Sunday, 19 February 2017

Calls of Nature

I decided no matter what I needed to get out onto the river today, no matter what the weather conditions.
My knee is still sore & swollen so opted for an easy walk stretch to fish but wanted to nip to another stretch just for a look at something from last year I had forgotten about and needed to collect, I arrived at the non fishing stretch just before 10am and headed downstream to where I wanted to go, on route passing the snowdrops which are now in full bloom all along the river.

The river looked in fine fettle but there was a very strong downstream wind which was biting cold.

I found and retrieved what I was looking for, something I wanted for a project in the summer but needed to collect now before the leaves come back onto the trees & bushes

Walking back along the riverside path I caught glimpse of a wood pecker before it disappeared from view but I guess that answered who lives in a hole like this.

Driving back the short distance to my chosen stretch just after 11am I wandered the short distance to the river and the wind was still biting cold so I knew it was going to be a day of fighting that and trying to find spots with a bit of shelter out the wind. The river was clear and up on its normal levels, it looked pristine fishing conditions all be it the wind was dampening things.

Walking along the high bank the gorse was in full bloom, I headed further along the bank and dropped down out of the biting wind, as soon as you were out the wind it was a glorious day, I sat and watched LDO hatching off the water in the morning sun where the water was sheltered. a couple of kingfishers were darting up and down the river and across in the field opposite a couple of Hares were facing up to each other, by the look of things mother nature was well under way making her changes for the spring.

First couple of casts in the faster streams produced a few nips from smaller fish and then I managed to just hook then loose a fish almost immediately as it took the fly as I was drawing it back to recast. 
Another couple of casts and a small grayling came to hand.

The next few casts produced another Grayling of similar size before all went quiet and I headed upstream.

As I came through the small copse of willow I could see a couple of Oyster catchers on the Gravel bank next to a goose thats been on the stretch for about 3 months now but cant fly due to wing damage, I managed to get to a place where I could take a semi decent picture without disturbing them.

Walking upstream into the biting wind again certainly woke you up and reminded me it was still February.

I never touched a fish at all in the stretch where the wind was blowing downstream and it was only once I was in the shelter of the big fir wood that I saw fish movements again.

Casting to where I seen a swirl I hooked into an angry trout almost immediately and with a few flicks of its tail it came right out the water and slipped the hook all I saw was the bow wave in its wake as it headed across the shallow water downstream.

I noticed as I trekked back downstream that the pussy willow are budding, a bit of colour appearing on bare branches, It wont be long until they have broken clean out of their bud cases and further along the bank the wax caps are taking advantage of the one of the logs.

I fished on for another hour but nothing more came to the flies so decided to call it a day as my knee was throbbing and the wading in the cold water wasnt improving anything.

One snowdrop that captured my attention today, purely for the size of the flower. Two single blooms in the middle of nowhere and the flowers were twice if not three times as big as any others I saw during the day.

It certainly was nice to be back out after a few weeks off but I think with the way my knee is and the Grayling season almost over that I might resign myself to calling it a day for the Grayling for this year as they are starting to think about other things, It was the 19th February last year that I stopped after seeing Black Grayling & in 2015 it was 28th February so we are definitely in that period of time and with it being a mild winter and spring happening that few weeks in advance its best to play safe & leave them be, am not the sort of angler who can see the signs but resigns themselves to continue fishing and call it sport.

I've had a fair to good Grayling season this year and stuck with the fly rod for the full duration, not once did any trotting get done, but who knows I may trot a few small red worms in the early days of the trout season until it warms up a bit.


  1. George your post shows just how beautiful our sport is. You don't need to catch fish to have a very rewarding and successful day.

    1. Thanks Alan, Truly wonderful no matter where in the world, some of the pictures you post are truly awesome.


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