2 August – Little Bognor

Yesterday at Glorious Goodwood the heat, sun and racing had taken their toll. I needed a relaxing day to unwind. I went to the river via Little Bognor and then to the lakes in the northern part of the Estate. As I drove down the slope towards Great Springs I saw a Buzzard and two Kestrels hunting in the same field. Some of the sheep were nibbling the grass and disturbing all sorts of prey. The sensible sheep were asleep under the hedgerow.

The sun was unrelenting and it was not difficult to decide where to fish. The mature trees and deep sided valley at Little Bognor provided shade and the spring fed lakes cooled the air. I had a long lunch sitting on the wooden seat under the Beech trees. I watched the Trout taking a variety of flies all over the lake, mainly buzzers and damsels. As the sun moved round to the west the shadows on my side of the grew shorter and the fish became less active under the trees.


I found a hollow in the slope of the bank which would support my back and settled down to await the arrival of a fish. It was too hot to continually flick the fly about under the branches and constant casting would disturb the fish. I waited about thirty minutes for a fish to swirl, it was on my left and only a yard from the bank. I flicked the black buzzer infront of me and about ten feet away. As I slowly drew the fly towards me there was a thump on the rod and then nothing. I had bumped it off on a short line. The seventh consecutive Trout that I have induced to take and subsequently lost.


I was convinced that another fish would be along shortly so I prepared the rod and rested it on the moss and leaves ready for action. I had started the session with a 4lb bs Stroft tippet and a size 12 buzzer, reasoning that this would enable me to keep hold of the fish I hooked. My approach was partially successful because I had proved to myself that the fish were not shy of the heavier tippet.

I waited patiently but the fish had moved across the lake into the shade on the west side. I knew it would be several hours before the sun dipped below the trees completely and the evening rise started. I was too tired and dehydrated to wait that long.