9 September – Little Bognor

Heavy rain before lunch eased in the early afternoon despite the forecast. I visited Little Bognor and was pleased to see that the lakes looked fresh and clean. The rain had settled the dust and pollen, the colours of the trees and plants were intense. The Trout were rising all over the bottom lake but the top lake was flat calm, there were no signs of fish.

I looked into the river at Rotherbridge, the streamer weed was turning brown and the water looked grey and cool. I peered through the railings on both sides of the bridge for several minutes but no fish revealed themselves. I preferred the shelter of the Beech trees and the rising Trout at Little Bognor.


I returned to the lakes and felt confident that I could catch a few Trout on buzzers. The fish were rolling over, head-and-tail, in classic buzzer rise forms. I stood under the umbrella of the Beech trees, the ground was too wet to sit behind the ferns. The Beech leaves shed the light rain into the margins of the lake where the Trout were leisurely wandering around sipping buzzers. I tried a black buzzer and a size 18 red buzzer but although the fish saw the flies, they were ignored. There was too much seed and leaf debris for a dry fly, the fish would never have found an Adams.


Earlier I had seen a bedraggled crane fly in the grass between the lakes. My imitation Daddy seemed large and crude compared with the natural. I flicked it into an area of water relatively free of leaves and waited for a response. A Trout rose under the fly and rejected it, I was not surprised. A few casts later a fish rose, took the fly and went on a long run down the lake. The Trout toured the lake and then became tangled in the twigs under my feet. I dug it out with the landing net and nursed it in the shallows until it swam away. I tried to tempt another fish from under the trees in the corner by the stone quarry but there was no response.


I was pleased to have tied an imitation Daddy, to have noticed the natural in the grass and to have had the opportunity to catch a Trout on a new pattern. I will have to tie a few more but I will make them smaller.