Monday, 28 April 2008


I was limited to two short sessions over the weekend , on
Friday I met up with Phil for a couple of hours and I also
managed to do the same Sunday with Mike . I had decided
on trying to target bigger fish and so had tied some flies
of a bigger size ,these consisted of some more Peeping Caddis
this pattern is fast becoming the number one fish taker for
me at the moment , it may be a confidence thing but it seems
a real killer. Searching was what I intended these short sessions
to entail .
With that in mind I tied some up on Partridge 10s sure hold
Lightning Barbless , the hook is for Dry's but I use it for all my
wets at the moment I just love it and it works a treat.
I also incorporated the largest Gold head I had , in my quest
to search the depths of the deeper pools . A few Woolly Buggers
made up the rest a couple on size 8's . These are the biggest flies
that I have targeted river Brown Trout with .

On the Friday evening I once more arrived in the middle
of a hatch , Phil had taken a few fish and the temptation
was to put a little F-fly on and fish the dry , I can become
quite obsessed doing this but managed to resist . So on
went the Peeping Caddis with the Wooly as the dropper.
The dropper was slightly the heavier fly but I wanted to
make sure they fished deep and bumped along the
bottom , in faster water I can fish down and across as well
as up steam allowing me to cover all possible holding areas .
Carefully wading above the first spot I dropped in a short
cast and let the line swing round , a sharp bang and the first
fish was on it gave me a good fight and a better feeling of
achievement it was slightly above the average size breaking
the pound mark around 13in .
I thought I had cracked it but although a few more fish found
the net they were all average under a pound about 10in long.
The other thing was the large amount of bumps and pulls
without making a hook up that I seemed to encounter.
Once more we had enjoyed our evening and made our
way back to the cars , Phil now looks quite at home on the
fly and is spotting areas that he would have walked past
months ago , now he drops down and takes fish.
On the Sunday I met up with Mike he had also had a fish
when I arrived , following him down the Mill Race with the
same team and set up I was soon into a Brownie , again
what I would class as a average fish but very welcome none
the less . I had come with the same intention of Searching
the depths for a bigger fish , no doubt I was probably missing
out on more smaller fish and who knows maybe bigger ones
as well ? I took one more on this set up and dropped another
with a hook pull , my luck ran out on a snag leaving just the
dropper .
Mike pointed out a fish rising at the bottom of the pool.
Removing the Dropper I popped on a F-fly 20's again it was
tied on the Partridge hook .

Making my way below the fish I waited , I was ready for a
little change from the wet tactics and this gave me a some
light relief .
After a few casts and no response I rested it for a while the
fish soon rose again , I had not seen any flies coming off so
stuck with my original pick , I thought I may get another
couple of casts and runs past with the fly before I put its
head down ,second cast and the fish rose I struck and felt
the reassuring resistance , when I held it it was again very
Sea Trout looking a nice little fish .
Mike was busy catching and he is now fishing the fly well
he had five fish , all downstream , a method he is now more
than adequate at , his general watercraft as allowed him to
pick up this Fluff Chucking stuff very quickly ,we just need
the conditions for him to take on the dry .
Like all the fish we catch retuning them after a quick snap
is very rewarding. This was another Silver fish .
As we left the river was colouring up and rising slightly .
My thoughts are of what to try next I'm sure the river holds
some big Brownies , the one I had last week was well over two
pound and it was the length of my net , the fisherman in me
imagines the possibility of a large Trout lurking in the river
just waiting for me to find the rite fly and method to hook it
who knows maybe next time !

Sunday, 20 April 2008

Trout on Sunday

I arrived at the river at around 1.30 , Phil's car was parked
up , we had arranged to meet at the Three Tunnels pool
As the river can be seen from the wall I decided to see how
Phil was doing before I made my way down to the water ,
''anything doing'' the reply came back ''yes had one'' by
this time it was plain to see that a large hatch of flies was
coming off and Trout were rising everywhere .
Now my pace quickened the thought of a few fish on the dry
was most appealing.
Phil was just landing another Brownie as I reached the top of
the pool , a nice fish about 12oz.
A quick word with him to see what the hatch was , Olive Dunn
seemed to be the best match , so I chose a size 18's tied to 3lb
fluro .
After a few casts I was in to my first Trout typical size for
the river under a pound , the rise was slowing much to my
disappointment , but one or two fish could be seen so I
changed to a 20's F -fly , as the fly reached the point were
a nice trout had been rising first run and it took 1.9lb was
the result after a good scrap.

After one more from the pool we decided to move to the
viaduct , as the fast water riffled down a few fish could be
seen still taking dries ,I took two more on the dry before
the rise finished Phil was busy trying the wet, with little
luck , I changed too and put a Gold Head Hares Ear 14's
on the point with a little Black spider Tin head 16'S on the
dropper . Two more fish followed on what was becoming a
very productive day.
Phil now tied a weighted Hares Ear I had given him on a 12's
not a pretty fly but it's a killer , Phil admitted he put it in his
box and fished the run with a fancy bought thing without a
touch , first cast with the fat ugly thing and bang !
After a good fight in a very strong current a nice Brownie
came to the net 1.5lb and very nice too , think he was
smiling at the fish but he did say he laughed when the
Trout took on my fat fly.
We now went our separate ways for an hour , I left Phil at
the Mill Race pool while I went to the Green Pipe , It's real
fast water with deep gullies when you get a fish it's good fun.

At this point I was fishing a new fly I had tied , the fish had
gone down and I thought this would be an ideal time to try
it I have seen all sorts of Caddis in a few colours , on the
Dane in Chesire they are a bright green , plain Hares Ear
seems a favorite here , so with this in mind I had tied this
Peeping Hares Ear on a 12's .
More fish followed the best was just over a pound , most
taking upstream as I watched the leader and hit any little
twitch. I continued in this manner and as often happens as
I lifted the fly as it passed I felt a heavy thud ''Ahrr stuck''
but no this snag was moving this was the fish I had waited
for and what a great scrap it gave ,finally it came over the
net . No scales at this point but it was well over 2lb and in
fantastic condition .

We finished with a few more fish bringing our total to around
twenty . We both chatted on our walk back to the car about a
a very nice day and when we can get back
for a few more hours .

Thursday, 10 April 2008

Uncle Johns Reel

I was reading Pat Reagan's web site on fishing the dry
and my mind turned to an old rod that could be cut down
to make a ideal little 7ft 3# weight only thing a little reel
to fit it ?
I wrote on here a few months ago about a old reel and after
over a year of saying I would clean it up ,thinking of making
the little rod combined with with the bad weather meant I
finally got round to it.
It was two Christmas back when opening what I thought was
my new Center Pin , my eyes first set upon this 'old rusty thing'
my mouth dropped ! much to the amusement of the family and
especially my Uncle John .
After then receiving my new reel ; much to my relief : I settled
down with a drink and picked the reel up , my Uncle then told
me a little bit about it and the subject soon turned to times
spent fishing .
One tale is how we stopped on the river over night me and our
Neil (my cousin) were sheltering in the tent , meanwhile our
Dads polished a full bottle of Whiskey off and preceded to sing
and laugh all night in the pouring rain . As the Sun lit the banks
they had also been keeping several other anglers amused who
had made there way to the river before first light .
The first thing was a good clean , the reel was a little stiff
a bit of hot water and a scrub followed by a bit of oil freed
things up . Next on the agenda was a visit to my work ,I
have access to a glass bead blaster which makes a nice job
of cleaning old metal .
A little polish on the screws gave the reel a nice finish and
I was ready for the next stage

The reel as no markings or stamps so it may have little
worth and is a little antiquated . Not that I would sell it,
it's of great value because of who gave it me .
So I set about making it comfortable for use , after the
refurb of the metal and a little more oil the only thing
was the handle . It was baker lite (not sure how to spell)
and this stuff seems to become brittle after a time , seeing
this reel had seen through it's life the threat of a Nazi
invasion it was a little past it's best but still solid .
The reel having no name or mark meant I was not restoring
it to it's original condition , so I settled for a wooden winder.
As I cleaned the reel , eared it's reassuring click , polished
the metal , I became more attached and to make it even
more so I cut a piece off Logan's Cherry tree for the handle
It's Logan's Cherry Tree because it was given to him when
he was born by Ian , it resides in the garden and is always
called by that name . Its a special tree for the above reasons
I may be soft but that little touch makes the reel even more
personalto me .
I took a few tools and basically whittled away at it , gradually
it took shape and fitted nice and snug , so much so I could
have left it without resin .
The more I worked it and the better it looked , I kept
putting my fingers in the winding position , until it was
comfortable , like I wanted .
Nearly finished I smoothed it over with a little sand paper
and added some wood oil to protect it against water .
The oil brought out the grain and added a nice colour to the
wood , the finished handle is a little larger than on a
standard reel of the size but it's spot on for me . A couple
of coats of clear varnish and it's all ready.
I will now have to sort my little rod out and see what
weight of line it can cast before setting one up on the
reel .
I can hardly wait for my first fish on this little set up
it should be good fun .
I said on that Christmas day I would use it and
catch a fish , that promise is a little closer now .

Cheers ............Uncle John

Sunday, 6 April 2008

A New Water

The weather forecast was looking bad , we had planed a few
hours out , not wanting to miss a opportunity we decided to
give it a go . Phil found a new water which we could try and
he and Mike were to pick me up at 10am .
A quick call to the fishery early brought a little info and I
decided to tie a few flies , they both arrived as I was finishing
the last one .
After a pleasant trip through some scenic countryside and
past some fishy looking waters we arrived . As we walked
up to the water we were met by the owner he gave us a
quick rundown of prices , showed us the fisherman's cabin
which as well as being a good shelter also had a free supply
of Tea and Coffee , all in all it was a nice welcome .
We were soon all gazing at the water quite a few Trout could
be seen head and tailing , Mike noticed a hot Tub in the owners
garden and you could just about of cast a fly from it into the
water which was basically at the bottom of his garden
( ermmmm sounds R-Reet)
So having booked in we all set about tackling up ,me and Mike
were busy discussing flies and tactics I turned to ask Phil but
he was already some 20 yards away setting up in a nice spot
it brought a smile to our faces , Phil's angling knowledge picked
this out , as well as rising fish , a couple of boats laid up and a
couple of other features meant it was a good pick , he may have
only been fishing the fly a short while but having fished a long
time he has a good all round base to build from, making the
process a lot easier than someone starting from scratch.
The way the fish were feeding made me think a team of
buzzers under a suspender was the way to go , at a guess
a little black number was the ones to try , 1 hour later not a
touch !
Frustrated I turned to a blob second cast and something hit
the fly all to quickly the line slackened . I was buoyed by this
and thought a fish would soon follow ''how wrong I was'' .
Mike had followed the wind to the bottom of the water , like Phil he
has a good depth of angling knowledge , following the wind is
something both fish and then in turn we do, the fish to find food
blown down and us to catch the fish . Mike like us had little luck
the cold easterlythat cut across the water was probably responsible .
I started to fish and while doing so noticed a few fish chasing fry ,
I had a few little pulls and plucks a change to a ''Cats Whisker''
was the thing I needed to do . Mike left me to brew up , we had
decided earlier that first to catch would make the cupper's but
with the threat of dehydration becoming more likely than a fish
we changed our minds .Third cast and ''bang'' my Dad had just
text me from his Hols and as I was reading the trout hit the fly
as it dropped a good scrap and a nice fish around 2lb .
A quick re cast a slow retrieve and I was in again the fish gave a
goodaccount of itself and was of about the same size .
I now went for my brew which was stone cold , goingto the
cabin stopping to chat with Phil on my way I must be a lucky
charm as Phil hooked his first while I was with him , although
in all ikely hood it was more down to his change of tactics
suspending his pattern under a indicator . After brewing up
and on myway back he was into another .
We finished with four fish , on quite a hard but very enjoyable day ,
and we found a good welcome at a nice little water ,not too bad at all

Tuesday, 1 April 2008

A not so Snowy River

After a nice day on the river last week I could not stay away
so I decided to explore a little downstream , we experienced
rain on and off most of the week so I knew fishing was out but
a walk with Melanie and the kids meant I could have a mooch
around and spend some family time as well .

The day on a Snowy river had left me thinking of little else
and I had been busy throughout the following week tying
flies .
When reading one of Mikes posts I noticed he said that this
was a favorite time of year for him , the clocks change meaning
a few hours on the river at evening time are now possible.
Not to waste an opportunity we arranged to meet up .
The river was not Snowy this time but she was up a good foot
and tinged with colour , the plus side it was finning down and
not as cold as on our previous visit .
We decided to walk a little upstream to the Mill race ,
I had spotted a area where the wall nooks back and
was just going to say to Mike that looks a good spot , but
he had already spotted it and pointed it out , It was exactly
in this area I made contact with the first fish , a nice Brownie
it even posed while Mike took it's photo on a stone , these
Trout are very silver and this one had big red spots almost
Sea Trout like in appearance .

I had fished to the bottom end of the pool taking one more
fish , as I made my way back I had one more cast in the nook
third run and I had a good take a couple of minutes later the
best Brown of the evening was in the net .
I had one more small fish and that ended a nice few hours.
Mike fished as hard if not harder than me , his first fly caught
river fish can not be far off , he fished well , I just wished he had
got one . It's hard when you are doing something new and don't
catch , you wonder if you are getting it wrong on this occasion I
think a little luck was all he needed ,his fly skills are improving
now it's just a matter of time .

A not so Snowy river


"Life is but a dream?"

"... on a good day of fishing, the job, the noise and clutter ... fade away until there is only water and the rhythm of the rod and, now and then, a fish."

-Random Phrump

''A Thought''

A simple philosophy I have adopted over the years has been tested and re-enforced in the past few weeks. It is to celebrate those good and pleasing things encountered in daily life, no matter how small, with at least the same vigour as I bemoan the bad or merely vexing.
-Steve Dobson

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