8th December 2015
Friday saw my good friend Paul Griffin from Glasgow driving down to Northumberland. He was staying with me over the weekend while he did a fly tying demonstration to youngsters at Thrunton Long Crag fishery on Saturday morning.
Friday evening was spent catching up as we played with new patterns and materials around my vice. Paul brought me a bag which contained all sorts of materials I have never used. Usually I tie basic patterns that I know catch fish for me on rivers and still waters. Paul ties a huge variety of patterns for salmon, sea trout, brown trout, rainbows and grayling. His den at home in Glasgow contains so much AND it is all organised. An impressive number of youngsters turned out considering the horrible weather. Paul showed the boys and girls how to complete two flies step by step. The youngsters concentrated so well for almost two hours, really impressive. At the end of the session the wind was almost gale force and the rain was horizontal. Not the ideal conditions for the young anglers to fish !!
It was great to see the number of adult helpers that were keen to help and encourage the young ones to create their own flies. This is the way to encourage young fly fishing anglers to take up our sport. The previous session Paul did at Thrunton was on a much better day weather wise and the youngsters went on to catch trout on the flies they had made, excellent.
On the Friday I had arranged to meet Paul at Chatton on his way down the A1 at around 1.30pm. I arrived just before 10am so that I could get a couple of hours fishing in before lunch. It was a mildish day but with a stiff wind blowing. Jimmy came along too as he knows Paul from previous days we have all fished together. After the usual cup of tea I set off for Dunnydeer Lake and tried a dozen casts with buzzers and nymph flies on my floating line. Nothing seemed interested in the offerings I was making so I walked across to Ross Lake. I picked my fishing spot carefully, the wind blowing from my left so I was casting across the wind. I also stood about twenty yards from a bank so that after each cast my fly would be blown into the bank eventually. On went my Pheasant Tail fly and first cast I let the fly sink for five seconds before retrieving, nothing! Next cast I waited ten seconds ant the third cast I waited fifteen seconds before retrieving. After retrieving for ten seconds my line went tight and I managed to land a beautiful two pound Brown Trout.
To cut a two hour story short, the trout kept taking the fly,not every cast but pretty regularly. After fourteen fish I was ready for some food and Jimmy came across from Dunnydeer . I told him what length of leader to use and what fly to put on. He stood were I was standing, and I told him in which direction to cast. I walked away and left him to it! I had only gone less than fifty yards and he shouted he had one on. Amazing how fishing works, SOMETIMES!!
Earlier in the week I was at Chatton again and in the same time scale I managed to land five trout. Two trout were tempted by a Black Buzzer while all the other others fell to a small Pheasant Tail pattern.
Coaching sessions are not as many now as the weather deteriorates, but it is strange how fishing can be very productive during adverse conditions. Wearing the right clothing can make such a difference so the rain and the cold has a minimum effect. There has been massive developments in technological advancements in clothing. Some of us have already got fishing bookings confirmed for the week between Christmas and the New Year!
Lots to do before then, as well as coaching and having some days fishing for myself with friends.