Wednesday, 30 November 2011 16:22

Contrasting Fortunes

Last week began with a short but sweet session on the Izaak Walton Hotel water on the River Dove.

All that lovely rain (and the corresponding lift in water level) was a thing of the past and the river was back looking exactly like it has for most of the season - extremely low and extremely clear. The conditions were almost perfect for sight fishing and stalking, and the 'almost' is in there, because the light wasn't too great...

I strolled slowly up from the car park to Ilam Rock at our top boundary, only casting to sighted fish, and landed around a dozen nice fish between 1.5 and 2.5lbs. It's a great feeling as you watch the nymph sinking slowly into the fish's line of sight, it's fins bristle and it swims over to the fly engulfing it confidently. Of course it's not always like that, but when it DOES happen as described it's a truely great feeling. It's a bit like underwater dry fly fishing and I love it.

The week ended a way up north on the River Clyde in Scotland as I was hosting a weekend of grayling fishing (and partying!). I study the river levels websites very studiously before trips such as these and was slightly concerned to see an up to date level of 1.2m on the closest guage, as against an average level of 0.67m. But a clear(ish) night gave a guage reading on 0.9m by Saturday morning. The water height wasn't the problem; it was the howling downstream gales which made life tricky.  The weather reports said 70mph winds and gusts up to 90mph! EEK

Still, grayling anglers are a hardy bunch and we went for it anyway. Perhaps unsurprisingly, only a few grayling were landed (a couple of real huge ones were lost) and we retired to the cottage in high hopes that if the wind relented then the Sunday conditions might be perfect... Hmmm...

Well the wind relented all right, but solid overnight rain pushed the height up to a whopping 1.6m and we decided on a change of venue. Tinto Fishery wasn't too far away and although a little bleak at least gave us some water we could cast into without getting swept away. Very surpringly dry flies were the way to go and we all had some nice rainbows to about three pounds. Shame we couldn't have had three pound grayling off the river, but as they say, "That's fishing"...


TFF 770 x 210 subs ban

TFF 770 x 210 subs ban

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