Over the past few years, the popularity of ‘the wee burns’ has established these wonderful places as one of the best types of fly fishing out there. But don’t let that lead you to believe that it gets busy – there are immeasurable kilometers of twisting, tumbling, gliding waterways that could provide many, many lifetime’s exploration and fun! You will seldom meet another soul after venturing a few meters from the road and more often than not you will have the whole stream to yourself.
Now, we are not going to break any size records here, your average is probably going to be shorter than my dog’s nose! But that is really not the point. Carefully working your way quietly upstream through the swishing deer grass or clambering over boulders and ‘picking pockets’ for some of the most iridescent, beautiful and ridiculously feisty wee Trout will leave your cheeks aching from the biggest grin possible!
The equipment to get the best from this purest form of fly fishing is light, the lighter the better, but bear in mind that if the wind picks up your #0 or #1 setup might struggle to put the fly anywhere near where you might like it to be! I would recommend a #2 or #3 and I very much prefer the fiberglass option in this situation – much more ‘feel’ and it simply seems in-keeping with the beautiful small Trout you are pursuing. There is also the option for ‘Czech Nymphing’ style on many sections but I generally prefer a short – 6′ to 7’6″ – rod to cover most situations.
For the selection of flies, your ‘usual suspects’ will be revealed under the stones on the bank and when water and weather conditions permit, upstream dry fly with #14s or #16s can be the most magical way to lose literally hours in what seems like minutes! This is Assynt fly fishing at its best – you canne beat the burn!