Top tips for tying a slim fly

There are certainly many advantages to having slim flies, mainly to do with proportions and sink rate. Slim flies are more realistic in size to the natural especially when you add a bead it easy to add to much bulk. Slim flies also do not create as much drag so will sink quicker.

Here are some top tips to get your flies on a diet.

  1. Use thinner thread -You will need to use a good quality bobbin but using size 8/0 instantly makes it easier to slim your flies down. Now you can get down to 16/0
  2. Use finer materials e.g. dubbing, wire, tail – Softer materials such as opossum are certainly easier to use for slimming down as you can dub it on tighter to you thread. You can also buy materials specifically for slimming down under the name superfine dubbing.
  3. Use thread as a body – This is one of my favourite methods for getting a slim fly as thread doesn’t trap air bubbles or need to be wet to increase the sink rate.  On dry flies it doesn’t get waterlogged and heavy.
  4. Undersize your bead – By doing this you make the fly slimmer as you don’t need to build the thorax as big to meet the bead.
  5. Use less wraps – I use very little wraps to cover my materials as often the overlap when adding an additional material is enough to bind it all down and if you’re a bit worried about it holding together just add a small amount of glue.
  6. Use less materials e.g. dub on thinner – Here is a big one for me as one thing that I notice with a lot of tiers is how much dubbing they try and add to their thread at any one time. Take your dubbing and then half the amount you have then spread as far as you can. It’s almost impossible to have to little as there is always enough to cover the thread. This gives the added advantage of being able to taper your fly as you can layer the wraps.
  7. Cover your fingers in wax – A small amount on your fingers will help to grip the dubbing tighter making a thinner rope.
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Get Connected on suspention rig

Many of us after a fish less day and seeing others catch their limit will wonder “so what was I doing wrong”.  I was told an interesting thing once that even the top competition fishermen miss half their strikes. If that is how many they miss, what are we missing?

How do we up the percentage, well one of the most crucial elements is keeping connection with your flies. So here are some top tips to get your success rate up.

  1. Make sure your line rolls out straight including your leader. If it lands in a heap you instantly have no connection until it has time to straiten out.
  2. Keep a short line. Keep line as short as possible to shorten the strike time and keep extra line off the water decreasing drag.
  3. Keep your rod tip high as this will keep line off the water and prevent drag while also shortening your strike time.
  4. Stand downstream. If you have to have lots of line on the water, stand as far downstream as you can and strip hard to keep connection as this will keep the line straight and avoid having to keep slack line on the water to avoid drag. When using this method strike sideways downstream as this gives the contact instantly rather than dragging line off the water.
  5. Keep your heaviest fly on the bottom and if you must use truck and trailer keep your tag as short as possible.
  6. Keep tags short. This will keep tangles low and decrease the strike time.
  7. Keep the distance from your indicator to fly as short as possible while still keeping enough to reach the bottom. You can always lengthen the length if needed but keeping it shorter will shorten the time it takes to show a take especially if fishing shallower water. I normally keep my indicator at ¾ of a rod length to my flies and lengthen it as needed by adjusting my indicator.
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Modern Nymphing Review

Well what can I say. I was pleasantly surprised by this video. The video is high definition of great quality and it is well laid out with very little repetition.

The video is aimed at being an introduction but covers all the main advantages and points so clearly it almost looks too easy.

I have been competition flyfishing for while but even i managed to gain a small bit of information and cement some of my knowledge. Also as they are using some of the techniques I was able to pick up other things they were doing that were not necessarily explained.

What I really liked was seeing them use one setup for all the water types without much readjustment of the setup e.g change French, Czech etc.

It also clearly shows how they cover the water as much as possible.

I purchased the digital copy of this DVD from Vimeo as it was more affordable but also means I can download it or watch it on any device in the house casting it to the TV using Chrome cast.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

5 Tips to tying a good Royal Wulff

To me this is a relatively simple fly to tie but it is not so easy for the beginner who is still trying to work out the best way to do things. So here are some tips to make a good wulff and hopefully you will learn something you can apply to other flies as well.

  1. Use moose hair instead of deer for the tail as this doesn’t flair like deer hair does which will make it much easier to get a nice flat tail.
  2. Use half the amount you think you need for the wing. I tend to use synthetic as this is easier to tie and clip to the right length after the fly is finished.
  3. Tie the wing in a figure 8 across the hook then wind round the base of the fibres before winding another figure 8 then wind around each post to keep the shape.
  4. Use 2 hackles instead of one with the length of barbs slightly longer than gape and wind on moving the hackle back and forth so that none of the hackles are crushed.
  5. Wind your working thread over the peacock herl so that it doesn’t get ripped apart by the first fly.

Enjoy your tying session

Posted in Flytying | Leave a comment


Well its been a long time in between fishing trips and as it was my birthday I thought I would get away from it all and go fishing. since I am already awake with the kids at 6am I left as soon as I was up or near enough.

After a few missed turns and a tiki tour through Hamilton (it has been too long) i arrived at one of my favourite stretches of water only to find that it was a lot more overgrown than last time and the electric fence was on so a lot of scrambling under fences and getting scratched by grass and blackberry. However it would be all worth it if i was slaying the fish but after the first hour i had only seen the one back at the bridge i left. the first fish i found i spooked but it was big probably close to 4lb. i tried a few flies but i think it was on high alert so i moved on and saw nothing all the way back to where i started where i tried the pool there and missed a good fish only to have it take again on the second pass. Unfortunately this fish was like a wet noodle and there were no blistering runs but it was a decent size at around 50cm so possibly getting to 4lb. i got one more smaller fish just before the bridge which gave more of a fight than the bigger one before i packed it in.

I only had a couple of hours left till i needed to head home and dare i say it the Waihou was looking like my only option but when i got to the car park it was full so decided to go to the Waimakariri instead which turned out to be the better option. no people and more fish. i managed to get 5 in the first hole and 11 by the time I left home. Although they were smaller fish it was good fun and better than nothing.

After arriving back in Auckland I realised how much better the weather had been down in the Waikato. It certainly felt like a summers day and i was certainly feeling the stress lift from my shoulders.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Keeping your sh@#t organised

The internet is great. There is so much information out there the mind boggles. I spend hours researching fishing looking for new techniques amd flies but how do you keep this stuff organised.
Here is the low down on some of the programmes I use.

This is my favourite program and has no limit to how much is stored on it. Sections are organised and you can sync it anywhere. My only problem is the online version is a bit slow and the android version is limited. The clipper is also a bit rubbish as you often get either a picture that cant be edited or a link only.

This programme is also great for saving pages and clipper the makes this easy. Add to that tagging your files and keeping your stuff organised is a breeze. The only downside is editing is not great and there is a monthly limit so if you are saving pages with a lot of pictures this can be used very quickly.

Great for searching stuff that others have already researched and saved but relies on links so if website changes or disapears it will not work. I use this mostly for fly ideas where no note is required.

This is another favourite and great for reading so any articles I want to read offline I save via the add on and sync before I leave the house so I can read on the way to work. I can then either archive it, tag it and save to onenote.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Wet fly

I was listening to some pod-casts the other day and was listening to Aaron West talk about wet fly fishing. This sparked my interest in that I have used this method on sparingly and with sporadic success. After doing some research and I was quite surprised to find some interesting techniques.
I had always thought of wet fly fishing as the old cast and swing type of method but after reading up on some of Davy Wotton’s techniques I was interested to see something completely different. One of things when reading about Davy is that he casts his flies upstream to dead drift then swings them on downstream then works them back upstream.
The idea of upstream wet fly fishing peaked my interest as I have in the past used wet flies dead drift to sighted fish with good success.
The other thing that is predominant with Davys technique is he is fishing numerous techniques and fishing from bottom all the way to the top imitating nymphs, wets and dries all in one go.

I have added some links with good articles on his technique and I look forward to using it when I get back on the water. I have also added the troutpredator forum where Davy will answer any question you might have.


Wet Fly Ways -Davy Wotton

innovativeflyfisher-Fishing Soft Hackle Spiders

Wet Flies Re-Discovered

Flymphs Rediscovered




troutpredator Forum beyond-the-swing


north country wets

north country wets2

upstream wet fly

Whew I think there is enough reading there to wet your appetite. As I get into fishing this method I will add some of my findings.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment