Grayling fishing UK

Grayling fishing in the UK is one of the most popular angling activities – with many fly fishing for grayling in UK’s rivers and finding it more appealing as grayling can often look heavier than they actually are. Grayling season is usually between mid-June to mid-March, although they can also be caught before season yet should be released.

Whether you’re a seasoned angler or a passionate beginner, John Norris provides advice for all levels of grayling fishing, increasing your chances of a successful catch…

Top grayling fishing spots in the UK

Choosing the right fishing location is paramount for grayling fishing success. Discover the top grayling fishing spots in the UK, such as the Test, Itchen, Avon, Dee, and Wye rivers. Through thorough research and even popping into our store in Penrith to chat with the angling experts at John Norris, you can identify the most productive beats, pools, or stretches in these rivers.

One of the prime locations for grayling fishing includes the Yorkshire Dales with rivers such as the River Ure, River Ribble, River Wharfe and more. Of course, the Yorkshire Dales also make for a fabulous family trip out, so you could turn your fishing experience into a full experience. Grayling are typically found in chalk streams offering clear and fast-running water.

The best equipment for grayling fishing

To maximise your success when targeting grayling, it's crucial to have the appropriate tackle and equipment - opt for a light to medium-action rod, ideally around 9-10 feet in length, to enhance sensitivity and detect subtle bites. Pair it with a high-quality reel and select a float line with a long leader for a natural fly presentation. Also, prepare a varied selection of weighted nymphs, dry flies, and streamers tailored to grayling fishing, as their preferences can vary based on the season and conditions.

Don’t be afraid to come into our Penrith store to see all available grayling tackle we have at John Norris – including bestselling fly rods, flies, reels and waders, or, click here to view our full range of fishing gear.

How to catch grayling

To catch grayling, anglers can adapt two popular techniques: dry fly fishing and nymphing. Dry fly fishing involves presenting artificial flies that float on the water's surface, imitating insects that grayling feed on. Choose patterns and sizes of flies that match the natural insects present, we can help you pick the best flies for grayling fishing, but we recommend klinkhammers and spiders with graylings. Timing is everything when it comes to the dry fly technique, as grayling tend to be quicker than other common fish, so it’s common to be too slow.

Nymphing is a very effective way of catching grayling as they are naturally bottom feeders – cast upstream and the nymph will come back towards you. Experiment with different depths and presentations to find what triggers the grayling's feeding response.

By mastering both dry fly fishing and nymphing techniques, anglers can effectively target grayling in different situations and maximise their chances of a successful catch.


At John Norris, we specialise in many angling techniques, ensuring that we can advise you on the best fishing tackle, gear and environments.

Visit us in store or browse our fishing gear online for the best fishing equipment on the market.