Saturday, 27 August 2016

Filling my box!

Those of you who read the Hillend Dabbler Facebook page will have noticed that I have been busy at the vice this week.
For those of you who don't do Facebook, here is some of this weeks work.




Tuesday, 23 August 2016

At the Vice Again!







After my trip to the Highlands last weekend by appetite has been well and truly whetted.
Tonight I have been at the vice gearing up for my trip to the Hebrides by tying a few trad wets in size 12s to gradually fill up my new box.
So much for me taking only one fly box to the islands! 


Sunday, 21 August 2016

The Spey Dam







Today I went on my first wild  fly fishing trip of the season.  
I never thought it would take me until August to  catch my first wild trout of the year. 
My friend Scott and I arrived early this morning at the Laggan Hotel to a arrange our days fishing which we had pre booked at the loch of the headwaters of the famous River Spey which is commonly known as the Spey Dam! 
After paying our permit and picking up the oars etc for the boat we drove on up to the Loch. 
Once we were organised and got the engine clamped on we manoeuvred up the loch to prepare for our first drift of the day.
It didn't take long for Scott to catch his first trout which was fooled by a heather fly.
It was cloudy and overcast for the first couple of hours and as the day went on the weather got better an better with the sun making appearances more often. 
After numerous drifts Scott's tally of trout was mounting up and it wasn't until after he had caught half a dozen that I fooled my first trout of the day which took a Connamara Black. 
It was a bit of relief to get that first trout. As the day progressed I went on to catch six more which were fooled by the Doobry and the Loch  Ordie. 
I caught a total of seven trout while Scott went on to catch a total of eleven trout. The most successful pattern of the day was undoubtedly the Loch Ordie which took more than half of Scotts haul.
In conclusion there was a total of eighteen fish for the boat which I'm sure you will agree was not a bad return for day out in the Scottish Highlands surrounded by beautiful mountain scenery.


Saturday, 20 August 2016

The Original Ballinderry


After looking through my book of Irish Fly Patterns I thought I would tie this fly as its a bit more true to the original pattern although looking at pics of original dressing it should maybe be more heavily dressed. I don't suppose it will make any difference to the troot. I imagine the only time you need to stick to an original dressing is for display purposes and the like. Far too much is made of sticking to exact original dressings for success with troot.

Friday, 19 August 2016

The Ballinderry (variant)



Im often inspired by Davie McPhail's tying demos on youtube especially traditional wet patterns. His latest fly tying  demo which I watched  today was no different. It was a variation of an old Irish pattern called the Ballinderry.
Therefore I decided to have a go at tying my version. I was quite pleased with my results. Im now gonna a tie another couple for my Hebridean box!

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Finding my Mojo!

Fishing wise, this year has been a complete disaster for me. Somewhere along the line I seem to have lost my enthusiasm for fishing, especially at the local reservoirs which is strange as this year I took out a membership for the Clarkston Angling Club's Lily Loch too. I've only ventured out on the local club waters on a handful of occasions this season and have not been on any away trips to any of the wild waters up north either.
However I aim to get my flyfishing mojo back as I've got a fishing trip planned to Benbecula and the Uists next month and I'm starting to get a little bit excited about that. 
I'm also hoping to go on a road trip up north next week to a reputedly good Highland Loch with my friend Scott.
I have cleared out all my fly boxes and started afresh by tying fly patterns that I will actually use. Far too many times Ive went trekking over moorland and bog etc to reach lochs and lochans overburdened by the weight of my rucksack full of unnescesary fishing gear and boxes of flies that never see the light of day.
With all this in mind this week I've been back at the vice, that was something else I haven't been doing much this year.
However I've really enjoyed getting back to tying again especially traditional wets which is my favourite style of flies to fish and a method which will be fully utilised when I visit the Hebrides and hopefully be of good use next week at Lochaber.
I will keep you posted and let you know how I get on . In the meantime here's a few examples of what's been created at my vice recently. 





Saturday, 2 January 2016

New Year, New Aspirations!


You could say that I've had a bit of a hiatus from my blog. It wasn't really what I had intended, however they way things have worked out over the last few months I haven't much choice due to a number of circumstances.
Nevertheless things appear to have settled back to normal here at Dabbler HQ, with just a few things to be put back in place.
Its a new year and a new start with a couple of big trips planned.
Therefore I look forward to start turning my thoughts to flyfishing and flytying in the coming weeks and months and once again get focused on what I enjoy most.
Today! at long last I managed to get the vice dusted down and put together some feather, fur and tinsel.
I had Highland Lochs in mind when I tied these this afternoon.

Thursday, 8 October 2015

Float On !




I had another outing on the tube last weekend, this time at Hillend's neighbouring loch the Lily!
I wasn't as successful as my first time afloat as I didn't catch any fish , however it was great fun to be out in the tube. I was really surprised that I could manoeuvre all over the 60 acre loch without any trouble. Perhaps I spent too much time moving around and maybe should have concentrated my efforts in some areas a little longer. I suppose I was just getting to know the tube and how to handle it etc, it was  great  to try in at the dam as well as square bay, Scunners point, the big weedy bay and all down the south shore. I could have done with a trout though. 
However I wasn't downbeat, far from it in fact I'm rather excited about the possibilities with the tube therefore I'm going to have another visit with the tube to the Lily this weekend as the Lily stays open until the end of October.
The Lily may be open for a further few weeks but the official 2015  brown trout fishing season has now ended but I'm already excited about getting out on the tube next season to some hill lochs that I would like to visit but in the mean time the Lily will do for the next few weeks.  

Friday, 2 October 2015

A Loch Revisited.











The day after my first experience of Armchair fishing I was once again out  pursuing Brown Trout, however on this occasion it took a lot more effort to catch my quarry.
I visited a lochan west of Rannoch Moor for the first time in a number of years along with my friend Scott.
We had a cold foggy start to the day and it definitely felt like autumn but as the day progressed the temperature started to rise.
After a walk of 1 3/4 hours we arrived at this remote loch which is set in a spectacular location surrounded by a group of Munros.
Before we strung our rods the sound of roaring stags could be heard echoing around the mountains.
It was obvious that the fishing would be difficult as there wasn't a breath of air and the surface of the loch was like a sheet of glass.
However during our time there a slight breeze would appear intermitently throughout the day but these spells didnt last long.
Fishing was tough but we did manage to fool around half a dozen trout each with Scott getting the catch of the day with a small plump Perch.
Big and bushy flies were the order of the day. We missed a lot more fish than we caught which was fun but frustrating too, The fish werent very big and never even reached the 1/2 lb mark. 
The trout may have been mediocre but the scenery was absolutely first class. I dont think Ive ever fished a loch with such spectacular surroundings.
We were leg weary and tired after making the long walk back to the car. Although we were thirsty and hungry after such a long day we deliberately avoided the chippy in Tyndrum and waited until we arrived in Callander to refresh and regale ourselves.