Fly Tying When It Rains

Great – so we have all been wishing for some rain for the last couple of months and now it has arrived with a vengeance. I think it has been raining on and off for a good week now which has pretty much put a halt to any kind of fishing in the rivers – well, most of the rivers I fish are bank high and rushing towards the sea looking like a big brown muddy mess. However, I am not despondent (and neither should you be) as when it stops the rivers will have had a good clear out washing all the weed and excess silt that has built up away and the fishing will be mighty fine. The Kelvin is tricky as it can go from bank high and brown to very low pretty quickly. I never really understand why sometimes it can maintain a good height and still be clear sometimes and at others act a totally different way to rain. The saying that if a cow pisses in a field upstream causes a spate in the Kelvin can be pretty true. However no mater what happened the fishing will be good all over. If it lasts much long though I will be hitting some of the tributaries for some action – they generally start off high and dirty and with prolonged rain settle down to just high and clear and the fishing can be pretty good if you love catching small trout on the dry (with a possibility of some nice ones thrown in).

I just know all the Salmon fishers are sitting with a big smile on their faces at the prospect of more salmon being in the river.

 Gallows Tool

Still, I have not been bored as at the weekend I bought myself a gallows tool and have been tying up some alternative flies. A gallows tool is handy for klinks although you don’t really need one (I don’t anyway) however it is invaluable if you are going to tie up some paraloops. It acts like a third hand holding up the wing post for klinks and the post for paraloops – very handy!

I spent some time tying up a half a dozen olive paraloops which are kind of similar to my “no fail messy olive”. It uses fewer materials and looks just as messy – I will post a picture to show them both when I have a chance.

I then decided on tying up a paraloop using a klink hook making a rather nice looking emerger – I tied up two kinds – one with thread as the body and one with a stripped peacock herl body.

I am undecided whether the body will sink under the surface however I am pretty sure the paraloop will have enough body to float the fly – considering I used flaotant as a dubbing wax I am more than confident actually. I would be interested in knowing if other people tie paraloops or fish them?


  1. Frank Andrews · June 25, 2008

    Hi Alistair, As you pointed out this recent weather has put the grin back on my face as a good salmon run will now give the kelvin the sport it deserves!! My camping trip on sat/sun ended in total washout but fortunately all was not lost! A quick 20 mins in the car took us to our “last resort”, the river luggie that runs through kirkintilloch! Within minutes me and my m8 jim were catching broon aplenty! 3 hours totalled 11 fish! A great end to an otherwise dire weekend. The Forth tonight for a Salmon, fingers crossed!!

  2. Alistair · June 25, 2008

    Hey Frank – thanks for commenting – pity about your camping trip – funny though how the smallest of streams and low expectations can throw up the biggest surprises 🙂

  3. Paul · June 25, 2008

    I like the look of that wee emerger Alistair but it might be murder to see on the water?The body should sit below the surface ok.
    My top fly this season is very similar to the wee emerger you’ve come up with,but with a post and a thicker quill body.I think stripped peacock quills create a very lifelike body,but they aren’t at all durable.After much trial and error i now give each body a few coats of hard as nails which seems to prolong each fly’s life against sharp trouty teeth.

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