Spider Fishing

Fish & Fly Team

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Source: GAIA Members Articles

[h=2]Spider fishing[/h]

Spider fishing’s tradition goes back centuries. The origins of the simple north country spider wet fly pattern – often referred to as the ‘soft hackle’ fly – can be traced back to early 19th Century Yorkshire, when descriptions appeared in an 1807 manuscript by Ilkley farmer John Swarbrick. But it wasn’t until around a hundred years later that the document was eventually published. Shortly after the fly came to prominence in Thomas Evan Pritt’s 1885 publication of the classic “Yorkshire Trout Flies”, later renamed “North Country Flies”. The book gained instant popularity by providing fly patterns for each month through the season, how to fish them and when.

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The history behind the method needs to be treated with respect and a “chuck it and chance it” approach will be largely unproductive When executed properly spider fishing is a method both satisfying and effective in equal measure.

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Fly rod and leader set up are all important in any one of these methods. Fly selection and presentation are key to targeting your quarry. A GAIA Instructor can help optimise your learning of these methods by eliminating bad habits before they take hold.

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Learning good technique means you understand what’s going wrong and why, resulting in the abilty to self correct with ease.

If you would like a GAIA Instructor to help you put theory into practice, use Find An Instructor to get in touch with your local GAIA instructor and have a chat about your requirements.

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Source Article...
 
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guest54

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Interesting how those spiders have their hackles raked, which is how I try to tie mine, and yet many illustrations show the opposite.
 

Mr Notherone

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Jul 19, 2013
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Monmouthshire
I’ve used spiders a few times this season with some success. It’s a skill I want to develop more. Usually I opt for nymphs subsurface.
 

vital

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Nov 9, 2009
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South of England
And don’t forget Spiders can be pretty good on put and take Stillwaters, especially slow sinking beneath trees
etc!
 

davefish

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Stow on the Wold
There is something about those flies I like. Perhaps it's in part to do with their history. I read that working men tied them with their hands (no vice) and fished to put food on the table for a young family, 1800 and frozen to death. Some materials were available and some not, depending on the area. And then there is their description-Spiders. Really. Anything that has drowned is my interpretation. I'll keep that to myself.

If you look at flies on the river today, easy see they are very delicate...

Chris
 

don1971

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Jun 1, 2018
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Uk
The photographs are misleading. The first picture shows some spiders, but what are the next 2 supposed to be? A wiggle cast and 2 boxes full of modern emerger patterns. Did bob Mortimer write this?
 

bobsmith

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Jun 16, 2009
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Yorkshire
Misleading load of *******s. Poorly written, with zero research to boot. If this is the level of knowledge that GAIA aspire to then god help us all!
 

wobbly face

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Not So Greater Manchester.
I think the article is more to do with "book a GAIA guide".
There's not a traditional spider in those boxes, look like dries with F flies, deer hair sedge and emergers/klinks.
Howell Morgan doing a wiggle/S cast to cover complex water with multiple currents. Useful for fishing dry, duo or nymphs with an indicator at range.
I think those pics should not have been used in the advertisement for GAIA guide under the heading "Spider Fishing".
It is a great method (so are are many others) and by all means book a guide to learn more (hoping that guide has the knowledge).
 

hoxton bridge

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Apr 2, 2017
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SW4
Misleading load of *******s. Poorly written, with zero research to boot. If this is the level of knowledge that GAIA aspire to then god help us all!

The best description of spider fishing I have listened to is Oliver Edwards. The man clearly knows his stuff and has fished this way for years. His advice looks very little like the above, which I think looks like a marketing exercise.
Best,F.
 
D

Deleted member 38815

Guest
Looked the photo of the spiders. In my 40 plus years of spider fishing never ever seen a spider with a gold bead up here on Yorkshire dales rivers.

I have the luck to with Oliver Edwards who's more than willing pass on info and advise and part with a few fly's. A true Yorkshire gentleman

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Interesting how those spiders have their hackles raked, which is how I try to tie mine, and yet many illustrations show the opposite.

With the hackle raked back, it pulses in the flow
 
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