I offer Fly fishing tuition in the Derbyshire Dales, Peak District National Park & South Yorkshire during November usually for two distinctly different types of people.
Firstly for the smart Fly fishers who want to use the quieter time to prepare & practice their skills in readiness for next season. Those who want to be able to cast longer distances, achieve greater accuracy, present a fly more delicately. When I was preparing to take my Game Angling Instructors Certificate assessments I didn’t fish for 3 months. I used my Fly Rod every day during that period. I used it to practice on the lawn, in the park, on the river but only ever used a piece of wool instead of a Fly. The reason being – you cannot improve your casting technique & fish at the same time. You must do one or the other. Yes it is frustrating to see fish rising & not be able to offer them a fly, but if you want to be a skilled Fly fisher then it is a price you have to pay. Pay back comes afterwards when you find you can cover fish in places you thought impossible. You can make a Dry Fly land like thistledown in just the right spot. You can cast that little bit further to cover that rising fish & put a mend in the line even before it lands! You have to decide to what level you want to take it but a casting lesson & a few hours practice each week will make you enjoy your fishing more next season and it beats shopping!
The second group are the dedicated Fly fishers who want a date with “The Lady of the Stream” – the Grayling (Thymallus thymallus). The Grayling, like the Mona Lisa, is most certainly an enigmatic lady. She is a member of the Salmon family but breads at the same time as coarse fish, rather than game fish. She is a bottom feeder yet will happily rise to take a dry fly from the surface. She has a liking for Fancy Fly Patterns such as the Red Tag, Treacle Parkin or Sturdys Fancy. She used to be known as the “Umber” or “Shadow” due to here ability to disappear without a trace. She is fickle in that she will stubbornly refuse a fly one minute and the next she will continue to rise despite your splashy cast or having missed her take the first time. She will follow a wading angler up a gravel bed gently taking any invertebrates that the wading boots disturb. She has her own Fan Club, such is her beauty and appeal http://www.graylingsociety.net/ . She is at her best at this time of the year and yet few Fly fishers spare her the time of day after the end of the Trout Season. Yes you will need warm clothes & the fishing day will be short but to be out in the countryside with a warm drink on a cold morning & have the expectation of a meeting with the “Lady of the Stream” is for some “The Holy Grail – ing”.
Tight Lines! Peter
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