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Friday, 29 November 2019

Tying a Tarpon Bunny with Davie McPhail

Tarpon Bunny flies have a long history, with many variations and unique takes on the design. This Keys-style Bunny, developed in the Florida Keys in the '60s and '70s, has grown to become one of the more effective and proven tarpon flies around the world. With plenty of life and movement, no tarpon angler should face those behemoths without a few Bunnies in their arsenal. Even though these flies are designed to target Tarpon, they have found some success in freshwater. Species such as Rainbow Trout, Brown Trout and even Pike have been known to chase these flies. The reason for this is the enticing, undulating fur from the Rabbit Zonker strip.

All of the materials needed to tie this fly are available from Glasgow Angling Centre as listed below, but as always, if you need any help finding materials or substitutes then we'll be happy to help. Time to tie a Tarpon Bunny, with the guidance of Davie McPhail.




Materials Used:
Hook: Partridge STS Patriot Tarpon Stinger Hook Size 1/0 Thread: UTC 140 Fl.Fire Orange Under Tail: Orange Bucktail and Orange Krystal Flash Tail: Spirit River Fire Tiger 1/8 Zonker Strip Throat: Fire-Tiger 1/8 Zonker Strip and an Orange and Yellow Hackle Eyes: 4mm White Eyes

Additional materials: Additionally, Davie made use of Varnish, which he applied to the thread after completing the fly.

Davie's preferred type of whip finish tool can be found HERE!

Thursday, 21 November 2019

Tying the Humongous (Woolly Bugger) with Davie McPhail

The Humungous or Wooly Bugger Fly as it's sometimes called is a great fly pattern with all of the ingredients to make a great lure for Lochs and Reservoirs. A chain bead head helps to give a natural sinking or dipping motion, a brightly coloured body with a palmered hackle to give it extra movement and a marabou tail with some tinsel through it. The best time to use this fly is during the period when Trout are aggressively stalking and hunting fry. With its versatile profile, it'll resemble a struggling fry which Trout will happily take, given the opportunity. 

All of the materials needed to tie this fly are available from Glasgow Angling Centre as listed below, but as always, if you need any help finding materials or substitutes then we'll be happy to help. Time to tie the Humongous (Woolly Bugger), with the guidance of Davie McPhail.




Materials Used:
Hook: Fulling Mill Lure size 8 Thread: White UTC 140 Tail: Black Marabou and Pearl, Gold and Silver Flash Rib: Silver wire or oval tinsel BodySilver Micro Fritz Hackle: Chinese Grizzle or Similar Eyes: Medium Chain Bead

Additional materials: Additionally, Davie made use of Varnish, which he applied to the thread after completing the fly.

Davie's preferred type of whip finish tool can be found HERE!

Thursday, 14 November 2019

Tying a Small Muddler Minnow with Davie McPhail

The original Muddler flies designed by Don Grapen have spawned 100s of variants that all share the clipped deer hair head and they catch fish all around the world.

The head is tied with natural deer hair and then clipped into shape. The Buoyant deer hair keeps the Muddler off the bottom, so it can be fished at all depths. The deer hair is hollow and the trapped air makes it buoyant. The muddler flies can be fished as a wake fly when the weather is dull which is usually late in the season when the sedges can be seen skating on the surface.

All of the materials needed to tie this fly are available from Glasgow Angling Centre as listed below, but as always, if you need any help finding materials or substitutes then we'll be happy to help. Time to tie a Small Muddler Minnow Fly, with the guidance of Davie McPhail.




Materials Used:
Hook: Fulling Mill Competition Heavyweight size 12 Thread: Uni-8/0 Tan Tail: Hen Pheasant Wing Quills Rib: Fine Gold Wire Body: Gold Tinsel Wing: Hen Pheasant Wing Quills Head and Collar: Roe Deer Hair

Additional materials: Additionally, Davie made use of Varnish, which he applied to the thread after completing the fly.

Davie's preferred type of whip finish tool can be found HERE!

Thursday, 7 November 2019

Tying an Olive Sculpin with Davie McPhail

Sculpins, or Bullheads which are found virtually everywhere that Trout swim and typically in large numbers. Small baitfish like these are an important food source for Trout, and especially for large Trout. It's for this reason that so many popular streamer patterns are intended to imitate or work well as imitations of Sculpins. The differences between a Sculpin and other baitfish is that they lack an air bladder, meaning they stick close to the bottom and do not move. However, when they do move, they dislodge themselves and drift freely in the current before darting in small bursts to where they intend to go. Due to this swimming behaviour, Trout will actively strike these bottom feeders as they drift in the current.

All of the materials needed to tie this fly are available from Glasgow Angling Centre as listed below, but as always, if you need any help finding materials or substitutes then we'll be happy to help. Time to tie an Olive Sculpin Fly, with the guidance of Davie McPhail.




Materials Used:
Hook: Tiemco TMC811S size 6 Thread: Uni-6/0 Olive Tail: Barred Olive Rabbit Strip Body: Wound Barred Olive Rabbit Strip Fins: Dyed Olive Grey Partridge Head: Fish Skull Olive Sculpin Helmet

Additional materials: Additionally, Davie made use of Varnish, which he applied to the thread after completing the fly.

Davie's preferred type of whip finish tool can be found HERE!

Friday, 1 November 2019

Hardy Bros Limited Edition Perfect Salmon Rivers Series Reels!

We are excited to announce a fantastic new Limited Edition set of reels from the famous Hardy Bros factory in Alnwick! This series of brand new 4 ½in Salmon size Perfects will be individually numbered and engraved with one of six of the world’s most iconic Atlantic Salmon rivers. We are now taking orders for the Limited Edition Hardy Perfect 10/11/12 Salmon Fly Reel for the Tweed and Gaula rivers. Contact us now or ask instore to secure yours, contact us for a list of available numbers here!                                      CLICK HERE TO SEE THE REELS NOW!
The six rivers recognised by this Limited Edition reel will be the Tweed, Tay, Spey, Dee, Gaula and Alta. Each river will have just 100 individually engraved and serial numbered reels. Each reel is hand built in the original factory built by the Hardy family in the mid 1960’s and home to some of the finest fishing tackle ever made!
Ever since Forster Hardy was first granted a full patent for the Perfect reel design in 1889, Hardy’s skilled craftsmen,  engineers, product developers and angling consultants have been constantly striving for ways to improve on perfection, tweaking and adjusting these reels to bring you what they believe are the best reels in their class to date. And this version is no different with a host of new and unique features, some new and some harking back to innovations from the past.
Each of the Perfect Rivers Series will be fitted with dual polished nickel rotating line guards to prevent line wear and allow the reel to be used either right hand wind or left hand as preferred. An ambidextrous, fully adjustable click check mechanism using an improved version of the time proven 1972 central line check system can be found on these limited edition Perfects, which works by lengthening the regulator spring wire to increase the range of resistance means you can easily set the reel up to suit your individual need, whilst retaining that traditional ‘Hardy sound’ that every reel manufacturer has been trying to replicate for the past 100 years or more.
The frame and spool of each reel is engineered and hand crafted from bar stock 6061 aluminium, deep anodised for strength and durability with a polished gunmetal grey finish, and at the heart of the reel you will find a one piece naval brass spindle and stainless steel ball bearings for frictionless running that will require only minimal maintenance – built to last a lifetime! To aid in the care of the reels inner workings, a handmade turnscrew tool made with a matching Ivorine handle means the spool can be dismounted without marking the finish on the flawless German nickel retaining screw.
The standard arbor design and wide spool mean this reel has the largest line capacity of all the Hardy Perfects, for tackling the biggest Salmon in the deepest and fastest rivers on the planet! It also makes it great for balancing out your longer Spey rods too, making for a less tiring day casting long lines and often big flies in the search for a migratory giant!
Every one of the Limited Edition River Series Perfects will be supplied in presentation box with a black rigid leather reel case with stud/slit closure and red felt lining, embossed with the classic Hardy Bros. ‘Castle and Fly’ emblem. Also included is a certificate of authenticity, signed by the craftsman who built the reel, a booklet on the history of the Hardy Perfect fly reel, reel manual and care directions plus warranty card.
Perfect Salmon Rivers Specs:

  • Commemorating six iconic Salmon fishing rivers - Tweed, Tay, Spey, Dee, Gaula and Alta
  • Individually engraved and serial numbered 1-100 pre anodizing
  • Takes Spey lines in the 10/11/12 category with plenty room for backing
  • Reel width 2in - Diameter 4 1/2in
  • Dual polished rotating line guards
  • Made in Alnwick, England
  • The all time classic fly reel for the discerning traditional fly angler
  • Engineered and hand crafted from bar stock aluminium with a naval brass 1 piece spindle
  • Ivorine handle and stainless steel ball bearings
  • Standard arbor design and large line capacity
  • Time proven, adjustable check system with that traditional ‘Hardy sound’
  • Deep anodised for strength and durability; polished gunmetal grey finish
  • Easily changed from left to right hand wind
  • Supplied in limited edition leather presentation box with a unique Hardy turn screw tool


A limited number of reels will be available from Glasgow Angling Centre and Edinburgh Angling Centre and will be sold on a first come first served basis, please click HERE to buy now - don't forget to ask what numbers we have available. The Tweed and Gaula reels are available to buy now with the other reels to follow in the coming months - Tay and Dee in February 2020, then Spey and Alta in May/June 2020 -  watch this space for updates as they come in!

Thursday, 31 October 2019

Tying a Blue & Partridge Wet, Soft Hackle Fly with Davie McPhail

The Blue Partridge originated as a river pattern in the North of England but using the original’s blueprint this fly has changed and evolved into a small stream and Stillwater favourite. The book that Davie McPhail references is Pritt’s 1985 "Yorkshire Trout Flies", where he remarks that this pattern is “A first-rate killer in biggish water any time after the middle of May.’

This Partridge and Blue, sometimes know as the Gravelbed is featured in many North Country fly lists, it’s a versatile spider pattern that can be tied in a selection of different colours as shown by Davie with his variant collection to cover hatches all through the season.

All of the materials needed to tie this fly are available from Glasgow Angling Centre as listed below, but as always, if you need any help finding materials or substitutes then we'll be happy to help. Time to tie a Blue Partridge Wet, Soft Hackle Fly, with the guidance of Davie McPhail.




Materials Used:
Hook: Fulling Mill All-Purpose Medium size 14 Thread: Blue Pearsall's Silk or Sub Body: Grey Natural Dubbing Hackle: Grey Partridge

Additional materials: Additionally, Davie made use of Varnish, which he applied to the thread after completing the fly.

Davie's preferred type of whip finish tool can be found HERE!

Thursday, 24 October 2019

Tying the Morton & Gold Wet Fly with Davie McPhail

Fly fishing using Wet Flies is the most traditional and still very effective method of fly fishing for Trout and Grayling. Swinging or pulling wets will imitate a huge range of aquatic and terrestrial insects, from Beetles to Sedges but a number of the Silver and Gold bodied Wet Flies such as the "Morton & Gold" Davie is tying here are fantastic emulations of Small Fry.

If you're looking to tie up some winged wets for Grayling over the winter or filling your box ready for the Brown Trout next season, Davie's simple steps will help you get them just right.

All of the materials needed to tie this fly are available from Glasgow Angling Centre as listed below, but as always, if you need any help finding materials or substitutes then we'll be happy to help. Time to tie a Morton & Gold Wet Fly, with the guidance of Davie McPhail.




Materials Used:
Hook: Fulling Mill All-Purpose Medium size 12 Thread: Uni-8/0 Black Tail: Black Cock Hackle Fibres Rib: Gold Wire Body: Gold Tinsel Hackle: Black Hen Natural or Dyed Wing: Green Breast Feather from a Lady Amherst

Additional materials: Additionally, Davie made use of Varnish, which he applied to the thread after completing the fly.

Davie's preferred type of whip finish tool can be found HERE!
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