“Firstly, I believe in being in the “right place at the right time”, but also that sometimes thinking out the box, can give you the edge and presents the fly in a different manner than what the fish have seen regularly” says Iain Wilson of Borders Gunroom.
After my recent successful trip to the River Dee last month where I managed to hook and land 3 Springers and a good few Kelts, I have been asked a number of times what was I was doing different from everyone else.
Firstly, I believe in being in the “right place at the right time”, but also that sometimes thinking out the box, can give you the edge and presents the fly in a different manner than what the fish have seen regularly.
On the latter half of opening week, the Dee levels were falling after a spell of heavy rain, the river was carrying some colour, a sort of murky/peaty stain, and was around 38f. I was fishing at Invery and Tilqhuilie and the river levels were 2 ft 4″and 2 ft 2″ over the two days.
I fished both days with a Clear Intermediate (S2) AFS Shooting Head with a 10ft 3.9ips Sinking tip attached onto the end. I tied on 6 ft of 20lb flouro carbon leader and I opted for a 1″ Heavy Brass Garry Dog tube fly, as I was fishing a fairly steady flow that was dotted with large boulders, creating boily eddies etc.
Nothing different to most other people fishing that day, But I wasn’t casting 45 degrees and letting it swing round. I try to fish my fly as deeply and slowly as possible, but without dredging the river bed and loosing umpteen flies.
I start as normal by lengthening line and let it swing round, once I have got to the required distance, casting 90 degrees square across the pool, and as the line lands I put in a big upstream mend into the Shooting Head, and hold the rod high so as to keep running line out the water,and take two big steps down the pool. As the line sinks and drifts downstream, I now drop the rod point and mend running line upstream and lift rod so as to keep running line off the river surface as much as possible, only dropping rod point again once the line is fishing across the pool at the required depth and speed.
If the fly is catching the riverbed too much, I will take my two steps before i cast or change to a lighter fly. I do like the fly to bump the river bed occasionally, as I know that it is fishing at the correct depth, and is down amongst the fish.
By altering Sink Tips and Fly weight you can adjust the depths depending on the pools you are fishing. It is the quickest way to do it, rather than mucking about with different lines, or having another rod set up, as you spend more time changing line over or walking up and down river banks swapping rods than actually fishing.
Borders Gunroom Spring Sale Saturday & Sunday 9/10th April.