Fly Fishing Tuition & Fly Fishing Lessons


Please Note: Due a change in my personal circumstances I have been forced to suspend my guiding and instruction service for the foreseeable future. I will continue to honour any outstanding gift certificates up to the expiry date. Sales of flies and accessories are not affected.

Fly fishing is a complex sport and it can take many years of experience to become proficient and confident. The learning process can be accelerated with fly fishing tuition and instruction from a suitably Qualified Fly Fishing Instructor. Fly fishing instruction not only helps you learn faster, but more importantly, you will learn the correct techniques and therefore not slip into bad habits right from the start. I provide fly fishing lessons and tuition in all aspects of fly fishing and fly casting and I have listed below many of the areas where you might feel you could do with some instruction. This list is not exhaustive and if you feel that you want to receive fly fishing tuition in something not listed please contact me to discuss your requirements.

All fly fishing lessons and courses take place in the Yorkshire Dales, North Yorkshire, on the river or at a local stillwater. You may have your own favourite piece of water that you wish to use for fly fishing instruction in the Yorkshire Dales and I am happy to visit you to give advice and tuition. All fly fishing tuition is given on a one to one basis. I prefer to work this way so that I can give you my full and undivided attention. This will give you the best chance of success and give me more time to teach you the art of fly fishing and fly casting. However, if you want to bring along a friend or relative you are welcome to do so. Fly fishing instruction can last from 2 hours to a full day or longer, it's your choice. If you want more general fly fishing tuition you might want to consider one of my fly fishing courses.

Fly Fishing Gift Certificates can be used for all fly fishing tuition - Is your friend or relative struggling with certain aspects of their fly fishing or fly casting? Why not treat them to a few hours of fly fishing instruction?

  • Fly fishing instruction in all aspects of fly fishing.
  • Single handed fly casting lessons - cast better, cast further, cast more accurately, lose those bad flycasting habits, learn new fly casting skills including, the double haul, Spey casts and snake roll. Improve your fly casting technique by improving your foundation casts: the overhead cast and roll cast. Learn to cast better in wind.
  • River fly fishing tuition - convert from stillwater fly fishing. Instruction in fly line management on rivers, river fly fishing techniques including, upstream dry fly fishing, downstream dry fly fishing, upstream nymph, Czech nymphing, Euro nymphing/French leader, wet fly fishing (north country spider fishing), duo and trio methods. Basically anything and everything to do with river fly fishing.
  • Czech nymphing - spend some time learning to fish the deadly Czech nymph (or bugging). You'll be amazed at its effectiveness and the places where you can catch trout and grayling. In addition to Czech nymphing practically you will learn about the flies used, suitable tackle, leader make-up, rivercraft, detecting the take and minor tactics of Czech nymphing. Read what some of my guests had to say about Czech nymphing.
  • Stillwater fly fishing tuition - do others always catch more fish? Successful stillwater fly fishing depends on many things, not least good fly casting ability, but also being able to use many different fly fishing techniques and adapting them to the conditions. I can teach you to fish with dry flies, emergers, nymphs (including indicator fishing, or the 'bung' as it is also known), wet flies and lures to improve your catch rate. Learn how to 'read' a stillwater to help your decision where and how to fish.

Pre-Learning & Reference Resource

All clients are given private access to my "Pre-learning & Reference" website following fly fishing tuition, lessons and guiding. This is a website designed and written by me for the exclusive use of my clients as a future proof point of reference. It includes sections on all aspects of single handed flyfishing for trout and grayling, from absolute basics of buying and setting-up tackle, casting, fishing techniques, knots, etc. and progressively covers more in-depth subjects such as more advanced casting, entomology, fly selection, etc. There are pictures, diagrams and videos to aid the learning process. This is a valuable source of information for any fly-fisher which has been well received by former clients; comments include...

Brilliant website!

Stuart, that's brilliant

I have had a chance to look at the website and I only have positive feedback. It is excellent, well-written, comprehensive and easy to understand with useful diagrams. I can't praise you highly enough for producing it and will be looked at again and again.

Just to say that I have surfed your new resource and would like to compliment you for the clarity with which everything has been presented and the generosity with which it is available to your clients for reference etc.

I've had a good read through it and I have to say that I think you have nailed it - the various sections are easy to read and seem to go into things with just enough depth without 'blinding with science' especially the entomology - just enough to give an insight into the subject and maybe encouraging further reading but enough to be confident enough to choose a fly pattern to suit. The section on fly patterns - positions on leaders and what to expect to find month by month is again enough to give 'confidence' and that really is the aim so the angler feels he is 'doing it right'.

You should put all of this into a book, it is really very good!

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Whether learning fly fishing for the first time, or just correcting a few bad habits that have crept into your fly fishing, it is vitally important to seek out the services of a suitably qualified, professional, fly fishing instructor. Qualifications in fly fishing instruction are rather complicated to say the least, but any fly fishing instructor worthy of the title "instructor", should hold one of the following qualifications: L2CCA (Level 2 Certificate to Coach Angling), APGAI (Advanced Professional Game Angling Instructor) or AAPGAI (Association of Advanced Professional Game Angling Instructors).

STANIC was the original minimum qualification required to become a fly fishing instructor. This was replaced in 2003 with the updated qualification L2CCA. Both qualifications have similar requirements in fly fishing knowledge, understanding and ability, but the updated L2CCA version introduced first aid, child protection awareness and CRB checks, as you would expect with any modern qualification.

APGAI is a far more advanced level, which requires that the candidate demonstrates they have prior experience of fly fishing instruction (minimum 12 months) and a high level of expertise is required throughout the assessment.

AAPGAI was formed by a group of APGAI instructors to develop their skills further and to offer an alternative (though very similar) assessment to APGAI.

If an instructor/guide does not hold one of the above qualifications, they have not been rigorously tested by the governing bodies of fly fishing in England, to ensure that they surpass the standards of excellence set for fly fishing tuition, and that they are of good character.

Unfortunately there are other (unrecognised) 'qualifications' in fly fishing instruction/guiding, e.g. REFFIS, which just serve to complicate things for those looking for fly fishing instruction and fly casting instruction.

Some anglers are taught by well meaning friends or relatives, but in reality this only leads to learning that persons bad habits. In the long term there is no substitute for a qualified instructor, ensuring that the beginner, or more experienced alike, get a good foundation in fly fishing from which to build and develop their own skills.


River Fly Fishing Tuition

Hi Stuart,

Just a quick note to say thanks for last Mondays session. I enjoyed the day thoroughly despite the unseasonable temperatures. I now need to practice the methods you taught me. The important thing is that I can see the reasoning behind the techniques and understand why they should be better than what I have been practising.

Czech nymphing - what can I say, it is amazing. After I left you I went up to where you suggested. I continued with the Czech nymphing and had landed 3 fish in under an hour, one of them a superb Grayling of around a pound and a half. I couldn't believe it considering our catch rate during the day. To continue with my astonishment with the technique, I went down to our club stretch of the Calder yesterday morning and had eight fish in a two hour session, all wild brownies, the biggest at just under 2 pounds - this technique is absolutely fantastic. What's more I was fishing in runs and pools that I had never been able to fish before because of high banking and trees preventing fishing with a conventional backcast, this method has really opened up the river for me.I will probably be back to you for a refresher or top up course this back end or early next season.

Thanks again

A very satisfied customer ( a bit corny - but true)

Andrew P.

Guided Day River Wharfe, Burnsall

Hi Stuart

Just thought I'd let you know that I was in Devon on business on Monday and I managed 2 hours on the Exe. I had 10 all together, including 5 in 20 minutes on the Czech nymphs! It's a deadly technique - your excellent tuition is certainly paying off!! I'll try and get up for a grayling day in December.

Best wishes


Guided Day River Wharfe

Hi Stuart

I have been out grayling fishing a few times this winter and found the Czech nymphing and upstream nymphing techniques we did at Bolton abbey to be really effective.

At the last trip I caught more fish than my five fellow anglers put together - the short line stuff really works.

Anyway thanks for a great day out and for sharing your expertise so freely.

Have a great year and I hope we will fish together again.

Best wishes