Content with making best of a less than memorable season

Some would say, and I include myself among them, that there is no such thing as a bad day's fishing - it is just that some are better than others.

I think the same could be said for fishing seasons and the one that finished this week would finish down the ranks. The floods of the spring made many rivers unfishable for weeks at a time but, luckily, there were dams that could be fished. As result, I found that my average weight for the trout that I caught was much higher than usual

Once back on the rivers when they had dropped to a fishable level, old fishy spots had disappeared but, as always, new ones had formed. It was just a matter of discovering them. In some places it was like fishing a completely new river with long stretches being unrecognisable. It was not until the latter half of the season that things returned to something near normal. In the last couple of days of the season, it was back to the dams or rather one dam, Mathias'.

That was on Monday, which happened to be my birthday, and what better way to spend a birthday than going fishing, even though it was cold, wet and windy and ended with snow on the hills. It was dull and damp as I started to fish but the water was clear. I covered some likely spots but touched nothing and only saw two rises. The wind rose so I moved to a more sheltered area and straight away saw a fish swirl and it took when I covered it. This fish was on the dropper, which was a water boatman. Within a few minutes, I had another fish this time on the point fly, a damsel fly nymph. Both of these fish were 1.5kg brown trout.

After lunch, the sun came out but the wind was much stronger and colder so I fished along with the willows at my back. I saw a rise and eventually hooked a fish which was a different one, as the first fish rose again in the same spot while I was playing it. This was again on the water boatman. Several more followed including some rainbows and a very good brown of 2kg.

The burst of activity in the afternoon coincided with the wind shifting to the southwest, which indicates rising atmospheric pressure. Late in the day, the temperature dropped and the wind increased and it seemed like a sensible thing to call it a day. It is never too late to be sensible.

I have already started to tie flies for next season, tying some water boatmen on a lovely sunny afternoon. Now is the time to check over tackle so that it is ready to go next season, or for an emergency fishing day in the winter. I think I will have to do something about my fishing vest as it stinks and is in danger of being banished to a far corner of the section.

This is my last column until September.


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