The Orvis Fly Fishing Report: Paul Procter reports on current fly fishing conditions in UK and abroad.

No. 54 Orvis Blog

September 2014
Written by: Paul Procter

image of Icelandic midge feeder

A tad over 24", this Icelandic midge feeder topped 7 lb.—a true Viking fish in anyone’s eyes.

Iceland Boasts Impressive Statistics:
Given it's in the grip of winter for much of the year, Iceland's trout season spans all of three months. And whilst the trout population eat outside of this period, they do cram in much of their feeding during June, July, and August.  What remains incredible, though, is the spanking condition of these trout, especially when you consider their staple diet consists of midges.  This year in particular has thrown up some amazing specimens, with trout as short as 18" weighing over 3 lb. that resemble footballs!  At the other end of the scale, we recorded a 7-lb., 2-oz. fish, which measured all of 24.25". Who says trout don't grow big when feeding on tiny flies?

Black Gnat

Black gnats might be small, but they often appear in the thousands, and this September should be no different.

Terrestrial Time:
September 2013 witnessed some of the best terrestrial falls on our streams up and down the country.  Black gnats and the closely related fever fly were responsible for much of the action, though a bumper crop of crane flies (daddy long legs) helped, too. By all accounts, this season appears to be shaping up to be even better than the last.  Early reports speak of countless terrestrials (namely gnats) throughout the Midlands, Yorkshire, North West, and Southern Scotland. There's no excuse, then, for not getting out there to enjoy prime dry-fly fishing before the season ends.

Dropped Arse Gnat
Dropped Arse Gnat

Partridge K4AS size 14-18

Black 14/0 Sheer

Dyed black pheasant tail, goose or swan herl

No-fray winging material, light dun
Trailing Legs
Pearl crystal flash
Natural CdC fibres
Thorax Cover

Black ethafoam

Fly of the Month – Dropped Arse Gnat:
As we're anticipating prolific falls of black gnats throughout September, it seemed fitting to detail an appropriate imitation here.  The aptly named Dropped Arse Gnat sits with its best part through the surface film as a partially drowned natural. Obviously, then, some form of curved hook offers an advantage, as, not only does this mimic the posture of a natural, it digs in to anchor a fly, thus minimizing drag.  A tight-knit body of dyed herl helps breach any stubborn surface film, making sure the fly sits correctly.  Varnish beneath these turns of herl helps to achieve a bombproof dressing.  Buoyancy comes from the No-Fray winging material, CdC fibres, and the foam thorax cover.

Black Gnat

As seen here, many terrestrials sit with their abdomen hanging subsurface, which the Dropped Arse Gnat copies to the letter.

Ladies on the Road:
In association with Orvis UK, led by Claire Zambuni, well-known American lady fly fishers have been travelling the length and breadth of our country to promote fly fishing for the fairer sex.  Their schedule has included an appearance at the CLA and several Orvis retail stores.  On 12 September, they will be hosting a day in London’s Leicester Square, which promises to be a huge success.  Judging by recent comments on social media sites, so far their trip has exceeded all expectations.  With several schools and fly-fishing workshops organised each season specifically for ladies, Orvis UK is one of the few companies committed to catering for female anglers.  Get updates and venues on Twitter at @OrvisUK and @OrvisLondon or Facebook at Orvis UK.

Black Gnat

The whopping 16.5-lb. Itchen sea trout, which got many piscatorial tongues wagging in the south.

Bumper Sea Trout Season:
Reports of some exceptional sea trout are flooding in from our intrepid Orvis guide Mike Bilson.  Late July and August have produced some cracking sea trout from many rivers, especially the chalkstreams of Hampshire.  Jon Penny was fishing with his friend Richard in the customary night session when Richard landed a superb 16.5-lb. sea trout, which caused a stir in the local news!  Robin Gould has scored well, too, both in Dorset and west Wales.  Using a sparse Wickham’s Fancy, he’s landed some notable fish of up to 6 lb. during the early evening.  However, after dark, a wee stoat’s tail has been doing some serious damage.  Countless other reports point to it being a bumper year, so we urge you to wet a line as the season soon draws to a close!  

2014 Schools and Courses:
Orvis have a great range of schools and courses lined up for 2015, which cover all aspects of fly fishing. So whether you’re a beginner or a more seasoned rod, chances are there’ll be something for you. As well as appearing in their catalogue, dates and venues can be found soon on the website here.

Orvis Courses
For further information and bookings contact Sporting Adventures at Orvis.

Tel: 01264-349515

Earlier Reports