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Mid Summer on the Liffey

We have now reached mid summer and the river Liffey is still continuing to produce some good fishing. Over the past week i was out fishing on the liffey on most evenings. Usually i get down to the river early enough to have a good look around to see what fly life is about. Looking around the river bank gives me an insight as to what flies the trout will be feeding on. In the past week i have noticed greater numbers of different sedges about, some of which as yet i have not established a true identity for. I am working on that at the moment and as soon as i have the true identity of the sedges in question i will post photos of them on the entomology page.

BWO spinner male

There are also large numbers of Blue Winged Olives about (BWO’s),  first the duns and later on spinners. The trout actively feed on the BWO duns earlier on in the evenings.  The fish usually start to feed on the BWO spinners just as it is starting to get dark. The rise lasts for maybe a half of an hour or so giving some good fishing during that time. I have also caught some good fish on an olive klinkhammer in size fourteen.

Blue winged olive female

During the last few weeks i have lost some great fish including what i have to say was the biggest fish that i have ever hooked in my time fishing on the river Liffey. I looked over the fishing set up i was using to see if there was any reason for having so many fish breaking the fine leaders that i used. The one conclusion i have come up with is that the action of the rod is too stiff for fishing with light leaders. In the last few outings i have started using a rod that has a much softer action. So far i have noticed a slight inprovement in fish landed but it is early days yet.

Night time trout

I have noted through the years that when it gets pitch dark at this time of the season, it is the time when the bigger fish come on the feed. Again this season, this is proving to be true. Using one of my all time favourite flys, a Roman Mosers Balloon Caddis, i have caught and released many fish that were over the pound mark. This is one fly i could not be without. I have tied up lots of different variations of it. Looking through my notes on this particular fly and all of the variations that i tie up, two patterns are way up the leader board in catch rate. They are a fly that i tie using black foam with a claret seals fur body and a black seals fur thorax and a fly i tie using dark green foam with a fiery brown seals fur body and a black seals fur thorax. These patterns seem to work best late at night well into the darkness.

Fly Tying Patterns Page :

Through my contact page i have often been asked to post photos of the fly patterns that i use. I have also been asked if i could post a step by step guide on how to tie those patterns. With this in mind i have decided to start working on putting a step by step patterns page together. When i have this ready i will publish it under Fly Tying Patterns.


5 Responses to “Mid Summer on the Liffey”

  1. bobby says:

    you are certainly ticking all the boxes in my favourites eg night fishing
    for brown trout etc cant wait to see the fly dressing’s this is a
    great wee blog keep it up

  2. Ben O Connor says:

    I have found it very hard to hook a fish when fishing dry fly on the Liffey
    Time after time fish rise to the fly but I only hook the odd one.
    Do you think I should use smaller flies.
    My guess is that the water temperature may be partly to blame and also the low water conditions.
    I hope to be fishing the Liffey at Clane some night this week will keep you posted.
    Great blog. Great information. Makes fishing more interesting.
    Many thanks

  3. wgsten says:

    I find that sometimes the fish are only sipping down the flies and a big fly with floatant applied is not easily sipped down because of its buoyancy. You can also try a longer and a lighter leader. At the moment i am using size eighteen and down when i am fishing dry. Late on when it gets dark i use a bigger size as the bigger fish come on the feed.

  4. Paddy says:


    Great to hear that theLiffey is providing such good sport, and what a beaut of a trout you have photed above!
    I have never fished the Liffey, and living in Meath i feel that i should really have a go! Can you recommend where would be the best spots to go, and who i would need to get permits/permission from?
    Thanks a mill, tight lines.

  5. wgsten says:

    Thanks Paddy.
    pm sent

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