22 Apr 2014

Busy times and sponsorship.

It happened again.
Another month without a post passed.

Since last i wrote i've become sponsored as a rod tester for Kunnan.
I've been holding some fly tying demos and of course i've been fishing.

I've cleared grayling, trout and brookies of my list for the year and the post-spawn pikefishing will swing in to action any day now.

See you out there!

19 Mar 2014

Three flies for Trout and Grayling.

The Fish

Brook trout - Salmo Trutta Fario

Grayling - Thymalus Thymalus

Trout come in three varieties in Sweden.
First, head of the family is the seatrout, searun brown or archetype for the family. Salmo Trutta and the fishing for these are conducted either like that for Salmon in rivers or at the coast with onehanded rods. I won't cover these in this post.

Then there is the Salmo Trutta Lacustris or Brown Trout, the regular model so to speak.
Local morphs can be found and they often move between lakes and river systems.
A fish of 3-4 kilos is considered a trophy fish

The third one is Salmo Trutta Fario or Brook Trout. They are generally riverbound and tends to be the smallest morph.
A fish of about 40 cm is very nice.
They are not to be confused with what Americans call Brookies, those are Salvelinus Fontinalis, a relative of our own Arctic Char, Salvelinus Alpinus.

The Grayling is another salmonoid distinguished by it's grand dorsal fin.
They also have morphs all over the world but our tends to be silver with a red and purple dorsal.

While trout,and especially the lakerun variety, can become pescavore grayling and brook trout tend to eat insects their whole life.
They inhabit the same waters many times and can be caught on the same flies, hence the shared post.

The Gear

As i mostly fish small waters with fairly small fish i find it more fun and more usefull to use a 8' #4 rod with a floating line.
When the water is really high or if i'm fishing a lake i sometimes use a 9' #6 also with a floating line, in the case with the high and/or cold water i use a light skagit setup to deliver the flies deeper. None of these flies will be covered here though as most of this fishing is going on in the summer when the fish gladly rise to the surface to sip floating insects.
Thin leaders is a must here but i never really used anything thinner than 0.18mm.

The Flies

Choosing just three was incredibly hard as this is a couple of species that eat a variety of insects (and even small fish in the case of the trout) but i concluded this was my top pick.

Elk Hair Caddis

This one was an obvious.
Half of my box is composed of these buggers.
Tied to imitate any of the Caddis species i find that it works well generally from early season to late autumn,they seem to imitate a wide variety of insects.
This one is my own variety with a dubbed head or torso.
I always tie a different colour on the body and the head though sometimes the colours are reversed.
I fish them in streams free drift and in lakes i tend to give a bit of movement by raising my rodtip up high and wiggle it a bit and the fly looks like an insect struggling on the surface.

Materials used in this fly are:
Body -  Moose Ear, Dark gray
Wing - Deer hair, Rusty
Head - Moose Ear, Light Gray
Hook- Kamasan B420 Sedges #12

Purple Nymph
When you're not fishing a dry you better have something to get down a bit.
There is a great variety of nymphs and the imitations are as complex and diverse as the dry flies.
I find however that something that was NOT adapted to blend in to the rocks and debri of the underwater world is a lot easier to get the fishes attention with.
I tie these in a couple of different colours but purple is by far the best of this sort,especially for grayling.
I usually fish it dead drift upstream in rivers and creeks and jigging in lakes.

Materials used in this fly are:
Tail - Peacock neck feathers
Body -  Purple silk
Rib - Copper wire
Wing sack - Purple rabbit
Head - Tungsten bead
Hook- Kamasan B420 Sedges #12

Chernobyl Ant
This one is a bit modern and will probably raise an eyebrow on any Cane fisher or imitation purist.
It is made to look like an ant,grasshopper or beetle.
I started using it as a unsinkable fly for skating.
I cast cross stream or 45 degrees down, let the current pick up a big chunk of line to give this speed.
It imitates not the bug itself to me but the movement of a bug flying over the surface.
The strikes are usually violent and sudden, not the slow sip you get with an EHC.
It can be tied with endless combinations of coloured foam though i use cut up kneepad and find it to work perfectly.
The rubber legs should be short and respond to all the small changes in the current.
As i said, i mostly skate this fly and i never use it in a lake.
I once caught 11 trout and 8 grayling in one summer night on the very same fly.

Materials used in this fly are:
Body -  Black foam
Belly - Orange chenille
Legs - Barred Orange sili-legs
Hook- Kamasan B420 Sedges #12

That is all for this round!

18 Mar 2014

Three flies for Perch

To kick of "Three flies for Sweden" i'm gonna go ahead and talk about my favourite flies for Perch.

The Fish.

The European Perch, Perca Fluviatalis, is a smaller predatory fish.
A fish above 1 kg is considered very nice and the Swedish record is just above 3 kg.
The main bulk of the population is about 2-6 hg and these are the ones i mainly target when i fish for perch.
They can be found in both fresh and brackish water.
It's a great schooling fish, incredibly fun and for me they take me back to when i first started fishing, angling with a worm when i was little, back to the simple joy of cathing a lot of them.
When you find a school you usually hook multiple fish in very few casts.

I think this is one of the best species to start your fly fishing career with.
They can be found in almost any water, hungry and give a good fight and you oftentimes have lots of room for casting.
Watch out for the spikes on the dorsal fin and gill flaps though.

The Gear

Depending on where i fish for them or rather the expected size i go for a couple of different rods.
When fishing in small forest lakes or ponds where i can expect them to be smaller i usually use my #4 rod to get a bit more fight.
Fishing in a bigger lake i usually use a #6 rod to be able to cover more water.

The line is almost always a floating line, sometimes i use a sinking tip but as these fish can usually be found in the shallows or hunting the top water a floating line will do fine.

The Flies

The fly i use most often is a rabbit zonker fly.
Rabbit is a soft material that moves great in still or slow flowing water wich is where you'll find these redfinned buggers.
The wing is tied in just at the base to give greater movement and the beadchain eyes gives it a jigging action.
Some flash under the wing to catch the sunlight and get them going.
It imitates a small fish or a leech and can be tied in any colour, perch respond great to gaudy colours.
Tie it on any streamer hook you like.
Somewhere from 4-8 cm in length depending on the size of fish you are targeting.

Materials used in this fly are:
Body -  Black woolen yarn
Rib - Stainless wire
Wing - Dark purple rabbit zonker and pearl flash
Head - Fur from the same skin as the zonker.
Eyes - Beadchain.
Hook- Kamasan B180 Low water Salmon #6

Crazy Charlie

Crazy Charlie was first invented as a Bonefish fly to fish on the Carribean flats.
It is however a fantastic fly for perch when you find them really shallow.
The eyes are tied on the up side of the hook flipping it over.
I fish this fly on a long leader at depths of 0.5-1 metre and let it sink to the bottom, pull it home and let it stir up mud, let it sink again.
Tied on a maggot hook, the type you use for icefishing, the hook point faces downward and the fish are securely hooked in the upper lip.
This is a fairly weedless fly as well.

Materials used in this fly are:
Body and Wing - Pearl thread
Rib - Copper
Eyes - Beadchain.
Hook- Mustad Maggot hook #12

Perch Popper
Popping for perch is not something you get to do every day unfortunatly.
It's reserved for the heights of summer but when you get to throw poppers it's the most fun fishing you'll ever get.
The main goal here is to generate sound and movement and trigger fish that are hunting the top water to hammer it.
Tie it fairly big, you want to make it worth their while (but not to big unless you target the biggest fish. This one is about 6 cm)
The marabou and schlappen tail gives a lot of movement and volume while the rubber offer even more.
The head is made out of a kneepad that i use a 10mm leather gauge to punch out and then paint with waterproof marker.
There are lots of nice popper heads do buy out there but i use these, simple to make and really cheap.

Materials used in this fly are:
Tail - Green marabou, pearl flash
Collar - Black Schlappen
Head - Kneepad 10mm popper head.
Hook- Kamasan B180 Low water Salmon #6

That concludes the Three flies for Perch!

21 Feb 2014

Is the pike premiere getting closer?

Well of course it is.
But is it in the forseeable future?

I think so.
This weekend i'm heading south for a meeting and i'm hoping to be able to squeeze some pike fishing in to these days.
Not very likely but i just might.

In news from my own river the ice is starting to creak and crack and there's been some waterflow on it, weighting it down and hopefully soon enough it'll release its grip.
Next week promises up to +9 degrees,hopefully that'll be the end of winter.
If so it'll be an exceptionally early spring and a very long pike spring season!

I've been tying some more, ran out of Big Fly Fiber and i really want some more of it, it's a great material and the flies look awesome.

Big Pink:

6 Feb 2014

Pike flies with Niklaus Bauer.

Yesterday was a fun evening (though a bit short)
Pike flyfisher profile Niklaus Bauer visited our local flytying club and showed a couple of patterns.
Nothing out of the ordinary but some neat tricks for handling materials.

What i liked most was that he gave away his pike fly to a young guy aspiring to start with pike on the fly.

I got some inspiration,got to talk some matierials and have a look at all those fancy ones i want but can't afford.
Nice to see what's out there anyways.

23 Jan 2014

FLY TV - Fly fishing for big Perch

Here we go.
This is a nice one.
Simple, good explenations of the gear (again,really simple)
I've really been looking forward to this release as i often argue that perch is the very first fish you should start fishing for when you'r getting in to fly fishing. (No,any fishing really)

Easy to catch, fun to play and really hardy, easy to unhook.
Easy on the eye as well.

You can get them on baitfish patterns for bigger fish, nymphs and such for smaller.
One of my favourites is actually the Crazy Charlie pattern in different colours.

They use bigger rods, I think you'll do fine with your average #5 rod so if you get in to fly fishing, get one of those, go to a lake and practice your casting and when you got a bit of experince you could take that trout trip you always wanted.

Bring the kids!

6 Jan 2014

Crappy winter but some good fishing.

This winter is the worst.
It's a few degrees above zero, no snow to speak of and more rain than anything else.
The ice is thick out on the forest lakes though.

I've been out icefishing some more.
These are some pictures from todays outing.

Arctic Char and some proper coffee.
It was a good day.

Apart from that i've gotten a new line for my switch rod.
Rio Skagit Max Short 200grains.
Great fun, i'm looking forward to the spring!