Tuesday 27 March 2012

First trout of the season

Sunday was a strange opening day.  Usually an opening day on a Yorkshire river means donning Neoprene chest waders a waterproof wading jacket lots of warm clothing and wondering if the rivers are low enough to fish. On the day the weather was warm more like  mid summer and the water levels were lower than at any time during the whole of last summer.

 The water is usually at least a foot and a half higher..As you can see from the exposed bank here :

Also added to the low levels the water was as clear as I have ever seen it .  I was even able to watch the minnows shoal round my feet as I kicked up food for them.

The warm temperatures did not seem to encourage either flies or fish to be active. There was little evidence of hatching flies the lightest dusting of Olives around lunchtime aroused little interest .  There was a couple of larger flies seen at a distance  march browns perhaps  but surface activity was zero.

I started with spiders in what was left of the the faster water but this raised no interest the usual runs seemed empty of fish.  I searched the deeper margin areas that were sheltered from the sun with nymphs but apart from a couple of small tweaks and plucks.  It was as if the river was empty.  I dont think the swimming dogs and all the walkers on the banks helped.

Eventually I located a feeding fish, a few yards downstream of the road bridge there is a very deep scour pool with a big back eddy.  A good fish was feeding steadily but without any great enthusiasm , it was lazily taking something trapped in the surface film.  Despite scouring the surface I could not see any sign of fly life so was to fish blind. Also  the only place I could get to near enough to make a cast meant I was effectively casting downstream into the back eddy.  So it was a long cast then I had to feed line to allow it to drift in.   Not very correct I grant you but I wanted that fish.  I guess I must have spent 30 minutes maybe 45 just swapping flies and casting and allowing the drift. Its amazing how you lose track of time when faced with such a puzzle.  Until I eventually had success.  A little size 18 emerger did the trick. I think I just got lucky and the fish and my fly ended up meeting at the right time.  But my it was good to see those red spots on brown and cream coming towards me in the clear water.

  The low water is a real worry lets hope we get some serious quantities of rain soon.  The ground is dry now and if we have a dry summer then some serious damage could be done to some rivers and streams.  So please God send rain...Tight lines to you all .

Wednesday 21 March 2012

Nearly Time....

The anticipation of a new trout season is now close to becoming a reality.  Its been a strange sort of winter.  good because I think I have managed to fish more for grayling than I ever have and I have had some nice fish .  No two pounders although I have come close not more than an ounce or two short.  I have hooked  one specimen and been connected to it long enough for both me and my host to be convinced that indeed the fish was well in excess of two pounds.  I thank Dave for his patience on that occasion when he invited me to fish that delightful chalk stream , on the day my casting was poor and my over eager playing resulted in a release at distance, finally to his amusement I managed to land the only small grayling we saw all day.  I suspect I wont have heard the last of that achievement.  

My trout  fishing can start on Sunday although only on the Ure,  The other clubs dont start till April the first . Not sure yet if I will fish on Sunday . Start day has always been on my local beck its a silly personal tradition but its sort of important to me.

Looking ahead this years plans include a long delayed trip to the Monnow and a day with Peter of walks and Fishes on a river yet to be agreed although I keep looking longingly at the Usk. Also hopefully a trip or two to the North East, the upper Tees and the Northumberland Derwent are rivers I look at longingly.  I hope and pray that our local beck gets some serious rain this year , I understand that not a single sea trout came to any of the rods last year , please god send rain.

Locally I have resigned from one association after only fishing it a few times last year.  But have at last gained membership of another small club with waters on the upper Yorkshire Dove.  A small wild fishery that looks most promising.

As for tackle and flies strangely I find that although I am fishing more the number of fly patterns I am using is getting less and less but those fewer patterns are in more sizes.   I am now a real CDC  fan the F Fly and the JT olive in a big range of sizes accounted for many fish last year.  Also north country spiders now have a permanent place in my armoury.   Lets hope the mayfly appear in numbers this year there is something magical about them.  Will the fish show much enthusiasm for the Grammon this year strange that such numbers of this big mouthful can be so easily ignored by the fish and I look forward to the hawthorn flies I love fishing with those the fish seem to fall of them with such abandon.

One for Hippo

 A blog I have followed for years is a Hippo on the lawn a recent comment on my blog shows two things , First it tells me Tom the writer was...