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Bebo

Fly Fishing - Advice Needed

Myself and the OH have done lots and lots of coarse fishing and the odd bit of sea fishing, but have only been fly fishing once before and that was with rented tackle. As we have a trout lake that does day tickets about a mile away we've decided that its time to have a proper go.

I need to buy all of the necessary kit and am after a bit of advice on where to start. What sort of rod should I go for? I was thinking a 10ft 7/8 would be about right for general purpose trout fishing. Is that right? I know we'll need reels that have several spools and different line types. Is three spools enough? What other bits can you not do without when you go fly fishing? Anyone got any specific makes / models of equipment to recommend?

All and any advice would be most welcome.
Brownbear

Cheapo Shakespeare fly rod and Diawa reel are fine. If you're going to spend money, spend it on a good quality line.
Mary-Jane

Excellent that you've decided to have a go at 'proper' fishing Bebo Very Happy

Have a look at this website which is very useful indeed, then if you've got any other questions feel free to come back...

http://www.flyfishingforbeginners.com/
Mary-Jane

Brownbear wrote:
Cheapo Shakespeare fly rod and Diawa reel are fine. If you're going to spend money, spend it on a good quality line.


I would disagree here. I'd borrow a couple of 'good' rods and reels and experiment with what suits you before you even consider buying. Having a 'cheapo rod' at the start can put people off fly fishing for good. An excellent lightweight graphite rod and good quality reel are a joy to use.
Stewy

I need to get all the gear too, I think my old man has got a priest somewhere although I doubt I will need it!! Rolling Eyes

Someone on another forum is going to send me a reel and some "stuff" for nothing which is mighty kind!! Very Happy

Had a look in this tackle shop last week but about the only thing I can afford from there is the flies!!!
Bebo

Mary-Jane wrote:
Excellent that you've decided to have a go at 'proper' fishing Bebo Very Happy



Don't call it that or you'll put me off. I think the main reason I haven't really done it in the past is that I've always considered it as being for the nobs and that I'd be betraying my working class roots to do it.

Anyway I think I've settled on Orvis Western2 9ft6 5/6 rods and Greys GRXi reels.

The reels come with 3 spools. I was going to go for a floating line and a sinking line (6 weight). Is that sufficient to start with? Any recommendations on brand?
dpack

put some worms in your pocket Wink
my fav for trout is a floating line ,5 lb to hook with a bit of cork as a float and worm
if you really want to use flies coachman and blackwitch are good
dpack

fly rod/line are ace for getting it there but trout's food is best bait
pop the first few and check what they eat
use that as bait
the ones i know best are canibals
Mary-Jane

dpack wrote:
put some worms in your pocket Wink


Surprised
Mary-Jane

Bebo wrote:
Don't call it that or you'll put me off. I think the main reason I haven't really done it in the past is that I've always considered it as being for the nobs and that I'd be betraying my working class roots to do it.


Awwwww...I was only joking Laughing Blimey - I've never thought of fly fishing as being for the nobs!

Bebo wrote:
Anyway I think I've settled on Orvis Western2 9ft6 5/6 rods and Greys GRXi reels.

The reels come with 3 spools. I was going to go for a floating line and a sinking line (6 weight). Is that sufficient to start with? Any recommendations on brand?


Orvis Western is a nice rod. I've got an Orvis rod too, plus an Orvis reel. As for lines - well, we tend to use Hardys...but as Gervase is oft heard to say, "It doesn't matter what type of line you get, the most important thing is being able to cast the bugger properly..."
Gervase

There's an awfu lot of cobblers taked about tackle (Fnarr). Not surprisingly, I suppose, for a passtime that's associated with blokes. Look at anything that attracts the anoraks, and you see the same sort of advertising, be it cycling, fishing, shooting, climbing or whatever. The idea started in the USA, I think, where agencie worked out the best way to pitch to anoraks was to bombard them with ridiculous pseudo-scientific detail.
As a result the ads are verbose in the extreme, and full of absurd scientific claims. If you see the words 'technical' or 'modulus' or any reference to 'molecular' you'll know what I mean. They make cosmetic ads look like a load of old boswellox.

But at the waterside there's not going to be a vast difference between a 600 Hardy rod and a 60 Daiwa or Shakespeare. Yes, the Hardy rods are pretty (that's my excuse), but there's nothing magical about them that makes them actually worth ten times more than a perfectly serviceable Japanese rod.

And the reel is just a carrier for the line. If you get one with spools that can be swapped around while the reel is still on the rod, so much the better, but don't be bamboozled by the sales pitch that tells you it was hand-forged from a single billet of titanium or whatever. A good reel should cost you about 12.

As for lines, get one with a brand name - the awful ones are the ones that are sold loosely coiled without a brand name for a fiver. Avoid those like the plague. Expect to pay 20 or so for a line, and look after it (get any mud off and dry it out after use, get some line grease and generally cuddle it).

Get hold of a copy of Trout and Salmon. Ignore the reviews (which is where reviewers get given a 600 rod or reel and a day's fishing on some sought-after water and write 200o words of gushing orgasmic prose that just repeats the pseudo-scientific boswellox in the marketing blurb) and look at the full-page ads. You should be able to kit yourself out with a perfectly serviceable fly-fishing outfit for less than 100 all in.
Gervase

I have been asked by the management to point out that Mary-Jane is far better at fishing than I will ever be, so listen to her.
(may I have my testicles back now, please?)
Mary-Jane

I'll just repeat that the most important thing is to find a rod (and reel) which suits you. You can only do that by trying different rods. Some are whippy, some are stiff. I prefer semi-stiff with a whippy tip...but that's just me. Other girlies are different.
Jonnyboy

Gervase wrote:

(may I have my testicles back now, please?)


I've just signed up for her fly fishing lessons next weekend, and have been told they are being used as bait instead of the fly.
Jonnyboy

Mary-Jane wrote:
Some are whippy, some are stiff. I prefer semi-stiff with a whippy tip...but that's just me. Other girlies are different.


Nick, NIIIIIIIIIIICK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Mary-Jane

Jonnyboy wrote:
Mary-Jane wrote:
Some are whippy, some are stiff. I prefer semi-stiff with a whippy tip...but that's just me. Other girlies are different.


Nick, NIIIIIIIIIIICK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Oh hell... Embarassed
Nick

Is it just me, or is it warm in here?
Rob R

Nick wrote:
Is it just me, or is it warm in here?


Hope not, the Hoff is already down to his undercrackers...
Mary-Jane

Rob R wrote:
Nick wrote:
Is it just me, or is it warm in here?


Hope not, the Hoff is already down to his undercrackers...


*Meep* Shocked
Stewy

Had a 2 bet on Cabrera to win the masters at 125/1 at the weekend and he came good so I have 250 to blow on some fly gear!!! Very Happy

I'm looking at rods and quite like the look of this ROD, I'll be fishing small ponds/lakes to start off with so was thinking the 9ft #5/6 line would do the job, any thoughts?

I won't be buying online as I'll go to the shop and get my hands on it to see what it feels like. (not that I know what I'm looking for!!)
Gervase

To be honest, that looks seriously good value. If you're fishing stillwaters you want to be able to cast a fair distance, so you need a rod that bends all the way down rather than one with a whippy tip and stiff middle (which is ideal for getting your line into tight spots). A good idea to try it in your hands and see what it's like, and most decent tackle shops will advise you well without trying on the hard sell.
Stewy

Excellent, will pop into the tackle shop when I get a chance to have a nose at it and most likely others.

What about line? What sort of price range should I be looking at, would the 30/40 price mark get me a decent line?

Any makes that stand out? I've been eyeing up line made by Cortland, any good?

Sorry about all the Q's, the poor bloke in the tackle shop will dread the day that I ever walked in there!!!

Will be buying my rod license tonight............
pricey

http://www.firsttackle.co.uk/acatalog/Cortland_444_SL_Fly_Lines.html

I use this online shop and this line in a DT6, It is a very nice cast Wink
Stewy

Just bought that Wychwood rod but he's had to order it so it won't be here for a few days, he was steering me towards a Redington rod for an extra 30 quid but I stuck to my guns but now I'm not so sure and maybe should of taken his advice, hmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.......

Picked up a cheap landing net for a tenner in another tackle shop, got a little bag from ebay and also bought a flat cap last week so I'm getting there slowly!!! Laughing



Bought a priest from ebay for a fiver too.
wabbiter

remember most fishing tackle is just to catch fishermen, be careful how you spend your hard earned cash.....mack Wink
Mary-Jane

wabbiter wrote:
remember most fishing tackle is just to catch fishermen, be careful how you spend your hard earned cash.....mack Wink


Definitely. Female flyfishers are far cannier... Wink
SheepShed

The rod, reel and line are just the start of course. Then there's the flies ... dries, wets, nymphs and lures by the thousands to choose from.
With a large enough selection you can spend all your time worrying about which one to use and constantly changing them, and end up not doing any actual fishing at all Rolling Eyes
Gervase

Mary-Jane wrote:
Definitely. Female flyfishers are far cannier... Wink

What?!?! Shocked This from the gadget queen? I'm spluttering with incredulity as I type...
Mary-Jane

Gervase wrote:
Mary-Jane wrote:
Definitely. Female flyfishers are far cannier... Wink

What?!?! Shocked This from the gadget queen? I'm spluttering with incredulity as I type...


Harrumph... Evil or Very Mad
Stewy

My priest came today and I also bought a fly box and some flies!! Very Happy



I know what they all are apart from these, anyone know?

SheepShed

I'd call them Goldhead Green Montana Marabou, or Montana Marabou Green Nugget. It's matching the stonefly nymph, but is a good general purpose nymph pattern with a bit of weight on it to get it low in the water.
Stewy

Thanks
SheepShed

There is a logic to the naming, sort of

You start off with a green montana

which is your basic stonefly nymph copy

Add a tail made of marabou (turkey plumes)

to give it more visible movement in the water

Then add a gold bead at the head

to weight it down a bit and add a bit of shine at the head.

And end up with a Green Montana Marabou Goldhead (and you can rearrange the words in whatever order you like)
Stewy

Just had a look through me catalogue and you are spot on, any other flies that are a must have for me box?
pricey

Stewy wrote:
Just had a look through me catalogue and you are spot on, any other flies that are a must have for me box?


lots I will take a photo of my boxes for you and then you can have a look and see what you like.

I tend to use what I like the look of, Montana's are always a safe bet on any water really, but try others the fish like a change every now and then.
SheepShed

Stewy wrote:
any other flies that are a must have for me box?

First thing you'll need is another box - game fishers are like muck, they attract flies !
What sort of water are you fishing on ? Lake, reservoir, big river, small river ?

The all-rounders I'd go for that would cover most lake and river work would be (in no particular order),
Damsel nymph
Pheasant Tail nymph
Gold-ribbed hares ear
Bloodworm buzzer
Viva zulu
Black and peacock spider
Coch-y-Bonddu
Greenwells glory
Some sort of muddler
Stewy

Will be fishing small lakes/ponds to start off with to see how I go, do I need any sort of spray or something to put on me dry flies to keep them afloat?
SheepShed

Stewy wrote:
Will be fishing small lakes/ponds to start off with to see how I go, do I need any sort of spray or something to put on me dry flies to keep them afloat?

There's stuff called Gink, which is a good floatant, but to be honest if you're fishing small fisheries for rainbows, I wouldn't bother too much with dry flies to start with. Stick with nymphs, buzzers and lures - you've got some good flourescent fritz goldheads and a couple of green and black lures next to them at the top of your box, I'd start out with those if I were you.
Get some casting lessons so you don't get into any bad habits, sort out your leaders and tippets (the monofiliment line at the end of your fly line), practice your knots so you don't lose flies (or fish) and get started. At most fisheries a beginner will be besieged by people giving advice, some of it might even be useful Laughing
Stewy

This is all good stuff SheepShed, quick question regarding the backing line, I will be using a 6 line so what strength backing should I use? Also I'm not so sure on connecting the fly line to the backing, I've got a DVD for beginners such as myself and it shows the fella threading the fly line up through the middle of the backing line and then covering with a sleeve, is this the best way or should it be knotted in some way?

You can tell I've done this before can't ya!!!! Laughing
SheepShed

I've been fishing over 25 years and have only ever got down to the backing a handful of times - unless you're running a huge fish on a whacking great reservoir or the Spey or something, it won't be anything to worry about.

The most important thing is fixing the fly to the leader, and the leader to the fly line. For the former use the good old 'grinner' and for the latter I'd recommend using braided loops on the end of the fly line and using the loop-to-loop method to fix the leader to the loop. Might not meet with the approval of the purists, but then you won't be presenting a delicate size 24 dry fly on a gin-clear chalk stream (not to start with at least).

Have a look at http://www.trout-salmon-fishing.com/flyfishing-knots.htm for some good knot diagrams
Stewy

I'm thinking of this LINE, what do you reckon?
SheepShed

Looks a sensible choice (WF is easier to cast than DT) and a good price.
Stewy

Right, what about leader strength and length? I'm looking at using the Orvis leaders loop to loop method for ease, fly line will be a 6...........

I was thinking a 9ft leader 6lb breaking strain to get me started or is that a bit heavy?

TIA
pricey

Stewy wrote:
I was thinking a 9ft leader 6lb breaking strain to get me started or is that a bit heavy?

TIA


Make the leader the same length as the rod, some times you might have to replace this twice or so in a day depending on snap offs, snags, changing fly's etc...

I only ever use 6lb, but it does depend on the water you are fishing they all have different rules.
Stewy

Cheers Pricey, the rod will be 9ft.

I don't really fancy having a bash at Dever springs to be honest so 6lb it is, just need a reel now amongst other stuff!!

I'm quite excited!!!!!! Laughing
pricey

I have a Leeda LV 100, 18 it was it holds the line and plays the odd fish, thats all you need it for don't spend too much on one.

Dever is fun and 6lb is ok to use there, I have had a few large doubles Wink

http://www.fishingnet.com/England/trout_fisheries.htm

Just a few places to look through.
pricey

Me and me brother fish here a lot, nice lakes and great fish.

http://www.woodingtonfishery.co.uk/4436.html
Stewy

I've had a peek at that one and it looks very nice.

There are 2 within 10 miles of me so will give them a bash first, walked around this one a week or so ago and really like the look of it.

http://www.barnelmsfishery.co.uk/index.htm

This is the other one.

http://www.haywardsfarmfishery.co.uk/index.html

I'm gonna get a reel tomoz, the dude in the shop showed me a Greys one for 30 quid last week so I'll be going for that me thinks.
pricey

I can only see one link Confused Well when your ready to come to Woodington then let us now and I will meet you there.
Stewy

Will do Pricey, I need to learn how to cast first though!!!!!! Shocked Laughing

I double posted the same link, have fixed it........
Stewy

Rod came today, It's a 9ft #6 4 piece Redington Red.Fly2 Very Happy

ROD

Will get a reel, line, backing and leaders on Sunday.

Quick thick question about tippet material, if I'm using a 6lb leader then I presume that I should be using the same strength tippet material??
SheepShed

If you're using tapered leaders (which I assume you are) you can just tie the fly directly onto the end of the leader, which is a lot simpler. The disadvantage is that each time you change a fly your leader will get shorter, and at around 3 a go that can get expensive.
For a separate tippet, you ideally want something just a tad thinner than the end section of the leader, so if you've got a 4X 6lb leader then go for a 5X 5lb leader, but tippet of the same size and breaking strain as the leader will do fine as well.
Stewy

At first I will just be tying the fly to the leader but seeing as a spool of tippet material is around 3.50 for a 40m spool I think I will get meself one.

Just bought a salter little samson from eBay, wonder if I can catch any fish to be able to use it............ Confused
SheepShed

Stewy wrote:
Just bought a salter little samson

That brings back memories, I've got one of those that I've had since childhood ! It only goes up to 4lb though, what are going to do with the big fish Laughing

BTW, have you got a landing net ?
Looking though my fishing bag there's also :
Line snippers
Forceps, for removing hooks
A 'zinger' to hold the two above (sort of retractable line thingy)
Small scissors
Line cleaner
Floatant
Sinkant
Gink

Then you'll need a hat with 'Orvis' written on it and a waiscoat with hundreds of pockets - you've got to look the part as well Wink
Stewy

Haha...... Laughing

Me scales go up to 14lb so that should do me.

I've got a flat cap!! Wink

Got a landing net and some snips and forceps, my main aim now is to get a reel!!!!!!!!!! (and a hip flask!)
Stewy

Got me reel today!!! Very Happy

It's one of THESE
Stewy

Had me first outing today and had a result!!!! Very Happy











Fished at Lower Bruckland near Axminster, luckily I was the only one there so didn't feel too nervous and managed to bag 2 trout!!!

One weighed 2lb 12oz and the other 3lb 4oz, had a cracking fight with the bigger fish, it was tail walking all over the shop!!
Gervase

Well done! Now you're hooked.
SheepShed

Excellent, well done Stewy.
Glad you had the foresight to take a photograhper with you to record the momentus event Laughing
Stewy

In the leaflet that I've got for the lake it says that there are fish to 30lb in the lake!! Not sure I'd want to hook a beast of that size........

Next time I go I think I will start using my tippet material as I've probably lost 2-3 ft from my leader.
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