Long Trotting for grayling is very much a traditional method of fishing for grayling during the winter months in the Yorkshire Dales, not only is it a skilful and pleasant way of fishing it’s also very effective.  Historically many of the angling clubs in the Yorkshire Dales permit long trotting for grayling, (usually with worm), after the brown trout season has finished and it’s a great way to extend your fishing season.

As with fly fishing it’s a mobile and lightweight approach to fishing and requires minimal equipment, in addition to the rod and reel all that’s required are a handful of floats, a box of split shot, hooks and of
course a small tub of worms. Most float rods of around 13 feel in length will suffice but a good quality and very free running centre pin reel is essential if you are to fish effectively.  The more commercially available wire stemmed “Avon” style floats are fine but the Reg Righyni style grayling floats with a longer and more visible tip are better.

There are two methods of casting – the multi loop and the Wallis cast, both take a little practice, (Wallis casting more so,) but it shouldn’t be too long before you get the hang of them. Controlling the reel without it overrunning both with the casting and the actual fishing is also something you have to work at but the initial frustrations and the odd “birds nest” soon become a thing of the past.

Long trotting is an efficient and effective way of catching grayling much more so than fly fishing at least during the colder and harder months during the winter, minimal wading is also required making it more comfortable than deep wading bugging or Czech nymph fishing.

Go Fly Fishing UK have extensive long trotting experience and in the Yorkshire Dales can offer long trotting days for grayling on the River Wharfe, River Aire, River Nidd, River Ure and the River Ribble.

Give it a go; I think that you will be pleasantly surprised as to just how enjoyable it actually is.