Category Archives: River Rhondda

RIver Rhondda Updates

Late season trout

Only a few days of the trout season left now and to make the most of it my good friend, Nicholas Steedman, and I spent a day on a small stream hoping to find some late season trout. A cold night meant that the fishing was slow in the morning although we both caught some lovely small trout in their spawning colours:

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A superb hatch of various insects in the afternoon brought some great dry fly sport. The fish were clearly feeding hard before the winter and we were both able to pick off a number of fish that were picking off duns and emergers.

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The standout fly of the day was this hot spot nymph:

 

The hot spot is tied with the new Harvey Angling micro fibre which is perfect for creating a bright target point on nymphs. However, it’s so fine that you can also use it for bodies on nymphs. The olive fly in the photo below was particularly good during hatch in the afternoon:

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Pheasant Tail Emerger Pattern

It’s great to have the dry-fly setup once again and my go to pattern early season is the pheasant tail emerger. Fishing is still slow but I enjoy just creeping around the river when the hatches start. At the moment the large dark olives are coming on around 11am to about 2pm and then they tend to peter off, but in this time you can have a little fun, they don’t turn their noses up to this pattern and It have accounted for many of my big fish that I’ve managed to catch over the years on my local waters!

 I tie this fly in size16/14/12s

  • SONY DSCHook. Kamasan B100.
  • Thread, Black UTC 170.
  • Body. 4 pheasant tail fibers
  • Rib. 2lb mono.
  • Hackle. Blue dun.

I like to tie this pattern on the kamasan due to the quality of the hooks and the strength. It’s Very important to have full confidence in the hooks when you hook into that fish of a lifetime! These have the thumbs up from me! Here is a link for the hooks so please check it out they won’t let you down! ..https://www.cliff-harvey-angling.co.uk/search_prod_list.asp?maingroup=HOOKS&thirdgroup=Kamasan&cha_product_category=8

 

 

 

Just a few for the morning

Looking in the box today i found that i was running low on a few patterns so i just sat down and tied a few for an early morning trip out with my mate Ceri sweeney.

6 of each pattern tied on size 16 j hooks bought from here.http://www.flytyingboutique.com/.

The water levels around my area in south Wales are quite low at the moment so smaller the better! God we need rain but not to much! Hope you like the patterns!

Jig nymphs.

 Emerges.

 Duns.

River Taff & Rhondda in flood once again!

We needed rain but come on this is just ridiculous

I had the weekend all planned with a good Friend Nicholas Steedman to come over and give the river Taff a bit of a looking at and even the river Rhondda might have had a little bit of attention. But it’s always the same, we pray for rain so the rivers will pick up a little and get the fish going but it just can’t rain a little bit, oh no it has to to rain cats and dogs and write the river off completely. The plans have gone out the window and down the Taff into Cardiff bay.So the next best thing will have to do, tying flies,a mixture of dry flies and nymphs. It will be a full weekend job so by the end of it i’ll have enough to cover me for a week on the river Tay in Scotland and the river trails in July 🙂 God i’ve  got a busy time ahead of me but really looking forward it!

Out and about in heavy water conditions

Well, as everyone here is south wales knows, the rivers are all in flood and have been for a few weeks now but I just had to get out and wet a line somewhere to relieve the tension.

I didn’t rush out as early as I normally do, I think I left the house around 9ish and to tell the truth I didnt really know where I was heading with the waters so high in all the rivers in my area. Even the streams are high and would be a battle to keep your feet stuck to the bottom, so the only thing I could do really was to cover as much water as I could and find the slacks and the back ends of the pools. I took the two rods as normal but I knew that I would probably be stuck to bugging with the conditions. I didn’t see much fly life around just the odd olive passing by. I only saw two fish rise so that didn’t really warrant me to set the dry-fly rod up so I took it apart and slid it in the back of my vest to keep it out of the way so I could concentrate on the nymphing side of things. As usual I was using my 10ft 3wt streamflex, set up with the french leader for the nymphing. I was using two nymphs as normal; on the dropper I was using a goldhead 2.5 phesant tail flashback and on the point I was using a copper head 3.5 peeping caddis.  Most fish came to the caddis pattern as i expected with the flow being so fast and with a small amount of colour to it. Fishing was good and for the water I could fish I just fished every little bit of it till it was bugged out as I say!. I even left a few spots for some time and then went back and this is a good little trick to getting another chance to catch a few more. Ill let the photos do the talking!

Finally a bit of fun on the dry

While I was in work on friday counting down the hours I had a phone call of my mate telling me about the great day that he was having on the river with the dry. He went on to say about what the hatch was like and what was on, then with a bit of a giggle he told me his biggest at that time was a 3lb 3oz brown, jammy bugger 😦 Not something you want to hear while stuck in work is it! With this news I was already planning the trip for saturday morning and crossing my fingers that the weather would stay fine.

The fly box has been a little bare with dries lately because of the nymphing i’ve been doing throughout the winter months, so friday evening was spent tying a few dark olives patterns to cover the hatch that is mainly on at the moment. I did tie a few small gray dusters up and a few griffin gnats just in case they started to pick of smaller flies in the evening.

I was out the door just gone 7am in the morning and busting for it, little early for the hatches around here at the moment but I had a few places that I wanted to check out with the nymphs. I had a good idea of the time that the hatch would start because of my mate’s success on the day before so I had plenty of time to have a little fun with the nymphs. As normal I had two rods with me, one set up on the dry and the other with the french leader, this is so there is no messing around changing over and re-tying leaders and so on. In the past i’ve missed out on a few chances to catch the bigger trout feeding because of chopping and changing and as you know they don’t rise very often. This gives you that little bit more of an edge of catching a fish of a lifetime in my eyes and it has worked for me.

I finally started the morning in a nice long run that had lots of pocket water so the french leader was the best option. I set up and cut off around 3ft of stroft ABR and attached that to the indicator but this time I decided not to tie in a dropper because of the water condition, the rivers in south Wales running low and very clear so I wanted it to look as natural as possible. I tied a 2.5m copper head hares ear jig to the point and made my way up the run casting the nymph far away from me and keeping out of the trouts vision. In no time, the leader slipped away up river and then shortly after the trout slipped into the net and was quickly released after a quick poses.

The first run of the day and also the first fish of the day below

Another fine trout below that fell to the nymph while searching out the water in the photo above.

I spent a lot of time fishing the water quite hard, increasing the numbers slowly with the nymph and hoping to bump into something a little bigger but they didn’t seem to be there. It doesn’t really bother me catching a big fish but it’s always nice to land one now and again. At this time I started to see the odd olive flying past so I made my way to a little slower water to see if there was anything rising but I seen nothing for a good while, so I sat back and just watched this one pool knowing there was fish there. It was only a matter of time before they started to look up and see the olives,.

This was the pool below

Finally a trout broke the surface taking an olive, that was my cue to take the dry setup off my back and give it a whirl. Here is the pattern I used to imitate the large dark olive below and the first trout that was fooled by it of the day 🙂 Result!

Over the moon with the trout above, I went searching for trout rising and with that the bugging rod was taken down and it didn’t have a look in for the rest of the day and rightly so. Every pool that I came upon had a trout picking the olives off but only the one and it seemed they were the better size ones, I really wasn’t sure why but I didn’t think too much about it. As I moved up river scanning the water I could see that the olive hatch was reducing so my time was limited to find fish on the fin. Knowing that this was happening I jumped pool to pool looking but the rises were getting scarce. Time was getting on and I was thinking about calling it a day to go home and watch the wales match, where I was going to get out of the river just below a bridge, I walked out onto the bank and I seen a rise right tight to a large rock on the opposite back. The fish didn’t rise again so I just thought bugger it i’ll see if it’s still looking up, I cast the fly around 3ft above where the rise was and in seconds the trout took the fly and made a mad dash for cover, straight away I knew this was no tiddler. Seconds later the trout was tail walking and trying to chuck the hook but I had a good hook set and after a few mad dashed around the river the trout was to hand and a quick photo and then released to fight anOther day. Cracking result and what a trout to finish the day off.

The last and the biggest of the day below.

Hard going is not the word for it.

After chatting to Paul Jenkins in the week, we decided to have a trip out together over the weekend and see if we could have a little fun chasing the brown’s on the sunday as saturday was a no go for Paul because the wales match was on.

Paul arranged to pick me up at 8.30 outside the house, I did plan on sleeping on till eight but my son had other ideas, 7 o clock he was pouring milk in my ear and that’s not nice im telling you After jumping out of bed and getting the milk out of my ear, I checked out the window to see what sort of morning it was, to my surprise I couldn’t see a thing, I could see about 20 yards at most, Pontypridd was covered in a blanket of heavy fog, but best of all it wasnt raining. Happy days as we say!. After a strong mug of coffee and a few tracker bars Paul turned up and off we set. We decided to have a look up the Rhondda to see if anything was moving, The Rhondda on times can fish well early season but today it was hard going, The river was on its bones and as clear as glass, not good really. We both opted for the french leader and decided on going fish for fish,  I set up first so I was the first stepping in the water, I went into the tail end of a long deep run and kept low keeping my shadow of the water as much as I could. After around 15 minutes of fishing hard I hooked into a trout on the tail end and soon as the hook set the trout left the water and that was that, Not a good start for myself. After my brief encounter it was Paul’s turn. Paul stepping into the run that I lost the first fish of the day below. Bad angling on my part but you can’t get them all as Paul said!

Paul fished through a few lovely looking runs and pools without even a take or anything, Hard going be buggered, we both must have covered well over 200 yards of the river with only a few fish to hand. On this we decided to leave the Rhondda and take to the bigger river, The taff. After a short drive we got to where a little  slower water was to fish the dries. We needed something to pick our spirits up after the disappointing effort up the Rhondda.  After standing at the back for a few minutes we were in luck, there were a  few olives on the water and a few fish rising close to the banks, finally something to target. Paul stepped in and started to work his magic with the dry by picking a few trout out on the 12″mark. We were on the look out for the bigger boys but it wasnt to be, maybe some other day! Slowly we worked our way around the long slow runs and pools with a few fish to hand but it was far from easy. Maybe next week will be a little better but who knows. Just a few photos of are day below.

As you can see Pauls eyes are all over the shop, he spotted a fish rising up river 🙂

For the rising days to come.

I’ve had a few problems over the last few weeks and unable to go fishing or even tie flies but im on the mend now and hopefully i’ll have a few trips out soon. Sorry for the lack of posts guys!

Last night I decided to sit down and start tying a few dries ready for the coming trout season, it’s not far away and im counting the days down till I can stick my feet in the water that hasn’t been fished all year; pocket water, my favorite! Fast shallow runs with rocks everywhere with flity trout laying in wait for  passing prey. What more could a fly fisherman ask for  🙂 This is what im talking about below

I’ve got a load more dry-fly patterns to tie up and post soon,  im just waiting on my new hooks to arrive from Phil, http://www.flytyingboutique.com/

My last trip out of the trout season

Well all good things come to an end and the trout season has finally passed and the grayling season has just started. If the grayling season is anything like the trout season ive had, it’s going be a good winter.

Nicholas, a good friend of mine gave me a ring in the week and asked if I was free to fish the Rhondda for a few hours on thursday. As I was  booked in for an operation on the friday I jumped at the chance to fish my last day in the trout season for myself.  Nicholas picked me up the following morning at around 8.30 and after a chat we decided to give the taff a go before hitting the Rhondda. Nicholas has never fished the top half of the taff where I live so it was all new water for him so it was a pleasure to show him all the runs and pools that I have on my doorstep.  We made our way down river a few hundred yards and got in at the head of a large pool where there was a good flow of water and where I’ve had a few nice grayling in the past and plenty of trout, But this day there seemed to be nothing moving in the run so we moved on up river a little into a shallower water with a few nice weed beds running down. Only after a few short casts in between the channels of the weed I was into my first trout of the day. Nicholas was fishing just below me so I called him up to fish the run knowing that the fish were up in the run. Nick moved into the run and was into the fish straight away on the french leader.

As Nicholas worked the run catching a few more trout and the odd small grayling we moved onto the next pool and fished the slow back-end of the pool with the leader.  The water wasn’t very deep and not much flow so it called for a single 2m nymph. The first few casts were behind a large rock that stuck out of the river bed and it wasn’t long when the indicator slipped up river and I was into another wild brownie. As I turned around I could see Nicholas coming up behind me fishing the far bank so I just waited for him to hook a fish and get a shot of him in action. The shot below was taken in the second of the strike. Moving out of the pool after picking a few more trout out, the time was ticking away so we made a move to give us enough time to fish the parts of the Rhondda that we wanted to. We stepped in where the Rhondda goes into the taff and worked our way up river under the road catching a few trout in the pocket water. We moved into a good pool that ive had some really good fun on the dry but there was nothing rising so we set about it with the leader. We both managed a few fish to hand and Nicholas lost a nice fish after a crazy fight. The trout manged to transfer the hook into a small amount of rubbish on the bottom.  Unlucky Butt 😦  but that’s fishing and he’ll be there for me next year:). As we stood there talking, I happened to look down a drop off in the water and saw a few trout on the bedrock just lying there, that’s the first for me on the Rhondda and it was nice to see. I pitched the nymphs just above them and jigged them past and one turned and grabbed the nymph but I missed the take. It happens and after a few more tries I decided to leave them to it. For the rest of the day we fished well and picked off a good number of trout and covered a fair bit of the Rhondda and it become a good outing and great company with Nicholas. Ill leave you with a few photos of are cracking days fishing.

Out and about on the Rhondda.

After chatting on the phone to Paul Jenkins AKA Bushy for some time we decided to have a look around the taff and the Rhondda the next morning,

Bushy came and picked me up in the morning around 8 am and off we set but before we even set foot in the river Bushy had to fill his stomach in McDonald’s. Like father like son! Now I know were Kieron gets it from 🙂 After the bite to eat, we checked out the lower parts of the Taff  but the river was still pushing quite har., It was a little to high to get to where we wanted to check out for the grayling so we headed off to have a look at the Rhondda for a spot of trout fishing instead. River conditions were much better up there and it looked quite inviting when we got there so the gear was on in no time and the rods were set up with the french leader and off we set for the first run of the day. Bushy stepped back and let me start the day and in no time I was into my first fish. After this we went fish for fish all day and it just got better and better as we worked our way up river, fishing all the pocket water and little glides we came across.  Bushy being Bushy pulled out all the better fish of the day and I was left with the spats as he called them, Terry sprat was my name for the day after that, thanks Bushy.  It was a great days fishing and great company and as always I learned a few things from Paul and I’ll be trying them out when im on the water next. Just a few photos of are great day we had below.

Bushy below