Thursday, 5 May 2011

GP Midge Spinner takes me a Tean beauty

Well for the last month i have been down to wess and my own Little gem of a river called the Tean, not a famous river, but a clasy little unfished beauty holding lots of grayling and not many trout but  huge ferox trout on every likely pool..
I caught my best fish to date last year a 2lb 2 oz brown that will stay with me for ever, i wrote a blog on the fish last year around the same time... we have a rule between ourselves that we only fish the dry in trout season and bug it for the grayling in winter..
These huge fish do come up and take the dry but getting them to take your fly is just different gravy..
There is a particular trout that we caught last year once on the dry and it weighed 1lb 14 oz, we watched it come back to its pool on April 6th and have never cast a fly at it so we can study is progress..
Like a mad man i have sat for hours just watching how this fish behaves and i have learnt so much this year from this method...
Its lives on a bend under a sunken tree root for most of its time but comes out in the day to feed at the rear of its root in a food lane, it is so spooky that a bird flying over it will bolt to safety..
I can position myself within ten feet of the fish and watch its every movement while on the feed....
I noticed that the fish was feeding most of the time on flys that i could barely see, just a dot in the surface along with other scum i could not believe how it could pick out food from non food at such a tiny size.. there is all sorts that comes down this food lane and seeing it pick out the food was wonder lots of flys get snubbed at as these trout are fully switched on..
The problem was that this fish would totally ignore olives, sedges, stone fly, reed smuts!!! i could not believe it!! Why was this fish taking tiny flys and not bigger more substantial food? I watched in amazement as a short flush of olives never made this fish twitch a fin...
My main priority was to find out what this fish was actually taking so i waited for the trout to come heavily on the feed and then entered the river behind it a netted the flys...
To my amazement this fish was taking dead drifting buzzers, the ones that you see the rezi lads raving on about, i have had many a  angler tell me 'buzzers are just a rezi fly glen and only come off in lakes' I was always unsure of this as buzzers hatch in a bucket of water if left for a month!!
These buzzers the fish was taking were 'spent' and one thing stood out, they had there wings splayed out just like a olive spinner...they were however tiny!!
I sent a email to WTT and ltdffa member Paul Gaskell asking him his thoughts on the buzzer thing..
Surley enough i had a long email stating that there are hundreds of different types of buzzers that come off rivers, some of them huge!!
I also put the question to John Tyzack and Paul G on why the fish would sip these all day long and ignore the bigger olives etc...
Both said the same...the fish can get more protein, from sipping thousands of buzzers all day compared to a short flush of they are looking for this food source and become 'locked on' a tilt of a fin to sip a dead drifting midge or a chase of a fluttering olive ? the buzzer wins!!
I see many a angler saying 'stick a big fly on and u will have it' well this from my experience is totall bollocks, and just the easy way out...yes you might get the odd fish smashing it but the trout i am talking about would not even look at a big fly as my story continues i found this out...

Taking a egg layer
The trout would only take dead drifting midge for 90 percent of the time, other times it would take a egg laying buzzer (midge spinner) as it dropped on the surface for a few seconds, this is the only time it would move slightly quicker as the fish knew it could leave the surface again.. but the dead drifter were its main priority and just a very gentle sip would do the job..

A fish that sipps buzzer downstream of the fish i am after

My next plan was to try and catch this fish!!
My problem was to create a fly so small to match the hatch that i was going to have to use very small line to get drag free presentation... but this fish is a wild power beast and would snap me straight into the roots, i had to hook the fish and hammer it instantly to get it down stream..
I sat at home the previous night designing a midge spinner pattern, i had never seen or heard of anyone using a fly like this , the flys i had collected were tiny buzzers with there wings splayed just like a 'sherry spinner' as previously mentioned..
I ended up with a lovely little pattern tied on a small 22 partridge hook...i just hoped it would do the trick..

I decided to go down and catch the fish (if possible) Wess was away so i had no one to sight the fish for me.
I knew i had to go strong so i opted to see if i could tease the fish with a bigger pattern, the fish was sipping away as normal and i started with a ltd sedge, nothing.. olive nothing, f fly nothing not even a twitch of a fin ...
So i had to go with the fly i had made a few night s before, my midge spinner... i had to go down to 1kg stroft with such a small fly to get it drift right...
surely enough first cast it landed 5ft above the fish and tilted its fin and sipped it straight down as calm as ever, my heart was in my mouth at this point and i waited for it too dropp then set the hook home..... i was in !!! a huge bolt for the root and i hammered my rod into it and ........PING....
Well i should of known really but i did what i wanted...fooled it for a dead midge....winner...
I was a bit gutted  i had left the hook in but knew i would be back again in a few days to land the fish...

Two days later i was back and Wess had been watching the fish, as normal it was sipping away and looked in no mither... this time i went for strong twang again, i tried to tease him up again with bigger flys but Wess kept shouting down to me....'not even looked at it bro'
I was about to try the GP midge spinner again as last resort and choose a  big Griffith knat, one of the most luckest things happened to me in any fishing i have ever done...Wess shouted ' no mate not took it'..... I could not see the fly and was about to retrive, my fly had sunk... my line tightened up and i was in!!! it had taken a sunken Griffith Knat lol
Well i had 1.8kg line and belted the rod right over, i could hear wess shouting 'keep it from the fucking roots'!! it was slashing all over the rear of the root and i hammered even more into it.. i managed to turn the fish and something changed...the fish was playing different to normal.. the hook had released itself from the mouth and stuck in the fishes back...
I played it into the net with a big sigh and wess laughed his head off of how it took the fly...
I then unhooked the fly from its back and found another hook stuck in the same position....i looked again and it was my midge spinner from two nights ago when it broke me!!!
The hook had caught hold of the spinner hook!!! now is that luck or just fate... bet i could not do that again...

Well we weighed the fish and looked at her in full light out the water...i had watched this feed for a month and spent hours looking at it in the water... i felt mad that i was now holding her... we took a few shots and watched her glide off fit and well... winner....
The pattern i have developed is very simple, nothing like i have seen but has all the triggers of a dead drifting midge, i shall put the step by step on my next blog post...

Today Wess gave me a call to say it was back out in the pool but not feeding so was really happy to see she ok, this fish has taught me so much and it wont have a fly cast at it again until next year...

Nice one

Pure Tean wild ferox trout on the dry mmmmm


  1. ayup glen
    what a corker of of a fish from a small stream , nice fishing mate well done .

  2. You want get some fuckin work done youth. You dead drifting ball bag!!!!

  3. Top blog Glen, cracking wildie.
    Fish everywhere seem to be on tiny flies at the moment.
    As you know, I'm after another one of those Tean lunkers on a different stretch.

  4. There is bigger fish in there but they rarely rise, think they are eating ducks and fish!!
    Fishing before work anytime

    Yes that one you caught last year was a absolute smacking fish from the Tean.. A place that could do a 4lber no problem...

    Eden we come !!!

  5. Top post youth......just want to point out that the anonymous comment suggesting that you might want to consider doing a little more work than angling wasn't dead drifting ball bag. Lets see if we can get you a fish that size out of Loch Finlaggan in a couple of weeks time. UC.

  6. A really good fishing story but your spelling is terrible. Start off with "flies" as the plural of fly. Then you need "an" before a word beginning with a vowel.