How to fish for Grayling

Kieranmcd123

Member
Joined
Sep 12, 2021
Messages
5
Location
Galasheils
As the title says, how do you do it?

This summer has been the first season I have ever fished. I learned to fly fish (unsuccessfully) around may and have slowly been learning how to do it.
The last few weeks have been my most productive time on the water landing around 15 trout and salmon parr - all returned safely - on the fly.

However, as some of you will know, most of our 'trout' permits expire this weekend and become Grayling only fishing permits.

Frustratingly, just as I have become somewhat proficient on the fly and completely addicted to fishing it's time to target Grayling instead. How do you do this? what flies/buzzers/whatever you use is best? Do you use a sinking or a floating line? indicator or no indicator?

like I said, I've only been fishing for a few months so any answer, even if you think it's daft, will help loads. I do not want to stop fishing just because its not trout season anymore so all your help is appreciated!

if it helps, I have a permit for the leader and the Tweed, so my second question is how do I target trout without targeting salmon - and annoying the salmon fishers - or targeting trout.

thanks a lot!
 

rabmax

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Joined
Sep 11, 2009
Messages
2,046
Location
Ayrshire
I tend to euronymph most in winter.Although nowadays i do it with a drop shot rig.For me it's far simpler than tying & carrying all your favourite flies in all the different weights.I just keep changing weight on the bottom.Sometimes i will also add a no6 shot to my top dropper in fast flows.I have never fished the tweed. But fish many Scottish rivers.Clyde'Nith'Ayr'Deugh'Avon to name a few.My main patterns are Black magic nymph'cream micro mop & a fly called Renegade.But i also carry a few shrimps & eggstacy eggs' Ptn's & a few Perdigons.The best advice i ever got was from a John Tyzack dvd.(Grayling are suckers for change) Fish your confidence patterns.One you locate a grayling shoal.You catch a few then you stop catching.Change one or both flies & you often start catching grayling again.I sometimes go through 3 or 4 fly changes in winter on a large shoal of grayling.I also fish dry dropper & indicator.And dry fly fish for them too.There's plenty big grayling in the tweed.This is how i fish.I am sure other's will be along soon with there methods & advice .Couple videos one on drop shot on euronymphing.Grayling are lovely fish.Enjoy
 

rabmax

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Joined
Sep 11, 2009
Messages
2,046
Location
Ayrshire
!

if it helps, I have a permit for the leader and the Tweed, so my second question is how do I target trout without targeting salmon - and annoying the salmon fishers - or targeting trout.

thanks a lot!
You can't fish for grayling without catching trout & Salmon.They will all eat the same flies.I sometimes hook more Salmon than the occasional Salmon anglers i see.Drop shot nymphing can be very effective at hooking Salmon.Years back i would land some Salmon.Now i just keep throwing out slack line until the Salmon throws the hook.Too much stress on the Salmon fighting them on 2 or 3wt nymphing rods.The trout do tend to stop feeding when coming up to spawning time.Tend to find you can go 2-3 months in winter without really hooking many trout.Hope this helps.Cheers
 

Andrew Moray

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 9, 2006
Messages
298
I tend to euronymph most in winter.Although nowadays i do it with a drop shot rig.For me it's far simpler than tying & carrying all your favourite flies in all the different weights.I just keep changing weight on the bottom.Sometimes i will also add a no6 shot to my top dropper in fast flows.I have never fished the tweed. But fish many Scottish rivers.Clyde'Nith'Ayr'Deugh'Avon to name a few.My main patterns are Black magic nymph'cream micro mop & a fly called Renegade.But i also carry a few shrimps & eggstacy eggs' Ptn's & a few Perdigons.The best advice i ever got was from a John Tyzack dvd.(Grayling are suckers for change) Fish your confidence patterns.One you locate a grayling shoal.You catch a few then you stop catching.Change one or both flies & you often start catching grayling again.I sometimes go through 3 or 4 fly changes in winter on a large shoal of grayling.I also fish dry dropper & indicator.And dry fly fish for them too.There's plenty big grayling in the tweed.This is how i fish.I am sure other's will be along soon with there methods & advice .Couple videos one on drop shot on euronymphing.Grayling are lovely fish.Enjoy
Hi Rabmax,

Not OP, but I found that really helpful,

Thank you.
Tony
 

ptn

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 24, 2009
Messages
249
Location
Dorset
Hi Andrew,
At this point in your fly fishing career don't worry too much about Euro, Czech, French and the other fancy techniques. Just carry on with the same methods you use for trout, grayling and trout behave in quite similar ways.
There are a lot of good books on nymphing techniques, George Daniel's are excellent.
Regards
Bill
 

Kieranmcd123

Member
Joined
Sep 12, 2021
Messages
5
Location
Galasheils
You can't fish for grayling without catching trout & Salmon.They will all eat the same flies.I sometimes hook more Salmon than the occasional Salmon anglers i see.Drop shot nymphing can be very effective at hooking Salmon.Years back i would land some Salmon.Now i just keep throwing out slack line until the Salmon throws the hook.Too much stress on the Salmon fighting them on 2 or 3wt nymphing rods.The trout do tend to stop feeding when coming up to spawning time.Tend to find you can go 2-3 months in winter without really hooking many trout.Hope this helps.Cheers
Thanks a lot. Some great info in there. Bought myself a wee box of drop shots and a new rod lol - a 7'6' 3wt though so not sure if this if this is best for nymphing? Like I said, beginning to become proficient on the dry so I did buy it with that in mind, although would love to use it over the winter. I have a 6/7# 9' rod though that I think will be better for nymphing.

Seems like nymphs are the way to go, however, is it worth fishing dry during the Grayling season at all? I'm sure I saw a grayling leap out of the river last week - looked like it had the tell tale fin - but only every caught one (accidently) when I left my fly to sink and went looking for a new pattern to use lol.

Thanks again!
 

rabmax

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 11, 2009
Messages
2,046
Location
Ayrshire
Guess it depends on the rivers you fish.In small streams with overhanging trees 7'6'3 would work.If your river isn't too deep fast.Nymphs 2'2.5'3 & 3.5mm would cover it.In low summer water i often add a no8 stubz to the bottom as a drop shot.I then just add\remove small amounts of tungsten putty from the stubz weight.I normally use a 10\3wt rod.Sometimes a 9\3wt
 

rabmax

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 11, 2009
Messages
2,046
Location
Ayrshire
Thanks a lot. Some great info in there. Bought myself a wee box of drop shots and a new rod lol - a 7'6' 3wt though so not sure if this if this is best for nymphing? Like I said, beginning to become proficient on the dry so I did buy it with that in mind, although would love to use it over the winter. I have a 6/7# 9' rod though that I think will be better for nymphing.

Seems like nymphs are the way to go, however, is it worth fishing dry during the Grayling season at all? I'm sure I saw a grayling leap out of the river last week - looked like it had the tell tale fin - but only every caught one (accidently) when I left my fly to sink and went looking for a new pattern to use lol.

Thanks again!
Dry can be good until it gets real cold.I tend to fish emerger often across & down for grayling.They see the fly before your tippet.If in England some rules don't permit downstream dry fly though.Another option is one of Mr trout's furled leaders with the sighter built in.Not as effective as euronymphing or drop shot.Still catch loads of fish though.Mr trout furles are good.Cheers
 

fishing hobo

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 23, 2014
Messages
2,078
Location
Scotland
I tend to euronymph most in winter.Although nowadays i do it with a drop shot rig.For me it's far simpler than tying & carrying all your favourite flies in all the different weights.I just keep changing weight on the bottom.Sometimes i will also add a no6 shot to my top dropper in fast flows.I have never fished the tweed. But fish many Scottish rivers.Clyde'Nith'Ayr'Deugh'Avon to name a few.My main patterns are Black magic nymph'cream micro mop & a fly called Renegade.But i also carry a few shrimps & eggstacy eggs' Ptn's & a few Perdigons.The best advice i ever got was from a John Tyzack dvd.(Grayling are suckers for change) Fish your confidence patterns.One you locate a grayling shoal.You catch a few then you stop catching.Change one or both flies & you often start catching grayling again.I sometimes go through 3 or 4 fly changes in winter on a large shoal of grayling.I also fish dry dropper & indicator.And dry fly fish for them too.There's plenty big grayling in the tweed.This is how i fish.I am sure other's will be along soon with there methods & advice .Couple videos one on drop shot on euronymphing.Grayling are lovely fish.Enjoy
I was fortunate to be invited to Tweed in Feb before the very first lockdown. - 4 degrees C 😱. Almost blanked until a decent grayling took the black magic nymph and it just wouldn't quit.... Made up for being frozen. Renagade did the damage in Avon and caught my biggest grayling on that. I cannot consistently catch those buggers 😅
 
Last edited:

eddleston123

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 3, 2012
Messages
10,316
Location
Peebles, Scottish Borders
As the title says, how do you do it?

This summer has been the first season I have ever fished. I learned to fly fish (unsuccessfully) around may and have slowly been learning how to do it.
The last few weeks have been my most productive time on the water landing around 15 trout and salmon parr - all returned safely - on the fly.

However, as some of you will know, most of our 'trout' permits expire this weekend and become Grayling only fishing permits.

Frustratingly, just as I have become somewhat proficient on the fly and completely addicted to fishing it's time to target Grayling instead. How do you do this? what flies/buzzers/whatever you use is best? Do you use a sinking or a floating line? indicator or no indicator?

like I said, I've only been fishing for a few months so any answer, even if you think it's daft, will help loads. I do not want to stop fishing just because its not trout season anymore so all your help is appreciated!

if it helps, I have a permit for the leader and the Tweed, so my second question is how do I target trout without targeting salmon - and annoying the salmon fishers - or targeting trout.

thanks a lot!

Lots of good advice for you on this thread Kieranmcd123.

I do get very confused about permits though. I live in Peebles and the association there states quite clearly that there is NO grayling fishing from 1st Oct to end of Dec.

However, all is not lost, I can fish the Clyde for the next few months for this marvellous fish.

The only advice that I may offer is not to get too tied up in the finer details of French / Czech nymphing at the moment. Initially you only need to remember that to consistently catch grayling your fly/bug/nymph needs to be trundling along or as near to the bottom of the river bed as grayling are, in the main, bottom feeders.

You do normally require to have an indicator of some kind, as take detection is very important. Every video on the subject will show their own subtle nuance on the subject.

I wish you all the best in your pursuit of the 'Lady of the Stream'



Douglas
 
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rabmax

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 11, 2009
Messages
2,046
Location
Ayrshire
I was fortunate to be invited to Tweed in Feb before the very first lockdown. - 4 degrees C 😱. Almost blanked until a decent grayling took the black magic nymph and it just wouldn't quit.... Made up for being frozen. Renagade did the damage in Avon and caught my biggest grayling on that. I cannot consistently catch those buggers 😅
Get some eggstacy eggs in your box fishing hobo.From mid November to around March they can turn cold days into good cold days.Peach is usually best colour on point .Small Renegade or black magic 10- 12 inches above.Some days they just want the egg.Other days they come for a look at the egg then see the small more natural dropper fly.Once i go through a shoal I will keep changing eggs Yellow'Flu cheese & chartreuse i carry.They all seem to work.I can see why Americans like fishing them.Me personally i don't have a problem fishing eggs.Thats what the grayling are scoffing down there.stray trout & salmon eggs.I know a few people on Facebook that fish eggs on the tweed.Deadly.
 

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