It has been a strange couple of weeks Torrential rain , record breaking temperatures . High water.. Low water we have had it all, and I have even managed the odd fishing trip, a couple of hours here and there to squeeze in between home and work . The highlights haven't been the fish but the surroundings and the things you see and the people you meet . One evening I had the pleasure of sharing the river with an Otter for a brief while . I read a lot of bad press about the Otters from some angling people and yet every single river angler I know doesn't have a bad word for them . We have had a resident otter on our local stream for 20 plus years . Sure it takes the odd sea trout at spawning time but the rest of the year it seems to live on crayfish, bull heads and the like . I suppose logically they are a lot easier to catch than a lively trout or grayling . Trouble is you put a heavily stocked commercial carp lake in front of them and all they are going to see is a whopping great Chinese take away. Full of big fat tasty carp. They don't understand the economics of running a commercial fishery. Anyway heres a really short and pretty bad video I took of one down the river the other night. It was a special moment it knew I was there but obviously thought I was harmless enough .
As for Crayfish well theres another funny thing , I caught one today. Thats a first for me and on a dry fly . Yeh right you say pull the other one . Well heres the thing I was fishing a dry , a size 16 IOBO humpy no less and the leader hooked under a bit of floating debris as I took in slack ready to recast . So I waded upstream to unhook the offending line and then realised my fly had got dragged into something so pulled it in by hand to clean of the fly and found this on the end. Now it may well be that I dragged the fly into the crayfish but I am convince that the IOBO looked so damn tempting it just stretched out his one good nipper and grabbed it . Anyway the cray was gently unhooked and returned swiftly . But I will definitely add it to my catch return for the season .
Yes its a native one , we are lucky around here that the signal invaders haven't arrived yet ...
Then to cap it all whilst fishing today I met several friends and the river keeper who I have known a long time in fact I gave him his first fishing rod when he was a kid. I do seem to spend a lot time chatting to fellow angling friends and yes these days more than ever a day on the river means so much more than catching fish . I guess this bloke knew a thing or two .