Sunday, 8 May 2016

Indian Tactics

Trust me to pick the warmest day of the year so far to fish a small river up the Dale I only occasionally fish from time to time which is tight to fish and simply walking along the stone banking is a break dancing feat in itself so its Indian tactics for the majority, down on your knees and surveying whats in front of you, most of the time intentionally but as was the case today sometimes on my knees unintentionally, but it was good to sit in the middle of the river cooling off!

I started around 1030hrs and the river really could have been doing with a bit more water in it. 
It was going to be hard going not only in tempting fish but on my knees too, something I wasnt looking forward to but its a lovely wee river and I only fish it maybe once or twice a season.

My logic was that today with the sun being on the water for most of the day the main rivers wouldn't have much showing however in the cooler shaded parts of the stream there might be the odd fish rising under the trees etc so it was worth the chance.

As I made my way downstream I saw small fish rising and I have to be honest I couldn't see what they were rising too, so after 10 minutes of sitting observing I decided a small olive pattern might tempt them.......Nothing, change of fly to a small emerger pattern.......nothing. Mmmm I wonder!!

Just then I caught sight of what I though to be a March Brown, I didn't get a very good look as it was flying upstream away from me, it was worth a try so a March brown was selected from the box and first cast.....

Success, small but beautifully marked and as wild as they come. The small pool produced another 5 of these small fish before it went dead and it was great fun tempting them as they came up, had a look and refused the fly but on the next cast took it without hesitation.

As I made my way break dancing down the stream my knees were taking a pounding and I knew I was going for a swim, even before it happened, sure enough down I went thankfully in a part of the stream where I managed to land on a flat rock and I just sat there for a few moments as all that was wet was my sleeve as I put my arm down to help me, If anyone seen me they would that I was mad sitting in the middle of the stream, but I did spot my next target fish which was rising close to some roots of an overhanging tree on the opposite bank.

Getting into position was a pain and after a couple of failed casts...stuck in the trees etc as it was really tight I finally managed to land the fly just upstream of where it last rose.......straight away up it came and took the fly. 

The red spots were nowhere as near prominent as in the smaller fish caught upstream but I wasnt complaining another lovely wee wild fish. The small pool lay still after this as this wee fella had went through it in its attempts to escape.

I came across a sight I've not seen on my travels for some time and that was an early purple orchid, only the two standing alone, I've not seen these for quite sometime now so it was nice to see them again.

The cowslips were also out in force and showing off all there glory

I have to say this year the wild flowers seem to be out in abundance over previous years, the wild primulas are thriving and can be seen in nearly every wood, the cowslips are showing more this year and the bluebells are just not quite there in this wood, some still in bud but another few days and bluebell wood will be a  nice sea of colour.

I sat and watched over another shaded pool and seen some insect life finally lifting in the way of a few olives, but not in any numbers and nothing was moving for them, after 10 minutes of not seeing anything I decided to give a cast anyway and see if I could entice a rise, On the 4th or 5th cast up popped this wee fella.

The red spots a bit more prominent than the last fish with a lovely buttery yellow belly.

I had reached where I wanted to be and the sun was high in the sky & it was hot, so a lay down on the grass banking for a few moments and something to eat was a welcome relief for my knees which were now aching. 

I started surveying the pool which was close by when a couple of inquisitive visitors strolled over and started grazing close by.

I saw a couple of small fish rise at the head of the pool in the faster water so got into position and had a few casts at them, twice I missed as they came up at lightning speed and rolled on the fly before finally connecting with one of them.

Totally devoid of any spots and a lean long fish  but still with the buttery belly.

I stopped for a few breathers on the way back upstream, it was nice to just sit in the shade and watch the yellow wagtails almost hover taking flies on an overhanging tree, and the bullfinches hopping from branch to branch.
It was during one of these breaks that I spotted my second wild orchid. Typical you dont see any for a few years then catch a couple of the same day.

Finally I made it back to the car, happy in the fact that my knees had survived...barely!
What a cracking few hours spent on a small stream catching wild trout, 9 in total of varying sizes but everyone as nice as the next, so a few hours on the TENS machine will just about sort my knees out but it lets me reminisce of the day in the sun with wild brownies. 

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