28 August – Perryfields

The Bank Holiday weekend had been a scorcher so after the usual Monday meeting, I went to Great Springs for a cup of tea and a walk around the lakes. I wanted to see if the hot weather had killed any Trout. A few Trout were rising and some were just splashing about. This year’s Roach fry were feeding in the shallows and stirring up the mud. The prospects for the evening looked good and I was tempted to stay. I had all of the lakes to myself.

However, the river was calling me. I decided to fish the South bank of the river, downstream from Taylor’s Bridge. The access to the water above Perryfields is better on the south bank. I signed in and went to the bridge to set up my rod. A small fish rose just above the bridge and I crept around the nettles to flick a nymph over it. I messed up the second cast and decided to rest the pool, I would return later. As I walked downstream I heard voices and splashing. It was a young couple in a canoe. I politely asked them to leave, they apologised and left after telling me they had been to the small island and back. Most of the Beat had been ruined. I made a mental note to keep away from the river on Bank Holidays.


I walked to the Island and looked for the deeper runs under the trees along the far bank. The casting was tricky but I only lost one fly. About a hundred yards above Perryfields Barn I found a long, deep pool that ended with a tree tunnel. It looked promising. I sat on the grass behind the balsam and gradually covered the top end of the pool. Extending line kept me out of sight and also gave me access to the middle of the pool. I shuffled along a bit and put a fly close to the trees in the mouth of the tunnel. It was taken with a bang but the fish came off.

I moved down to the bridge the sides of which were covered in blackberries, elderberries and rose hips. A winemakers dream. I sampled a few but they were ‘pippy’, past their best. There were a few fish rising under the Oak trees where it was impossible to cast. I saw a good fish rising directly under the bridge and I made a long cast with a double-haul. I think it was too long, the Trout stopped rising.

Two hours had elapsed since the canoeists departed and the sun was going down. I thought that the Beat upstream of the Island would have settled down. I crept along the bank and trundled a nymph beside the beds of streamer weed but had no takes. On my way back to Taylor’s Bridge I didn’t see a fish rise. Even the fish above the bridge had disappeared. Nevermind, the summer holidays finish next week and the countryside will be a quieter place. The Autumn is usually the best part of the season.