In 2009 I was lucky enough to visit New Zealand for the first time, and decided to buy a second hand Cortland Silverstream #6 fly rod and reel combo (after a friend showed me a fly fishing magazine, instantly loved it) for the amazingly cheap price of 70 NZD (£36). Unfortunately I had no money for a guide so resorted to teaching myself, with the results being I saw one brown trout in about 4-5 day trips....
my return to the UK I was determined to be more successful. I googled
fly fishing in the area of Somerset where I then lived, and the results
gave me Chew and Blagdon lakes, which are pretty famous I had heard.
my unbelievable lack of knowledge of insects, fly patterns, casting and
trout, I decided to get to Chew for the opening day. I set up on the
bank nearest the tackle shop, and with the wind blasting in my face I
began to cast about 5-10ft into the lake. A pleasant gentleman next to
me informed me that he had been in the same spot on the opening day the
previous year, and was also a complete beginner, and had some success
with short casts. I had no such luck...I have no idea what fly pattern I
was using then, probably an orange buzzer, but it made no odds. After
getting wind blasted for 4 hours I decided to try my luck elsewhere, and
joined around 10 blokes fishing in a secluded area of the lake. I tried
to catch a glimpse of what everyone was using, but they were far too
busy landing decent rainbows for me to sneak a peek, so I just tied on
something else orange and completely wrong for the situation. I don't
need to mention that I blanked that day, but it did not dissuade me one
The rest of the year followed a similar pattern, and the lack
of money to hire a guide didn't help. So it turned out to be a season
long blank, which surprising didn't put me off.
I moved to Leeds
in January 2011 and again googled fly fishing, Yorkshire. I had no idea
about the rich fly fishing heritage in this area of the world, but due
to a new job I now had the funds to hire a guide for the day. So in
early April I embarked, unbelievably excited, out towards the dales to
meet Steve Rhodes of Go Fly Fishing UK. I learnt more about fly fishing
in that day than I ever thought possible, which improved my knowledge no
end, but also highlighted the vast wealth of information available.
Unfortunately I again blanked that day, but encouraging words from Steve
were great. I finally landed a wild brown trout about 1 month later on
an expedition to Bolton Abbey, and since then I have been border line
obsessed. The rest of the season proved more fruitful, landing a few
more wild brown trouts, and joining a decent club for a decent price.
that brings us to date and I hope (in a round about sort of way)
explains why I have started this blog. With another guided day booked
with Steve this year, bring on the 30th of March.