17 September 2011

Extended body CDC upright adult

I've been playing around with this pattern for a while now. It presents very gently on the water,is extremely buoyant without the need for floatant treatments and seems to be very effective. Even though the body is of CDC it is remarkably robust: I fished this LDO/BWO version (#14) on a small Welsh stream last Spring and it was still in tact after a dozen sharp-toothed wild brownies.

so how do I tie it?

I like to use light wire emerger hooks, maximum gape, minimum shank.

First you select a large CDC feather, appropriately coloured for the abdomen. Hold the feather by the tip and stroke the fibres toward the butt. The fibres at the tip become the tail fibres. Tie the feather in such that you have the right abdomen length to match the natural. Trim the centre of the tip, leaving 1-3 tail fibres on either side.

Tie in a length of Tiemco Aero wing or other buoyant wining material, angled three quarters backward.

Using a split thread technique create a dubbing loop of long CDC fibres to match the legs and wing colours of the natural. I have used one natural and one olive feather here.

Trim the wing to about abdomen length. Trim the underside and neaten, just a little, it works better when a little untidy.

I tie them to imitate a range of uprights from the big E. Danica in #10's through to little #16's. I've not tried smaller, yet.

Have fun and let me know how you go.

edit: I couldn't resist trying this pattern on a smaller hook, so here's an LDO/BWO on a #18 Varivas 2200...

15 September 2011

Thoughts on my Hardy Zenith 9' 4wt

I've always had good use of a quick actioned 9' 4wt rod: initially for larger streams and rivers and occasionally for stillwaters. I was really excited about getting my hands on a 4wt Zenith after casting 10 and 12 wt prototypes back in February with Steve Peterson, marketing manager at Hardy. I cast the 12 wt for 30mins, backing out the tip on every cast and it felt like a 10wt!! the 10 felt lighter and more effective than my 8wt Loomis GLX which has been my favourite saltwater stick for over 10 years... not an easy rod to beat.

I've had my 4wt Zenith for most of the summer but hardly fished it because I've been "in the shrubbery" with my 3 and 2 wts in the little streams around Kent. So with a full 6 days of fishing on the huge San River in Poland last week I got an opportunity to really play with this new rod.

so how was it?

I loved it! yes i know everyone is saying that about the Sintrix range... but I put the media hype and other (very positive) opinions aside and just focussed on fishing with the thing.

It is very light and very responsive. all without being too stiff. it loaded long and short casts equally well and with flawless leader turnover, which is impressive considering on most days I was fishing 18 - 24 foot leaders, sometimes in duo manner, normally to 6 or 7X.

I caught some good grayling and browns and always felt the rod had the sensitivity to allow me to "give the fish some Welly" without compromising the tippett.

I would very much like to see a 10 or even 11ft version for a 3wt line. this would make me very happy indeed!

Well done to Howard Croston and the whole Hardy team, an exceptional bit of tackle!

14 September 2011

Polish Grayling!

I was on the River San in Poland last week with a great bunch of guys. Thanks Jeremy and Wojtek!

biggest grayling and most challenging river fishing I have ever done, I will definitely be back.

see the album on the right of this page for more photos.

looking forward to autumn!