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  1. As is my Summer time custom I resort to chasing Carp in the warmer summer months. This is usually my only occasion for Coarse fishing at this time of year.

    Now, I usually start later in the summer, about August, but this year we decided to start our carp fishing in July. A small group met at Willinghurst one hot day in mid-July, and we proceeded to fish the large lake down in the valley.

    Well, we all managed contact with fish at some point during the session, some managed to net fish.

    We decided to repeat the process again in August, almost one month later. A similar group again met at Willinghurst and fished the same lake. And again, most of us managed to net some fish, although the fish were becoming more difficult to tempt.

    Our last session came in mid-September, when the fish were definitely cagey in their dog-biscuit frenzy.

    A  couple of like-minded carp fly-fishers were avidly feeding a shoal of carp down the far end of the lake and the fish tended to stay down there, taking a while before progressing up the lake. Fortunately, they did manage to travel up to us and we eventually made contact.

    However, some aspects were apparent from our visits:

    ·       The carp have become wise to artificial dog-biscuit imitations

    ·       A new type of fly/bait is required, planned for next year

    ·       They can apparently detect surface lying nylon, turning away from baits at the last minute

    ·       Unless the artificial bait closely resembles the natural biscuit, it is likely to be ignored

    ·       Merely chucking out dog biscuits underarm is most likely to attract hungry ducks

    ·       Regular small dose feeding to keep carp interested is required

    ·       Do not ignore the margins as surface baits end up here and the carp follow the windborne bait

    Just for the record, in the last few casts, I managed to hook and with some expert netting from a good friend, land a large carp (15lb Common!). Best fish all year.

  2. You might have noticed that the weather has been rather hot recently. This may be good for most people and occasionally the garden, but for fishermen/fisherwomen it ain't necessarily good news! For a start, the fish do not like excessive heat as they become sluggish and do not want to feed when the water temperature exceeds a certain temperature (I am uncertain exactly what the cut-off is, it may vary dependant upon other factors). I don't lke excessive temperatures either! I am talking trout here, as they are primarily a cold water species after all. 

    However, it is not all bad news, as soon I will return to my annual visit to my local Carp fishery and try for them. I have recently been busy tying deer hair flies for the visit and will report back after that.

    In the meanwhile, we can just hope for some rain and fresh water for the lakes, rivers and gardens  

  3. The start of a new year inevitably brings with it an intention to change things and plan to do things differently to what has gone before. Some make resolutions and try to follow them through, but I suspect many are forgotten once normal life restarts.

    As I read through my fishing diary from last year I notice the number of Blanks that I had and which flies that made contact, but did not result in netted fish. So, maybe a time to take note of what nearly worked and a resolve to re-stock those patterns that either disappeared with the fish or lost in a tree.

    The trouble is the lack of time.

    • I have been tying flies for a few months to re-stock boxes for the forthcoming season and am part way through the list of patterns that were planned - ongoing
    • I plan to enter my usual Fly Tying competition that finishes just before the start of the new season (fortunately!). I usually start tying entries in the last months - a deadline helps to improve concentration! just about to start
    • I have several repairs to rods and related fishing equipment that need adressing. Part of the problem is the repair of a piece of equipment instrumental in rod ringing- Rod repairs completed
    • I have been reading too many articles on 'must have' patterns that I would like to tie, as they help me re-visit my early fly tying career - leave for another time
    • The BFFI may only be less than two months away, but I am planning my shopping list already and the questions that need to be asked - excellent Fair as usual
    • And normal life keeps re-appearing with new responsibilities and further travel......more travel next month

    Happy New year!

    Now looking forward to warmer weather and start of new season

  4. My trout season essentially closed at the end of October. I had planned to carry on into the winter. but other matters put an end to that!

    So, I have been at my tying bench for a few weeks and will be again in the New Year. I am currently tying patterns that I will use in the Spring months, mainly black nymphs of varied patterns.

    I also have some repairs to do to some rods, re-ringing etc. Unfortunately, the revolving tying caddy, that I use to assist rod wrapping has broken, so I will have to try and mend the switch.

    I also plan to increase the range of Salmon fly brooches next year, these will mainly be Traditional patterns, that appear to be popular with customers. The more esoteric and bespoke patterns only have a limited appeal, probably to the original customers for whom they were tied.

    I intend to produce some of the previous patterns that are currently 'Out of stock' as I suspect they are not readily available elsewhere.