Arrived on the river and looking downstream nothing was moving at all. Not to be put off I started off on the spiders which brought me a great day 48 hours prior and it wasn't long till the sun was poking its head through again and the first fish was in the net.
As I made my way upstream the fish were coming to the spiders just as they were the other day and it was turning out to be another one of those days, lots of small fish but excellent sport.
I made my way steadily upstream to one of the pools and sat for a few minutes watching to see if any fish were moving and slowly but surely fish after fish started to rise so changed my set-up to dry fly.
First thing to suck down the dry fly was this little guy, almost a bar of silver, the photograph does it no justice to how silver it actually was & I suspect could be a sea trout smolt??
Next the ladies made an appearance, and everyone of them in fighting fit condition, showing no signs of spawning at all, all on the dry fly.
After the 3rd Grayling I thought it best to move on as I didn't want to be constantly competing with them whilst looking for the trout so carried on upstream, the weather had most certainly improved and it was almost like summers day.
I watched as the fly landed just above where the trout had been rising and next thing sure enough up it came and sucked down the fly......fish on......well I was amazed when I seen the colours of it as the fish came to the surface to try and escape the hook hold.......a Rainbow Trout
This was most definitely a first in a long-time, for me landing a Rainbow trout from a river, the last time being on the Hampshire Avon. Obviously an escapee from somewhere but I couldn't think where as the River and its tributaries this far upstream all come from the reservoirs which are not stocked with rainbows. The fish was almost fin perfect and in excellent condition.
I dont normally take any fish for the pot, and haven't done for many years but this trout isn't supposed to be in this river, so it will be my Tuesday night tea with some new potatoes. All this talk of food, it was time to break out the Kelly kettle from its hiding place which had been strategically placed with brew equipment, what better way to pass an hour on the side of the river watching the world go by.
I wasn't the only one enjoying the sun, the butterflies were sunning themselves.
The flowers were all leaning to the sun drawing in the warmth.
And the Hen Mallard was escorting her young around the pool.
After a brew and letting the world go by for over an hour it was time to see if there was gold after the rainbow and sure enough the golden bellied brown trout were still rising and still taking the dry fly.
I'm not normally lost for words but what happened next cast certainly made me speechless, not less than 30metres from where I had taken the rainbow trout I had covered a rise and hooked another rainbow trout of roughly the same size, as I was about to try and slip the scoop net under him I accidentally knocked my tippet with the net and the fish turned and was gone.............I could have kicked myself for being so clumsy but I was amazed that in just over an hour I had went from catching 1 rainbow trout to catching 2!! Who would have thought that after all these years of river fishing & only once before catching an escapee that I would catch 2 escapee rainbows in literally 30m of each other on the same day.
I continued on and the fish kept rising to the artificial's another couple of small Grayling and a few small trout, Across the Dale in the distance the clouds looked ominous, so decided to start heading back down after all I was now a couple of miles upstream of the car
As I fished back downstream with the grey clouds slowly catching me up the brown trout continued to rise although not in the same numbers as earlier in the day.
The ones that were rising were a better stamp of fish and it was nice to see such lovely brown trout with their golden bellies and array of colours.
As the leprechauns say, there is gold at the end of the Rainbow there was certainly Gold after the Rainbow's for me today and another lovely day in such magnificent surroundings.
Tally for the day was:
17 Brown Trout
1 Sea trout Smolt (If somebody knows better could they let me know if it actually is)
6 Grayling and 2 Rainbow Trout, all that was missing was a salmon for a full house.