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With the mercury falling from yesterdays late afternoon sun, a night of clear skies the ground this morning was covered in a dusting of ice crystals. Jack had been for the first time this autumn.

Bury Black Pudding served with saute Bramley apples.

Bury Black Pudding served with sauté Bramley apples.

A hearty breakfast was in order on this cold November day. Slices of Bury Black Pudding with sautéed Bramley apples were cooked on the stove and served with French Toast and a cup of Yorkshire Tea.

It would be an ideal day for some fishing as the river was running slower today and the margins were clear. On a day when ‘Jack Frost’ has been and the ground is crisp, a couple of maggots trotted beneath an Avon float will usually result in a good roach, dace or perch. My preference on days like this or when the snow has fallen is to head to the Kennet or a Hampshire chalk stream to fish a small weighted shrimp or a dry Red Tag in search of grayling. One fly I have always taken grayling on during cold November days is a small fly tied with either purple or orange floss silk and a badger hackle, or with a body flat gold tinsel with a badger, snipe or partridge hackle, usually tied on Kamasn B911 barbless hooks size 14 or 16. These flies are classic North Country Spiders, tied with soft hackles.

Stephen Cheetham is a great advocate of fishing with North Country Spiders, he also ties some fantastic patterns and to a high quality.

Stephen and Christine Cheetham run Fishing With Style, based near Leeds. One of Stephen’s key interests if fishing Tenkara style where the fly is attached to the rod, yes no reel required and the flies have forward facing hackles.

Partridge and Orange tied by Stephen Cheetham

Partridge and Orange tied by Stephen Cheetham

Stephen produces a boxed set of North Country Spiders, called the North Country Spider Collection and costs £38 including 4 flies of 6 classic patterns. These being Partridge and Orange, Snipe and Purple, Water Bloa, Hare Lug and Plover gold tag, Stewart’s Spider and Greenwell’s Spider. I hope to get one of these collection in my Christmas stocking…

http://www.fishingwithstyle.co.uk/northcountry.htm for futher information on how to fish these flies.

If you are out on the water today, I wish you tight lines.