Sunday was fathers day and when asked what I wanted to do it was a simple response . " A few hours down the the river". Wish granted....Once i had found somewhere to park I headed of downstream to start fishing up....Now the river was still up a an inch or two and was still carrying extra colour fining down from the previous days. After walking downstream for 15 minutes, a distance that I reckoned that would take me an hour or two to fish back up. These little spate rivers cant be rushed containing lots of pocket water and bankside runs that need careful searching. Also slow wading is the name of the game. These small wild fish rise freely but soon head for cover if careless wading send advance notice of your presence ,
The colours of these wild fish always amazes me. and although the fish are small they resist capture with a great deal of airborne acrobatics.
There didnt appear to be a great deal of surface activity but as is often the case a bit of searching located fish. It was in the places that usually appear lifeless during summer low conditions where I started to see activity and as everything seemed to be hatching my fly of choice was once again a size 18 IOBO. This was the fly after 4 or 5 fish after a dusting with the frogs fanny.
This was the same fly half a dozen fish later . There was a discussion in a magazine last month on the supposed lack of resilience of cdc for fly dressing. Well this fly went on to catch between 12 and 15 fish before a tree trout claimed it. After each fish a quick swill in the water and a squeeeze in a piece of kitchen roll and a dust up with frogs fanny and its just like new.
Now I bought some Roman Moser miracle float at the start of last season after fishing with Dave Southall and hearing him praise it but initially I wasnt impressed . This season I have given it another whirl after another chat with Dave. So before using a CDC fly I apply a smidge of miracle float.
Now when I say a smidge thats what it was. On reflection I had been using way to much . Barely a tiny drop rubbed between finger and thumb just so your skin feels a little greasy see photo below,then the CDC is worked between your fingers. This just coats the cdc without clogging it . After maybe four or five fish I would re coat the CDC. otherwise just a swill and a squeeze in tissue then a quick brush with frogs fanny . It makes a real difference to how the CDC holds up. Thanks Dave...
After luch there was quite a few mayfly hatching . A switch to a mayfly pattern brought a few fish . TBH I think the IOBO would have been just as effective if not more so. But its nice to catch on a mayfly it makes me feel like summer is here .
As for the frogs fanny I bought a big tub of the Silica stuff from some bloke in the states on ebay about 3 years ago . I find it identical to the real frogs fany. I just keep refilling the original bottle.
I dont think it was a concidence that the mayfly brought a few big stockies up . When they have been in the river a week or two will rise at anything so uneducated or not a big visible fly is going to tempt them.
The little wildies also were up for a big mouthfull. the mayfly hatch was really isolted to one slow stretch where duns were trickling off for a while. Hopefully the main hatch should get going this week.
Heres one that ended up on my waders . After I let it float away it dissapeared after about 15yds all that was left was just circles in the film...
Just as an aside I picked up a Snowbee little nylon case with fly boxes last closed season. I had spotted another mate using and liked the looks of the handy size and whilst trolling ebay noticed these for sale compartment boxes pretty much identical to snowbee except for a fraction of the price.
There brilliant , so slim that I can fit five in the pocket of my chest pack. You can see whats in them easier through the clear lid and there magnetic so the wind doesnt blow everything away. I think the big chunky old fly boxes are a thing of the past for me...