On Thursday evening I planned to walk along the river and show a new member the best pools. We would chat about rivercraft. With a rod each. It would be more walking and talking than fishing. There were big clouds and a stiff westerly breeze which would help presentation. Excellent fishing conditions, no excuses.
We started at the Ladymead pool. We watched the water for rising fish while discussing the currents and sand banks. Polarising sunglasses were essential. We started exploring the run under the near bank with a weighted nymph. A fish splashed in the tail of the pool, right in the middle of the fast water. A few casts down and across failed to get a response. We walked upstream, stopping to look at the river’s features, the depth, the speed of the current and the weed beds. There were no flies hatching and the trout were well hidden.
Below Taylor’s Bridge the river had great potential, the flow and colour were perfect. A few beds of streamer weed were just reaching the surface. We sat beside the shallow pool, it was my turn to explore the pool. I worked a black nymph down and across the top of the pool, just below a bush. After five minutes a good fish rose and took a fly from the surface about twenty yards downstream. I continued edging down the pool, gradually working towards the critical square yard. I shuffled down the bank on my knees and covered the area, there was a swirl which could have been a ‘cats paw’. I lengthened the cast and swung the fly across the current. The line drew tight and the fish felt like a good one. It was a wild trout and it scrapped all the way to the landing net. It was about eight ounces and looked like a sea trout. It had a pronounced dark trailing edge to it’s tail, just like a chub. It swum away very strongly.
It was getting chilly and the light was failing so we adjourned to The Badgers to continue our discussions. We had converted the theory into practice and caught a trout.