One of my fellow CADAC committee members is a very successful Salmon and Sea Trout angler. Admittedly, he lives quite close to the river but his success rate is much higher than most. He doesn’t class himself as a great angler but he catches plenty of very good fish.
So what’s his big secret? He goes fishing a lot!
He doesn’t just wait for ‘perfect conditions’, he fishes frequently and at the right times and as a result, is occasionally rewarded with a brief spell during which he is successful.
Today I experienced one of those times when for a short period, everything was perfect.
After a full day of picking up some reasonable fish on nymphs in fast water, I arrived at a slow pool and spotted a rising fish.
This pool was very silty and calm so I got in carefully so as not to alert the fish to my presence. Once I was in position, I hardly moved for two hours!
There were some big flies about but the fish seemed to be sipping tiny flies from the surface.
Little dimple and sipping rises suggest little flies but not necessarily little fish.
Good sized fish will often lose sight of and miss very small flies if they slash at them. They can also create a bow wave as they approach the fly which can make zoning in difficult. So instead of a normal take, you might just witness a ‘sip’ as the fish opens its mouth directly beneath the fly. This causes a ‘vacuum’ that the fly is sucked into and often, the fly will just disappear from view.
What an evening it turned out to be!
The water was flat calm so I wasn’t able to make any search casts or unnecessary movements. Instead, I just waited for individual fish to start feeding confidently and then rotated my body through 90 degrees to cover them. Long leader, size 16 and 18 flies and delicate presentations resulted in one of the best evenings fishing for truly wild trout that I have ever had! The last fish was an absolute monster considering it came from this little industrial river. It was measured at 22.5 inches and calculated to be just under 5lbs but with fading light and no other cameramen available, the pictures really don’t do it justice.