fly fishing how-to

Trout Dying To Get a Good Photo

We all should know the rules for releasing a trout with the best chance of survival, but there is one rule that is almost never included in articles about successful releasing.

So, you have landed the fish as quickly as possible to limit capture stress and you are about to pick up the fish and a get a few ‘grip and grin’ shots before release.

But, grip and grin, can all too often turn into grip and kill, and it is all down to where you grip, and how you grip, the trout that can determine its survival.

Link corrected – Read the full story and see the grip and kill photos.

The worst example of ‘grip and kill’ in these shots – almost certain lethal damage to heart, liver and gills. Photo of worst grip and kill grip
Posted by Tony Bishop in environment and conservation, fly fishing, fly fishing how-to, trout information

How to Cast a Heavily Weighted Nymph Rig: Learn the Chuck N’ Duck

This is dear to my heart and the back of my head. Excellent article on casting heavy nymphs or split-shot weighted line without seeing stars.

This technique is perhaps best used on shortish casts – if you are propelling big lumps of weight over longish distances you may run into trouble – but then why would you be casting long with big weights?

Article

Posted by Tony Bishop in fly fishing how-to

Swinging wets and nymphs in streams and small rivers

This is one of my favourite forms of fly fishing, especially on streams or small rivers. When ‘traditional’ dry fly or nymphing is just not getting the job done, swinging a wet fly often gets results.

In fact, unless there is a rise on,  I usually start out wet fly fishing. To me sitting on a bank waiting for a rise to kick in is a waste of very precious fishing time.

See the new and full story here

Posted by Tony Bishop in fishing flies, fly fishing, fly fishing how-to, fly fishing tips

New Fly-Fishing Book: ‘What Trout Want –The Educated Trout and Other Myths’

Quite simply this is the best book I have read on fly-fishing, and I have well over 100 books on fly-fishing in my bookcases. This simplified approach to catching trout, without the baggage of myth, pseudo-science, and self-serving BS is something I have tried to preach in my own books and articles – just wish I could write it half as well.

I don’t care where in the world you fly-fish for trout, read it and become a better fly-fisher.

whattroutwant

“In What Trout Want, Bob Wyatt busts one of fly-fishing’s biggest myths -selectivity- and teaches readers how to:

  • Simplify fly pattern design
  • Reduce the number of patterns needed
  • Improve presentation and stealth
  • Catch pressured trout

Catching trout simplified 

  • A brilliantly written and well-crafted exposé fly fishing’s greatest myths–selectivity, matching the hatch, pressured fish, fish feeling pain, precise imitations, drag-free drifts
  • Recipes for the author’s tried-and-true patterns
  • Practical, down-to-earth suggestions for catching fish”
Posted by Tony Bishop in fly fishing, fly fishing how-to, trout information

Quick and easy way to check or change your fly

Tim Rajeff, master caster shows a simple way to check or change a fly without stripping in the fly-line. Safety tip: don’t try and catch the fly, grab the leader and of course always wear glasses as you do every time you fly-fish.

Posted by Tony Bishop in fly fishing how-to, Fresh water how-to

Fly casting can often be improved by slowing down and casting easier

Very good article on casting technique on Gink & Gasoline site:

Read the title of this post and try to live by it. It’s my attempt in “one sentence”, to help fly anglers quickly improve their fly casting, and it’s made me twice fly caster and fisherman I am today. There’s lots more to fly casting than slowing down and casting easier, but if anglers focus on doing both together, they often will find that it can greatly improve their overall technique and control. Ask any professional sports athlete how they maximize their performance and potential, and almost all will reply with excellent technique. It’s no different in fly casting. If you want your fly casting to reach its full potential, you have to first build a strong foundation of fly casting mechanics and principles that you can consistently live by on the water. I’ve found personally that when I take the time to slow down and cast the fly rod with less power, it’s much easier for me to focus on the most important element of my fly casting, my technique… [read full article] (Link fixed)

Posted by Tony Bishop in fly fishing, fly fishing how-to, fly fishing tips

Fishing Minus the Hero Shots

Kirk Deeter from Field and Stream and Midcurrent is one of the better fishing writers, so I found this article about using ‘grip and grin’ shots to bolster a weak story very helpful to budding writers.

Especially those who want to break out of the morass of bland rubbish writing supported by same-old-same-old-pictures, and instead deliver words that make pictures in the readers mind.

Money line:

“You see, I’m not a grip ‘n grin man.  I prefer to fish from the shadows, and stay in the shadows, even after I land something big.  I have a face that’s made for radio, and a passion for fly fishing that’s rooted somewhere that can’t be captured, no matter how many megapixels are devoted to it.”

Read full article here.

Posted by Tony Bishop in fishing media, fly fishing, fly fishing how-to

Distance Schmistance.

One of the South Island of New Zealand’s best known guides, Chris Dore, offers some sound advice about getting more distance, and the benefits of being able to do so. This is especially true in New Zealand where casting in a wind is a very common requirement.

“I tire of hearing people bagging distance casting. "its not needed here in NZ" and most commonly "all my fish are caught within a few rod lengths" are common justifications.

Well mate, that’s because you can only cast a few rod lengths. And how do you go in windy conditions? You don’t? I wonder why…”

Posted by Tony Bishop in fly fishing, fly fishing how-to, fly fishing tips, New Zealand Fishing

Tenkara and European nymphing, a link?

Tenkara fishing is getting a lot of press, but the link to an ancient Japanese method to ‘modern’ techniques is very interesting.

Tenkara and European nymphing – where the old becomes new.

Sometimes it happens that some apparently disconnected events come together to open a door to something new. A case in point.

First apparently disconnected event.

I had been reading a lot about the Japanese Tenkara style fishing, and had bought a Tenkara rod and used it a few times, with some success. It is fun!

Then a few months on I was reading an UK fly-fishing magazine. Two articles in the same edition of that magazine, apparently disconnected, except that both were about fly-fishing, melded together to open a door neither author knew tenkarafly1existed.

The first article by a well known fly-fishing author and fly-tyer, was taking someone to task about his notion that wet flies tied with hackles pointing forward over the eye of the hook were ‘invented’ about 25 years ago. Not so wrote our eminent author, they were invented about 50 years ago in the Clydeside area, in the UK.

Both these gentlemen were only about 2000 years out. Japanese ‘Tenkara’ fishermen have been using wet and dry flies with hackles tied forward for around that many years.

O.K. So a marginally interesting, piscatorial and historical matter cleared up.

However this historical fact becomes more interesting when melded with the second article, on the ‘European’ fishing style.

Read on..

Posted by Tony Bishop in fly fishing, fly fishing gear, fly fishing how-to

The Trout Diaries: A Year of Fly-Fishing in New Zealand

troutdiarycover

As a New Zealand fisherman with over 50 years experience, I am acutely aware of the almost dreamlike reputation New Zealand’s trout fishing holds for many overseas anglers. Unfortunately much of that dream has been fuelled by over-hyping in print, TV and other media. Sure we have big trout in superb surroundings, but the big trout are hard to catch, and require for the most part good fly-fishing skills, where casting and presentation techniques are key.
Fortunately Trout Diaries is extremely well written, and through an anecdotal style reveals the true nature and reality of New Zealand trout fishing, and the techniques that can lead to success.
In many ways the books title is a misnomer, it is most certainly not a ‘I did this on this day’ book, but covers a years worth of fishing trips throughout both the North and South Island of New Zealand. On the way you will meet some of the true characters that fish our waters, and learn a lot.
I cannot recommend Trout Dairies highly enough.

Another review:

“This is such a fine book; one that is able to be enjoyed on several levels.
It has inspired me to fish some new water, and it offers some gems on how to fly fish. The Trout Diaries is occupied by some of the most interesting characters to inhabit our angling literature, and the author has captured their voices beautifully. The book will appeal to people looking for the adventure that comes from new places and people, but primarily for me, it was about an adventure of the soul. This ultimate adventure, so well described, is the most important journey of all, and is what will make this book appeal to an audience well beyond anglers. It is a book that can make you laugh and cry, which is quite something for a book supposedly about angling.”

Yet another:

“Derek Grzelewski sees what most others do not; his thoughtful observations are carefully wound into stories that are neither just about technique, nor about the requisite equipment but rather how fishing for trout, pounding miles of river bank, chance encounters with locals and peering from bridges into running water, feed us. He threads his 12 months of fishing with his life experiences. This is not a book about pounds, numbers or the one that got away. He recounts his meetings with professionals, scientists, cockies, novices, old timers, whitebaiters… for each of them a different slant on what they take from the fabulously fresh still and running waters of New Zealand. I couldn’t put the book down.”

Posted by Tony Bishop in Fishing Travel, fly fishing how-to