Greig Seafords are 'conducting an investigation into the cause of the breach in the net' so we can all breath a sigh of relief) whilst calculations based on SEPA figures suggest that Marine Harvest alone lost 2.3 million salmon in the first 9 months of 2017, largely from 'disease'. How the powers that be can allow this reckless abuse of the environment to continue is a mystery. Land based closed containment as soon as possible!
Finally, the 2018 Wild Trout Trust auction is now open. I almost hesitate to spread the word about this because there are days I want and I may get outbid! - but it's in a very good cause and there are plenty of lots that are simply not available any other way.
Get fishing soon - Tight Lines when you do, and very best wishes!
Martin and Jessica
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