I have been reading the monthly fly fishing magazines for decades and I do sense an increasing appreciation for the sporting qualities of the Grayling as a fly fisher’s fish. As a Yorkshireman I have always had a love of them but once I moved to the south of England (1994) I could see that they were, at that time, much less appreciated than Trout. However I do believe that even on the hallowed chalk streams there have been big changes in attitudes over the past twenty years. I’d say that Grayling have become even more ‘trendy’ than Trout amongst serious regular fly fishers.

Mike's Grayling 18th Nov 2016

Grayling are a great dry fly fisher’s fish. On northern rivers the autumn is traditionally the best time for consistent Grayling sport with the fly and I have found that there is usually good dry fly sport until around late-November. On the southern chalkstream rivers dry fly sport continues right through the winter. Yes the best fishing is pre-Christmas but even on cold January days there is usually an hour or two in the middle of the day when a few olives hatch and the Grayling rise well to a dry fly.

And Grayling are certainly a great nymph fisher’s fish. Nymphing techniques are many and varied from a simple New Zealand style duo presentation through to heavy ‘chuck & duck’ Czech nymphing, French leader style, Tenkara, North Country spiders and more. Grayling are a very interesting and challenging quarry for nymph fly fisher’s right through from the summer to the late-winter.

Itchen Grayling

Another big benefit of the Grayling, especially to southern based fly fishers, is that they give the opportunity to fish the famous chalkstream rivers at a fraction of the price charged during the Trout season. A Trout season day rod on the River Test or River Itchen will set you back somewhere between £100 and £250 depending on the beat and the date whereas a Grayling day rod (October onwards) will usually only cost around £50 to fish the same beats.

And our Go Fly Fishing UK guided day prices (which include the day rod ticket) are also significantly lower. During the Trout season a guided day for one rod on the Test or the Itchen will cost around £300 to £550 but in the peak Grayling month of November it is just £209 or £229 in October (two rods £309/£319).

So if you have not already experienced the delights of Grayling fly fishing then drop me an email dave@goflyfishinguk.com or give me a call (07899 034728).