Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Drifting the Loch









Yesterday I took the opportunity of taking out a boat at Hillend for the first time this season.
I was out on the loch about 9.45 and made my first drift down past the three trees and the back of the woods. No success so I moved over and have a drift over at Speirs Island again without success. I then headed back over to the back of the woods and had a great drift down to Lowe's Bay. This time I managed to hook and land a trout which was fooled by my variant of a well known lure which was devised at a fishery near Lanark. I call my variant the Hillend Dancer.
I then moved up to the west end of the loch at the dam and had a long drift from there down the loch but without success.
I then tried down the front of the woods and the boathouse bay. Then I tried a drift which was recommended to me by a well known Hillend angler from the Braco Burn area right down close to the southshore boom where I managed to hook and land a further two trout which were fooled by a lure I tie which I call the Hillend Sunray.
Satisfied with my bag of three trout I called it a day just about 3pm.
All in all a very satisfying day indeed despite the bright sunshine.

Sunday, 27 April 2014

A fine way to end the day


This morning I had some family chores to attend to and in the afternoon I watched that game that someone once said was more important than life and death. Yes I was watching the football so once that was all over I then had a meal and it was then off to the loch I go. Happily I wandered down the narrows it was then that I met my wee pal Joe. After a quick chat I sat down and strung my rod and started to fish at the narrows. I got the feeling I was in the wrong place so off I went to the Boathouse Bay. It was warm despite the east wind so I sat around for a bit then set up with two small nymphs on my leader. I cast them out and retrieved then as slow as I could. I had been intending to use my recently tied dabblers but the conditions called for the nymphs in my opinion. 
A short time later my hunch paid off as I hooked and landed a nice rainbow trout which was fooled by my top dropper which was a size 14 hook with a peacock herl body ribbed with silver tinsel and some black cock hackle fibres for a tail. A very simple and drab tying but one which the trout appeared to like.. I didn't fish on much longer and was just happy to catch the one trout and then head back home for a nice bottle of red and enjoy the afterglow of a very fine day indeed.

Friday, 25 April 2014

The Cruix Dabbler


Well I never got up to the loch today but fully intend to be there over the next few days for sure. So once again I was at the vice today tying up some more patterns. I call this the Cruix Dabbler. Named after the village which is in the shadow of the Hillend Loch dam.

Thursday, 24 April 2014

A Black & Claret Dabbler


I'm hoping to be out fishing over the next few days so in the mean time I did a bit of flytying this afternoon. I tied a few of these dabblers. The tail is black mallard as is the wing and collar hackle. The body is claret slf ribbed with silver tinsel and the body hackle is dark claret. Tied on a size 10 Kamasan hook using 8.0 black uni thread.

Friday, 18 April 2014

Hillend North Shore Podcast

Here is a short podcast I managed to put together from the North Shore at Hillend Loch earlier in the week. I know , I know its not very professional and there are many mistakes etc . Remember I only do this for fun so don't take it too seriously. I know I dont. So go on and give it a listen.


Monday, 14 April 2014

Not what I was after!





The weather todayy was quite a contrast from yesterday it was rather sunny and the westerly breeze was fairly moderate so off I went up to Hillend this afternoon.
I opted for the North Shore on the point opposite the big Island. I spent an hour or so along the point using a couple of lures all to no avail. I then sat on the bench for some lunch and a change of flies. This time I tied on a small nymph at the point and a wee blood worm/buzzer on the dropper. After my late lunch I started fishing again and much to my surprise after about four casts I hooked into a fish. Unfortunately it was not what I had intended to catch as I had fooled a pike on the bloodworm.
I fished on along the north shore a bit for a further few hours but without any success however I did see a huge big gull dive bomb the water and attempt to fly off with a trout but it dropped the fish . Then I saw it do the same thing a short time after and this time it made off with the trout over to the big island where no doubt it scoffed the lot.

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Was it worth it?


This morning I tried to persuade my mate Alex not to go fishing up to the Lily Loch with me as I had looked at the weather forecast and it wasn't very favourable to say the least.
However Alex had recently got himself a season ticket for the lily and hadn't been fly fishing for about three or four years and so was quite understandably keen to go no matter the weather. I'm sure we all know that feeling.
As expected when we arrived up over the hill we remarked that the elements were going to be rather challenging as it was blowing a gale and raining.
We headed up to Scunner's Point at the west end of the loch as we would have the wind at our back.
And so we proceeded to fish. We stuck it out for a couple of hours trying both bays as well as the point.
I hooked my one and only trout from the point. The fish was fooled by my black uv lure. But was it worth it? No! not really as we both were soaked to the skin and chilled to the bone. Hoping to get to Hillend loch tomorrow if the weather is more favourable.

Sunday, 6 April 2014

The Jingler



A fly pattern which has featured in recent podcasts, videos, blogs, magazines and forums has been the Jingler.
Its all the rage. Apparently its a very old Scottish pattern which has been fished on Scottish lowland rivers for many a year with great success. The sudden rise in its popularity is probably down to social media etc as opposed to the good old fashioned method of by word of mouth.
Regional flies and methods have stayed local for years but with ever increasing technology there will come a time when there will be no such thing as regional fly patterns as they will eventually be known nationwide or even worldwide.
Anyway I digress its an extremely effective pattern especially on rivers however I believe it will be a fantastic pattern to use on the loch too especially when the surface is calm and and trout are on the feed.
I've no idea if these patterns that i've tied are acceptable as Jinglers , as you know how pernickeity some folk can be but they will do for me.

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Tying a Straggle Fritz Lure

Stuck in the house with the lurgy Ive been tying up more flies and as a few folk have been asking to see my UV Straggle fritz lure I thought it would be a good idea to make a short vid of tying the pattern which is extremely easy to tie and a pattern that I can highly recommend.
I normally tie these lures in size 8's but on this occasion I tied it on a size 6 as I'm clean out of Kamasan 8's.