Sunday, 2 July 2017

Battered but not Beaten

The river has been thinning down nicely after all the rain during the week and when I walked down this morning it was in a very nice state, the sun was shining but the wind was bad and blowing straight down the Dale and I knew casting was going to be a nightmare.

As I sat & tackled up with a team of nymphs I watched a hatch of yellow sally's come off the river and as soon as they had broken through the surface layer they were off in the wind.

Making my way to my starting point there were a few damsel flies flying around then the peace & tranquillity was broken as the farmer made his way into the field behind with a couple of tractors...the grass was ready to cut for haymaking.

A few cast and the first Grayling of the day came to hand, nothing of any size but nevertheless nice to see as always.

A couple more casts and a couple more Grayling of the same proportions were in my hand. The wind was an absolute nightmare & I nearly lost my head wear a few times. I thought I seen a fish rise in some slack water behind an overhanging willow so stood and watched to see if it would rise again and sure enough just as I seen a yellow sally break through the surface and about to spread its wings it was snaffled by a trout.

Not having the set up for dry fly I decided to chance it and have a cast to see if I could entice it with a nymph. Within a few seconds of the nymph landing slightly upstream of the rising trout the line came to a stand still & I lifted into it hoping it was the trout and sure enough  it moved off at a steady pace trying to flee the hook hold.

A nice fight ensued and a few minutes later I slipped the net under a lovely trout.

Making my way downstream casting the best I could in the wind I connected with another couple of small Grayling before I decided to take a  break away from the wind and slipped behind some high willows to grab a drink and a break.

Moving downstream refreshed  the wild flowers were again showing all their beauty in the morning sun.

Thankfully the high bank behind me now gave me a bit of shelter from the annoying wind but I was limited to where I could fish as the shingle back dropped off quickly into a hole so I had to play safe and manoeuvre myself into an area where I could cover most of the water without going for a swim.

A few casts of the nymphs and I felt a solid take on the line and  the reel started to scream, My first thoughts were salmon again, but this was quite different from that after a few moments and then I saw this lovely big trout break the surface of the water trying to get its freedom, This fish was stunning and would easily be my new personal best from this river and I estimated him to be above 5lbs in weight. I backed off onto the shingle to try and land him as the deep drop off was immediately in front of me and as I reached for the net on my back the line went slack....it had thrown the hook!

I sat staring at this spot for almost 10 minutes cursing to myself, I couldn't get below the fish due to the deep water and obviously the tension from the rod and the downstream current had taken its toll on the size 16 hook hold. Ah well some you win some you loose!

Making my way downstream I got a consolation prize of  another small wild trout.

The noise of the tractors, the wind and the lose of the fish had taken its toll, but it was mostly the wind that had done it for me and I decided to cut short the session and head home, battered but not beaten, there is always next time.

At least the walk back to the car was far easier now the grass had been cut!


  1. Nice post George.
    I love the photos of the countryside, and walking through a field that has been clipped is much more pleasant than a thick one.
    The browns are well spotted and beautifully shaped.

    1. cheers Alan, it certainly made for easier walking back up to the car, thats for sure.

  2. Replies
    1. Cheers, mate always nice to see you dropping by :)


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