Sunday, 30 June 2013

Off the mark…phew


With our trucks loaded to the hilt with all kinds of fishing paraphernalia (right), we headed for the river quick sharp.  A feature of Iceland is often a strong northerly breeze.  However, we were blessed with a near calm conditions for our first morning.  The problem now was deciding on where to fish.  For once we’d made the right call… 





…Raven and Gummi deliberating over which might be their best chance of a rising fish…





Phew…it’s always nice to get one under your belt and with the pressure off hopefully more fish would follow!


Friday, 28 June 2013

Midge Mecca:


It was nearly midnight when we got our first glimpse of the Laxa (right).  The good news was a few warmer days had encouraged midges to hatch. In fact, with many of them delaying their emergence, like a London bus, it seemed they’d all decided to come at once…our arrival at the lodge was greeted by clouds of tiny midge that seemed to get everywhere!




…The number plate of our truck became smudged with midges as we drove up the Laxa valley…








Such were their numbers, it was hard to escape the midge hordes that made it indoors too.  Thank God these little blighters were the none biting variety…

Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Good to be heading back:


For a couple of weeks now I’ve been tying flies for a trip to Iceland.  At last the day dawned of our flight and following a dreary train journey to Manchester airport, it was nice to be hopping onto a connecting flight bound for Akureyri.  This remote region in Northern Iceland lives up to its name of “Ice and Fire” for we flew over several dormant volcanoes capped with layers of snow.  Just like the UK, Iceland is about 3 weeks behind with plenty of snow still blanketing mountain peaks (above, a view during our descent to Akureyri).  With night time temperatures still dipping away, hopefully the midges are still prepared to endure the cold…


~Safely on the ground at Akureyri airport before heading to the mighty Laxa~


Thursday, 13 June 2013

Busy Week:


What with all the fly life kicking about, our big trout have gone into overdrive by looking up for longer periods.  In fact there’s been days when several notable specimens have been hard on the go, giving us ample opportunities to tangle with these usually elusive beasts.  With that, my last half dozen outings produced some glass case specimens, all taken on dry flies during decent hatches or falls of terrestrials…namely, black gnats.




…This bruiser was busy scoffing black gnats late one afternoon.  He snaffled a size 16 NDT without a glance before towing my around the pool…




~Another terrestrial feeder tempted during the recent spell of balmy weather~


Thursday, 6 June 2013

Bits n Bobs…


Recently, more settled weather has encouraged many of our flies and bugs to stretch their wings.  Admittedly, nature is a week or two behind, but the last 10 days or so have seen a diverse number of fly flitting about that in turn had trout looking up for longer periods.  The first of our fabled Mayfly have appeared (above) and close on their heels were decent falls of black gnat too.  More obscure findings include the Gravel Bed Fly, a gangly-legged terrestrial that’s not too common.  However, trout love ‘em where they occur.  Then there’s Large Brook Duns (LBDs) that some claim fish rarely bother with…my local trout population have different thoughts!  Yes the bulk of LBD nymphs might well haul out of water to emerge, yet breezy conditions soon see them crashing back to the surface.




…Large Brook Duns, represent a decent meal and are popular with trout in my neck of the woods…









…The humble Black Gnat has appeared in hordes to send our trout daft…











~Gravel Bed Flies might not be that common, but trout relish them where they occur~

Saturday, 1 June 2013

More than just a Spider hook…


The Partridge Spider Hook (L3A/S) might well have been designed with North Country patterns in mind, however, it’s a lot more than just a Spider hook. The “Captain Hamilton” bend and wide gape make it an ideal choice for a range of emerger and terrestrial dressings too.  Whether using deer hair (al a Bob Wyatt’s DHE) or CdC, it’s my first choice when tying shuttlecock style emergers so popular with river angler’s today.  Though for black gnats, hawthorn flies or beetle imitations you couldn’t ask for a more balanced hook.  My favourite sizes are 12 down to 16.

Partridge Spider Hooks @






A clutch of flies that have served me well recently…dressings below







Hook: Partridge Spider #14

Thread: Danville’s Primrose

Butt: Pearly tinsel

Body: Olive dubbing

Wing: Elk/Deer hair

Thorax: Hare’s Fur





Hook: Partridge Spider #16

Thread: Danville’s Wine

Rib: Danville’s Wine

Body: Mole’s fur

Wing: Natural CdC

Thorax: Hare’s Ear






Hook: Partridge Spider #14

Thread: Sheer 14/0 Black

Body: Peacock Herl

Shellback: Black Ethafoam

Post: Fl Yellow TMC Aero

Thorax: Peacock Ice-Dub

Head: Ethafoam folded over