Saturday, 27 April 2013

Well Worth It:


The plan was to spend a few days north of the border, even going as far up as Aberdeenshire.  As ever, nature dealt us a cruel hand with rising rivers and strong northerly winds.  Aborting our mission, we managed to find one likely spot though again the wind proved a problem.  A good few hours walking and deliberating on where might be favourable passed before a handful of fish were eventually discovered.  Richard was first to score with a fit 1lb 10oz trout.  But, shortly afterwards the albeit meagre trickle of olives dried up.  A team of spiders worked through some tumbling water produced a modest pounder for me then out of nowhere this large snout poked through the surface film.  A quick flick upstream of this disturbance produced our best for the day (above), making our long journey and walk well worth it.

~Specimen trout like this hen fish are our future and need to be turned loose~


Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Big Boys come out to play…


A fair dollop of rain and breezy conditions have kept us off the rivers lately.  However, things settled down enough for me to nip out and spend a few hours on a favourite stretch of water.  Best of all, a half decent hatch of LDOs had some thumpers looking up for lunch.  This bruiser (right) weighed well over 3lb and towed me about the pool before he finally rolled over.  Another three notable fish followed, all were tucked up in daft spots, quietly sipping down a steady stream of duns…happy days! 


One of the lucky ones this Large Dark Olive dun found sanctuary on a dry boulder.  Yet, when they’re on the water nothing excites trout (or fishermen for that matter) more!









~You’d be hard pushed to find a better looking specimen than this lump.  Another that topped 3lb, making it the best session so far this season and one to remember~

Friday, 12 April 2013

Salmon on Dries…


With temperatures at last reaching into double digits, yesterday pretty much ranked as the first day of spring in my diary.  Best of all were rafts of Large Dark (right) drifting down the soft edges of current lanes. Some nice trout were quick to take advantage, which got me off to a nice start.  Though what I didn’t expect were topping salmon, two of which latched onto my size 14 DHE drifted down to them.  Well, you see a rise at this time of year and automatically think of trout!  Making my 4-weigh groan the tussle was epic and the best of them weighed just over 7lb.  Granted they were well mended kelts which were dropping back, but it does raise that question of salmon feeding in fresh water… 







Two pound plus of solid spring trout which snaffled the olive DHE (Deer Hair Emerger) without a second glance













Salmon kelts too had a liking for the DHE and nailed it with a satisfying head and tail rise







~Firmly embedded into the jaws of a decent male trout the DHE scores again~


Thursday, 11 April 2013

A Steady Stream:


Despite the unwelcome return of that nagging easterly, a day on the Lancashire Colne saw a staggering number of Large Darks congregate quieter parts of the river (right).  I was with successful urban landscape artist Liam Spencer who happens to be just as skilful with a rod in his hand rather than brush.  For three hours a steady stream of duns lifted off making it possible to target trout using our beloved dry flies.  Granted, struggling water temperatures did seem to make some trout lethargic, but we found enough fish to make the trip more than worthwhile.  


~Liam pitches at a trout holding tight against the far bank~


~Following a welcome response, minutes later a feisty Colne fish comes thrashing to hand~









          …Phew, safely in the net…

Monday, 8 April 2013

The Beginning of the End…?


Zephyr like breezes and much needed sun lifted weekend temperatures to nearly double figures.  In turn our coveted upwinged species responded by emerging in reasonable flurries.  Best of all though was the anticipated appearance of that iconic creature the March Brown, which trout really do relish.  As for the fishing, well the action might have been short lived, however, if you flitted from pool to pool it was possible to find rising trout before the curtain came down.  Hopefully at last this slight increase in temperatures signals the beginning of hatches proper and the end of winter’s icy grip…




It’d always nice to get a fish under your belt and I tend to make sure by using the net…





…Large and elegant, March Browns are perhaps the most wonderful of our upwinged flies…






~Despite March Browns being on the menu this trout snaffled an olive loopwing emerger~











Clean and in good fettle, you couldn’t wish for a better example of a spring trout

Friday, 5 April 2013

Magical Moment:


Another gruelling day of a relentless easterly with sub zero temperatures.  In truth, I was staring a blank in the face when for no apparent reason those icy gusts just died away.  Suddenly, a degree or two warmer, up popped Large Darks Olives (right).  In fact for the first time this season, several littered the surface at once.  Best of all though were dimpling trout, right on theirs heels and there in front of me.  What followed was 15 minutes of pure magic that concluded with a solid 2 pounder.  Sadly this welcome activity was brought to an abrupt end by that bloody wind, which spread cat’s paws across the surface, rendering the river lifeless once more.

~My day concluded with the stunning and well marked 2lb plus cock fish~



…An ill wind killed the hatch stone dead to rob me off any further action~


Tuesday, 2 April 2013

A Steady Trickle:

Flies 028

A glutton for punishment, I was out again yesterday.  Well, ever the optimist, my reckoning is that despite a horrible cold snap, things are bound to to kick off soon!  OK, so the hatch didn’t deliver, however for the first time this season, a steady trickle of Large Darks filtered downstream and joining them were a fair number of midges too (right).  Idle flows on pool tails and inside bends saw these two food sources gather where the odd dimple or two made it possible to pick off feeding fish.  Of course, such trout are often grateful now and although many were sipping in tiny midges they rarely refused a large CdC dun pattern.




~This spotted fellow might well have been knocking off midges, but couldn’t resist a CdC dry.





~Another fit fish about to be turned loose~