Claret Dabbler

Claret Dabbler

We’ve just added the Claret Dabbler to our list of tied-to-order flies. Many lake guides will tell you that this is the fly to have during any Arthurs Lake or Little Pine dun hatches. It can be fished as a wet, but really excels when fished in the surface film, and momentarily ‘hung’ and twitched along the surface at the end of a retrieve. It’s one of our favourites!

FlyShop 1864 Fly fly tying courses – course content

A brace of Black and Peacock spiders

A brace of Black and Peacock spiders

Call FlyShop 1864 for more details!

Course content

The courses have been structured to enable all skill levels to participate, and to teach take-away skills for tying better flies, and tying them easier. Some of the topics covered will include:

– Technique for tying durable bodies with peacock herl

– Tricks for tying deer-hair and Possum Shaving Brush ‘wings’ for better flotation and fish-catching

– Technique for tying in durable, non-slip parachute hackles

– Techniques for tying easy ‘porcupine’ hackles – the easy high-viz alternative to parachute hackles.

– Tying with deer-hair – bullet-heads and the WMD

– Correct techniques for tying with foam – glue, legs and the Chernobyl Ant

– The rules for using colour and UV reflective materials in flies

The course will cover many more topics along the way, and the day-to-day techniques that may be troubling you (such as dubbing!) will be covered through the course of tying the featured flies.

There’s no better thrill than catching a fish on a fly of your own design. Come and join us to learn more about how to do it.

Caddis grubs

Fastwater Caddis
Here is a new ‘go-to’ pattern for the freestone rivers of Tasmania. While I have a preference for fishing the dry-fly, this isn’t always the best approach. This is when I opt to fish a nymph in tandem with a larger, bouyant dry fly, or upstream nymph with the single fly.

A nymph that has proved deadly this season has been our Fastwater Caddis pattern. Originally tied for the fastwaters of Tasmania’s north-east (North Esk, St Patricks rivers), this fly has historically produced for me a few times, but didn’t ever rate as a must-have pattern. That was until this week.

The speedy tail-outs of fastwater slots (the fastwater run-ins at the heads of pools), and the deep bored-out channels found on the outsides of long runs had always under-produced for me on Tasmania’s Mersey River. This caddis grub pattern, fished on a long dropper, has provided the key to succeeding on these sections of water over the last two days of fishing; seven brown trout between 1 and 2lbs, and a wild 2lb rainbow have been proof of its appeal, all fish that have been captured from these previously difficult water structures.

This fly is pretty simple to tie, with the main challenge tying the olive rib body in. Translucent olive rib (medium size) makes the segmented body, secured down with black wire. A black seals fur throat is added, just behind a black tungsten bead, all tied on to a curved grub hook. 

The next time you’re on the stream, lift up a few rocks and check out the inhabitants. No doubt, there will be plenty of bright green caddis grubs crawling around.