Latest News and Top Tips

Hints & Tips - September

Date Added: 20/08/2018

Fly Fishing Tuition in the Peak District & South Yorkshire has seen another very busy season for me and in particular with people booking River Days. From the beginning of April I have been constantly busy with clients wanting both Instruction & Guided Days. People completely new to the sport booking Introduction Days and many existing clients coming back to me for further Instruction or Guided Days. It has been a very enjoyable season!

It’s hard to believe that September is upon us already and hopefully the weather will get back to our more normal pleasantly warm days with some rain to rejuvenate our rivers & streams. The Brown Trout Season will soon be at an end for another year. No time to be heavy hearted though as September can be a cracking month. Brown Trout should be feeding well in order to put on some weight before their breeding season and Grayling & Still Water Rainbows will be in peak condition. All we need is some favourable weather and the opportunity to get on the water, be it still water or river.

Still Water Fly fishing can be very good at this time of year and you should make sure you have patterns with orange in them, to simulate water snails. Fry Patterns should prove useful as the bigger fish target the fry. Terrestrials such as Daddy Long Legs are likely to be on the menu, especially on breezy days.

River Fly fishing will require Sedge Patterns, Dry, Emerger, Pupa & Larvae, together with Daddy Long Legs & Beetle Patterns. Take along the usual Nymphs and if you want some seriously delicate fishing a few North Country Spider Patterns may just pay dividends. Keep an eye on any leaves floating by and if the fish appear to be rising to them then get out the Greenfly Patterns & Griffiths Gnat. Cast them near to the leaves and see if you get a reaction from the fish. Make sure the flies you are using are very small!

Remember you need the right pattern and you need to then offer it in such a way that the fish think it is the real thing. Fly fishing is the art of deception and the fish will be the ones who have the final say on just how good we are.

Tight lines!
Peter Lax GAIC/L2CCA
Professional Fly fishing Instructor, Licensed Coach & Experienced Guide.

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Hints & Tips - August

Date Added: 24/07/2018

Learning to Fly fish in the Peak District, Derbyshire & South Yorkshire in August can involve a lot of patience & cunning.
It isn’t just about learning to cast or having a vast choice of flies. It’s about being able to put the right imitation fly in the right place doing the right thing at the right time.
If the hot and bright weather continues then look for the fish in shady places. They don’t have eyelids so being out of bright sunlight is more comfortable for them.
If it stays very hot then they will seek out the well oxygenated places. Perhaps where a river or stream enters a lake, or near the aerators in still waters, or at the head of pools in flowing water. All good places to try during hot and dry periods.
Fly choice can be made easier by asking the owner of the fishery or the water bailiff what they would recommend. Look around and see what is about both in the water & in the air. Check the spider’s webs as they can be very revealing.
There will be times when you really struggle to find what they want. I don’t think the fish always know what they want at this time of year, so don’t be afraid to change fly pattern often.
Daddy Long Legs will probably feature along with other terrestrials. Sedges will be about especially in the evenings and large numbers of fry, so fry patterns can be useful on still waters. Quite often the fish will be smutting and so very small flies may be required to prompt them to take your offering.
If the fish appear to be taking at the surface but aren’t interested in your dry fly then try a nymph or spider pattern fished just subsurface – this requires a lot of skill and quick reactions but it is a fantastic and delicate way to fish!
August can and often is a tricky month but make the most of it as the rewards are magical. A good Fly fisher will make the most of what takes he or she gets and these can be few and far between or all in a very brief period of time.
Remember Fly fishing isn’t about catching loads of fish; if it was then we would just use a worm and have done with it!

As always Tight lines! Peter

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Hints & Tips - July

Date Added: 16/06/2018

Fly fishing in the Peak District, Derbyshire & South Yorkshire has been very good during June, Rivers & Still Waters have fished well despite the very low water levels and the May fly have treated us to some really exceptional sport.

The odd May fly is still emerging but the fish aren’t paying much attention. It is normal to get a bit of a lull after the Mayfly period. The fish are usually full to bursting and starting to get a little more choosey about what they will eat. But they will eat if we offer them the right pattern doing the right thing. Small offerings can often be the answer. Check out the spiders webs to see what fly are about!

Sedge Flies will be about in great numbers during the day & in the evenings. So make sure you have some sedge patterns and be prepared to offer them in all sizes. It is the one time that the Dry Fly Fisherman will purposely let his Dry Fly “Drag” to simulate the “Skittering” of the natural Sedges over the water. The takes can be savage!

For the river angler the Grayling is now back in season and it would seem rude not to offer “The Lady of the Steam” something to take her fancy. Perhaps a Sturdy’s Fancy or a Treacle Parkin might do the trick!

The Terrestrial Flies are about in numbers now and we should be looking out for them particularly on breezy days. Flying Ant, Daddy Long Legs, & Beatle Patterns are a must. Don’t forget Griffiths gnat & Double Badger which can be well worth trying when the fish are taking small stuff at the surface. Fish them on the downwind end of still waters and around tree lined banks on rivers.

Always keep a close eye on what appear to be surface rises as they aren’t always what they seem. Quite often the fish will cause a disturbance at the surface when they are taking sub surface items of food. Look at what’s happening and fish accordingly. A spider pattern fished just under the surface perhaps?

When giving Fly fishing Lessons I always try to get my clients to look at what is happening around them. What are the Flies doing? What are the Fish doing as a result of it? And what should We be doing to take advantage of it?

As always I wish you – Tight Lines! Peter

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Hints & Tips - June

Date Added: 24/05/2018

Fly fishing in Derbyshire, the Peak District, South Yorkshire or anywhere for that matter is about deceiving fish with an artificial fly.
There is much confusion about what is meant by “Fly”. Just look in a Fly fishing Shop and you will be amazed at what passes as a so called fly.

River & Lake Flies are creatures that live for almost all of their lives underwater as Nymphs or Larvae. When we use imitations of these we are “Wet Fly or Nymph” fishing.
To complete their life cycle they must change to Air Breathing Flying Insects to find a mate. It is one of nature’s true wonders. When we imitate these we are “Dry Fly” fishing.
We can even imitate the creature as it is in the process of changing & this is called “Emerger Fishing”. This can be a very successful approach but to be effective it has to be done when the natural creatures are “emerging”.

That is the trick to it all really. The fish react to what the Fly are doing and as Fly fishers we should be doing the same thing. That is, reacting to what the Fly are doing & offering the fish the correct imitation doing the correct thing.

I always teach people to understand these basic rules as it is fundamental to what Fly fishing is all about. You don’t have to know the name of every fly on the water – the fish don’t. You do, however, have to know or be able to make a good assumption of what the Fly are doing. This will determine what the Fish are doing & consequently what You need to do about it!

It can take a lifetime to become a truly skilled Fly fisher. That’s part of the charm of it as there is something about a pass-time that continually tests you and at which you are always learning. It can be frustrating though when you first start out and that is where time spent with an Instructor or Coach can get you off to a good start and begin to help you make sense of what for many is a complete conundrum . Do beware though of those who tell you they know everything there is to know about Fly fishing. I know quite a few excellent Fly fishers and the one thing they all have in common is that they openly admit that they learn something every time they go to the water. That is why they are so skilled!

The Derbyshire Peak District has some stunning Fly fishing venues, both River & Stillwater, so why not have a day Fly fishing and really get to know the Rivers that have made places like Ashford, Bakewell, Chatsworth & Haddon Hall such idyllic locations.

Tight Lines!
Peter Lax GAIC/L2CCA
Professional Fly fishing Instructor, Licensed Coach & Experienced Guide

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Fly fishing Tuition - Safety

Date Added: 31/12/2012

Fly fishing Tuition in the Peak District, Derbyshire Dales & South Yorkshire takes you to some beautiful locations on both river & still water. I teach Casting, Fly fishing Techniques, Basic Entomology, Fly Choice, River Craft, Tackle & Set Up, but regardless of where I teach or what is to be included SAFETY is always one of the first things I cover.
Be it Still Water or River it can be a potentially dangerous environment and we should always treat it with the greatest respect. It always surprises me how many people who have Fly fished for years pay scant regard to the safety of themselves or others.
At the start of a new year let's just have a look at some of the basics that can make our fishing a little safer next season without turning it into a health & safety nightmare.
A pair of Polaroid Glasses gives us a fishing advantage & protects us from a hook in the eye!
A Brimmed Hat or Peak Cap shades our eyes from the sun & deflects a hook that would otherwise hit us in the face!
A Wading Staff allows us to test the water as it were & provides a reassuring third leg when moving position whilst wading.
A Life Jacket should always be worn when fishing from a boat.
When we are wading or fishing from a dam wall, fishing platform, or near a steep drop off always consider the situation. Should we have a Wading Staff, Life Jacket, Throw Line or is there a Life Belt nearby? I realise these things can be a bit cumbersome but surely that isn't nearly as inconvenient as ending up drowned! You can even get Fly Vests that incorporate a buoyancy aid these days. Some models also self inflate on immersion into the water and will self right an unconscious wearer.
A bottle of Antimicrobial Gel to clean hands before eating is a good idea; you only have to look at what you clean off your Fly Line to appreciate what goes floating by. On a similar note covering any open wounds is a wise precaution. Weil`s Disease may not be common but it can be fatal!
I could go on about Sun Cream, Appropriate Clothing, Food and a Drink etc. but I would urge you all to think about safety & try to make next season an enjoyable & safe one!
Happy New Year & Tight Lines!

Peter Lax (Professional Fly fishing Instructor & Licensed Game Angling Coach)

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Hints, Tips & Fly-fishing Lore

Date Added: 21/04/2012

I've added this section to the website as I thought it might help make the site more interesting to would be fly-fishers.

I'll be adding useful hints and tips on a regular basis so keep checking back.

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