Saturday, 31 October 2009
Friday, 30 October 2009
Thursday, 29 October 2009
Wednesday, 28 October 2009
Click the link to visit the tutorial.
Tuesday, 27 October 2009
Now I don’t condone the use of barbed hooks, and I understand why some prefer to have them. If you’re a 9 to 5’r and can only manage a few hours during the week or a days fishing over the weekend, using barbed hooks probably offers you that added security to maybe catch that one or two fish for the day, but employing this method opens you up to more problems eradicating the hook once you have him on your mat. Some of you are probably saying, “Aaah! but that’s why we carry along a pair of wire cutters Si”, Okay fair dinkum, but tying materials and hooks these days aren’t cheap and with the amount of time & effort we spend in tying up our flies why would you want to cut the bloody hook in half with a pair of wire cutters anyway….It doesn’t make sense to me!!!!!!!!! I can guarantee you that many pike fly-fishermen don’t carry wire cutters with them and are quite prepared to just yank & pull the barbed hook free from the hard bony interior of a pike’s mouth. Thus ripping the hole bigger and in some cases shredding skin, gristle and muscle in the process. Its hard enough trying to get a pair of long nose pliers down a 2 kilo pikes gob without bashing its teeth trying to extract a hook, “So can someone please tell me how easy it is to get a pair of short handled wire cutters down a pikes mouth …especially without not only damaging yourself, but also to the pike in question. I can also guarantee you that 95% who carry wire cutters use these short handled versions purely because long handled are extremely hard to find in any hardware store, let alone cost an arm and a leg!!!!.
Now those that use barbed hooks might argue the fact that barbless have more freedom to move around once it has pierced its way through thus making the hole bigger. Well this might be true but I also believe the way we fight our pike once hooked plays a big part in how much damage a hook can make. Like so many other species, pike often breach themselves violently thrashing their heads from side to side as they tail walk across the surface trying to eradicate the un-wanted hook from their mouths. This is where much of the damage is caused either with barbless or barbed hooks, yet if you fight a pike correctly you can control him to an extent that he doesn’t need to jump out of the water. One can feel and see when this is going to happen and so one can either lower his rod tip slightly , or let a short bit of line out between your stripping hands fingers.
Fishing celebrity extraordinaire…(Not!) John Wilson in the UK, often can be seen on his fishing programs purposely trying to get the pike to tail walk across the surface with comments like “I just love it when they do that” & “Is he going to tail walk for me” followed by that irritating stupid laugh of his…….”John if you ever read this mate, then you really need to reassess the way you play a pike me old son, especially on national television. There’s no need to do this. Not only are you adding more pressure to an already stressed out fish, but you’re giving the hooks more opportunity to punch their way through a pike flesh which in turn leads to more damage. “Textbook fucking error in my eyes”.
I have to admit that this season whenever I’ve used barbed on my flies I’ve had this niggling feeling at the back of my mind that I hope the pike is hooked in an area of its mouth where I can eradicate the hook easily. Having that worry hanging over me in some way has spoiled the experience for me a tad this season…... As I mentioned earlier I don’t condone the use of barbed hooked flies, I just know what has done more damage to a pikes mouth this season here on the Baltic and I definitely wont be using them again.
Monday, 26 October 2009
Take 6 Olive Chinese neck hackle feathers and tie 3 on either side of the hook shaft at the back near the hook bend so they are splayed facing outwards
Make your 1st dubbing loop and place a 50mm length of brown raccoon fur zonker strip between.
Snip of the leather strip and push fur as close to the cotton as possible.
Twist fur onto the loop. Wet fingers and run through fur getting rid of any loose strands
Wrap dubbin loop around the hook shaft pulling back the fur with each turn.
Take clumps of 3 Ostrich hurl feathers and place around the hook shaft leaving the bottom free.
Tie on 3 medium grizzly saddles to the top and sides
Repeat steps 2;3;4;5;6
Now take 6 thin long grizzly hackles and place around the top section of the hook
Make one last dubbing loop and place a 60 mm length of yellow Raccoon fur between, snip leather off and spin onto the loop. Then wrap around the hook shaft. Whip finish and place a dab of head cement over the front. Stick on some eyes if wanted.
Thread: xx strong white 75D
Hook/Tube: Gamakatsu SL12 big game saltwater hook/Eumer tube
6 Olive Schlappeen feathers
Raccoon zonker fur - Brown
3 x medium Grizzly hackles
6x thin long Grizzly hackles
Yellow raccoon zonker fur
Sunday, 25 October 2009
Saturday, 24 October 2009
These measurements are around the lengths you should be using.
Fold the feet over and place a small blob o superglue in the fold.Hold firm for a few seconds and the legs are formed.
Place a hook up turned in the vise and stick legs onto bend of hook with some superglue,then tie on securely with cotton. Whip finish and snip away. I then build a body of bucktail on the underneath of the hook. One can add front legs but at its a popper I don't bother. I have a few of these legs in a box if they get ripped to shreds which I just super glue on.
This fly is probably more suited for Bass but I've caught pike with it as well.You will miss plenty of hook ups due to the foam legs but every now and then one will stick.
Friday, 23 October 2009
Anyway the use of heavy mono leaders by many pike fly-fishermen has made me sit up and re-assess my set up….especially from my shooting head to the fly. So for the last 2 seasons I’ve been using a heavy 60 lb mono filament on one of my outfits. At 1st I had some trepidation, but I have to admit that having religiously alternated each day between a 60 lb mono leader and a wire trace I can honestly say that I have been very impressed with how the mono leader has stood up to the rigors of these Baltic pike, as I‘ve only replaced 12 the whole season.
Those that do already use mono leaders probably think that a 60 lb mono is a bit of an over kill, and in truth It probably is, but its stopped that nagging feeling I got when I used something smaller like 30 – 40 lb mono, to a point where I can now relax completely during a sessions fishing. Another reason why I’ve become a convert is that its drastically improved the movement of my fly as well, which “I feel” has improved the overall presentation of my fly. The more I fish with a heavy mono leader the more I’m glad I persevered through all the worry at the beginning and looks like I’m not going to be digging into my pockets as often.
Thursday, 22 October 2009
Wednesday, 21 October 2009
Tuesday, 20 October 2009
Gamakatsu Octopus Circle Hook (Inline Point) 6/0 as well as
Blacked Nickel Hi-Carbon Circle Hooks 6/0 every other day alternating between barbed & de-barbed. Out of the 84 fish I caught using these circle hooks, only 4 were caught in the scissors and out of the 17 I took home for the table 9 were damaged by circle hooks & out of those 9, 5 were barbed. Now is it me or are those statistics pretty bloody dismal. It begs me to think that whoever thought that circle hook will improve your chances of hooking the pike in its scissors is just talking a loada bollocks in my eyes. I wouldn’t be questioning this thought process if it was only a couple of fish I’d caught………… but come on, 4 caught in the scissors out of 84 with 9 deaths. One of the reasons for these deaths has been the fish are hooked before I’ve realize the pike was on, and the fly ends up being swallowed further to the back of a pikes mouth and ends up snagging its gill rakers and even under its tongue. Circle hooks were 1st designed for the Saltwater baiting brigade where the shapes of the mouths that are being targeted differ drastically from a pikes mouth. My one concern is the upturned hook point at the front of the hook.Although I can see the benefits when using bait with these hooks the upturned hook point doesn't allow for a brisk hook up in a pikes mouth,Which then allows the hook to move more freely withing the large cavity of a pikes mouth.
One only has to take a look at slow motion footage of pike attacking lures under water to see how wide their mouths open and how they engulf their prey/lure/fly. Circle hooks are never used to catch Barracuda or Wahoo purely because their teeth and the shape of their mouths is not conducive to the shape of the circle hooks…so why should they be good for catching pike………I have no idea. I will be using them again next season……(maybe not as often as this year ) before I make my final decision whether to scrap them altogether from my flies. I’m just glad I spent the time and stuck to a strict regimented routine with these rigs n set ups this season as it really has opened my eyes & begged me to wonder whether the so called "experts" in the sport really know what they are talking about.
Saturday, 17 October 2009
Friday, 16 October 2009
Here's some more images of Rowland Frasier from his week in Manitoba this spring,which he says was rather slow by his standards. Anyway I'm real excited as Rowland will be coming out to Replot next Spring for 10 Days to fish the island as well as the Merikarvia river mouth.
Thursday, 15 October 2009
Still a day out fishing beats a day in church!
Have to say though, four hours in +2'c water turned my bollocks into peanut shaped rattles
You can see where we fished in my google maps in the right side bar click the green marker with the dot in the middle.
Wednesday, 14 October 2009
For the last 3 years I’ve kept a little black book with me whenever I’ve gone fishing to record the days events in short. Here a couple of interesting statistics from just this year.
1. Since the 8th April I’ve dedicated 175 days fly-fishing for pike, and had I not torn my
hamstring I could have added another 14 days to that tally.
2. In those 175 days I’ve caught 752 pike which averages out to 4.06 snotrockets per day. I don’t
count fish lost during a fight but it was over a hundred.
3. I’ve alternated between 2 rods, one with a 60 lb mono leader & the other with a wire trace. I
caught 356 with the 60 lb mono leader & 394 with wire trace. I’ve changed the Mono leader 12
times yet replaced 57 wire traces,& I haven’t lost a single fly using either method.
4. Each day I’ve also alternated between either barbed hooks or barbless for my flies, and found
no difference in the hook up ratio. What was alarming to see though that I can honestly say
without a doubt, that barbed hooks did more damage than barbless.
5. 4 % of the pike were hooked in the scissors while 83% were hooked inside the mouth
somewhere, And 13% were hooked in the far back of the mouth either through the gill rakers
or through its tongue.
6. I took a total of 17 pike home for the table all were bleeding heavily from the gills.
7. Red/white has again been the killer colour combo that has caught me 174 fish .
Black/white second with 122
Orange or predominantly orange combos 96
Blue/white/purple combos 79
Chartreuse or fluorescent colour combos 76
Green/yellow; Green/white combos 14
8. I used circle hooks as frequently as I possibly could, and only 4 pike out of 82 were
hooked in the scissors which begs me to think, whoever says circle hooks improve your
chances of hooking the pike in its scissors really is talking a loada bollocks.
9. The average weight 4,35 kg’s……..Average length (75-85cm)
10. I caught 5 pike with my 1st cast of the day
11. I’ve also caught the same pike on 3 separate occasions in 3 separate areas. Purely
because of the distinctive markings found on them.
12. I’ve caught 493 pike on sunny days & 257 on overcast/rainy days
13. I caught 11 pike over 8 kg, 36 over 6 kg, 59 over 5 kg the rest were jacks of 2,3 & 4 kg’s
14. I only fished from a boat 47 days out of the 175, the rest were all spent wading.
15. I had 4 blank days out of 175
16. I caught 24 pike that had visible signs they had been attacked by a larger pike
There are several subjects which caught my eye this year which I'm going to delve into in more detail in the coming weeks
Tuesday, 13 October 2009
Monday, 12 October 2009
Place an Olive schlappen feather over an Black schlappen – Twice, then tie on the far side of hook - repeat process yet tie this batch on the front side of the hook so they flay out from each other.
Take a decent clump of yellow bucktail and face towards the hook. Rap a few turns around the clump then pull tightly so the hair stands out firm. Make sure the bucktail is evenly spread around the hook shaft.
Fold back and wrap cotton directly behind the fold.
Run the cotton down to the hook eye. Tie on some gold/Silver wired short strand garland & wrap down the length of the hook shaft. Run the cotton down over it to the back of the hook.
Palmer on 1 Olive Marabou hairline directly behind the bucktail.
Cut 2 bong shaped pieces of 5mm foam in different colours. I like to use similar shades to the feathers.
Place together and tie onto the back of the hook in front of the marabou. this tie is the most important positioning as its where your final tie in point will be where the lip will stand up.
Tie on twice leaving the front loose.
Turn vise over and tie any small red clump of material directly under the front tying point.
Run the cotton back along the same tie in points then fold over the foam and tie in front of the lip. Pull down with each wrap until the lip stands up. Whip finish.
Superglue the lip together. Stick some eyes on if you want and colour patches with a permanent marker.