When fly-fishing on the Wear there is no real requirement for huge double handed rods. Rods in the 10ft - 13ftft range will cover most eventualities. In general floating lines with a variety of tips will cover most of the river but it is always worthwhile carrying a full sinking line as well.
Many anglers opt to spin in high water. Spinning or bait fishing at this time can reward you with fish that otherwise could not have been caught. A good 10ft spinning rod will be required with a large capacity fixed spool reel or even a multiplier. Popular baits for bank fishing include devon minnows, toby salmos, blair spoons and Flying C's.
Fishing is all about confidence so choose flies with which you feel comfortable. Size is the most important matter when considering what pattern to use, with colour running at a close second.
Tackle for Trout
For sea trout a 10 or 11ft rod and appropriate line will suffice. As for the fly box make sure that you have highly visible flies with yellow and orange. This is particularly true when there is peat stain in the water. Jungle Cock is useful addition! silver and blue flies such as the Medicine or Teal Blue and Silver and Silver Stoats Tail. With warm waters Riffle Hitch and similar surface flies can be very rewarding.
Tackle for brown trout & grayling
Lighter rods around 9ft, rated for a 5wt line are best suited to most of the brown trout and grayling fishing on the river. There is little need for anything other than a full floating.
In the spring flies such as Greenwells, Coachman and Kites Imperial will catch large brownies feeding on the prodigious hatches. Come summer such things as Silver Sedge and Tups can imitate the large hatches of sedge and smaller olives.
The river holds a population of very large brownies and whilst these can be caught on the surface in the spring by summer they feed almost entirely on fish (minnows in the main) and can be caught on sculpin patterns. During autumn and winter, when fishing for grayling on the River Derwent, small spider patterns, Czech nymphs GRH and grayling bugs should replace other flies in your tackle box.
Visiting and local anglers are able to purchase tackle from local tackle shops and mail order outlets. Those marked with an asterisk (*) in the following list of suggestions also hire out equipment.