North Country Spiders

steve m

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Jun 29, 2007
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Hi all

Just finished watching Oliver Edwards's Essential Skills DVD on Upstream Nymphing and North Country Spiders and was wondering if the fishing of spiders is only suited to northern freestone rivers or will they work eleswhere. I fish here in South Wales and occaisionally on the Wye, Irfon and Usk in Mid Wales. Any ideas would be most welcome.

Steve M
 

SpiderMan

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Did somebody call my name??? ;)

I'll certainly go along with the statement that "they'll work anywhere!"

Here, in the USA, wingless wet flies are commonly known as 'soft hackles.'

How good was Oliver Edwards' DVD?
 
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steve m

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Jun 29, 2007
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72
Thanks all

I will have to tie some ready for the start of the season which is not far away now thankfully. SpiderMan the DVD was very good as it included Oliver tying some the patterns that he used, it also includes Czech Nymphing which I found very good


Steve M
 

SpiderMan

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Thanks, Steve. I'll have to find a fly shop that I can order it from that will mail it to the US for me. (John Norris' often sends me stuff but I'll have to see whether they sell this DVD.)
 

royvs

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TM beat me to it...I would echo the quality of the flies from SpidersPlus..outstanding.
 

grey duster

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As will I - and to the quality of the OE DVD's - and yes they will work anywhere where you can give them or they can get a bit of life for the hackles. I have had great days on the rivers in Cheshire with Grayling with them.
GD
 

Spider

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Did somebody call my name??? ;)

I'll certainly go along with the statement that "they'll work anywhere!"

Here, in the USA, wingless wet flies are commonly known as 'soft hackles.'

How good was Oliver Edwards' DVD?



Spiderman,


If it doubt, next time you are fishing, try to catch a dun/mayfly in your hand. Unfortunately the poor fella may end up a bit mangled.
Then, put a damp or wet Snipe and Yellow , or similar, ideally in a similar size , beside it on your hand.

They look so similar - its no wonder they work ! Add in the hackles "zipping up" in water to look very much similar in profile to a nymph , plus hackle movement, and you've got one useful fly....

They are also lethal on Stillwaters, and have generally equalled or outfished some of the very useful Spanflex Buzzers I used to use.

Oh by the way, they work over here in Ireland too ! :)
 

maharg

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May 17, 2006
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Up to my eyes in it!!!!
I have dabbled with spiders in stillwaters for years. Last year i fished them almost exclusively on my club loch. I had plenty of good results. I will continue the trend this season, fished on a 4 weight:D
 

The Famous Grouse

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May 16, 2006
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I've found your North Country Spiders (known over here as soft hackles or traditional/English wetflies) to be tremendously effective over here even though it is very rare to run into an angler who knows what they are.

In fact, I'd say in general they are the second most effective pattern I use after nymphs.

Their use is not limited to stream trout. I was fishing steelhead on river on the south shore of Lake Superior once and it was a Friday and so quiet crowded. I saw an angler hook into a fish and he landed and returned it before I came up to him. I just drew up even with him on the bank and he hooked into another one, a bigger fish.

He brought it to hand and in its mouth was an unmistakable Partridge & Orange.

I said, holy ****, you're fishing wetflies and he explained that these "English Wetflies" as he called them worked a treat in low and clear water when the steelhead become suspicious of anything that looks too good to be true.

He was surprised that I recognized the pattern, he had read about them in a old book he bought in a secondhand shop and tied some up on a lark. He said he'd never run into anyone who recognized them, which I can believe.

Certainly a pattern that's worth learning how to fish.

Grouse
 

Highlander

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Erskine, Scotland
traditional/English wetflies
Grouse I do not know where you got that one from, Another inventing the wheel perchance. I correspond on a few American boards & I have never heard of North Country Flies called that.
Soft Hackles or even Flymph mistakingly but never "English Wetfly"
Tight lines
 
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royvs

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I've found your North Country Spiders (known over here as soft hackles or traditional/English wetflies) to be tremendously effective over here even though it is very rare to run into an angler who knows what they are.

Interestingly, my two 'murican buddies fish them almost exclusively on the PA and Maryland streams. Usually a team of three flies..heavyish nymph on the middle dropper, Spider on point and top.
 

hennessygavan

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Sep 19, 2006
Messages
355
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Lough Corrib, Ireland
Spiderman,


If it doubt, next time you are fishing, try to catch a dun/mayfly in your hand. Unfortunately the poor fella may end up a bit mangled.
Then, put a damp or wet Snipe and Yellow , or similar, ideally in a similar size , beside it on your hand.

They look so similar - its no wonder they work ! Add in the hackles "zipping up" in water to look very much similar in profile to a nymph , plus hackle movement, and you've got one useful fly....

They are also lethal on Stillwaters, and have generally equalled or outfished some of the very useful Spanflex Buzzers I used to use.

Oh by the way, they work over here in Ireland too ! :)

Well said Spider.
They are essential must have patterns in my box too.
Gavan
 

DrRob

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May 17, 2006
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With Cindy Crawford
I have fished with what are now mistakenly called North Country Spiders for over 30 years on many of their ancestral rivers as well as further a field in both North & South America as well as Australia and New Zealand and can vow for there effectiveness on lakes and Stillwaters too. I have over many years tied flies for many clients all over the world via my old “Snipe and Purple” website. And have had many reports on there effectivness.
Mistakenly people refer to patterns like Partridge & Orange, Snipe & Purple and the like as SPIDERS, which in fact they are not. If you read all the traditional literature on these patterns the term spider does not occur. Spider was a term populated by Stewart to describe a few patterns tied by James Baillie of Scotland and not the traditional north of England patterns popularised by Pritt, Edmonds and Lee to name but a few. Unfortunately due to the ignorance of many of our famous self professed experts in magazines and on DVDs the term spider has been mistakenly used to describe the traditional wet fly patterns of northern England. In Scotland there is vast tradition of fishing spiders as well as traditional forms of wet fly like the Tweed, Clyde and Tummel patterns, are these Spiders ? Most assuredly NO!
It is a sad reflection on today’s anglers that they don’t know or investigate the history of the patterns and styles of patterns they use, if they did they would realise that most of what is spoken about North Country Spiders becomes complete bunkum due to the fact that their central starting premise the term “Spider” is wrong.
 
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19 Fut Sheelin

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