Waters & words : a celebration of flyfishing

Topical subjects, ideas, and links

There is a bewildering barrage of information out there on fly-fishing, and it comes out almost daily. Appearing here, are a few items that are of relevance to us fly-fishers of Trout in South Africa. Let me pick them up from friends, twitter, and facebook, and share them with you here to save you the time.  I hope that this changing selection of items will prove useful and enjoyable.

  • Dry Dropper Rig

Check out this brilliant idea from the Driftless area:  really brilliant! Driftless angler

  • Fifty Tips

Fellow Blogger Domenick Swentosky from Spring Creek Pennsylvania is writing a series called “Fifty Tips”.  They are definitely worth a read.  Check them out here on : Troutbitten

  •  Parasol Posts

Check out how to tie these. They keep your emerger just where you want it …just under the film, and give you a sighter to see where the fly is at the same time.  Really worthwhile:  LINK

  • Roll casting

Many of us battle to turn over a roll cast well. It helps to watch some good footage of this cast to iron out any bad habits. Here are some good clips:





  • KZN River Trout characteristics

In this blog post I explored the colouration of Browns in 3 of my local streams. It turned into a bit of a project, and I continue to upload pictures of my own, as well as those from readers interested in the idea, who send me their photos. If you have pictures of Brown Trout from the Mooi, Bushmans , or Umgeni:  Please do mail them to me at truttablog@gmail.com

  • The “Halo Hackle” concept.

This seems to be largely a South African concept. One in which you tie your parachute dry fly with a normal hackle, but add a second, very large, very sparse hackle to float the fly on rough water. Here are a few links to introduce the concept:  The RAB tied halo hackle style     and the Halo Hackle Klinkhammer  see also the Fred Steynberg Halo Hackle emerger  and a post on this blog.

  • Tying in biots

Many of us are a bit mystified about this whole biot thing in fly-tying. Here is a great article taking the mystery out of it all, and a second one from Ralph D’Anrea.

This little video shows you how to tie in biots to get two entirely different effects, and this one demonstrates how to use them for nymph tails.

  • Parachute Hackles

A recent demo at the Natal Fly Dressers in Maritzburg had me doing a little research and more than a bit of memory trolling about developments in the arena of Parachute hackles. It seems the concept was patented as early as 1931! William Bush and Helen Todd are amongst those credited with the invention.  For the uninitiated, here is a Basic Parachute tie; and here is a more thorough expose.  A parachute emerger or Klinkhammer is probably the best known application of the method in our times. Probably the most clever tip on tying these hackles is the “twist”. And here is a clip on tying them REALLY TINY.  And for some different ideas, here is a special method by Geir Kjensmo  ;

Then there is the Para-Wulff, and Tim Rolston has some great content, including his free e-book on the subject. Agostino Roncallo also has a great idea.

  • Drifting the Madison 

These two videos ( & 2)  really captured the float fishing experience on these hallowed waters. Anyone wanting to sponsor the trip?

  • Droppers & tails 

Multi-fly rigs including weights, strike indicators and fly combinations. It is a huge subject, but here are some ideas from Currentseams . You can also get great ideas from the google images page on the subject , although you have to sift through the ones that don’t relate to fly-fishing. There is also quite a lot of chatter on the forums about this. A dropper on a slider is another option. Sometimes the dropper concept is used purely for attaching your weight, rather than a second fly. One thing for sure, is that knowing your knots helps with new ideas. Rene Vaz gives a New Zealanders perspective on the subject.

  • Tailing loops.

This casting fault is so common. Here Marc Fauvet explores the issue thoroughly

  • Fly Tying tips

Here are some really well thought out tips for fly-tyers.

  • Ever wondered what the hype about a Petijean tool was?

Watch this excellent 8 minutes of demo of the tool and the new stacker to see what it is all about, even if you use the skills demonstrated to apply with a dog clip and some foam with a slit in it, it is worth watching the reel thing in use

  • The Great battle against the Anti-Trout lobby in South Africa:

There is some conveniently abbreviated content about the issue on the net,  Here Wolf Avni speaks about Trout as his livelihood.  Other video’s on youtube.

  •  What is this Czech nymphing talk all about?

It’s high sticking, as we used to know it. New name, and a few subtle refinements, mostly to do with using indicator material in the tippet instead of a floating indicator. Here is a good explanation of the whole set up: Gink & Gasoline

  • Very pretty:

Very pretty countryside , and a very pretty girl  in blog posts and video from a A Norwegian blogger 

  • Exploring streams

Check out this delightful post, which captures for me what it means to cruise around checking out the smallest of streams

  • Some short notes on nymphing with Strike indicators

Gink and Gasoline is a very active blog:  here is a short pleasant read on the use of indicators

  • Selectivity

Tim Rolston has posted an essay on Trout and selectivity, that is out of the top drawer. Having just read an internationally acclaimed book which addresses the same topic, I believe that Tim has done more to unpack the subject in this one article, that that entire book!

  • Vrederus

Tom Sutcliffe is a master with a camera and a fly-rod. In this recent essay (one of many), he explores Trout water in the remote North Eastern Cape at a place called “Vrederus“. It is pure eye candy!

  • Lesotho

Fred Davis, writes of fly-fishing for Trout in Lesotho. Lesotho is a tiny mountainous country, landlocked and entirely surrounded by South Africa. It is a wild and rugged place, of clean water and innocent fish. Fred’s essays are a delight!

  • CDC

Hans Weilenmann wrote this superb article some time back, on the use of CDC in fly tying. While by now, most of us have seen plenty of CDC in flies, this article gives you a full run-down on all the things that it seems too silly to be asking at the tackle store.

  • Quills

We see a lot of flies tied with “polish Quills” nowadays. This excellent little video shows you how to get those quills prepared at home.

4 responses

  1. Graeme

    Great summary content Andrew! A one stop shop… Thanks for doing all the work of sifting through the web.

    November 13, 2014 at 9:24 pm

    • Thanks. It is hardly a chore Graeme,but always glad to hear it is of some use.

      November 14, 2014 at 9:19 am

  2. Nice Andrew. Some interesting tips and links here. Also enjoyed your fly tying demo at NFDS last night – thank you.

    November 11, 2014 at 10:59 am

    • Thanks Peter

      November 11, 2014 at 1:03 pm

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