One of the most under-rated but exciting styles of fishing is chasing our ‘Silver Tourist’ sea-trout in the salt water, especially if you can locate some of their feeding grounds. Watching for fish splashing is a dead give-away but it’s not always a case of not catching if you don’t see them as often the best fishing times are when the fish don’t break the surface at all.
That’s when local knowledge and a lot of searching hours becomes invaluable, however it’s also a great way of passing a summer evening wandering the shoreline in search of silver. Not that it’s only trout that can be the quarry with Mackerel, Saithe and Pollock great on the fly rod as well and also often found close into the shoreline (albeit the latter more in the rocky outcrops and deep drop offs you’d expect for an ambush type predator). If you’re really lucky to have them then Sea Bass are something else altogether and I know anglers who prize this species above all others.
Often located around the edges of the bladder wrack in search of prey, our sea trout are very susceptible to a fly and I like to fish both weighted as well as non-weighted patterns depending on the location and surrounding snags. Either way the best type of fly for this has to be something offering plenty mobility as well as being robust enough to survive the hostile environment as well as encounters with fish and this wee streamer style is something I generally reach for when fishing this way.
Floating lines are ok, midge or sink tips I feel are better as they overcome the buoyant nature of the salt water and help your fly fish where you want it. Not that fast sunk lines are not important, however I generally use these when chasing the Pollock haunts more than sea trout in the estuaries.
Vary the colours (orange can be very good) and both hook size as well as wing length, however you really don’t need a massive selection and I prefer to keep everything simple and approach light so I can cover a lot of distance easily if need be. Once found the sport is usually very spectacular and very very memorable.
Hook: Partridge Sea Prince (CS52) Size 6 – 10
Thread: Benecchi 8/0 Red
Wing: White Funky Fibre Synthetic Hair (Funky Flytying) under Pearl Crystalflash.
Cheeks: Blue Dyed Grizzle Cock Hackle Tips (Chevron Hackles)
Hackle: Blue Dyed Partridge (Chevron Hackles)
Head: Uni 6/0 Florescent Fire Orange Thread under UV varnish
Step 1: Lay a bed of thread on hook starting on shank short of the eye and run level to hook point
Step 2: Cut a section of synthetic wing hair and tie in approx 50 - 60 mm from hook bend
Step 3: Trim waste at a steep angle to form head of fly
Step 4: Cut approx 5 or 6 strands of pearl flash and tie on top of wing projecting about 5mm longer than wing
Step 5: Take 2no hackle tips and tie in one each side sitting about 10mm shorter than overall wing length
Step 6: Prepare and tie in dyed blue Partridge hackle
Step 7: Wind on hackle, secure and trim waste. Tie in sloping back over fly. Note Don't fold the hackle as this removes additional movement.
Step 8: Catch in Hot orange florescent thread
Step 9: Cover head with hot orange thread, tie off and trim
Step 10: Apply UV varnish