Tuesday, June 9, 2015

The Badger Quill: Dry Fly Fishing Co Wicklow

The Avonmore river runs through oak forests, towering pines in the Vale of Avondale and the stunning Meeting of the Waters. The river rises above Roundwood in Lough Dan and travels over a granite bed for 35 miles till it enters the sea in Arklow. Just 50 mins from Dublin this remote angling location will give all anglers challenges and rewards.

It is the runs and pools that are the characters of this fast flowing river. Due to its high acidity the water is very hard and fish take that bit longer to grow. However there is a large stock of wild brown trout averaging 8 to 10 inches and there is quite a few larger fish to be hunted also.

Growing up on this river offered some serious challenges to a developing angler such as myself with the high acidity in the water fly hatches were sparse and the trout were very fussy when the decided to rise. Many good patterns were developed and used on this river to entice the wild trout from their hiding spots but for me one stands out the most; The Badger Quill.

Originally I tied with a Badger hackle stripped and using the quill from the feather to create the body; the tail and shoulder hackle was made of the same feather and a split starling wing capped off the fly. However you needed the right Cock Indian cape that would give you the quill for the body and it was not easy to find. The original dressing listed is with a natural stripped peacock quill. 

Its hard to beat the original dressing  but this version is just as effective and the materials are easier to get hold of, the tail is Coc De Leon as I use in most if not all my dries and nymphs as tails. The body on the size 18 or 16 hook is the quill from the Coc De Leon feather, its the closest thing I can find to give the quill bodied look as the original, a light coat of varnish to hold the quill in place and I add the CDC wing.

The hackle is a small badger cock hackle and I put one turn on the under side of the wing to prop it up a little and one and a half turns at the head of the fly. The fly is finished and an old dressing is ready to take trout after trout in the Late May summer evenings.  
With the modern developments in fly tying and materials some of our old and tested dressings are being forgotten, when these patterns are still as effective today as they were the first time there designers through them on the water. I like to fish these fly's regularly and they constantly produce great fishing if you haven't fished this fly before or remember it from older days then its time to get on the vice and get them back on the water, you wont regret it.  
I hope you enjoy tying these patterns and enjoy fishing them even more then I have had. If you would like any of these flies or any other patterns of you choice you can find my contact details on the right side of the blog. Thank you for reading and tight lines.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Peter, it is very pleasing to see old patterns still being used. I will tie this one and try it on our British Columbia streams.