70 - Top Tips - 6 WAYS TO MAKE 2024 AN INSPIRING FLY FISHING YEAR!
6 WAYS TO MAKE 2024 AN INSPIRING FLY FISHING YEAR!
Fall back in love with your “local”
These days, keen anglers will travel thousands of miles in a season to fulfil their dreams. But do we always need to do so? Not only do we rack up a big carbon footprint, but we also tend to overlook what’s right on our doorstep!
So many of our towns, cities and parks have low cost, local fishing
There is so much fly fishing out there these days. Perhaps you have an urban stream nearby? Or is there a coarse fishery or stretch of coast to try? The options are bigger than we often think- and so often there’s a pleasant surprise, to say nothing of lower fuel bills!
Bug hunting can be really revealing- and almost as satisfying as fishing!
As fly fishers, we quite often just tie on our favourite fly and get casting. But how much do we really notice in terms of those small but key details? This season, take a few minutes before you cast, whether that’s to sample some fly life or simply to take it all in.
A fine meshed net can be great fun for some “bug fishing” on lakes, or you could turn stones over on the stream or even do your own kick sample. It’s not only fun, but can help deepen our love of nature- as well as informing fly choices!
Take a UK fishing break and explore our national parks!
Wild, peaceful water on Dartmoor- one of our many national parks where fly fishing is an option.
Whether it’s the cost of living or awareness of our carbon footprint, more of us are now holidaying closer to home. Nor is that a bad thing when it comes to fishing! Look no further than Britain’s national parks for further evidence.
Very near to Turrall HQ, Dartmoor and Exmoor both provide wonderful scenery and trout fishing. Or you could head for the mountain lakes of Wales, the fascinating hill tarns of the Lake District or Scottish Highlands. Pretty much all offer affordable day ticket sport- and that wonderful sense of freedom we all crave on our time off!
Become a river guardian
It’s a sad fact that our rivers face manifold threats these days, from abstraction to loss of invertebrate life. But while it’s easy to feel helpless about this, anyone can do their bit to help, whether it’s calling in anything worrying like pollution or poaching, or even doing some citizen science!
Indeed, where the authorities go missing, anglers are now stepping up. Why not get in touch with the Angling Trust or your local rivers trust and get involved in monitoring?
Catch your first sea bass on fly
With suitable flies and kit now easy to find, saltwater fly fishing is as accessible as it’s ever been.
With better protection for juvenile fish and nursery areas, stocks of small bass seem to be on the up in recent years. This bodes well for anyone who fancies chasing sea fish on the fly! Estuaries are the ideal place to get started- and you needn’t buy a new rod and reel- just make sure you wash your gear down well once you get home, to remove any salt water.
Look no further than small Clouser Minnows or sandeels to get your first bass, which often come within inches of the shore. If in doubt, visit your local tackle shop or check out online forums for suitable spots to try. We’d strongly recommend catch and release, even if you are lucky enough to find a “keeper” sized fish, because these creatures are slow-growers which are every bit as precious as wild trout.
Take a youngster fly fishing
Let’s not beat around the bush here- there is a drastic need for us to get more kids fly fishing. We are an ageing sport that needs new blood more than ever! While very young children would struggle with a fly rod, ten and up is a great phase to start.
You will need to sacrifice some of your own fishing time. You’ll also face a tangle or two- and might need to offer a shorter, lighter rod and a pick a venue with lots of space and high stock. But that buzz of seeing someone catch their first fish is priceless! You could be giving the gift of a whole lifetime of enjoyment- not to mention giving our rivers and lakes another friend and guardian.
Perhaps you could even become a volunteer or train as a coach this year?